Palo Alto Tender Tracks Wednesday 10.03.2012


Martins’s Creek
Day 5
Waning Gibbous Moon

Today was such a peaceful, easy and sweet day.  The children shared their beauty with each one of us teachers in a way that they have not done so far.  The ease of everyone being with each other is growing.  Harper came today and there were no tears,Jasper separated from Mom, it seemed, quite easily, Julian said to Mindy something like ‘I really like this outdoor school’ during circle time and the rest were just peaceful.
During circle we had almost all new songs for this October and Halloween month and a new story, for some, A House with No Doors, No Windows and a Star Inside.  They all stayed quite present and when we cut open the apples to see if stars were really in there, THEY WERE! Though the apples we had had very vague or less dramatic stars.  But, they were there and the children were thrilled.  After circle they gave the stars to the forest for the squirrels and racoons and they really liked giving those out then off to go someplace cool.

When we got to Martin ‘s creek it was DARK!  ‘Why is it so dark?’ some asked.  ‘yes, why is it?’ and we all went to figure this out.  Oh yes, there were grand trees protecting us from the very strong and hot Sun!  What a gift that was. For the entire day we suffered not from great heat.   We walked up and up and up the hill to get to where we were going and it appeared that Davey and Misha sat down in the middle of the trail for awhile as their legs did not seem to be as happy to get to where we were going as the children were. But, after a little break we made it!  Many of the children remembered this place from our first day and shared what they knew of it with Zara and Harper who were not there on the first day.  We ate straight away and then began the adventures.

I stayed with Harper for awhile as she was finishing eating while all the other children went off in different directions.  She did not like all the little gnats flying around and she was concerned that they were bees. They were not and I let her know that if I see any flying thing that could hurt her I will let her know and do my best to make sure she does not get hurt.  And, what a blessing, I was able to keep to my word.  Later on I thought that we found a nest where the children started to play so I made sure we stayed away from them and then there was one more lone wasp near where we were trying to catch a cricket so I took us to another spot.  I do believe this helped her be around the unpleasant yet, harmless little gnats after that. At least I hope so, for her sake and comfort!
The children explored and played throwing rocks over the edge at the end of the creek for a time and then went exploring near the pond at the other end.  Mindy took some on an adventure and Audrey went off with Misha, Julian and Davey. They became Coyotes again and howled to us and we howled back.  Mindy wound up just being with Zara and the two of them took a very long time focusing on going over this one hard spot.  I actually don’t know why they wound up doing that but I think it was because Zara wanted to.  I was with the rest of them and we were trying to catch a cricket and then played ontop of a beautiful stump.

On and off the children played on Nature’s swings that are there. From all my observations, it seems that somehow the Redwood trees there have grown these branches that are more like vines and they make GREAT swings!
There were some falls, and tender scrapes and loving kisses and first aid kits to take care of all of these things.   There was fun running up and down hills and eating a second lunch.  There was listening to the birds all around us and hearing their different calls and, what I found fun is that, Davey and Misha were speaking some English.

In the bus it was peaceful and unified as Mindy played some games and told some fun stories to them.
Your children are truly treasures that are delightful to get to know more and more each week.
I am filled with great gratitude to be able to share the Earth and Sky with them.

And, I have copied some of Mindy’s observations that she sent to me at the end of the day:

I was really in presence with Zara today.  She has some fear around climbing, and yet, she is talented at it!  She really wanted to climb to the highest places and even asked to walk across a tree branch that was above her.  When she wanted help, I just stuck with her and encouraged her to find hand holds.  That felt good for me and it seemed empowering for her.  She also complained about her feet hurting, but when offered her shoes, she chose her bare feet.
 Davey was sweet too.  He just stripped off his clothes (I think to keep them from getting wet) and then was having a hard time with his hands being dirty and his clothes being dirty and not wanting to put them back on. But he put them on and was fine.  He and Zara and Serena really enjoyed playing hide and seek this AM.
 At Circle Time, Julian whispered to me that this Outdoor School is his favorite because he gets to listen to the birds.( So THAT’S what he actually said. I stand corrected from what I wrote above.) He told me that he had a dream that he and his brothers were in a rocket ship in outer space.  They visited mars— there was only rocks on mars and no water or creatures.
 With all of Harpers dislike of bugs, it was so cute to see her enthralled with the banana slug:)
 Juliette carries herself like a leader.  I love the way she just takes Duncan’s hand and heads off, or the way she seems so grounded and walks with confidence.
 Misha enjoyed showing me his chestnuts today and then sharing them with Serena, Davey, and Zara.  He also told me a bit about his lunch and wanted to know about mine.  He spent a fare amount of time eating, but so slowly that he did not consume much.
 I liked watching Duncan be a bear and then hearing Serena go over to him and tell him how to lie down and lay eggs “like this” because “bears lay eggs” and they have to go and sleep a lot (hibernate?).
 It really was an enchanted, dreamy day.


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