Last Tuesday Chrysalis had their Spring Festival and their Open Day, a celebration of the change of season and a chance for parents to have a look around, learn some things, ask some questions and meet with other parents. We have visited Chrysalis before but not in such detail. Getting to the school you cross a number of rivers/creeks as you wind your way into the Thora Valley, when you arrive at the school you can't help but be struck by the surrounds; waterfalls in the surrounding mountains, the luscious bush, the flowers, the rivers (yes the school gets flooded in, usually without students in it), all pretty damn striking and then you have the school which looks like hobbit town nestled into it. The school is on a few levels and it really fits the environment, most of the buildings are mudbrick and made by the school community. There is so much to discover here and I love the undeniable presence of the natural environment that is part of the school.
Scott and I both fell in love with the school all over again and just felt so lucky to have the opportunity to send our children here. We really love the gentle nature of the school and it's approach to learning. One student who is now sixteen and has gone through Chrysalis from Kindergarten to Year 8, was just beaming as she was telling us how even now her and her friends (all the kids in her Chrysalis year) say these have been the best years of their lives so far, there is such a tight bond with the steiner kids, their parents, their teachers and the community.
Scott sat in on the curriculum talk whilst I played with Ilo, and he was really impressed by the variety of skills and the way in which the students learn; learning through nature, through experience, through stories. Scott is currently asleep, so cannot really comment further or give any detailed examples, maybe at a later date perhaps.
Poe spent the day with the Kindy class and was in heaven, he couldn't believe there was a fireplace (a mud brick one at that) in the storytelling room and that whilst they were eating lunch there was a swallow flitting about feeding it's babies in a nest just above their heads (they were eating lunch at a table in a kind of little cave, a roof and three walls but a big opening to the outside). He and Little Kindy performed a Spring dance with Kindy as part of Spring Festival, complete with flower garlands on their heads and little feet and arms going in and out the "windows". He claimed that his flowers were so bright he nearly couldn't see and every time he looked at them he just went "what!, flowers on my head! what!". Sweet precious one. As I write this, we have just finished decorating the house for when he wakes on his fifth birthday tomorrow. He is having a fairy party and he wishes that when he wakes up he will be as tall as Harriet. I will definitely post all about the party but before that post I have to post about the amazing Genevieve and her birthday gifts, our nourishing and precious visit from Annie, Genevieve, Olive, Oscar and Megs, my birthday, the arrival of Jen, Rod, Lily and Saul and then finally the Poe adoration/birthday blog. Oh my goodness what a backlog (for some reason I am tempted to say backblog but it kind of sounds too much like backbog, which really doesn't sound great at all). hmmmmm i am tired.