Homeschooling is on the rise! According to data gathered by the US Department of Education, the number of homeschooled children ages 5 to 17 increased by almost 62% from 2003 to 2012. There are over 1.7 million kids out there who are learning at home, at the park, and in the woods. Parents are reclaiming the roles of teachers, with the world at large as their classrooms!
Support for homeschooling families has also risen. Sandi Russi, founder of Wholistic Learning Resources, had recognized in 2010 the need for a place where homeschooling families can avail of specialty classes such as art, handwork, woodwork, and movement. She pioneered a program that offers Waldorf-inspired classes in a school-like setting that supports the homeschooling lifestyle! There are others out there who bring their know-how and love of teaching to the homeschool world such as Earthschooling, Live Education, Syrendell, and Waldorfish, to name a few.
We are happy to partner with Sandi Russi in launching Davis WLR last year, which brought us (Rick and Jennifer Tan) on board as homeschooling teachers for the families in Davis, Sacramento, and surrounding areas. We are also very happy to participate in WLR's Avenues & Inspiration Conference this August 2016. With Sandi Russi and other instructors of the WLR program - Kathy Anuszczyk, Talib Huff, Ciana Keller, Audra Sterrett, and Brian Wolfe, we are proud to inspire other parents and their families to make the homeschool journey with us.
Homeschoolers are a community of people who believe in the power of family, that the capacities of the 21st century can be taught and fostered in the home, that we as parent/educators are responsible for guiding our future's leaders, peace keepers, and change makers. Ultimately, we make the homeschool journey because we value the precious time seeing our own children grow and become loving adults.
Join us at the Avenues & Inspiration Conference; let's begin the adventure!
Rick and Jennifer Tan
Start with workshops in wool crafting, wood working, watercolor painting, and journal keeping. Mix in chef-prepared farm-to-table gourmet meals. Combine it all in a setting of tranquil luxury and impeccable elegance. And voila! Syrendell Summer Retreat 2016 at Park Winters.
As long time artists and educators, we have been teaching children the practical arts, and it was time to bring the merits of hands-on creative learning to the grown-ups. Through working with nature's materials such as wool, silk, and wood, the children acquire mechanical skills, develop a sense of self-esteem, and build a love of learning. What about adults? What would they gain in hand-dyeing wool, hammering wood, or watercolor painting?
If you have witnessed a young child's imagination - in their playtime with blocks and dolls, in their telling and re-telling of stories, in their pages and pages of drawing and coloring - you would be envious that they appear to be an infinite wellspring of creative abandon! As adults, we can easily lose touch of that can-do imaginative spirit. However, in our grown-up lives, when we can be offered the gift of childhood as we build and draw and paint and play with yarn, we can reclaim what is in us all along: our creative genius.
Maya Angelou once said, " You can't use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have!"
But wait! There is more to the Syrendell Summer Retreat than replenishing your creative powers. Perhaps with a similar philosophy in teaching children, we believe that the content of what is taught is best received when the whole being is engaged and happy. If you are growing a garden, you can't simply plant a rosebush and be done with it. You need to feed it with warmth, and to surround it with love. If the Syrendell workshops are like planting a rosebush, then Chef Scott Ostrander's gourmet meals will certainly nourish it, and the Park Winters estate is the gorgeous planting bed!
We aim for a balanced, harmonious experience with the Retreat. If we are to succeed in growing the garden that is you, then the Retreat must nourish all your senses and nurture your spirit completely. Park Winters owners John Martin and Rafael Galiano designed and built and polished a gem. The estate truly shines and bathes guests in sparkly splendor! And Chef Scott is a masterful artist whose work is a feast for the eyes as well as the palate. We are so fortunate that our workshops had landed here.
And there is one more element that is crucial to the enjoyment of the Retreat: the attendance of others like you. Our human connections with each other throughout the Retreat is what weaves it all together. We encourage each other, laugh together, learn from each other.
Come join us - let's inspire one another,
Rick and Jennifer Tan