- Principal's Address
- New Office Building Official Opening
- Class Structure and Staffing for 2021
- GHSS Middle School Survey
- Bush Playgroup
- Bush School
- Bush School / Bush Kindy
- Karri Kindergarten
- Class One
- Class Three/Four
- The Mead of Poetry
- Class Five/Six
- Gardening News
- GHSS Preferred Supplier List
- Music Intensive with Paul Lawrence and Nicole Peterson
Dear Families and Friends of Golden Hill Steiner School,
Spring Clean Fair and Open Day What a wonderful Open Day and Spring Clean Fair we had a couple of weekends ago! In spite of the early rain, the return of the sun brought many visitors to our school to enjoy a cuppa and cake or a sausage in a bun, browse what was on offer at our Garage Sale stalls and to visit our beautiful classrooms and meet with our teachers.
A huge thank you to those that made the effort to book and man a stall; to our parents for baking treats, serving cuppas and cakes and sizzling sausages, thanks! I would like to make special mention of Teresa Stockdale for co-ordinating all things Sausage Sizzle; Katja Lamb for assisting with the groundwork and co-ordination on the day; Kylie for opening the shop; to the amazing staff of GHSS who assisted with preparations and then gave up their Saturday to man classrooms and stalls and to get the school looking its beautiful best so we could promote Golden Hill Steiner to both the converted and the curious - Denise, Sophia, Evie, Kristi, Lisa, Ashley, Renee, Kate, Theresa, Robyn, Ellen, Heather and Bruce; to Oona, Jody and Tegan for all the behind the scenes work leading up to the day - getting the word out, managing bookings, organising floats and the like; and Bill Hollingworth for taking a trailer load to the tip shop at the end of it all.
In the end we made $110 in stall bookings, $120 in sales of secondhand items, $595 on sausage sales and $555 on Tea, Coffee and Cake sales. Once costs are covered I anticipate we would have made about $1000 to put towards the Kitchen Garden Classroom and we have also had enrolment enquiries as a result of the Open Day. Congratulations one and all!
Administration Opening On Thursday we welcomed Mr Rick Wilson MP, the Hon Terry Redman MLA and Lisa Robertshaw from AISWA to the official opening of our Administration and Fire Services upgrade. We acknowledge that this project was made possible from Federal funding in the form of a Capital Grant and a Low Interest Loan application through the state government.
Many thanks to parent, Rosie Reddie, for adorning the building with her beautiful blooms for the opening and to all the school staff for ensuring that the space was looking its best on the day. Hannah Halls did an amazing job of catering the function - thanks Hannah. And Mike Hyder and an ensemble of the Golden Hill Fiddlers impressed guests with their beautiful music.
It was wonderful to also celebrate with the past board members and founders of the school who were responsible for all the planning to get us to this point. A fantastic result and a credit to all involved.
Class 6 Graduation Due to the restrictions on event numbers and physical distancing required under Phase 4 COVID-19 restrictions, our Graduation Ceremony for 2020 will be different to years gone by.
Classes 3-6 will attend the ceremony and each Class 6 student is able to have a maximum of 4 guests attend. This allows for parents plus siblings and/or grandparents to attend. Could Class 6 parents please notify the school of the number of guests that will be attending the Graduation ceremony on the morning of Thursday, December 17th so we are able to gorup seating accordingly.
Class 1 students will still make a rose presentation to the Class 6 graduates at the end of the ceremony and Class 5 parents are still able to prepare the morning tea as the number of people allowed in the kitchen is separate to the number for the hall.
Thank you for your understanding in regards to this. The school looks forward to a time when we can return to all families being welcomed once again in recognising the graduating class.
