As it is now almost 2 years since we held the wonderfully successful Parent Engagement Evening at the school, we would like to invite members of our school community to attend a School Community Conversation Evening on Monday 14th May at 6.00 pm at the school. Members of the management team will attend and we look forward to having a rich and constructive conversation with the school community about ways we can work together to build and strengthen our beautiful school. We want to hear from you about what is working well and your thoughts and ideas for improvement. Please mark the date in your calendar, we will send further information early next term.
By Steve Sagarin
(This brief article is based on part of my talk, “What Makes Waldorf, Waldorf? Separating Myths from Essentials and Making the Future Bright,” a keynote address at the annual Governance, Leadership and Management (GLaM) Conference, Steiner Education Australia (SEA), Shearwater, The Mullumbimby Steiner School, NSW, Australia. May 2, 2015.)
A Steiner school gives its graduates—high school graduates—five gifts. Primary school parents and graduates will recognize these gifts, but they will also recognize that they do not come to fruition by 7th or 8th grade.
1.) The first gift is the gift of ideas and ideals.
A Steiner school does not provide beliefs or a worldview. Belief, knowledge, and worldview may be “about” spiritual matters, but are not them. The school provides a pathway or method for discovering profound ideas and ideals, should a student wish later in life to pursue them.
In fact, all we can give with regard to spiritual realities—the realm of ideas and ideals—is a path that can be followed or retraced. In geometry, I can show you how the steps of a proof lead to logical proof, but you must take that final intuitive leap yourself. If you do not “see” that these steps constitute a proof, all I can do as a teacher is retrace the path with you, perhaps using different language or different symbols in order to help you again to the brink of intuitive understanding.
2.) Second, a school addresses its students as developing human beings, beings uniquely capable of inner transformation.
In nature, metamorphoses and transformations are primarily visible. We can see a plant grow from shoot to leaves to flower, each stage presenting unforeseen changes of form. No one looking at a caterpillar for the first time would guess that it will soon be a butterfly. In human life, especially after childhood, transformation and development are not so visible. For Steiner, all cats belong to the same species, but each human being is a species unto himself or herself.
3.) Third, a school introduces students to different ways of knowing and being, three in particular.
(Psychologists recognize these with terms like “cognition,” “affect,” and “behaviour.”) You can know cognitively, you can live in your head. You can contemplate or reflect, observe or compare, analyze or synthesize. These accord most closely with what the world outside a Steiner school means by knowing.
But you can also know with your heart. I call this aesthetic knowing, knowing in which you are awake to beauty, to an ethical understanding, and even to truth. The path to truth may be cognitive, but the recognition of truth is a feeling. Playfulness is the true expression of aesthetic knowing. One way to understand what I mean is to contrast aesthetic knowing with its opposite, “anaesthetic knowing.” Something that anaesthetizes you puts you to sleep—you cannot know anything. The aesthetic awakens you.
Last, you can know in your body and in your senses. Michael Polanyi calls this “tacit knowing,” knowing more than we can say. You can read a book about playing the piano or performing heart surgery, but I hope you would not say after you put the book down that you knew how to do these things.
4.) Fourth, a school can provide profound examples and guidelines for a healthy life with other persons.
If they choose to, Waldorf school graduates know how to care for others in brotherhood and sisterhood, in solidarity. They know how to respect the equality of any man or any woman. They know where their individual freedom lies, the sort of freedom that laws and conventions cannot touch, and how to accord others their own freedom and dignity.
5.) Fifth, students receive a reverence for life and for the world; a concern for the environment, however defined.
I mention this last because as a society we have probably embraced this gift more fully in the past fifty years than we have the others. Any school, any teachers, may give these gifts. But the sad truth is that in our world today only in Steiner schools can you regularly find teachers united in common purpose to give their students as fully and consistently what I have outlined here.
Our brains are at their most innovative when they are resting, so why aren’t we making time for quiet reflection?
To read more follow this link.
As you may have noticed, construction of our new Innovation Centre is now well underway.
We would like to create a beautiful entry to the school including an outdoor shelter between the new building & the Performance Hall. The aim is to provide students & parents a covered drop off area at pick up time and students with an additional sheltered space in the playground. This is in addition to the building that is currently underway.
We are aiming to raise $30,000 for this addition. The current balance in our Building Fund account is $13,550, so we still need to raise $17,000. To read about our Master plan, to see a time lapse video of the construction so far or to make a donation please follow this link
Please note that deductions to the Building Fund are tax deductible.
We had a lovely, productive, community RCM Morning recently with 10-12 parents attending.
We were able to work together & improve a number of areas around Admin & the Top Playground. Such a fun way to contribute to the physical body of the school & enrich our community.
Class One is enjoying movement, art and drama while learning their letters and numbers, all with the background of Autumn and Easter. It’s a special time with some very special young people.
Class 5 and their Class 2 buddies recently enjoyed a lovely excursion day together into the hills. On arriving at Rummery Park, our wonderful parent helpers set to work lighting a camp fire and helping students to chop veggies for the soup, which simmered while we walked. We looked and listened and noticed the small things…. as we made our way along the bank of Boggy Creek to the spectacular Minyon Falls Lookout. Out in the forest and by the creek, the day seemed to fly by; after a warm cup of camp soup we hopped aboard with our buddies and bussed back to school. Our appreciative thanks to all the parents who came to assist, it was lovely to spend the day with you all!!
