Every year we begin and end the year with the Rose Ceremony, an event that marks the transition from one stage of life to another. Foundational to our educational model is the understanding of human development and its phases. One principle of human development is the seven-year phases of life: birth - 7, 7 - 14, 14 - 21. In the Rose Ceremony, we see the first and second phases represented as the kindergartener enters 1st grade. Three ideals live within each seven-year period: goodness, beauty, and truth.
From when a child is born, up through our kindergarten program, the child is most nourished by a sense that the world is good. We cultivate this sense of goodness through the loving affection of the teachers, through stories, and through the daily environment the children experience with their senses. The teacher carries on the parents’ loving gaze and constant devotion to the child’s well-being. Hugs each morning, snuggles on the rocking chair, and a nice back rub when settling down for a nap let the child know that they are loved and in a good, safe place.
The Rose Ceremony marks the beginning of the next phase of life and development. This is why storytelling is so important in our curriculum. The spoken and written word help guide the students through an understanding of the world, and through the word, and through the teachers, the students develop a feeling that the world is beautiful. The world may not always be good, and this is something that the teacher helps reveal as well, but in the world, beauty persists. Through the teacher’s artistic teaching, the student sees that the world is ordered, is coherent, and that they belong.
We help our students develop the ability to not only sense goodness, beauty, and truth, but also to be bearers of them out in the world.