Calyx Happenings

May, 2021


Saving the Trees

Calyx children continue their collective work on preserving the story of the "Save the Trees" movement, an important piece of South Whidbey State Park history. Two years ago, the children became interested in the movement and after research and interviews wrote, directed, and performed a play telling the "Save the Trees" story from the perspective of the forest animals. This year, the children are designing, facilitating, and recording interviews of individuals involved in the movement as part of a larger project to preserve the oral history of the park. Keep an eye out for our final project - a sound installation in the SWSP phone booth!


April, 2021

Spring Time - Beach Time!

After a slow and cautious re-opening of our in-person time together at SWSP, we were so excited to find out that the Beach Trail has reopened after nearly 5 years of closure. Last week, Calyx was able to return to an old Calyx tradition of walking the beach at low tide from SWSP to Bush Point Beach. We are finding our way, exploring the rhythms of the land and sea, and discovering new ways of being together with the earth as our guide.


Spring-Summer, 2020 

Connecting From our Backyards

Calyx Connects (a new Calyx program) and Calyx Backyard Summer Camps offered children the opportunity to connect with peers, play, exploration, and nature in their own backyards. Through an innovative balance of online connection, visiting artists, and inspiring outdoor projects, children ages 7-11 enjoyed becoming earth warriors, tinkering engineers, and nature artists.


February, 2020

The Lichen Project

Throughout our lichen study, we have worked both collaboratively and independently, practicing Calyx agreements and social and emotional literacy to enable rich collaboration and to meet our individual needs. needs met. We learned the three main groups of lichen and practiced counting and categorizing specimens found on the trails. We made observational drawing of different lichen types and wrote similes to describe the different lichen we observed.


October, 2020

Calyx Offers First Backyard Field Trip

Can something be both dead and alive? Can you really find Dead Man's Fingers in the forest? What's with all the dead stuff in nature? What happens to it? Where does it go?

Calyx's naturalist mentors, with special guest Dave "Caveman" Friedman, facilitated a successful and fun backyard nature experience for children ages 7-11.


Spring, 2020 

Calyx Children Explore Poetry

Calyx School children dove deep into poetry this Spring with help from our visiting artist, Vicki. Students picked poems to memorize, wrote their own poems, and created the first ever Calyx poetry book!


January, 2020

Diversity of Greens

As part of a larger expedition into understanding and recognizing diversity, Calyx children record the diversity of greens they observe in the forest. By putting all their work together, this "Diversity in Green" quilt showcases our student's diverse perceptions and creative expressions.


September, 2020

Calyx Opens With a Hybrid School Year

We are so excited to be launching this unique beautiful year with our Calyx community! Calyx has always been a responsive program, meeting the diverse needs of our children, families, staff, and earth. And this year is no different. We are starting the year off gently with small pod in-person meetings once per week, supplemented with Zoom-time gatherings and back-yard explorations.


March 23, 2020 

Calyx Launches Online Outdoor School!

Calyx mentors and children continue to learn together! Our new program uses technology minimally and intentionally to support our ongoing work in nature connection, social & emotional literacy, integrated studies, culinary arts, visual arts, and civil discourse. Mentors continue to work closely with children and families to develop our new program design, ensuring all children have access to the learning be offered and that our families feel supported.


Winter Term, 2020

Peace Council

In Peace Council we cultivate conflict resolution and restorative practices, as well as explore peace within and outside us. This term, we have begun with a series of Thich Nhat Hanh inspired meditations. First a drawing meditation, then a stone mediation. Last week, we made meditation bags for our stones to help us with our practice.


November 6, 2019

Inoculating Logs with our Favorite Mushrooms

With the help of a local mushroom expert (and a kind donation of supplies), Calyx students spend the morning hard at work, drilling, plugging, and labeling mushroom logs!

We are building our knowledge base of mushrooms and how they connect to us, our community, and to the earth.


Fall Term, 2019

Mushrooms as Mentors

Our daily explorations on South Whidbey State Park trails have led us into the world of mushrooms. Student interest in mushrooms and mycelium are prompting a foray of interdisciplinary learning experiences in our forest, indoor classroom and beyond!


September 20, 2019

Calyx Kids Participate in Climate Action

Some of our Calyx families joined forces with Whidbey Island Climate Activists, voicing their concern for clean water and clean air.

As part of our sustainability curriculum, Calyx students learn about how they impact their environment with their actions and words.