We talked about Weekly notes, about how in so little work you are showing people what is inside this beautiful place, what this place can give to your brain. This week I volunteered for weekly notes as you can see. I will try to give you things that really show what NBS is all about, because it is indeed a beautiful place.
Will began meeting with saying that he had his first hockey game this weekend, he lost his first game and won his second. I thought it was amazing because Will was the first boy who talked today, being a sevie, he is opening up to us. You could tell that he was full of joy with Will’s big smile. He is happy that Hockey started.
-Merry also had a hockey game. Last year her team didn’t do so well with losing Rutland constantly. She is really confused with the position she is in. Last year they lost but she had power to go to the puck, now with a new position, she feels uncomfortable, she misses the last position she played. She’s older now, she is stepping it up, let's hope for Merry to find a comfortable place in this sport. She is really great at it, We’ve all seen her play at the annual NBS hockey tournament. I feel like Merry has high standards for herself. Sometimes she feels like she is not setting a good role model to the young hockey players on her team, I think he needs to realize she has a major gift.
-Wren was watching tv with her mom, she lied about her laundry being done after an ongoing show-addiction through the day. This upset her mom. Her mom doesn’t want this “lying” relationship. Wren doesn’t want this relationship either. This was a mistake. All kids do this, but I thought it was cool that Wren brought up a little thing that can create a big disaster. I could tell that Wren loves her mother and wants the best relationship.
-The ninth grade boys came to the sevies party, Aidan saw Will dressed in orange along with his family representing something sacred to them. Will said the other day, the reason he loved the color orange was because it represented so many things in his life, like his dog and his ongoing passion for the Hockey sport.
-Marina felt weird about not having Eden hat her party, with Eden being gone to her Red Cedar friends. You can tell that being away from her old friends is hard for Eden. She definitely feels close to the Red Cedar. Her goal is to have that in North Branch by the end of this year. She needs to let us see that touchy-feely side of hers, even if it’s weird. We need to be close with Eden like she is outside. It needs to be inserted into the inside, this school. I know we will see this soon, since we are already seeing it some each day.
-We talked about the school board and how much love and time they put in the school. The board puts in 15 hours a month in the school, without even having children being there. The board dressed up for wiffle ball to make the school happy. They give so much support while having other things to do, other jobs, full-time, having other kids as well. We need a volunteer board to help the school survive. The board is important to all of us, they are part of the North Branch family, we love them. We, the kids, are so very thankful.
-If anyone's, looking for a bed and breakfast Leeya has one up for sale, in Nuh-Haven, Vermont.
-Althea was sad because Keeley didn’t want to carve a pumpkin with her and she felt like she was missing the moment to recreate a moment from the past. I feel like time is flowing by for a lot of the siblings in NBS, relationships with brothers and sisters, are getting weaker by age. It’s normal, we are all growing up. No one ever told us that growing up isn’t hard.
Angus’s father let Angus use the big chop saw, now that he is not a little boy anymore. Angus was glad, I hope he doesn’t hurt himself!
Then Anika read "the ocean moving all night” by: Rumi
In science we had to plot a trail around nbs property, my partner was Sam. Eric did help us find our first plot, but Sam and I found the rest. We got most of the plots finished, the more plots you do finish less time we have to build the trail. Sooner or later skiing will arrive, so our trail will be complete. We all can’t wait!
In math we learned about graphing coordinates and looking at the patterns in the coordinate plane, along with explaining the sequence in an equation form. Math for me, was finished in a good 45 minutes, I felt accomplished and hopefully I got 100%. In math I have really been trying to really push myself. Math isn’t my best subject since I have a hard time understanding it. But I am still trying, Rose is helping me. I am thankful for her.
At lunch I played soccer, not a typical scrimmage, but a good 30 minutes of middle school world cup. This game consists of Anika’s karate, japanese, moves, getting her ball away from her precious goal. I played barefoot, feeling Jack’s hardcore skiing foot, and kicking Angus in his chin for the 4th time by accident today. By the end of the game I was happy and I didn’t get out yet… This game really brought all of us kids together.
AFTERNOON: Tal got mad at us, because a lot of people have over due things, including me, I felt bad, and I made a promise to finish all my work before the conferences, I am making a schedule for myself for the week to fit in all the little things.
