The Space We Hold


SAVE THE DATE

Eurythmy for Parents
A short 15-minute eurythmy session to start your day, no experience necessary
Monday, October 22, 8:30 - 8:45am

New Book Club: Simplicity Parenting by Kim John Payne
Monday, October 22nd, 8:45 - 9:45am (group meets every 2 weeks)

JUNIPER children -last day to bring a 16oz wide-mouth jar to prepare for the Lantern Walk
Monday, October 22nd

NAS Parent Walk-Through (for in-house families)
Observe classrooms and explore the foundations of Waldorf education with Jennifer
Wednesday, October 24th, 8:30 - 9:15am

Parenting Support Group w/Bank Street + University Settlement
Thursday, October 25th, 9:30 - 11:30am (email Jennifer to join)

Coffee Friday
Friday, October 26th, 8:30 - 9:30am
Free coffee! Good company! Head downstairs after drop-off


In Gratitude

Thank you to David, Tom, Idan, Jason, and Jimmy for putting up the blackboards in the first grade room. Who knew it would take five people and so much time? Ms. Park and the first grade are very appreciative!

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Thank you to the many families who came and worked in the garden the past weekend. The children returned to play in El Jardin this week and had a beautiful, clean space thanks to you!

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Thank you to Rachel for so generously bringing fresh-brewed coffee each week to our Coffee Fridays, to Margaret & NAPA for organizing, and to all parents for coming together, connecting, and nurturing one another at our newest weekly gathering.

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 Willow students in their own little world
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AMAZON SMILE

Did you know that your Amazon purchases could be raising funds for our school? Shop through Amazon Smile to easily help our school:

1. Go to smile.amazon.com

2. Choose New Amsterdam School as your selected charity

3. Shop as normal and a percentage of what you spend is automatically donated to our school! 


12 SENSES: SENSE OF PROPRIOCEPTION

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Have you ever closed your eyes and walked forward, not being able to rely on sight, your senses honing in on the feeling of your own body moving? If you haven't tried it, you might. This sense of your body's movement is proprioception and it's the third of the four "foundational senses" in Rudolf Steiner’s concept of the twelve senses present in the human being, after touch and life. Developing these foundational senses is a large part of our early childhood program and there is much parents can do at home as well.

A well-developed sense of one's body in space allows us to move, literally, through our day with ease and a feeling of orientation. This in turn allows our thinking to focus on things such as reading instead of on the question of where our limbs are in relation to each other and the objects around us. Of course, children with a weak sense of proprioception are not aware that their consciousness is being diverted, but they do seek to stimulate this sense. Moving freely and lifting are two ways they will develop their sense of proprioception. These two activities stimulate our joints, tendons, and muscles, which feeds crucial sensory information to us. Children who "cannot sit still," bump into others, or seem unable to carry their own bag, often need more time to move freely in their environment and more opportunities to carry groceries, blocks, or their own backpack. Although at times our instinct is to have them move less freely in order to protect them, when we facilitate more time for spinning, jumping, landing, running, crawling, dancing, skiing, walking, climbing – really any free movement added to plenty of opportunity to carry things of varied weight, including their own bodies! – we help to develop in them a healthy sense of proprioception. Walking with a backpack to kindergarten, instead of scootering or riding in a stroller for example, will help your child be ready to focus her mind on learning in a more academic environment when the time comes. Read more in the links below!

The Importance of a Large Movement Vocabulary

Wonder of Childhood: Sense of Self-Movement

Waldorf Library: The Spacial Ins & Outs of Proprioception

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WHY MIXED-AGE KINDERGARTEN?

You've probably already heard that next school year we will add a classroom to the early childhood program and that all three rooms (Juniper, Willow, and the third class) will be "mixed-age kindergarten." What does that really mean? It means that all three classrooms will have 3 to 6-year-olds and because of this children will no longer move from Maple, to Willow, to Juniper. They will move from Maple into one of the mixed-age classes and then stay with their teacher until they go to first grade. We are moving to this model for several reasons. This model gives children, parents, and teachers time to develop a deeper bond over multiple years. It also gives children time to grow their confidence and develop mastery in their environment, which supports the leap from kindergarten to first grade. Perhaps most interestingly, it is a better reflection of family life, which can be so important especially in our city where many children do not have siblings. Younger children learn by watching their older classmates and older classmates learn the satisfaction of responsibility and the joys of caring for a younger child. Every child experiences anticipation and fulfillment over their time in the classroom family. This kind of program is now being implemented in many schools around the world out of an impulse to ensure our early childhood programs are as true to life, and as full of life, as possible. When children of different ages have different learning needs, requiring teachers to coordinate and plan a broader and more age-diverse program, the classroom comes to life in a whole new way and deeper learning and growth comes out of that energy. Louise de Forest began this conversation with you earlier this week, and we will offer more conversations through the year on this topic.

 In the mixed-age kindergarten classes, the children are simultaneously both teachers and students.

In the mixed-age kindergarten classes, the children are simultaneously both teachers and students.


Join a Monday MORNING Book CLub!

Our book clubs meet on Mondays from 8:45 - 9:45am (alternating weeks, so each club meets approximately every 2 weeks, except for school holidays). This season, we will be discussing the following works:

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Book Club #1

Developing the Self Through the Inner Work Path in the Light of Anthroposophy by Lisa Romero

Ancient and modern practices are re-enlivened to meet humanity’s evolving needs and to fulfill our present task of cultivating freedom and love to its highest degree.

This group includes meditative drawing!

Next meeting Monday 10/29, 8:45 - 9:45am

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Book Club #2

Simplicity Parenting by Kim John Payne offers a pathway to simplify four realms of your home to reduces stress and allow room for connection, creativity, and relaxation. The book focuses on streamlining your environment, establishing rhythms and rituals, simplifying children’s schedules, and scaling back on media.

First meeting is Monday 10/22, 8:45 - 9:45 am


A Final Note:

Our new Spanish teacher Joseph Smeall has embarked on the New Yorker rite-of-passage of hunting for an apartment. If anyone within our community knows of rooms for rent (in any neighborhood!), please email him directly at joseph.smeall@columbia.edu. Many thanks!


Belle Savransky