Hello, dear families,
It’s with a grateful heart that we share all the events we enjoyed in Fig Tree this November, a joyful month!
We began by welcoming Ms. Claire, our new assistant, and getting to know her over a round of morning coffee and bagels. We enjoyed long conversations and connections while the children played outside, burning off Halloween’s bounty from the night before. It was a warm and easy way for all of you to get to know Ms. Claire, and she felt welcomed indeed; we appreciate all who came that morning.
While welcoming Ms. Claire, we also loved on Ms. Lacey! The community really stepped up and absolutely showered Lacey with affection, well wishes, and baby gear at Mandola’s on a sweet, rainy day. She was very touched by all who came out and by all the help she received. It’s such an honor to be a part of such a loving, thoughtful community. Thanks again to all who came, and a special thank you to the many families who worked on invitations, decorations, activities for the siblings, food, and the many, many layers of arrangements made for the afternoon. Your efforts made an impact, and your support for Lacey’s family shined.
The community stepped up once again to make Fall Fandango one of the more meaningful community events we’ve had. We laughed, we cried, we danced, we ate...all in good company. I saw so many families reaching out to each other, enjoying stories, or taking it easy by just being together. It had been a rocky week for the whole country (no matter how or whether one voted), but at Fall Fandango there was a tangible coming-together, the bonds of community keeping us steady, reassured, and hopeful.
Fall Fandango was also very successful as a fundraiser. Fig Tree broke our record set in previous auctions by selling our framed collection of monoprints for $1000!! Congratulations to the Jackson family; we are grateful for your generous bid, and we are so happy for you!!!
November progressed with students receiving the last of the Great Stories, the Story of Numbers. Students’ awareness and gratitude for our ancestors’ discoveries and contributions is deepened by this multilayered tale, stretching from unknown ancient peoples to Sumerians to a cave in India to China to the numbers we use today. This story prompted several explorations, including a group of students who learned about writing and reading Roman numerals.
We also had our fall parent conferences, which truly were delightful. I received lots of positive feedback about providing your child’s report beforehand; I will continue to do so in the spring. My memories of those two conference days are of having laughter and/or tears of gratitude as you and I sat by that big, open window talking about your child. Thank you for your partnership in serving your child in the best ways we know how; your support is meaningful, real, and deeply appreciated.
Soon after, we welcomed Ms. Claire full-time into our room and hearts, and the transition could not have been smoother! She works well with the children, observes a lot, speaks to children in beautiful words and tone, and has shared many of her talents and gifts with us. She, a skillful knitter, had the wonderful idea of teaching non-knitters how to help create a surprise gift for Ms. Lacey’s baby. And wow, was knitting a HIT! For part of the morning before Thanksgiving holiday, we had a “knitting workshop,” with every single student choosing to sit about the rug, some stationed as helpers for the novice knitters, all of us click-clicking away with support, concentration, and love. It was a large, beautiful, joyous sight.
That same morning, we also hosted a special guest….We had the honor of listening to a local author share her book with us for read aloud. Amy Jackson, a Cedars mom, is an astronomer who has recently published her first book, Cassandra and the Night Sky. Cultures all over the world have legends about how certain constellations came to be; Amy read her original story about a girl, a swan, a scorpion, and a mysterious teapot becoming constellations we see today. Amy then provided star maps, and some students were very excited to draw their own constellations and create original stories for them.
[If you would like to order a copy of the book, you may purchase it here. We also have printed order forms if you prefer; just let us know if you’d like one.]
And then...November ends as it began…
by welcoming someone VERY special into our community!
We are SO happy to announce the birth of Lacey’s baby girl, Hazel!! She was born on Friday, November 25, healthy and strong. Lacey said that all is well and good as they rest, bond, and bloom as a family. We look forward to meeting that sweet little one! Welcome to the world, Hazel!
December has several events--mark your calendars!!
On Wednesday, December 7th, join me for a Coffee Talk on “The Importance of the Third Year,” a helpful insight into the ‘magic’ that happens as your child completes his/her third year of a developmental cycle. Join us for coffee, community, and finding out the what, how, and why that third year is so very vital in a Montessori education.
On Thursday the 8th, Fig Tree and Mountain Laurel will attend Act II of the Nutcracker ballet, performed at the Long Center by Ballet Austin. It is a rich cultural and musical experience that the children enjoy, whether it is a familiar favorite or a dramatically new experience. We prepare students by telling them about the history, plot, and characters of the story, as well as etiquette as an audience member so that they realize the theater is a shared experience between the performer and the viewer. Attending the Nutcracker is a personal highlight of each year, observing Fig Tree’s children as they experience the wonder.
Join us December 15th for our Winter Bonfire. It’s a community potluck with holiday lights, good food, lots of friends, and warm hearts. Remember your flashlights and glow sticks! See you there!
Thank you for all you have done to make this November so meaningful. This is a rich, active community, and all the ways that you show up, help out, and shine make a huge difference for everyone involved.
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