|In This Issue – September 2017||
Issue Number Fifty-nine
Recognizing that it is completely impractical for most of the world’s population to attend workshops and participate in organized Living Values Education activities due to time, cost and travel requirements, ALIVE and LVE Australia invite all ALIVE Associates and Focal Points for LVE to embrace, encourage and extend LVE Distance to their communities to engage in these new dynamic self-engaged programs. We will encourage and will actively assist however we can, any ALIVE Associate or Focal Point for LVE wanting to translate these materials for local use.
We are excited about this new educational opportunity for people to change their lives. Please join us in helping people explore and discover a new way of being in their values. Open to everyone, this allows all of us to make a difference in our own life and the lives of people around us. Below is a short introduction about what we've been building patiently over several years.
LVE DISTANCE has gone international with programs now offering four facets available to anyone, anywhere in the world:
LVE Distance Resource Materials offered for Download: LVE Distance Study Course, Audio files, Personal Journal, Study Group Guide, Facilitator Training manual, LVE Self Reflection 12-step “Living in My Values” personal evaluation.
We would like to share with you part of the personal experience of the first person who did LVE Distance, Denise Shaw:
“I was not expecting this would make the huge difference in my life that it has. The material forced to look at myself, all of me, my hurdles, pain, grief, fears and blocks. I soon discovered what values were the hardest for me ... anything to do with me!!
I completed the course and wanted to help others gain what I had gained and became a facilitator. This was a very valuable experience for me I found so much inside of me I had not healed and by doing so my fears lessened I grew a new understanding and compassion for myself. Something I previously only had for others. My fear of being judged was challenged; I won and chains around me were broken. My journey continues every moment.”
Raj (Roger) Miles and Suzanne Stallard
Focal Points for LVE, Australia
The LVE Team in Brazil, in cooperation with the Brahma Kumaris, will begin launching the Living Values Activities books in Portuguese as e-books in late October. They will be making these available free of charge.
A picture is worth a thousand words … as you can see in these beautiful pictures of a six-day LVE Children’s Retreat in China. Taking place in Miyun from July 28th through August 3rd, Jay Chodagam and Elsie Tan served as the LVE Facilitators, with a very capable group of translators and parent helpers.
On 6 August, an LVE team travelled from Shanghai to Changzhou where Trish Summerfield facilitated a one-day LVE workshop for 30 participants. Ms. Summerfield is one of the Lead Trainers for ALIVE and the former National Coordinator of LVE in Vietnam. Most participants were educators, including five principals from Changzhou City. This event was organized and promoted by a local trust fund set up by a philanthropist who believes in Living Values Education. Everyone took benefit and a future program is being planned at a local school.
In July 2017, Living Values Education was delighted to be hosted in three unique and amazing locations that beautifully captured the warmth of hospitality and spirit of the Greek people. They say that a picture speaks a thousand words. On this occasion, perhaps it would be more appropriate to say that a picture speaks 2000 words!
Mr Yannis Anastasiou kindly hosted two evening seminars for local Pilion region educators in his beautiful garden.
Axion Esti is a totally unique ‘Arts School’ that is eco-friendly and architecturally superb. Created by the visionary owner, Ms Glikeria, and the equally visionary architect, Mr Dimitris Phillippitzis, the school encapsulates and ‘lives’ and ‘emerges’, amongst others, a welcoming and positive emotional culture in an atmosphere where everyone feels loved, valued, respected, understood and safe.
The seminar for a youthful group of dedicated educators began with a mini practical activity to discover ‘Who’s values are these?’ followed by a range of trust activities with humor and light-heartedness.
One of the highlights of the evening was ‘Story Time’ and ‘Quiet Reflection’ in the school’s outdoor amphitheatre followed by a group photo.
These three photos first show Mr Dimitris leading the group into the amphitheatre where stories were shared, the group photo was taken and the evening sun brought the evening to a close. These pictures truly express more than what 2000 words can say.
According to the local press report:
‘An important meeting – workshop on ‘Values of Life in Education’ was organized by the Association of Friends of the Children’s Library of Xenopoulouli at its premises. Through this event, friends, teachers and participants of the International Conference held in Zakynthos in July 2014, reunited to include the current President of the Association for Living Values Education International, Mr Christopher Drake, who came from Hong Kong, Vice President, Areti Foufopoulou, and former President and lover of the Greek spirit, Peter Williams.
After a presentation by members of the Association of Friends of the Xenopoulouli Children’s Library of Values, which this year emerged through books and corresponding actions, it became an experiential workshop for adults on the subject of the universality of love’.
The workshop ended with the signing of Peter’s ‘Ancient Wisdom for Modern Times’ books, translated from English into Greek by Aggeliki Palatzidi.
What is totally unique about the library is that it is run entirely by volunteers, most of whom are mothers. Their dedication and practical example for others to follow, has brought many to their doors – especially children – to learn more about values, Greek myths, legends and how to live a life of values.
Living Values Education would like to extend our appreciation to them all, their key person, Ms Anda Katsaitou, and everyone who gives tirelessly from their heart with love.
