Celebration of Life Festival at Maplewood

By Erin Magrath

Maplewood Elementary will be participating in a Celebration of Life festival the week of 10/29/17 and with CLI (Creative Learning Initiative) inspired performances on November 3rd, 2017 starting a 1 p.m. We are celebrating different cultural traditions throughout the world that celebrate an end to a natural cycle.

These traditions were created as a way to explain natural phenomena; and bringing in an SEL element, a way to honor, remember, and respect those that have died in our families and communities. Some traditions which will be studied by Maplewood students are Celtic Samhain (Halloween) with the seasonal cycle, Mexico’s Day of the Dead and the Monarch Butterfly Migration cycle, and the Hungry Ghost festival of Southeast Asia in relation to the lunar cycle.

In addition, we have a community partner, Mayra Sotelo, who will be giving a Mexican cultural read aloud in traditional Dia de los Muertos costume in our library, November 2nd in the morning. Please feel free to come and celebrate with the Maplewood community on either of these dates.

Dia de los Muertos altar at Maplewood. Photo by Elizabeth McQueen.

Photo by Elizabeth McQueen.


News from the Maplewood Gardens

Hello, Mustangs! Some of you may have noticed some changes outside and wondered, “What happened to our entries on Maplewood and Ashwood last Friday?”

Our very own Ms. Kirk applied with the nonprofit Austin Partners in Education for corporate-sponsored assistance with landscaping and painting improvements for our campus. Within a week, Maplewood had been chosen by Ernst & Young LLC as the recipient of a $2,000.00 grant for supplies and a team of 80 employee volunteers ready to help. After meeting with Ms. Jacobson to develop a plan, the work was completed last Friday, October 6. Ernst & Young’s wonderful team of hard-working volunteers repainted the restrooms across from the gym, installed new landscaping at the front and Ashwood entries, mulched trees, added soil and compost to classroom raised beds, and powerwashed the front exterior of the school.

With donations of time and funding, Urban Patchwork has been working with the Maplewood Gardens group to develop a sustainable master landscaping plan, and these plants were chosen with our campus needs in mind. Keep Austin Beautiful loaned us the tools needed for the job, and Organics by Gosh donated half of the mulch. Please note that all resources, time, and effort are in-kind donations from our community; no funds have been spent on this project from Maplewood PTA or the school. We are so grateful for the gifts and hope you enjoy the results!

Now it is our time, Mustangs, to nurture the gifts we’ve received! Maplewood Gardens would like to host an informal chat and watering/care planning session this Friday, Oct. 13, right after drop off at the front entry. Please join us!! If you’re interested in volunteering but can’t attend this Friday, please email Periwinkle.

A big THANK YOU to Ms. Kirk, Ms. Jacobson, Ernst & Young LLC, and the volunteer Maplewood Gardeners that made this happen!! Also, a special THANK YOU to Kristen and Cayden for repairing, repainting, and installing the Mustang blue arch in the courtyard! It is welcoming and beautiful!!

Peace and Plants,
Maplewood Garden Team

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Photos by J. Potter-Miller.
More photos on the Maplewood PTA’s Flickr page.

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