Greetings! The past two weeks were comprised of only six school days due to the Balinese celebration of Galungan along with a Muslim holiday. Even though the school weeks were shorter, our days were filled with learning and fun. Let’s start by looking at our most recent day of school…Friday. We started off the day with an engaging Green Studies class led by Pak Brett and Pak Made. The children used all five of their senses to explore sugar cane which is growing in some of the gardens around campus. The teachers brought us to an area in front of the bamboo bridge to find the sugar cane and then Pak Made cut some for us to observe as well as to taste. What a sweet way to begin the day!
Following our nature walk, the students returned to prepare for the full moon ceremony. Ibu Ria guided the children to make “kwangen” which are special cone-shaped offerings, and the Starlings followed the sequential order to place the flowers and leaves inside the kwangen. Then, we walked up to the temple on campus and participated in the ceremony.
After snack and playground time, the children walked to the yoga studio for a special session with a Sufi master who played a unique stringed instrument and had a marvelous hat. He was accompanied by a flute player, a drummer, and a woman who created sound by pouring water. It was mesmerizing. They played an assortment of songs for us, and each song invited us to do something different, such as to relax to a lullaby, make animal sounds, or to dance. We also watched the practice of whirling, which involves the dancer spinning around and around.
In the afternoon, a moment that we have been looking forward to finally arrived….our debut performance on the stage. The students sang, “Hello to all the Children of the World” and showcased some of the many different ways to say hello in other languages. They prepared the flags from their home countries and proudly wore these as necklaces. We are so proud of them. Can you believe that all of this happened in just one school day? Hopefully everyone will have a restful weekend as we have another exciting event happening on Monday…our first field trip. We will meet at 8:15 am next to the BioBus for our excursion to the Bali Circus.
Our first thematic lesson, “My Body and My 5 Senses” has come to a close. One of the highlights from our thematics was incorporating a mindfulness practice with our freshly baked pumpkin bread from Cooking Class. Each student was given a slice of pumpkin bread and asked to hold it in the palm of their hand without eating it. First we looked it carefully, from each angle as well as from a distance and also from up close. Then we smelled it by taking a few big breaths together and following that, used our fingers to feel the texture of the bread. After this, children were invited to put the pumpkin bread next to their ear and to listen for any messages. They shared some very interesting things that the pumpkin bread was saying to them. Finally, the students were asked to take a tiny piece of bread and just place it in their mouth and to notice the taste without chewing. With all of this suspense building, imagine how amazing the pumpkin bread tasted when we could eat it. We invite you to try this practice at home with your children or even by yourself. It was so much fun that we did it again!
On Thursday morning, we were blessed with another Mystery Guest. Pak Eric came and surprised us by reading a birthday book about Peppa Pig. We are very grateful. If you would like to be a Mystery Guest, Thursday mornings are a great time to visit so please contact me to schedule your visit. Our next available date is September 29. Thanks!
A few more highlights from the past 2 weeks:
Double Birthday Celebration!
Exploring texture by creating Feely Boxes
Strengthening gross motor skills
Next week, we embark on a new thematic lesson entitled, “Outside of Our Nest”. We will be exploring our campus by attending special classes with other grades and new teachers. We have some great visits planned and look forward to sharing more details with you as it unfolds.
Ibu Russlee *Ibu Ria *Ibu Yuadi *Ibu Komang