High School Survey Last week I had the pleasure of visiting Steiner Schools in WA with Board Chair, David Stockdale and founding teacher and parent and current board member, Jen Fraser, to look at how they had implemented expansion into the secondary years. Golden Hill Steiner School is on track to expand into the middle school years and to that end are gathering data from existing families on their intentions with relation to secondary schooling and if they would consider a Steiner Middle School option if it were available. We are particularly interested in hearing from families of Class 5 students and younger. If you are yet to complete the survey, please use the Survey Monkey link below to complete a survey for us. Please note, you are only able to complete the survey once.
Class Structure and Staffing for 2021 will be as follows:
Karri Kindy – Denise Bullen - M, Tu, W, Th
Karri Kindy – Bruce Anthony – Th, F
*Class 1 – Melanie Trenow - M, Tu ½ Th, ½ Fri
Class 2 – Lisa Dowden Parker - M, Tu, Th, F
Class 1 /2 Bush School – Bruce Anthony W
Class 3 / Indonesian - Ashley Schipp M, Tu, W, Th
Class 3 - Renee Schipp Th, F
Class 4/5 – Robyn Miller - Tu, W, Th, F
Class 4/5 – Kate - M
Class 6 – Ellen Somas - M, Tu, W, Th, F
*Class 1 numbers for 2021 are low. Mel will work 3 days a week and take Main Lesson 4 days a week with Class 1. Class 1 and 2 combine for Bush School on Wednesdays and on Thursday and Friday afternoons. Should numbers in the class increase we can look to increasing Mel’s time with the class.
A GHSS community survey has been created about the possibility of establishing a middle school program in the near future.
Golden Hill Steiner School is looking to expand our offering to include years 7 to 10 and we are seeking your thoughts and feedback. The survey monkey link will take you to this survey and we ask that you take the time to complete the survey by Wednesday, December 2nd.
Thank you for your time and responses.
We've been learning a lot about the bush, Noongar culture and building in Nature.
Each week we come up with such a range of activities because the session is child led with support to help their visions come true.
Birak, Birak! Breath out, the end of the year.
Birak, Birak! Long dreamy summer days,
Life-restoring sun rays;
Birak, Birak, gather in the year.
As we reach the final weeks of the school year, we undergo the seasonal transition from Kambarang to Birak. This year has been unusual for recent times, as we have alternated between warm sunny days and colder wet days more reminiscent of Makuru/Djilba. While we celebrate every downpour for it’s earth-nourishment, the message about the change to Birak has been a bit more difficult to convey to the children as they go from playing and exploring down at the creek one week to rugging up in rain jackets and trekking through the wet bush the next.
Nevertheless, with more and more seasonal songs and stories, practicing of Christmas songs, and talk of end-of-year activities and looming holidays, the children are becoming aware of the changes in season that are upon us. Here’s hoping a few dry sunny days in succession allow us to end the year with some celebratory play dates at the creek, getting very wet, cool and muddy in the warm sun as befits the end of another school year.
For the weeks that remain, please make sure your child is dressed appropriately for the weather, and have a full change of clothes (and a towel, if it fits) in their bags. On hot days they can bring their bathers or wear them underneath their clothes. As the mozzies persist with the rainy weather, please ensure that arms and legs are covered with loose-fitting clothing. Can Kindy parents also please return any spare Kindy clothes and calico bags children have been sent home in recently.
End-of-year Bush picnics
Please note the following dates are the last sessions of Bush Kindy and Bush School for the year. Parents are invited to join us with a plate of healthy tucker for a picnic celebration by the creek around 10.30 on these days. A note will come home with your child as a reminder in the coming week.
Bush Kindy - Friday 11th December
Bush School - Tuesday 15th December (our last session will be on the Tuesday to enable Bruce and Evie to attend the Karri Kindergarten Stepping Stones graduation ceremony on the Wednesday. Class 1 and Class 2 will spend their final Wednesday with Lisa and Ashley).
