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10 January 2014

Dear Parents,

The clouds parted and the sun came out just as we said goodbye to you at Brockwood and headed for the walk to Inwoods on our first day back. Having braved the roads in wind and torrential rain, it was a pleasant surprise and delight to be able to continue on foot under a blue sky, through fresh puddles, and into the rays of sunlight leading us to our small school; indeed a really lovely start to the new term and the New Year with the children.

Firstly, a big thank you to the small team of parents who managed to dust, sweep, mop and bring a sparkle to the buildings a few days ahead of commencing. This regular occurrence before the beginning of each term, organised by parents, is greatly appreciated by us. You may also have noticed the new towel hooks and panel, the freshly painted bathrooms, the well-designed location of the Play House, the tool shed behind the Oak House, and most importantly, the most perfect, long awaited office for Inwoods (the first photo below is of the view from the window). So, thanks again to those that got involved with any of this during the holiday.

It has been a very muddy week but fortunately mild, and manageable with all the good gear that you have equipped the children with so well. We are now only in need of waterproof covers for their backpacks, so if you know of a good source please tell us. As you will see from the photos, the children easily and eagerly engaged in writing, drawing, experimenting, reading, playing, sharing and exploring throughout this first week. The Curriculum Meeting coming soon will outline in more detail the range of learning opportunities available for each of the age groups this term, with the opportunity to discuss approaches and understand how this learning can have depth and meaning. Please take note of the action points below and get back to us with any questions.

Best wishes for a lovely weekend.
Mary-Ann and the Inwoods team


Sensitivity to beauty and ugliness

Any tendency or talent which makes for isolation, any form of self-identification, however stimulating, distorts the expression of sensitivity and brings about insensitivity. Sensitivity is dulled when gift becomes personal, when importance is given to the “me” and the “mine”—I paint, I write, I invent. It is only when we are aware of every movement of our own thought and feeling in our relationship with people, with things and with nature, that the mind is open, pliable, not tethered to self-protective demands and pursuits; and only then is there sensitivity to the ugly and the beautiful, unhindered by the self. Sensitivity to beauty and to ugliness does not come about through attachment; it comes with love, when there are no self-created conflicts. When we are inwardly poor, we indulge in every form of outward show, in wealth, power and possessions. When our hearts are empty, we collect things. If we can afford it, we surround ourselves with objects that we consider beautiful, and because we attach enormous importance to them, we are responsible for much misery and destruction. The acquisitive spirit is not the love of beauty; it arises from the desire for security, and to be secure is to be insensitive.
J. Krishnamurti, Education and the Significance of Life

A longer route to Inwoods on the first day

Green History Of The Earth Class

Indoor Games

Paired Reading

Ella's assembly on chickens

Curriculum Information
Bush/Wood Craft & Spanish Walk

For the six sessions this half of term, 'Spinney Hollow' will be teaching knife skills, followed by making woodland animal creations using these skills, then bush craft chairs using tripods out of hazel rods. And finally they will teach the children how to identify trees in winter, know their uses and the folk law surrounding them.
Spinney Hollow

Taking advantage of Laxmi’s presence, the outdoor exploration now has an added twist of being a time for Spanish immersion lessons. Along with Laxmi and Mariamah conversing in Spanish to the children and each other on the walk, Spanish songs are learned, and the children each have vocabulary books to add a few words to each week. This coming term, the walk will go regularly to the Plantation at Brockwood; here the children will have a chance to make and improve upon dens, have a fire, and explore the woods and climb trees in the area. Additionally, carving and other nature art will hopefully develop.

Science with the 9 to 11 year olds
What does it mean to be alive? What is our world made of? How do substances react with one another and why? What’s electricity? Why are we not floating around in space? Are we floating around in space? How do we find answers to these things? What do scientists know and how do they find out? Do they know? Can we find answers to new things?

The Redwoods continue to question, explore and find out about this thing we call science...

Project Topic for the 7 & 8 year olds
From this September, we’ve started introducing topics that hold together the children’s learning in the Open Classroom. This term’s ‘The Development of Life on Earth’ follows on from the last topic of ‘The Big Bang’. In a broad sweep, the children will be taken through time from the mercurial and dynamic atmosphere of the beginning of earth where we last left off. They will imagine the first building blocks of life that gathered together to form organisms and eventually all the flora and fauna of the earth. Individually and in groups they will explore microorganisms, and various animal and plant species, as well as taxonomy, states and transformations of matter, land formation, mapping and calculations of area. 

Working with the pink and blue language boxes

Counting in nines

And important reminders:
  • Child Assemblies: Dhyana will be giving the next child assembly on Thursday 16th January, followed by Aurelia on 23rd January.
  • Pick up at Brockwood: The 5 to 7 year olds will need picking up at Brockwood at 3.30pm every Monday until further notice, and all the children will need picking up at the same time from Brockwood on Wednesdays.
  • Parking: Please complete the parking survey that Julie will send around so that we can see how we need to improve on our transport policy.
  • Curriculum Meeting: This will take place on Sunday 19th instead of the whole group Parent Meeting. The morning will be structured in the following way: 10 to 11.30am group meeting for parents of children ages 5 and 6; 11.30am to 1pm, for parents of children ages 7 and 8; 10am to 12pm, for individual parents to meet with individual teachers of the 9 to 11 year old children. Please get back to Mary-Ann if you are unable to attend on Sunday and if you need childcare at Inwoods during this time. Any parents who would like to have a meeting with all or some of the staff to discuss their child: please make an appointment in the usual way. 
  • Lunch Preparation: Emiko will now cook on most Mondays instead of Fridays this term and will continue to offer a wide choice of dishes. Along with the usual baked and raw veggies, on Wednesdays Laxmi will cook the following menu on a 3 week rota: 1. Roast potato, baked beans and scrambled eggs 2. Pasta with tomato sauce, with and without cheese, quinoa for the wheat free option, and boiled eggs 3. Rice (brown and white options or mixed) bake mixed with red lentils, seasonal vegetables and grated cheese on top. On Fridays Laxmi will make soup, freshly baked bread and chappatis (as a yeast free option) with salad vegetables.
  • New Dates: Please note the scheduled parent meeting in May has been cancelled due to the Green Fair, which will be happening on Sunday 11th May.

The 'literacy lab' class created a group list poem

To Make A Dragon
If I were to construct a dragon I would take:
For the wings –
The feathers of a fiery phoenix
For the skin –
The zigzag scales of a piranha sea monster
For the tail –
A whoosh as hard as a whirlwind
For the eyes –
The fighting power of a wizard’s wand.

Creative Thinking Group

Laxmi now cooking on Fridays

The New Inwoods Office

Dates for your diary:

Curriculum Meeting
Sunday 19th January: 10am to 1pm

Open Morning
Wednesday 22nd January

Half Term Break
Monday 17th February

World Book Day
Thursday 6th March

Parent Meeting
Saturday 15th March

Open Morning
Wednesday 12 March

Open Morning for pre-school teachers
Wednesday 26th March

Spring Celebration
Friday 4th April

Easter Break
Monday 7th April

Summer Term
Tuesday 22nd April

Notice Board
We are looking for the following items for donation to the new office: small couch, hardwearing rug, plant, curtains, and a water jug. Many thanks!

Copyright © 2013 Krishnamurti Foundation Trust Limited 1055588 Charity Number 312865

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