Great Hollow Wilderness School

The Rise and the Fall

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Although we usually think of January first as our ‘new year’ start, it often feels to me like August marks this moment with more enthusiasm and a more visceral effect, as the mornings turn cool and the midday sun shines high and deeply warm. In fact, looking at the ancient Celtic Holiday of Lammas, August first marks the first day of Autumn. This time is the clasp of our year in terms of gaining and losing; like the wheat that dies the moment it’s swiped by the sickle, yet simultaneously creates abundance, nourishment and plenty for it’s recipient. As the turning of our year leans toward autumn, we learn how to best use our newly garnered skills in order to face the next threshold of challenge.

The Whole Earth Home-school Program this past year has undergone some needed processes as well as growing pains. After an unsustainable growth the previous year, we are all trying to gain our footing in order to solidify the Home-school program for the future. This is the new threshold we face right now. The programs are ready to molt and grow new feathers, hopefully preened by both the staff at Great Hollow as well as the families that are the essential body of the programs. Each of the courses are ready to be fortified by student ideas, some new parent suggestions, and a collaborative means of creating a sequence of educational bullet points which can be standardized in a way that gives the programs a good strong backbone. Along with this, experiential time and sensory exploration will always remain and integral part of what we do.

As the newly appointed Home-school Program Coordinator, I have my workbook chock full of both necessary tasks and new ideas that I will be pursuing whole heartidly throughout this year. Most importantly, I am reminded of the deep value and importance of giving our children the time to learn from, and with, Nature.

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