“One little candle lighted in the wreath, the earth below, prepares to glow
Two little candles lighted in the wreath, the plant lifts up, a blossom cup
Three little candles lighted in the wreath, the animals run , to see the sun
Four little candles lighted in the wreath, a baby is born, to warm the earth, to fill the cup, to light the sun, to lift me up”
In just three short weeks our lovely group of ten K6 children will be graduating from Karri Kindergarten at our 'Stepping Stones' ceremony, to be held on Wednesday 16th December. This special day, the last in Kindergarten for the year, signifies the completion of their first six years (represented by the six stepping stones they will cross over), and beginning of their second septennial of life. This is significant as it heralds the 'etheric birth' or 'change of teeth' which indicates a readiness for academic learning. The children have been visiting 'big school' for lunch and play, and working on completing their craft bags which will be used to store their knitting next year.
During these last weeks in Kindergarten we celebrate 'Advent', which begins on the fourth Sunday before Christmas (this year it falls on Sunday 29th November). By recognising the four kingdoms on earth; minerals, plants, animals and humans, we give our gratitude, and our little ceremony is a quiet time of focus, which can deepen our connection to the Christmas season.
Each week we light another candle in the wreath and place a gift thus building up our Advent table; the first week a rock or crystal, the second a plant or flowers, the third a little animal before, at last, the nativity scene is revealed.
This can be done simply at home, for example by lighting a candle before placing a special crystal in the centre of the table, followed by a little plant the next week, and an animal figurine the next. A simple nativity could be set up on a table, and on Christmas morning the children can discover the little baby Jesus in the manger.
This beloved ritual can be a quiet moment in this busy time and help to bring a calm and reverent mood amidst the commercialism of the season.
We wish everyone a peaceful end to the year and a wonderful Summer holidays.
Love from all of us in Karri Kindergarten
In Class One we have been learning lots of great Nativity songs, recorder tunes, lyre melodies and verses in preparation for our class play.
Using instruments, props and costumes to tell this seasonal story is giving us lots of opportunity for team work, encouragement and creativity, and we are having lots of laughs too!
We had a wonderful 3 weeks with Bree visiting to do her practicum through Curtin University. We participated in lots of maths and literacy activities.
One of our favourites was parachute games to learn sounds and letters which you can see in the photos.
Earlier in the term we had Inoke, Sofia and Leo’s grandma Di visit, to show us how to use the spinning wheel. It took a bit of creativity and innovation to get all the parts in working order.
She showed us how silk, sheep fleece and alpaca fleece can be spun into wool. We all had a go at spinning the raw wool by hand by rubbing it against our legs.
We have also had our last birthday for the term so we are all now officially 7 and we know the birthday verses and poems off by heart – especially our own version of A.A. Milnes 'Now we are Six' which we extended to include 7!
Class 3 and 4 spent three wonderful days at Camp Quaranup. The children participated in bush walking, archery, raft making, jetty jumping, rogaining and experienced the opportunity to spend time with their peers in unique surroundings.
Many thanks to Monique, Ryan and Heath for joining us at camp.
Plays are such an important part of a Steiner education for our children. As children they love the nervous excitement and lead up to a play performance, some more than others. As parents we also love to see our children on stage and given the opportunity to shine. Below is an article sourced from the SEA website about the role of plays in our school curriculum and the benefits they bring to the children.
Why a Class Play in Waldorf Schools?
February 08 2018
For almost every grade in most Waldorf schools, there is a class play. This is an exciting event and means a great deal to everyone: the teachers, the students, the parents, the extended families of students. Interestingly enough, Rudolf Steiner never indicated that every year should have a class play! This is a tradition built in the ensuing decades of the last 100 years of Waldorf education. Doing plays is a happy tradition, but not a necessity in the curriculum!
The class play gives a teacher many chances to build the social strength in the class. It often also reinforces aspects of the curriculum. It changes the routine in a stimulating artistic way that provides relief from the steady rhythm of the days and weeks and months of the school year. This relief returns when the regular rhythm returns and the class feels the ordinary soothing events of life replace the dynamic and artistic tension of preparing a play and performing it.
