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Camper Campus Graduation
An Odyssey of Love
A la Claire Fontaine T his year has been an Odyssey of L ove for all of the children as they have grown, finding new interests and talents, experimenting and exploring.
At the beautiful Camper Campus graduation celebration, the children 3 danced in front of a bright backdrop that showed a rounded city, the stars in the sky and a spectacular rainbow. T hey sang favorites from "Vole, Vole, Vole Papillon," about the butterflies they invited into the garden by planting milkweed, to standards such as, "Sur le Pont d'Avignon," replete with bows and curtsies, accompanied by the guitar music of Sandra Sandia. T he youngest students of Ecole Claire Fontaine have practiced eating amongst friends, sharing and taking turns. T hey have learned to use scissors and draw circles, to be adventurous, and to be gentle with plants and one another. T heir changes have been tremendous during this odyssey of growth, life and love. 6
Jamais je ne t?oublierai.
Les T haumartuges PrĂŠsentent: After weeks of intense preparation, including making art, costumes and sets, the children embarked on their final rehearsal week, creating a magical, musical rendition of the voyage of Ulysses, who he encountered and who waited behind. On graduation night at Abbot Kinney, after a grounding session of qigong, the children set sail...
L'Odyssee de L'Amour
?W ily Ulysses," as Homer describes the adventurer, is brave and strong, however his great superhero strength is his cleverness. After 10 years of angry gods such as PosĂŠidon, monsters like L e Cyclope, unhelpful crew mates and mermaids luring them with siren songs, he finally makes his way home to Penelope. T he children at ECF?s Abbot Kinney Campus lived this odyssey with a multi-pronged project. T he process unfolded organically for months, and out of it came an appreciation and understanding of Greek architecture, art, dance, embroidery, geography, music, mythology, poetry and sculpture.
Teacher Marina went in-depth to explore Greek architecture with her class that built replicas of ancient cities, describing a progression of learning that included herself. T he children and teachers created scenes of gorgeous detail representing the Parthenon and Homer. 15
T he stage is set for this epic voyage...
Busts of historical figures took shape, tapestries were woven, the Frieze Grec drawn, dances were practiced? T he children discovered the connections between these aspects of Greek culture and history over a period of several months, culminating in a nuanced musical production of Homer?s Odyessy.
Ulysses and Penelope marry behind the tree before welcoming their baby, Telemachus. Ulysses loves them so much that his heart is full, but he knows that he must go from his island to experience many lessons of body, mind and soul in the Mediterranean Sea. 17
?Je t'aime Pénélope! Je t'aime," Ulysses calls out as he sails away from his family. "Ulysses sur son bateau, bateau! I l était une fois, Ulysse et ses matelots sur la Méditerranée dans leur grand bateau!"
Penelope is sad amongst her friends, because her love has gone away. "Les feuilles s'envolent volent au vent de l'automne. Les feuilles s'envolent volent au vent qui les prend."
Penelope waits for her love to return from his Odyssey. Many suitors come to distract her. "PĂŠnĂŠlope, ĂŠpousez-moi!" But she continues to wait and weave. "No, merci. Je voudrais terminer ma tapisserie.?
Ulysses must battle the Cyclops. With his cleverness, Ulysses prevails against the one-eyed monster ! T he waves crash! Oh no, it?s Poseidon, the god of the sea who is so angry!
T he ship breaks in the chaos of pounding waves and rocks and his ship mates are gone! "Ohé ohé Matelot, Matelot navigue sur les flots...I l entreprit un long voyage sur la mer Mé-di Méditerranée ohé ohé..."
Fish fill the sea... Mermaids sing from the rocks... Ulysses is in the water!
T he god Zeus reassures his daughter and goddess of wisdom, Athena, that Ulysses will return home.
Hearing the siren song of the Mermaids, Ulysses immediately covers his ears. "Amour.... amour? ."
Calypso makes Ulysses a raft when his boat is destroyed. "Oh, que tu es belle Calypso,? says Ulysses.
Ulysses and Calypso dance near the Calypso Deep, the deepest part of the Mediterranean Sea above the Hellenic T rench.
As the sun and the moon rise and set, so do the years pass. T he baby of Ulysses and Penelope, Telemachus, grows into a young man of 20 years, and is visited by Athena.