We all went down-stairs to the art room, to work on self-portraits. I couldn’t go because I wasn’t here on Friday to do math, so I had to do the page due. Plus I had other little overdue things needed to be looked at and given to the teachers. For a good rest of the day I finished everything, with Rosemary and Aidan along my side. We helped each other, and Aidan and I finished. We felt really great. For a good 15 minutes we had time to go down-stairs with the rest of our peers and started on a abstract portraits of ourselves. It was a time well spent.
The 15 minutes passed and soon it was the end of the day. We gathered our piles of jackets, shoes, lunch boxes and back-packs, and left-over candy wrappers from the Halloween two days ago, to go to carpool. Today was a late day, sorry carpoolers.
We started the morning with giving ourselves pats on our back for only six dishes to clean. In the past we’ve had a hard time doing dishes and having a lot of them to clean. This year We have been really paying attention to the way we clean things so it’s fair for everyone. The low number of dishes today was a record.
After, eyes were on the black hole, not many things were in it, only about six as well! Including Rose's sweater.
It is Leeya’s dad's birthday today, she guesses he is 64. Every birthday on his, he goes on a thirty mile walk to New York, where he brings a backpack and many pints of gatorade. I think Leeya has the most interesting dad I know. I don’t know him, but from what I have heard, he is weird, with mushroom collecting and things but at the same time that’s making him really cool. This walk is amazing, it’s encouraging me to have the same goal.
-Griffin is adding a new solution to the job system. Griffin has been really involved with the school lately. With talking in meeting to finding new ways, easier ways to do things here. I am really proud of him, he has come a long way, since last year.
-Today is Wren’s grandpa’s birthday. No one told her that, it was until she woke up and went down-stairs for breakfast. She was grumpy that no one reminded her. The years before she wouldn’t care at all, but this year being 13, she cares. Tal got after her about how it’s not our parent's job to remind her, or tell her, it’s up to her, she should be mad at herself. I depend so much on my parents to tell me things that I wouldn’t bother to find out. I want to not depend on my parents, I want to step it up, in this way kids are a lot like this, but to grow up you have to change from that innocence, depend on yourself, grow up and get it together.
Tal is ranting and is positive that he has Histrionic Personality Disorder, though not all the exact symptoms. HE thinks he may have six or seven other personality disorders. But he is not worried! he says everyone has a personality disorder.
Aidan was searching for a poem yesterday, and found an add, an add of the creator of “5 hour energy”. The creator is donating most of his money to charity. I think it’s amazing because since I was little, my dream was to be rich, I thought of winning the lottery and how that would be my true Utopia. I never really thought of charity, I didn’t care about charity. When I was little I was selfish. Now going to the North Branch school, I see simple Utopias, like love, or a place that makes you happy. Money doesn’t make you happy, the idea of having money does. It is not Utopia. All this guy wants is other people to be happy.
-Tal commented on Wyatt’s writing piece in a good way. He said that it sounded like a sophisticated writer. Wyatt told all of us that he used a lot of time on every sentence, to make his writing improve, to grow. The more time and thought, the more rich your writing is.
It was said that we need Tal to talk and to have a conversation to support meeting, to keep it alive. People need to be talking without Tal encouraging them. We need to step it up and control this school, control meeting.
Maxine has been really paying attention to her mother, she is realizing that her mother sacrificed so much for them through her life. She has been saying thank you a lot more. It was touching and I really could tell that family is really important to Maxine. I could also see tears forming in her eyes.
Althea’s mom has been stressed out lately. Althea’s wants her mother to feel better. On Friday they’re doing a mother-daughter yoga class to calm down and relax.
Aidan read Alone by Edgar Allen Poe and Meeting was done.
From childhood’s hour I have not been As others were—I have not seen
As others saw—I could not bring
My passions from a common spring—
From the same source I have not taken
My sorrow—I could not awaken
My heart to joy at the same tone—
And all I lov’d—I lov’d alone—
Then—in my childhood—in the dawn
Of a most stormy life—was drawn
From ev’ry depth of good and ill
The mystery which binds me still—
From the torrent, or the fountain—
From the red cliff of the mountain—
From the sun that ’round me roll’d
In its autumn tint of gold—
From the lightning in the sky
As it pass’d me flying by—
From the thunder, and the storm—
And the cloud that took the form
(When the rest of Heaven was blue)
Of a demon in my view--
-LitIn lit we are reading To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. For our lit assignment we had to read chapter 11 and chapter 12, We talked about the black church and how it was a gateway through happiness and love for Scout as a white child. All through class a buzzing wasp, was buzzing around the table, like it just wanted to be with us, to look at us, listen. Marina wanted to catch it and let it free outside. But I thought it felt free inside the classroom, with us. It was a good visitor.
