TCH Traditions - The Children's House

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TCH Traditions

by Karin Church
Thursday, May 16, 2024

As the 40th school year of The Children’s House comes to a close, we prepare to participate in some of the time-tested, community-building, heart-warming traditions that make our school what it is to the children, the families, and those who work in this community of learners. These traditions and others throughout the year enrich all of our lives and create the culture that binds us together from the youngest child in Nido to the graduating 8th year. Sharing our traditions with those who are new to our community helps them obtain a deeper understanding of what matters to us and hopefully connects them to our community on a deeper level.


Traditions exist and are developed in each classroom to build community within these smaller groups of learners; however, the traditions that are practiced on a school-wide basis are the connecting fibers that link each classroom community to the whole which is The Children’s House and Compass Junior High.


The school year opens with the Fall Festival, in preparation for which elementary and junior high learners work with our amazing kitchen staff to welcome the entire school community to a day of celebration.  We gather in the Barn and partake in a delicious meal made from the local harvest and then head outside to play games and participate in arts and crafts. Family members can volunteer to help set up, clean up, or support an activity. In starting our year together this way and celebrating the abundance of our harvest and the joy of being together, we begin the year knowing that we are all part of something bigger that aims to support our learners in the most loving, kind, and thoughtful way.


As the year progresses, the children participate in activities within their classrooms in ways that are meaningful for their developmental stage. Lower Elementary celebrates Pumpkin Fun Day (which falls on Halloween) but other classrooms recognize this time of year too, in ways that make sense for them. Elementary also celebrates the 100th Day of School, Primary has an annual pajama day, and Valentine’s Day is celebrated as well.  (Classroom Highlights and Waypoints are great ways to know what’s coming your children’s way!)


Before we gather for our Harvest Feast in late November, our school plants daffodil bulbs on Daffodil Day in memory of Anna Maas, Sierra Fetterolf, and Rowan Sanford. Later that month, Elementary and Junior High students gather in the Barn for a meal inspired by the story Stone Soup, while all the other classrooms feast potluck-style. Less than a month later we gather as a whole school once again for the Seasonal Sing before we leave each other for winter break.


Celebrations abound at the end of the school year. They bring us together to sing on May Day, sing and share our community on Grandparents and Special Friends Day, and, finally, acknowledge the wonder and majesty of it all on our last day of school Dance of the Cosmos. This year we will establish a new tradition, Nadine’s Day, in honor of Nadine Elmgren and the years of love, inspiration, and commitment she brought to The Children’s House. You’ll find us outside on this day, playing, picnicking, and beautifying our campus: the place where all the people who make these traditions meaningful come to gather.  See you again soon!