Plays in a Waldorf school are called “pedagogical” dramas for a very good reason. They are aids to the class teacher in developing skill and capacity in students, strengthening the sense of interdependence in the whole class, and brightening the creativity of the class through drama. Some teachers elect to do a play only every other year or every three years. This is entirely at the teacher’s discretion. A certain class might need uninterrupted rhythm or concentrated work on a subject, for example, instead of a play. The teacher decides on the play and the casting. Often an unlikely candidate for a lead part in a play or an obvious leader for a small part can surprise everyone, unlikely roles to all but the teacher! The teacher might be looking to stretch of a child’s ability.
Sometimes teachers engage students in paper maché, painting, and dying for set design, or sewing and fabric arts for costumes. Music and dance are often included in plays. Singers and instrumentalists alike are included. The range of possibility is many in a class play. This presents a good rationale for doing a play, the combining of many artistic undertakings to make a beautiful play.
Dramatic arts are also used by teachers in several non-performing ways. Sometimes a teacher will write a short piece for an assembly, not meant for high performance, that is only seven to ten minutes long. These are often designed to bring an academic point home strongly. Sometimes a teacher will ask a class to remember a story by acting it out. A box of silk pieces and belts and capes can enhance this experience.
The whole artistic approach for Waldorf teachers includes all the arts: music, drawing, painting, sculpting of all sorts (clay, beeswax, wood, stone), music making and singing, drama, speech formation, dance, and collages of several of these arts. The class play is one significant opportunity for a collaboration of arts.
As with all the arts, confusion about the product and the actual goals can occur. We do get confused in Waldorf schools about the “best paintings,” and the “most beautiful sculptures,” or the most stunning main lesson books, the most beautiful singers, the most talented instrumentalists. Using all the arts carries the goal of clear thinking and deep inner experience during the experience. The displayable results are mere vestiges of the child’s artistic experience that brings the meaning home to the sensibilities of the young artist. In the culture of North America, the preoccupation with “talent” and “genius,” or the personality-driven aspect of our culture can make it very hard to stay with the essentials of why we actually do plays in Waldorf classes.
Of course, one wishes for a good play with high drama or effective comedy. If a casting decision is to give an unlikely candidate a prized part, the results could be less than satisfying dramatically than it might be with the “most talented” in a class. Reviews by Vanity Fair or The New Yorker standards might name the class plays a flop! But it might just be a very effective pedagogical play.
If the teacher gives the play away to a theater professional and auditions are the way to cast the play, the artistic merit of the play by worldly standards might improve, but the pedagogical impact will certainly suffer. The participation of parents in the class play can be a complicating factor as well. Sometimes parents have strong feelings about the part their child should have, or about the play the teacher has written or chosen, or about how the production should go. This adds stress to an already creatively stressful process and is often driven by cultural expectations and not by the pedagogical ideals mentioned already. And surprising things can happen: one part a performer had was as Nana, the dog, in a rendition of Peter Pan, who had no lines and brought the house down with the comedic gestures of the canine nanny.
The ultimate satisfaction of a class in its play is the successful immersion into the characters and the story of a play. Once the play is performed, the audience’s comprehension of the story, the laughter, and tears the performers feel for one scene or another from the audience are like icing on a well-baked cake. Children do learn to depend on each other in a new way from the ordinary, and students do change after deeply entering into a character unlike their own. Students find new voices in themselves, new motivations, new friends, a new appreciation for each other through interaction on stage. Sacrifice is needed for a good play: the sacrifice of one’s personality for another, sacrifice of preference for the good of the play, sacrifice of friends to interact with unlikely companions for the play, sacrifice of many preferences for the sake of a good play. And the sacrifice of repeated rehearsal might be the biggest sacrifice of all!
