Reflections on the Holiday Season
Posted by Peggy Procter on 12/18/2017
A few days ago, my daughter asked me about Judaism, curious to understand more about the religion and culture. We spoke for a while and we even took the opportunity to speak with a friend’s mom who is Jewish to learn more. Shortly thereafter, my daughter said something lovely. “Mom, one of the things I like most about Judaism is that their holidays are more about family and love and food and being together, and less about presents.” This is just one example of the types of conversation I’ve had and the thoughtful comments I’ve heard from my daughter over the last few months since she began attending Echo Horizon. This is what Echo Horizon is all about - inspiring our children to be curious and ask questions and to engage with and learn from people of differing backgrounds; helping our children to be empathetic and compassionate and to think about others; encouraging them to see difference as beauty. This is what drew me to Echo Horizon last fall during the search process and this is the reason I am so grateful to be a part of this magical place.
Experiencing Winter Program for the first time was breathtaking. It is a beautiful representation of our values and our spirit, the same things that my daughter is embracing in her first year at Echo Horizon. It was a gift to watch our sixth graders lead confidently while also taking such good care of our younger students. It was a gift to experience the brilliance and supportiveness of our entire faculty and staff as they collaborated, under the tremendous leadership of our arts team, to put on a fabulous show. It was a gift to not spend one minute worrying about the set-up and food knowing that Mayra and her team and Josh and Lisa and their team of volunteers were organized and willing to do whatever was needed for a beautiful experience. And it was the icing on the cake to see all of our students shine on stage, displaying their talent, enthusiasm, hard work, focus, and willingness to take risks. The final song, The Wish, brought tears to my eyes as I watched our students and our graduates, arms around one other, connected in love and in song by their Echo Horizon bond.
As 2017 comes to an end and with 2018 just around the corner, I send my final blog post filled with deep gratitude and awe. You amaze me Echo Horizon. Thank you for sharing your joy and love with me and my family these first few months - my heart is full as I head off for a much needed “long winter’s nap”.
PS - I humbly share with you my poetic toast - not sure it will read as well without the laughter and cheers and chatter of our beloved students in the background!
‘Twas the night before vacation
By your poetically challenged Head of School with a little help from Clement Clarke Moore
‘Twas the night before vacation and all through Echo Horizon School
Faculty and students reminisced about how these first months had been so cool.
Our great faculty was busy crafting the final lessons of the year
In hope that their kiddos would leave with a cheer.
The students were nestled all snug in their beds
While visions of kind teachers danced in their heads
The school year began with a new Head and a heat wave
Postponing Popsicles in the Park certainly wasn’t our fave
Then came Burger Truck, Pinwheels for Peace and a pep rally with the Hawk
Doing the Cha Cha slide together, not even Dr. Patterson did balk
Birthday celebrations were a blast with yummy treats and best wishes
The Around the World Picnic in the park with extravagant international dishes
A Points of Pride ceremony focused us on kindness and trust
Re-committing to these ideals was definitely a must
New Spirit gear arrived and off the racks it quickly flew
People purchasing both the vintage and the brand spanking new
We donned our beautiful new Echo gear on our Friday spirit days
Our sixth grade leaders inspired us to show Hawk pride in creative ways
Taking care of our neighborhood at the cleanup at Ballona Creek
Lots of garbage, cigarette butts, and even an old microwave we did seek
All School picnic was loads of fun with yummy fried chicken and desserts so sweet
Joyful to bring the community together despite the unrelenting heat
When Halloween preparations began there arose such a clatter,
That the Leadership Team appeared to see what was the matter.
A petition from fifth grade requested costumes be worn
After much deliberation, a new tradition was born
Faculty appreciation snacks at meetings filled our bellies and our hearts
Who knew the parents would spoil us with finger sandwiches and apple tarts
We sent kids off on amazing adventures to Catalina and to Pali
Where they snorkeled, hiked and learned about the geology of Cali
Grandparents and Special friends day arrived with a trivia game so fun
We learned so much about our school’s history by the time that it was done
We learned about inclusivity and each other led by the one and only Roger
He kept us motivated and inspired despite a loss by our dear Team Dodger
This evening is Winter Program bringing us holiday music and cheer
Vacation is just around the corner and the start of a brand new year
It’s hard to believe it’s December 14th and we’ve made it this far
Our amazing faculty inspiring each student to reach for a star
What good times we have had what great memories we share
It’s been incredible to see how much each one of you does care
Peggy sprung to the stage, to the whole community gave a shout
Let’s get these vacations started, before the students begin to pout
And we heard her exclaim as she flew out of sight
Happy Holidays to all and to all a good night.
- Echo Horizon School
- Head of School Blog