Special thanks, too, to Areti Foufopoulou, Aggeliki Palatzidi and Yannis Filtis who organized all the logistics of the Lehonia and Volos programs – and Anda Katsaitou who organized the Zakynthos event – with their ever professionalism, kindness and altruistic joy.
Peter Williams, the former president of ALIVE and the Head Teacher of the Kuwait American School, shared a wonderful experience: “Today was the first day of the new academic year at the K-12 Living Values-Based Kuwait American School for all 70 staff. We began by sharing Living Values Education’s theoretical model in a living way by way of the World Cake activity from “Living Values Activities for Children Ages 8-14”.
Members of the KG staff began to make the cake by stepped forth to represent a huge circular baking tin that could turn at varying speeds to mix the ingredients. Putting the ingredients into the cake began by them inviting 2 colleagues to bring a value ingredient of their choice into the cake to be baked. They, in turn, invited 2 more colleagues who in turn invited 2 more colleagues. So there was 8, then 16, then all. Imagine the staff speaking their value as they entered the cake mix — and then bouncing up and down or waving their arms as they cooked their values —
amazingly all different values with the tin spinning!
Then the bad guy came — me — to take out one ingredient — the appreciation ingredient. You can imagine how the caring staff shouted 'no' and clung on to the educator who brought appreciation to the cake.
Living Values is for all in our KAS cake — students, parents and faculty. We cooperate and learn together in an atmosphere of LVRUS — Love, Values, Respect, Understanding and Safety where there is no place for put downs.
What did we learn?
The educators come from 33 different countries/ cultures, each with their own gifts, learning and teaching approaches … and own set of personal and shared values. We were amazed to discover that there were so many different values that we all understood. The same will, of course, apply to our students.
The Life Skills Approach that Matters
We all have values and beautiful qualities inside of us — yet do we take time to understand what really matters to each and every child to discover their innate gifts, approaches to learning and individual set of personal and shared values? That's why the school educates for values, resilience and life skills. Looking at the world today, there are many youngsters waiting to be listened to and some who are bullied or stigmatized for having values-based issues — sometimes defined as personal or mental or well-being issues.
Perhaps a growing awareness of a 4 step practical living values-based approach will help to add voices to what really matters to us all:
a. What are your values?
b. What are your shared study place/workplace values? Are they understood and in alignment with your own?
c. How can we come together so that our shared values blend to help students and one another?
d. How can we genuinely add to what matters for us all?
The next step will be to share the same with our students as they learn to navigate their lives with hope, resilience, identity and a belief in what really matters.”
“The last time we contributed to the newsletter,” wrote Marlies Ludding van Loon, the President of Foundation Living Values Education Nederland, “we reported on the Children’s Integration Project ‘ToGether’. This project was organised by the foundation OneMelodie, Living Values Education Nederland and The Free Space school in the Hague, the first school in the Netherlands to implement Living Values Education. The project was life changing for the participating children.
Since then, The Free Space school received a financial grant for a ‘Parents Participation in Education Project’. During this Living Values-based project, teachers and parents have been learning about and practising how to bring values at school and at home into alignment.
Part of this project currently is a seminar organised by the school: ‘The power of peace in education’. This will take place on the 21st of September, UN Peace Day. During the seminar our Book of Peace will be presented. This is a compilation of drawings and interviews with pupils, teachers and parents of the school about peace. The children shared beautifully about their naturally felt responsibility to start with peace themselves, and what helps them to achieve inner peace. Their sharing is so creative and wise.
DIFFERENT APPLICATIONS of LVE
A wonderful circle of people with different competences and from different regions of Holland are now regularly coming together to reflect, exchange ideas and experiences about LVE, and to develop more values awareness. This has resulted in a variety of experiences and projects.
This summer brought sunny skies and LVE workshops to New York and California. The mid-July LVE WeekendRetreat at Peace Village, in Haines Falls, New York, was attended by 37 very engaged and enthusiastic people. Half of the participants came in their professional capacity as educators and the other half as parents. The participants voiced wanting another LVE training mid-year and a longer training. Parents wanted parenting classes and values classes for their children. Many thanks to Ed Wondolowski, Natasha Panzer and Stephanie Kerr for their outstanding job facilitating the retreat in Haines Falls.
On August 24 and 25, Natasha Panzer facilitated a six-hour workshop for the staff of two nursery schools/extended day care centers in New York. The director and staff enjoyed the workshop immensely, and the children are already enjoying making and being peace stars.
Annie Jorgensen and Kyoko Kimura did a wonderful job facilitating a mid-September one-day LVE Workshop at the Anubhuti Retreat Center in Novato, California, and also put on a one-day LVE “camp” for children in San
Francisco. The “camp” has been a special project of Kyoko’s for seven years. While six- to eight-year olds and their parents abound, this year also brought a tween and a teen who have been coming for years. They enjoyed the sponge story, sang a peace song while sprinkling love and peace on others, sat outdoors for a quietly being exercise, and made virtue bracelets with different colors for the virtues of their choice. Yummy food, sharing and games at the park closed the day.
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