The Grapevine

Woodinville Montessori School Weekly Newsletter, Sept. 20, 2017

LEARN self-respect, compassion and commitment to community | GROW academically, socially, emotionally, creatively and intellectually | BECOME world citizens who have a voice and make a difference.

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WMHS Senior is National Merit® Scholarship Semifinalist

UN International Day of Peace

Peace education is important in Montessori

Pinwheels for peace

Classes at both the Woodinville and North Creek campuses marked the United Nation's International Day of Peace. They gathered in multi-class circles, sang “Light a Candle For Peace,” planted Pinwheels for Peace (this is the Douglas Fir class) and hung handmade paper doves on classroom door handles. Peace education is a very important part of a Montessori education all the time, not just on the International Day of Peace.

“Peace is an important topic, and we will focus on how to act in a peaceful manner and how to help bring peace to our community,” Woodinville campus teacher Tara Chandler noted in the Maple class September newsletter. “We will learn some yoga moves and other self-calming practices so that we can revisit these activities throughout the year when we need to find peace both within ourselves and in the community.”

Congratulations to Anisha Chutani '18, who has been named a National Merit® Scholarship Semifinalist! She is one of about 16,000 semifinalists nationwide. These academically talented high school seniors may continue in the competition for about 7,500 National Merit® Scholarships worth more than $32 million, to be offered in the spring.

About 1.6 million juniors in over 22,000 high schools entered the 2018 National Merit® Scholarship Program by taking the 2016 Preliminary SAT/National Merit® Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT). The nationwide pool of semifinalists represents less than 1 percent of US high school seniors and includes the highest-scoring entrants in each state. Each state's number of semifinalists is proportional to the state's percentage of the national total of graduating seniors.

Merit® Scholars are selected based on their skills, accomplishments and potential for success in rigorous college studies. Semifinalists must fulfill several requirements to advance to the Finalist level of the competiton. About 90 percent of the semifinalists are expected to become Finalists, competing for one of three types of scholarships. The Finalists will be announced in February, with about half of those students winning a National Merit® Scholarship, and a Merit® Scholar title. Winners will be announced from April through July.

WMS Fall Festival is on Saturday, Oct. 7

By Fall Festival Chair Angela Kugler

Please join us for the WMS Fall Festival on Saturday, Oct. 7, from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. This is an annual social event hosted by the Family Alliance for students and families to have fun together. This year's event includes a Pumpkin 5K run, a petting zoo, pumpkin decorating, amazing balloon artists, apple cider, food trucks (Daddy's Donuts, the Grilled Cheese Experience, and Inferno Dogs), an obstacle course, carnival games, an experience from the ID Lab, and more!

The event is completely funded through wristband purchases and a portion of food sales. We welcome you, your friends and family, to join us as we celebrate the fall season together!

Thanks to Amy Kibuishi for designing Fall Festival coloring flyers, which are available at the front desk of both campuses. Students are encouraged to color and return them to help us to beautifully advertise the upcoming Fall Festival.

Watch your email tomorrow—we will send out a special registration link!

Secondary retreats to Camp Killoqua

Secondary retreat

By Teacher Alaine Davis

Secondary students in 7th through 9th-grades spent three days and two nights last week at Camp Killoqua in Stanwood. The beautiful setting, including 85 acres of trees, trails, and Crabapple Lake, charmed students, teachers, and chaperones alike. WMS contracts with the organization “Journeys: Rites of Passage” to facilitate our retreats, and Mark and Brumby did a tremendous job of engaging the students in games, skits, an art project, mindfulness activities, and even a “Talent Optional” show, which was by turns entertaining, heartwarming, and hilarious. Camp Killoqua staff led special activities as well, including a climbing wall, archery, and boating on the lake. Students got to know one another (and their teachers) better, had lots of laughs (and a few cuts and scrapes), and returned tired and full of funny stories.

See more photos in the gallery

Seniors review Seattle Opera's original work “An American Dream”

By Anisha C. '18 and May H. '18

Seniors at opera

On Thursday, Sept. 7, the seniors went to see “An American Dream” performed by the Seattle Opera at Washington Hall, a historic building built in 1908.

The opera was set in World War II during the internment of Japanese Americans. This made the venue of the performance especially appropriate, as it had been used as a reception center during World War II, a place where Japanese Seattleites had to register to be sent to internment camps.

The opera followed a young girl, Setsuko, and her family as they were forced to leave their home. The plot centered on Setsuko's doll that she had hidden away before she was forced to leave. The doll was then found by Eva, a German immigrant who moved into the house after her husband pressured the Japanese American family into selling. Another key to the plot was the letter holding the fate of Eva's Jewish family left behind in Germany, a letter which Setsuko had taken and kept before leaving. By the end of the opera, both women were reunited with their possessions in Setsuko's childhood home, each by then having lost their parents to the Nazis or to bad health in the American camps.

The performance was well done and powerful. All the performers inhabited their characters with a lot of emotion, and sang very skillfully and energetically. This made the performance seem real and immediate, which was furthered by our being seated so close to the performance. An interesting choice had been to start the show with a video that showed testimonials of people who had lived during the war, which helped ground the opera in reality. The set and costumes were simple, but fit well with the period of the opera.

The performance exposed the difficulties that Japanese Americans had to face during World War II, and the importance of not making the same mistakes in current times. Both seniors enjoyed “An American Dream” and found it emotional, interesting, and fitting for what they are studying this year in American history.