Teera, Bethanie and Anna
The year 7 girls who play for the Thunderbirds won their second Grand Final in a row on Monday night completing a fabulous season in the junior league. It was a nail biting game as they were evenly matched by the Black Queens who played a strong game. All of the girls gave it their all and at the final siren the score was even. The match went into 5 mins overtime to determine the winner and the girls came out firing to win the match 32 to 25. They were presented with the competition shield which will now proudly display 2 wins to the Thunderbirds. The coaches encouragement award was presented to Ruby Stante while the referees Most Valuable Player (MVP) Award was presented to Brianna Hart. Coaches Lindy and Kasper were very proud of the girls for their consistent effort, improvement, great team work and awesome sportsmanship. The team are looking forward to the new challenge next season going up to the big league- High School Comp. Good Luck to all!
Merry Jeann graduated from CBRSS in 2014. In 2016 Merryn established herself as a feature vocalist and songwriter to take serious note of. Merryn has been compared to artists Amy Winehouse, Feist and Yukimi Nagano (Little Dragon), herself drawing vocal inspiration from diverse acts like Nai Palm (Hiatus Kaiyote), Laura Marling and Moses Sumney.
Students from the high school were invited to work with Merryn this week, rehearsing and performing an acoustic version of her new single “Wantigga- Slowly”
The single was released on Good Friday and has already had 54000 views on Youtube.
The intention of the project with the students was to create a live acoustic version, featuring a choir of CBRSS students performing it with Merryn in the Movement room.
The Audio and Visual recording will be used as promotion of the song and the artist “Merryn Jeann”.
There will be a professional crew making the clip which will be launched sometime next week on Youtube and other social media platforms.
Looking for quality art and craft supplies or a Steiner inspired gift or toy?
Art Makes Sense!
A beautiful array of quality art and craft supplies as well as Steiner based toys are available online at Mercurius http://www.mercurius.com.au/
Enter the promotional code: FRIENDCBRSS and 15% of the sale will also go towards P&F fundraising!
Mankind must above all seek universality and the courage to look at things from all sides ~ Rudolf Steiner
Limited places available, contact Geraldine to register email@example.com
We’re trying to raise money to help Bryce and his Super Max & Bryce project team of friends and family, to purchase 1,000 Super Max the Turtles so we can give one to every single child diagnosed with cancer in Australia and New Zealand this year (see the project website at www.supermaxandbryce.org ).
This year, Bryce has expanded his goal to include New Zealand because of our partners at ANZCHOG who represent children’s oncologists in both countries (ANZCHOG stands for Australia and New Zealand Children’s Haematology and Oncology Group – they are Australia’s leading team of children’s cancer researchers; they love this project and have committed to being our non profit/registered charitable organisation partner so all donations can go through them and be fully tax deductible; their website is www.anzchog.org ).
For a brief overview of the Super Max & Bryce project, here is a recent story that aired on the TODAY show last month: https://www.facebook.com/iwakeupwithtoday/videos/1864344730266850/ (you’ll see that the TODAY video clip has over 86k views and 2.1k likes).
Here is a short “thank you” video Bryce made at the end of our first trip around Australia (it’s only one minute long and you’ll see Oden featured in it): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R4HxzRJDjV4
This is a local project supported by local community members; we couldn’t do it without the support of everyone around us.
This year, we are additionally trying to raise funding to give out 1,000 star covered scarves to the mums of children with cancer and 1,000 star covered socks to the dads. Our organisational partners at Annabel Trends (a local Burleigh Heads company) are producing these at cost for us with unique “Super Max & Bryce” designs and cards. The goal with the scarves and socks is to let ever mum and dad with a child who is battling against cancer know that they are cared for, thought of and connected through the stars wherever they are – connected not only with each other but also with every other family who is going through this unimaginable journey as well as the rest of us who are sending them love and hugs through our donations and support of the project.
Thank you for your consideration and support for this project aimed at spreading love, hope, happiness and comfort to children and families who so desperately need and deserve it.
Cheers, Amy (& Bryce)
It has been a positive and energetic two weeks around the school with a number of excursions and events happening for various classes, as well as our Autumn Festival. Students from right across the school were involved in the festival; with Kindy children joining us to watch and Primary and High School students singing, acting and providing musical accompaniment. As with most of our festivals, the teachers also had an opportunity to get up and sing.
I know that some members of our parent community were disappointed that this was a student-only event – we certainly missed you all at the festival and really look forward to welcoming you all to the Winter Festival (which will be held off site). We will be emailing out a link to parents so that you can watch some lovely video footage of the Autumn Festival and just ask that you do not upload the link to any social media or forward it to others.
Last week Teera and I attended the March Delegates Meeting of Steiner Education Australia (SEA). Delegates from Steiner schools from all over Australia attended this two day meeting to talk about a range of issues common to us all. Steiner Education Australia supports Steiner Schools across Australia in a range of ways, including by developing and maintaining the Australian Steiner Curriculum Framework – which is the first national Steiner curriculum to have been accepted as a registered alternative anywhere in the world. As a NSW school, we also have to abide by the Education Act (NSW) which requires us to teach the New South Wales Education Authority Curriculum, and SEA assists us by providing advice and guidance in this regard .
At the meeting, we listened to an interesting presentation from Alex Shain of Reconciliation Australia; this was particularly relevant as we are just at the beginning of the process of creating a Reconciliation Action Plan for our school. (We will share more information about this in the near future, inviting parents to register their interest in joining our working group.) It is certainly a shared aim of our teachers to develop a deeper relationship with the local Arakwal Bundjalung community and the proposed Reconciliation Action Plan is just one part of this.
Finally, a big thank you to all of the parents who have attended Class Meetings this term. Attendance at these meetings has been quite high and I know our teachers really appreciate it when they are able to talk with parents and share information about what we are doing at school. I know it isn’t always easy to get out in the evenings for meetings and I am really grateful that so many of you have been able to do this.
Please note on Tuesday (3rd April) after the Easter break, the Canteen will be CLOSED. The Canteen will re open on Wednesday 4 April.