“The only way to stop the juggernaut is to stop running, and start thinking of time as music that we don’t want to stop the flow of, or a gift with which we have been graced.” Phil Cousineau, Once and Future Myths.”
Happy New Year!
I love how we have a New Year in the middle of the school year! It is such a gift to be able to press the reset button and re-establish rhythms, goals, and routines.
My New Year’s resolution? To be more present and in flow with time. Like the quote above, I am searching for the balancing point between keeping the rush of the outer world flowing (rather than drowning in it), while surfing my inner world.
Instead of seeing time as a scarcity, time is a gift, if we look at it that way. As always, being in a place of gratitude is the best attitude. Doreen Dvorscak, the kindergarten assistant, has a mantra, “I have all the time in the world!”
Favorite Time of the Year
For many teachers at Rainbow, the next couple months are their favorite time of the year. Why? Because your children tend to return from winter break very focused. I think it has something to do with the magic of time – over break grown-ups almost always jump off the juggernaut and spend quality time together as a family.
It also has to do with winter, a time when our souls turn inward. Your children may learn more in the next couple months than the whole rest of the school year. At their student-led conference in March, you will see the results of their progress and be amazed by their epiphanies.
A New Time: The rhythm of the whole school will be different over these coming winter months. We all worked very hard to complete the capital campaign in December so that we can move on from the hub-bub of fundraising and into a more contemplative time. In case you didn’t see it, here is the GOOD NEWS I sent out on December 19:
“What an amazing community! This last week was a landslide of donations. At this point, virtually everyone has given to the combined campaign. Even MORE families participated than last year!!!! Some classes have 100% participation, and school-wide participation is about 90%. Together, you raised close to $130,000, and still more is coming in. While that is a little short of the goal, with participation so incredibly high, we know that all of you did your best. The board and the fundraising committee are amazed and humbled.
Therefore, the board announced last night that we will go ahead and break ground. They decided to limit the project to just what is absolutely needed to open the new classrooms, and the rest of the project can be cut out or put off. We are also getting some incredible in-kind donations that will greatly cut costs. In addition, since family participation is so high, we think we will be able to leverage that to bring in some more grant funds. Plus, some donations are still rolling in. It’s going to work!
You will learn more about all this later, but for now, I just wanted thank all of you for being such a beautiful community, and send you off into the holiday break knowing this good news.
Peace, love, light, and gratitude.”
So, What’s Next? Indeed, contractor, Chris Fox, turned in the request for permit on December 22.
In order to have the necessary classrooms ready for next school year, we have to break ground as soon as the city approves our permit. We still have to raise some funds to fund the construction.
Fundraiser, Sara Stender, will be working on attaining some grant funding for the next few months, in-kind donations toward the construction, as well as gaining more business sponsors.
Of course, if you never got around to donating to the campaign, and you don’t want to be left out, you can always make your donation. Several people have even made second donations to help fill the funding gap. Again, the participation behind this campaign is delightful! Thank you everyone!
Volunteer Hours Used Creatively
I want to give a special shout-out to Geneva Novik, mom of Sasha, in first grade. Geneva used her volunteer hours to produce the campaign video that we showed at the winter program.
This was a huge project, and Geneva poured her heart and creative talent into it. What a great idea she had! By the way, If you have a special talent or skill that you think can be utilized to help Rainbow, you can always pitch an idea, like Geneva did, as a way to use your volunteer hours. I love great ideas!
Student Talent Show
Speaking of talent… did you know the student talent show is in February? It’s my favorite event of the year – always a testimony to our creative and supportive community. That will be Friday, February 20.
Hobey Ford Show
Then, Rainbow is hosting a very special creative show – nationally renowned, Hobey Ford, will bring his puppets on Saturday, February 28. When Hobey performs at Diana Wortham Theatre it is to a sell-out crowd, and The Diana Wortham Theatre has twice as many seats as our Rainbow Community Auditorium, so you will want to purchase tickets early. They are in the office, Malaprops Bookstore downtown, or you can get them online here.
Get Ready to Talk with Your Child
For students in the fourth through eighth grade; the next few months bring some important experiences. The annual ski trip is January 23. For many students this will be their first time on skis or a snowboard – a time to expand their boundaries.
Also, over the next few weeks, older students will be starting or continuing their sex education, and students in 6th and 7th grade will engage in substance prevention education. We will provide plenty of guidelines for parents about how to have these frank and open conversations at home.
Thinking About Next Year
Now that the push for the capital campaign is over, I begin looking ahead toward next year. This week, I will be drafting the 2015-16 budget, and shortly after that the board will be approving the tuition rates for next year.
Admissions director, lovely Sheila Mraz, will be asking for your intentions for next year, and in February your contract to secure a spot for the following year will be due.
Stay Cozy. Just as the seeds beneath the ground are resting and soaking up as much earth energy as possible right now, we need to also. It is definitely a time to be grounded. Let’s savor every moment we have. Spring will be here before we know it.