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26 August 2016

posted 25 Aug 2016, 16:04 by Carolyn Brett   [ updated 25 Aug 2016, 18:50 ]
"I just wanted to say congratulations on, and thank you all for your efforts in making the Musical Festival over the last 2 nights a simply fantastic experience for one and all.

We came along last night and loved every minute of it. It was driven by the children, guided by you guys, delivered by each and every child, and enjoyed by parents, families and the community that took great pride in the efforts of their own and other children and the school.

It was a real show case of all that is great about WBS – it was creative, innovative and just terrific. And, like everything you guys do, continued to build on, grow and take this annual celebration of all aspects of the arts into yet another brand new and exciting space." - 
Feedback from a very satisfied parent!

The Festival of Music is now over, but the spirit of giving things a go lives on! An enormous "tino pai rawa" to our children for their 14 performances, our dedicated team and supportive parents for getting a vision implemented - and wasn't the organisation slick?!

As one of my favourites, Sir Ken Robinson, discusses in his book 'The Element - How finding your passion changes everything", it is the encouragement of family/teachers that supports children to connect with individual talents and passions and that
one size doesn't fit all. 

A lot comes down to mindset and being open to doing things in different ways. Whether it's playing a jandal, a wooden spoon, a pot, a melodian, a triangle, a violin or a theremin...... chanting, dancing, poetry, beatboxing or making a movie - who knows what fire this may ignite.......

As Sir Ken believes, "all children start their school careers with sparkling imaginations, fertile minds, and a willingness to tale a risk with what they think..... with too much narrowing down..... too much emphasis on 'basics', many children don't get to explore the full range of their abilities and interests."

We don't want to stifle our children's motivation to learn or pour water on their fire! It's an AND. Yes, there is a strong focus on the 3 Rs here, we have to. However, as I said a few weeks ago - that has to be the floor, not the ceiling.

This week we have also had a beautiful range of musicians in school, performing to our very interested children. As Scott mentioned to me yesterday, "All of the children listened so well, were attentive, really into it - loved it." We came to the conclusion that our children could do with regular exposure to people showcasing talents and passions, when it fits. If they had been listening to a classical violin piece earlier in the year, it may have been out of some children's comfort zones and that's when we get the giggling and immaturity and all that goes with it! 

We also had a number of children take a risk when performing to other children........

"I am so proud of what I did I nearly cried (but I didn't).

I thought that my heart would burst out because I was so scared...."
 (Year 4 boy)

It's been an extremely rewarding week. 

Now, we had gold coin donation in the Newsletter, as a fee to go towards supporting the Festival. We understand not many people carry cash, but as we only managed to gather $179.60 through a gold coin donation - and a considerable amount of money is spent on makeup, costumes, lighting, backdrops, technical bits and bobs - the 'buckets' will sit in the office for some weeks to come - so please help us get some traction towards breaking even!

For more on Sir Ken and The Element: