Teacher Margaret's "View From My Window" - February 29th

3 windows 2.29.24

Dear Friends, 


Never underestimate the spiritual lives of children.  Meeting for Worship yesterday was filled with powerful, spirit-led messages. We began Meeting singing together “What a Wonderful World” by Louis Armstrong, and recorded recently by John Batiste. Then I shared a short reflection by Reverend Barbara Holmes

“The journey of life is absolutely a sacred journey . . . It is impossible to shift priorities if we are in a constant, busy, frenetic lifestyle. There has to be that pause, that breath, that waiting, that willingness to be still until we know. Be still and know—but the stillness doesn’t immediately lead to knowing. At first, we have to be still, and then we have to be patient until the knowing comes about.”  


Out of our listening worship, ten or so Prek, Kindergarten, and First Grade students stood and reminded us to take care of the earth, be patient, be loving, and they were grateful for their families. One Kindergartener exhorted us to do more than be kind but to do things for friends whether it's easy or not.  An older student shared that we don’t know what someone is thinking or feeling so even a casual unkindness could cause real pain. Then for five minutes, the silence deepened, the swinging feet and restless shifting of 130 children stilled. Afterward, we greeted each other and finished with a rousing version of “Somos El Barco” by Peter, Paul, and Mary. 


I asked a few 8th-grade students to reflect on their time in Meeting for Worship. After doing some math, Parker realized that he had spent at least 140 hours in Meeting for Worship. He reflected,

“I have learned that it calms me down, it makes me really think about my life, and brings me out of the rest of the world and the distractions. I’ve learned that my community is filled with great people and kind and supportive individuals. I really appreciate Meeting for Worship.”


Cole has the same number of hours under his belt and wrote, 

“I have learned it's better to listen than speak because you learn info by listening and it is calming to listen. When it is quiet you can learn about yourself and be in your own mind, it's a time of relaxation.”


We have had a busy week! On Monday Lorna Frizell-Johnson spoke with students in 5th-8th grades about being a filmmaker. She began her presentation by asking students about what they loved. Several shared different things with her, and she then challenged them to consider these topics for their films. Middle School students have been putting the finishing touches on their production of School House Rock Live, Jr. First and Second Grade students have been rehearsing for their musical in three short weeks.  Second-grade students are having a publishing party today to celebrate publishing their stories. Seventh Grade students are creating their mini-golf course as a part of their study of geometry.  Preschool 3 students began their day by creating paper figures representing themselves or other humans. As I write we are getting ready to host the Universal African Dance and Drum Ensemble.


Update on Middle School students' top five priorities for Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL) in its work with the 119th Congress beginning in 2025. 

In this week’s Middle School Meeting for Business, the students approved the following five priorities to send forward to FCNL:

  • Promote Diplomacy to Prevent War
  • Promote Universal Health Care 
  • End Over-Policing of Marginalized Communities
  • End Poverty + Hunger and Work Toward Economic Equity
  • Increase Funding for Mental Health Services and Mental Health Awareness


Thank you for reading to the end of this long piece.



Margaret Haviland

Margaret Haviland



  • March 1 at 7:00 PM and March 2 at 2 PM- Middle School Musical Schoolhouse Rock Live Jr.
  • March 6th, 2nd and 3rd Grade PBL Celebration for families 6:30-7:30 PM
  • March 7th, Family Council Meeting at 7:00 PM on ZOOM
  • March 9th, Family Council Pot of Gold Playdate 1:00-3:00 PM
  • April 16, April 30, and May 15 ~ 7:00-8:00 PM three-part series exploring what it is that makes Westfield Friends School a Quaker School



New in our library 

Worm and Caterpillar are Friends

by Kaz Windness

Worm and Caterpillar are Friends by Kaz Windness

New in our library 

The Fantastic Flying Gooks of Mr Morris Lessmore

by William Joyce



The fantastic flying books of Mr Morris Lessmore by William Joyce

New in our library 

The Truth About Dragons

by Julie Leung (Author), Hanna Cha (Illustrator)



The Truth About Dragons by Julie Leung (Author), Hanna Cha (Illustrator)


New in our library 

The Book of Turtles

by Sy Montgomery (Author), Matt Patterson (Illustrator)



The Book of Turtles by Sy Montgomery (Author), Matt Patterson (Illustrator)


In our library in honor of National Read Across America Day

A Land of Books: Dreams of Young Mexihcah Word Painters

by Duncan Tonatiuh 

Land of Books: Dreams of Young Mexihcah Word Painters by Duncan Tonatiuh





What I am reading

Mermaids in Paradise

By Lydia Millet

Mermaids in Paradise By Lydia Millet