After we then had Math, which was an easy 2 page assignment, I worked with Catherine, and we both worked well together finishing it just in time, at 12:20.
-Lunch: I played another game of world cup, while some people went up for seconds on the delicious school lunch special of “Roasted meat and Veggies.” Eric started a new schedule of school lunching every Tuesdays and Thursdays. We (The school) are creating healthy and balanced meals for everyone. We have a vegetarian option along with a meat option. You will find out more on it in the monthly newsletter, because I am writing it.
-In study, Tal was gone for half of the time we had, so the eighty boys were in charge, requesting that they would be best to be the leaders. Wyatt was sitting in Tal’s dark maple, chair, acting like Tal, throwing out funny things like Tal did (hand motions, saying “SHUT UP!!!”, etc. We all had a big laugh at his pretty good impersonation, which did side track us. When Tal opened the heavy door, we got in our quiet mode, like we were like that the whole, entire time. (Tal probably knew we'd do that). We’re still kids, our goofiness can overcome us. This work time wasn’t as productive as I wanted it to be. By the way we didn’t mean this in a mean way towards Tal, it’s just a way of loving him. The best impersonation are when you know a person really well.
Science class was productive. We started presenting our projects in a slim summary form. The eighth graders had to go around class showing diagrams of their recent study of a solution to navigating Earth. For example, my study was about early time keeping to reflect on how we find longitude at sea. After this class, school ended at 3:30 P.M.
Morning notes by Angus-Teachers were in a meeting so we had meeting by ourselves.
We start off by talking about what we had learned about our family the night before. Sam’s grandmother got her pilot's license before her driver's license. Sydney’s Cousin’s son wrote speeches for Obama five years ago. Owen’s grandfather studied with John Lennon in India. Merry’s grandfather was killed in the last kamikaze raid in World War 2. Jack’s family is from every part of Europe. Wren learned her grandfather turned 93 the night before and her family has coasters from every Ivy League school. Eden has French royal bloodlines. Henry’s ancestors in Ukraine had to always watch out for Nazis during World War II...
Marina talks about music group by ourselves the day before. It went well but not as well as we planned it to. I personally had a lot of fun and I didn’t think we did to badly.
Rosemary got to help her brother out with his math homework. She was happy that he had asked her.
November isn’t usually a great month for Marina but this year it seems to her that it feels better this year.
We talked about our siblings and how we grow up as humans. Owen read this poem by Rudyard Kipling.
If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:
If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:
If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’
If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!
After the poem Catherine says something because Rosemary had done her LIT the day before. She talks about how Wren had been scared that if she never went to find anybody at lunch that nobody would find her, so Catherine tried it and Rosemary had come to find her.
-I came into Kelsey and Tal talking, It was ten, the middle of study. I had come from a late doctor's appointment. After, their conversation, I talked to Tal about my appointment, which was actually good news. I gave him my both assignments due, and he pointed out that my cousin was Dean Stockwell. He is supposed to be a famous actor. We were laughing because we didn’t even know who he was, and my dad thought he was famous. If only I did have a famous ancestor, like Kelsey. Hers is Louis the 16th!!
Wren found out her grandfather’s birthday, He is officially 93 and counting.
Science: Right now we are on a Utopian project on top of the subject, Earth. In groups we are creating our definition of Utopia with sticks and stones right outside of the North Branch School. We are all supposed to finish this today, so we can scale draw it on our very own homemade map that we learned to plot.
We ended the day with Wren's Project about failed Utopia’s. Her topic was so interesting and really giving us another way to think about Utopia. Finding Utopia is finding yourself, not in a group, not us, it’s based on yourself. These failed Utopias were based in group living spaces, and doing things as a community, thinking that is the way to live. But if you live in a community focusing on other people, you are not living Utopia, you are failing it. Utopia is striving to find your light, to learn from your flaws, to create by yourself, building to be a better human.
After this beautiful project, rated ten by me, was done, we talked about character sketches. One is due Monday. For those who don’t know what a character sketch is, it’s a 5 page piece of writing that is about any person that comes to your mind. Those 5 pages are strictly about her/him and your relationship.
The day ended, with carpools lined up for the 4 day weekend!