Notes from the Head

Among our teachers’ many talents, one that stands out is that of being master gardeners. Teachers have the amazing ability to get their hands dirty, planting seeds; nurturing young, tender plants; and giving them just the right amount of water, nourishment, encouragement, proper lighting, and a healthy dose of love. Just step on our campus for a visit, and you will see a beautiful botanical garden that is richly diverse and colorful, and of varying sizes and rates of growth and development. Some grow well on their own, displaying independence and self-motivation, while others need a bit more TLC and individual attention in order to reach their peak. Our teachers are able to cultivate some beautiful creations that grow to delight all who have the blessing to witness the beauty right before their eyes.

“What type of plants are being planted?” you might ask. Well, our teachers are master gardeners of children! With a great deal of faith, love, and hope, our teachers are planting seeds of new knowledge, nurturing those seeds, feeding them, and encouraging their growth on a daily basis. The children entrusted to our care come to us with a natural curiosity about their world. As their understanding grows, so does their desire for more seeds to be planted. Our teachers are also igniting the fire within our young charges, which serves as fertilizer for their growing minds and expanding spirits. At the end of each school year, we transplant our growing “plants” into a new fertile bed, perhaps a new courtyard, and introduce them to yet more opportunities to grow new shoots and blossom. By the time they reach the end of their time in our flourishing gardens, we send forth beautiful creations that have grown under the watchful eye, nurturing care, and strong encouragement of teachers and parents working together to bring out their best.

The seeds planted by our master teacher-gardeners grow deep roots and strong shoots and are ready to carry their beauty into the world beyond our adobe walls. They are strong in mind, body, and spirit, and they make their world a better place. Through faith, hope, patience and love, our master gardeners accomplish great things, and the seeds that they plant come together in young people who go on to change the world. What a blessing it is for those of us who are witnesses to the beauty of God’s creation right before our eyes in the classrooms of St. Michael’s. What a privilege to plant seeds every day and watch them grow!

Margaret Moore

Head of School

Parking Lot Safety and Etiquette

This is just a gentle reminder regarding parking lot safety as people come and go through the school parking lots. As you are entering the campus from Wilmot and Fifth Street, please do not stop along the curb for drop-off or pick-up until you have passed the sixth grade gate. Stopping prior to that gate creates a safety hazard and can prevent subsequent cars from being able to enter the parking lot. Recently, cars have had to stop in the intersection of Wilmot and Fifth because the entrance was blocked by cars parked along the curb. If you are walking your students to their classrooms, or you need to come to the School Office, please park your vehicle in the parking lot. No cars or trucks should be left unattended along the curb at any time.

In addition, please drive SLOWLY through the parking lot. Children and parents are crossing the parking lot as they walk into the courtyards, and children are not always looking both ways as they cross. Let’s be vigilant and watch for children as you come and go. We want to ensure that our children and parents arrive and depart school safely each day.

Coach’s Corner

Middle School Sports

Congratulations to our Coed Soccer team on their victory over TCDS last week. Way to go! Upcoming schedule:
Thur. 12/14 – NO PRACTICE
Mon. 12/18 – Game @ Leman Academy 4:00pm
Wed. 12/20 – Game TCDS @ SM 4:00pm
We are now into the basketball portion of our winter intramural program. Upcoming practice dates:
Thur. 12/14
Mon. 12/18
Tues. 12/19
Wed. 12/20

Uniform Exchange Recap

We had another successful Uniform Sale and Exchange this past Saturday, when hundreds of items found new homes.  Thank you to all who attended, and especially to our wonderful volunteers: Barbi Reuter, Christy Collins, Klara Valent, Ava Neher, Sue Aaby, Shanti Martinez, Jennifer LaHue-Smith, and Cathryn Rose. We couldn’t have done it without you!

-Kristin Greenwood & Bridget Peyton 

Notes from the Head

There are very few places where it is more exciting to spend the weeks leading up to Christmas than in a school. As one can imagine, the atmosphere is electric with visions of sugarplums, intermingled with math facts, dancing in little heads! Focus begins to wane in the classrooms as the number of distractions multiply. In contrast, we find ourselves in the church liturgical season of Advent, a time that calls us to wait, to watch, to stay alert as we prepare for God’s joyful surprise. It is a time to behold the awe and wonder of the season, taking note of God’s presence in the present moments, in things previously unnoticed.

I frequently find myself in conflict with this time of the year. With constant commercials pitching items we did not know we needed, as well as frequent reminders of the declining number of days for Christmas shopping, it is not surprising that it is a time of high stress and exhaustion. Who has time to slow down and “smell the roses” when there is a mile-long list to accomplish? Which is why I love Advent and the contrasting reminder to slow down, be in the moment, and enjoy the magical wonders that surround us.

Small children are our perfect model. They take in every detail. They can stare at the Christmas tree for hours, checking out each ornament and all the dazzling lights. Their faith in Christmas displays hope, joy, and love right before our eyes as they behold the majesty in God’s creation. They take pleasure in the simple things and are present for every moment. And right there is our reminder. Watch, stay alert, be ready because the joy of the season is in the present moment. I am reminded that the to-do list is not important; rather, beholding the awe and wonder is.

Perhaps this Advent season, we can look with five-year-old eyes, appreciating each magical moment. Watch, stay awake, and wait patiently as the season of preparation unfolds. Such a practice may just change Christmas for us as we look with fresh eyes at the beauty of our creation, intentionally slowing down for Advent. The signs are all around us if we simply take the time to notice.

Margaret Moore

Head of School

Uniform Sale and Exchange

The uniform sale and exchange will be held this weekend on Saturday, December 9, from 9:00 – 10:30 a.m. in Tankersley Hall. Gently used uniforms (all seasons) can be had for $2 to $4! Or bring your own gently used items (no faded clothing, holes, or stains, please) for even exchange. Now is your chance to size up pants and jackets or stock up on shorts and polos for the spring. This is likely the last uniform sale and exchange of the year. Hope to see you then!

Ten Thousand Villages

Shop with Ten Thousand Villages during Saturday’s uniform exchange.  St. Michael’s Social Action Committee is offering a selection of fair-trade crafts from Ten Thousand Villages, representing many developing countries, encouraging artisan groups, and helping people live with dignity.  Unique selections range from $3 holiday decorations to elegant solid brass earrings made from shell casings, charming Peruvian nativities, and much more.  Gifts to feel good about!  We are the only place in Southern Arizona to “Shop the Village.”

Coach’s Corner

Middle School Sports: Our Coed Soccer Team is off to a great start! Our next game will be Monday, December 11, at The Gregory School at 4:00 p.m.
Intramurals: This Wednesday is our last day of volleyball for our intramural program. Next week, we begin basketball. Practices next week will be held on MondayWednesday, and Thursday (12/11, 12/13, 12/14).

SMA News

A big THANK YOU to Anna Martinez-Ross and Dave Ross of Martinez-Ross Marketing for sponsoring the December Coffee Corner. It was a great turn-out!