During our Rocks and Minerals block my students and I are speaking this poem by Robert Frost.
Fire and Ice
Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I’ve tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And will suffice.
We’ve also started singing a song for Michaelmas. The first few lines are:
Firmly on the earth I stand;
Michael’s sword is in my hand;
When I conquer fear the dragon’s chains I tightly bind;
Michael’s light within my mind
One of the festivals that lives quite strongly at our school is Michaelmas, and we’re singing this song in preparation for this festival.
Michaelmas is a wonderful festival during which we celebrate, honor and call forth the archangel Michael, who is one of the four archangels — the one who threw Lucifer out of heaven. He is recognized as an angel of courage and strength and he is most often depicted with a sword and shield. Quite often St. George, from the story of St. George and the dragon, is represented as a human incarnation that called forth and represented the Michaelic spirit.
It is wonderful at this time of year to bring stories of strength and courage to your students. For younger children, St. George is perfect. For older students find biographies of real individuals who display that Michaelic strength. Last year I told my class about Julia Butterfly Hill. A few years ago I told my eighth grade class about Sojourner Truth. There are so many people in the world who demonstrate that spirit and they can give great inspiration to our older students. As I write this (on the day of the tenth anniversary of 9/11) I think of all of the heroic figures that emerged from that tragedy. Telling one of their stories could be a wonderfully uplifting way to bring a spirit of remembrance to our oldest students.
If you want to read more about Michaelmas, here are a few links.
Carrie at The Parenting Passageway has a great post about Michaelmas.
Melisa at A Little Garden Flower writes about it here.
Here’s a post at Our Little Nature Nest that has ideas for great Michaelmas activities.
I love this Michaelic season. It feels so appropriate for these first few weeks of school when we must call forth a little more of the fire within us to take on new subjects and confront the challenges of a new year.