W hen Ulysses returns 10 years after the Odyssey began, many pretended to be him, however Penelope knew that her true love would be able to make the archers target with his bow and arrow. 24
Slow and steady wins the race! Ulysses searched deeply within himself and traveled far. He was finally home with his family because where there is a will, there is a way. L ove prevails.
Voyagers Navigate Under the Stars, By the Light of the M oon
the days of Homer when he wrote the Odyssey, sea voyages were navigated by the night sky. Before heading east to traverse the Mediterranean, Ulysses was advised by Calypso to remain on the right side of the constellation of the Bear, and keep an eye on the Pleiades, the Boรถtes and Orion?s Belt pointing directly south. I n addition to watching the stars, we can also use the sun and moon to navigate ? by imagining a line connecting the points of the crescent moon to the horizon, you can find south in the Northern Hemisphere, and vice versa. By using the shape of the sun?s light reflecting on the moon, voyagers like Ulysses could navigate. Watching the magical full moon illuminating the Pacific Ocean next to our school, we can see the effect of the moon on the waves. As Einstein?s general theory of relativity shows us, gravity is not a force, but rather a consequence of the curvature of space and time caused by the uneven distribution of mass/ energy. continued 30
Given the Ear th?s size r elative to that of the moon, wer e ther e water on the moon, the swells would be huge! We know that the sun r ises in the gener al dir ection of the east and sets in the west, but it is not the best navigational tool because it is appr oximate. At night, star s r ise in the east and set in the west too. W hen you ar e sear ching for Polar is, or the Nor th Star , r emember to lie back and let your self dr eam of the voyages you have under taken. A young gar dener on the Camper Campus whisper s to the spr outing ?babies? the childr en have planted, ?T he Solar System: Mer cur y, Venus, Ear th, Mar s, Jupiter , Satur n, Ur anus and Neptune. T he Solar System.? Ar istotle?s ?music of the spher es? can be hear d in the solar system, gazed at by astr onomer s, philosopher s and wr iter s fr om Galileo and Ptolemy to Melville, Stephen H awking and the childr en. 32
D iscovering the Cosmos I n their Cosmology class with Bhavna, childr en gear up for space tr avel, donning invisible boots, gloves, helmets and oxygen tanks befor e blasting off into the cosmos. ?We live on Ear th, in the Milky Way Galaxy!? She shows a dr awing of the night sky filled with twinkling star s and a child exclaims, "Constellations!"
T hose ar e made of star s that stay in place, but planets ar e star s on the move. Planet means "wander er ," Bhavna explains. She asks, "W hat is it called when the planets go ar ound the sun?" A student announces pr ide, "Or bit!"
Navigating by Compass T h e ch i l d r en p r act i ced m ov i n g to th e p ol ar d i r ecti on s f ou n d on a gl obe (and locating the M editerranean Sea!). N ex t th ey cr af t ed com p asses w i th a f ew si m p l e i tem s: a d i sh of w ater a n eed l e a m agn et a sl i ce of cor k
Pl ace a m agn et on ei t h er en d of y ou r n eed l e an d w ai t 2 m i n u t es f or i t to becom e m agn eti zed . - Pu sh t h e n eed l e th r ou gh th e cor k - Pl ace i n t h e sti l l d i sh of w ater - W at ch as t h e n eed l e f i n d s n or th & sou th ! Fi n d m or e i d eas f or com p ass m ak i n g at w w w.w i k i h ow.com / M ake- a- Com p ass For f u n t ool s t o u se i n y ou r su m m er n av i gati on , tr y d ow n l oad i n g th e m on th ly ?Even i n g Sk y M ap " at Sk y M ap s.com 37
Playing from the H eart Music soothes the soul
and charges the brain. W hen children listen to classical music, their brain function improves, as does their capacity to learn. Teacher Marina gathers the children weekly to conduct an important piece of music - it?s a surprise which will be chosen. For the last concerto of the year, the choice was Bach. T he class was born from the shared interests of the children and teachers, leading to the inspiration for another project in the making for next year. We look forward to the voyage and seeing the beauty that comes from a project that delves into the works of great composers.
piano teacher Moana, the children performed an evening concert
featuring old favorites like Mary Had a Little Lamb to theme songs from popular movies. A visible sense of pride filled the face of each child as they finished performing their recital piece.
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