Rudolf Steiner, the founder of Biodynamic agriculture, was also the founder of the Waldorf School system. We are lucky to have a Waldorf school just down the street from Summerhill, where both school age Cipes children currently attend (my daughter is in grade 2). Steiner was a public intellectual and a mystic. It is often difficult to describe Biodynamic agriculture when pressed by a sceptic, and it is also hard to describe what makes Waldorf education so special... but it IS!
The school is such a blessing for us. I am not the most educated person about Waldorf pedagogy, or what makes it special, but my experience is that the school LOVES the children and nurtures the children. They respect and honour my daughter at school the same way we do at home. They teach things a little differently, for instance there are regular nature walks, gardening classes, handwork classes, and lots of storytelling interweaved into the lessons. Pop-culture and screens (TV, computer, etc) are discouraged at home and not allowed at school, so the social culture is a little bit different. Anyway, all these little things add up to a very special environment that engenders in the students a love of learning. The motto of the school is "Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire." This seems to sum up what makes the school special well.
As parents and enthusiastic supporters of the Kelowna Waldorf School, Summerhill is one of the key sponsors (and host) of the annual Kelowna Waldorf School Fundraising Gala. Here is the poster:
The gala is open to everyone, and is a great way to meet the fantastic teachers and community of the school. Tickets are available via this website by clicking here. There is even an early bird special if tickets are purchased prior to Feb 13.
The dinner will be prepared by the Okanagan College Culinary Arts students, under the leadership of Chef Bernard Casavant. The Trips, a most excellent local bluegrass band, will play after dinner and we'll dance the night away!
Hope to see you there!