Each Zelda School celebrates the following festivals every year. This yearly cycle holds the school community and bonds us to the seasonal changes we live within. Some of the festivals are for pupils and their families, others are open to the wider community and all friends and relatives.
Welcome Cream Tea
In the first week of September, before the start of term, we hold a Cream Tea afternoon at Zelda School. This gives us all a chance to catch up after the summer holidays and, most importantly, gives the children an opportunity to re-familiarise themselves with school whilst with their parents. We find this an important transition between the long holidays and term time.
At the end of October (Samhain), we each bring our own light to greet the oncoming dark time of the year. The children make lanterns in the preceding weeks, then we gather after dark one evening and process around the grounds singing songs. A beautiful, joyous way to welcome in the cosy time of year.
We mark the beginning of Advent with the simple but profound ceremony of the Advent spiral. A spiral made of evergreen branches is laid on the floor of the yurt with a single candle in the centre. In turn, each child takes an apple holding their own small candle and walks around the spiral to light their candle from the central flame. They then place their apple-candle on the spiral as they return. As the ceremony proceeds, the spiral slowly turns into a spiral of light. The depth of this moment of stillness and beauty as we approach mid-winter stays with children and adults alike for many years.
Somewhere between the beginning of February (Imbolc) and pancake day, we have a celebration of the coming of Spring, sharing pancakes and opening up again after the winter’s darkness.
Around the beginning of May (Beltane), we draw up the rising spring energy to its maximum at the maypole festival. All children and adults take a turn around the maypole with live musicians and lively songs, and plenty of cakes and drinks afterwards. This is one of everyone’s favourite festivals: a bright signpost for the start of summertime.
Around the Summer Solstice, we hold our fair, with the Zelda Schools looking at their most beautiful with trees, flowers and vegetable gardens blooming. We have an all-day barbecue, cake stall, many games like splat-the-rat and lucky dip, and crafts too. It’s a day to sit down on the grass, relax with all the other families, and take in this key turning point of the year.