In the end, a class play is a lot of fun and excitement; the rewards of many weeks of hard work. Unlike other arts, it is such a social art and is shared socially with the whole community. Live theater is always thrilling because unlike a film; no one knows what is going to happen on stage nor how the actors will react. Many is the time that class teachers instruct, “Whatever happens remember who your character is and respond in that character, no matter what!” It brings lessons for life with these facts. It isn’t so much what happens — things will always happen — it’s how we respond that makes the story so compelling! So, practice for the play begets practice for life, a gift well beyond a performance or two!
Term 4 has been an absolute whirlwind as we approach the end of the Class Six’s primary school years. Class Six have had an incredibly successful business venture through 'Lemoshi’s Lunch Bar' where the children made fresh sushi rolls to order. On our busiest day, 65 sushi rolls were hand rolled by our kitchen team. Sweets were also sold at lunch time supplied by the wonderful Class Six parents, having the children work quickly to add up orders and supply change to their hungry peers. Class Six then had to count the revenue, add up the costs and then calculate their profit. Over three very busy lunches, our profits exceeded $900! A big thank you to everyone in the school community who bought something from 'Lemoshi’s', making it the big success it was.
We have also been studying astronomy in the classroom and the children have created beautiful posters and diorama’s to show off their knowledge about space. Everybody should be proud of their beautiful and unique creations. After studying the vast cosmos, we have come back to Earth (still wearing our scientist hats) to study physics and learn about magnetism and electricity.
Much to the children’s dismay, we have also begun an introduction to puberty in our health lessons. However, the 'anonymous question box' is slowly filling up and I look forward to answering all of their questions about their bodies and growing up.
Class Six also went on their final camp this term and what a great camp it was! The children took part in a 2-day sailing course where they were taught how to sail a 3-person, GP-14 dinghy. There were many tears and several capsizes on the first day as the children were well and truly out of their comfort zone! By the second day, the children were a lot more comfortable and confident and they navigated their sailing boats out in the Albany mariner. After 3 hours of sailing the dinghy’s, we then moved onto two, bigger sailing boats. We became the crew and had no choice but to be brave and work together. We spent several hours sailing all around Princess Royal Harbour and into the King George Sound. It was such an awesome experience and the children should be so proud of themselves.
In the past few weeks Class One have added some new fruit trees to the orchard. A plum called 'President' evoked some timely comments over whether the tree would be called 'Mr Trump' or 'Mr Biden'. Two fig trees were also planted and an avocado now stands in between a mulberry and a macadamia. A future food forest in the making.
Class Two wove some beautiful patterns into trellis framing that now adorns the main vegetable patch. They are growing several different kinds of running beans that will be both eaten fresh and harvested dry for soups and Mexican style dishes in 2021.
Class Three have embarked on their building project. With the assistance of Leif Lebbing, we are building a pond outside the new administration building. The class have learnt to lay a foundation and then bricks over an old tree stump. They will then render the pond, and we hope to see many of the 'school' birds visit for a drink and a splash over the hot summer months to come. The walls of the pond will then be the backdrop for mosaic tiles that Class Six have been diligently working on.
Class Four continue to work hard in the gardens, and display great team work. They have planted out our summer cucurbit crops of pumpkins, cucumbers, rock-melons and watermelons. These will be ready to harvest when the children return to school next year. The class recently relished a dish of roasted Florence fennel. Class Four have also learnt about soft and hard-wood cuttings, and have successfully propagated rosemary, lavender and thyme for the new office garden.
Class Five are very close to finishing their main lesson in Botany, and have explored many ways of using kale, from chips to juice and stir-fries. This has been an important lesson in the cycle of gardening, from planting, weeding, feeding, harvesting and then back again.
If any parents or guardians are keen to help in the gardens over the holidays (as kike doesn't take a break!), please feel free to text me on 0456 229 124. I will be in the gardens most Wednesdays from early in the morning until about 11am. The exception will be the week between Christmas and New Year.
Happy Gardening and a safe and Merry Christmas to all.