If you are interested in alternative education this video will interest you. It’s about six minutes long.


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John Haines is the author of In Search of Simplicity: A True Story that Changes Lives, a startlingly poignant and inspiring real-life endorsement of the power of thought, belief and synchronicity in one’s life.


Here’s some additional information I just received by email from a friend:

Green School, Bali: An international school rooted in holistic education & environmental stewardship

Green School opens on 1 September 2008 for children in Preschool and Kindergarten through Year 8 with students and faculty from Bali and 16 countries around the world. Here in Bali, Indonesia, we are building a new school where Western and Indonesian students can learn together to become more curious and more passionate about their education and our planet.
Green School’s beautiful eight-hectare, environmentally sustainable campus in Sibang Kaja is bisected by the Ayung River, on whose western bank are the School’s classrooms, libraries, laboratories, and kitchens. Aquaculture ponds, organic vegetable gardens, edible mazes, and permacultural gardens are interspersed throughout the vast campus, which is built entirely of low-impact and environmentally conscious materials such as bamboo, alang-alang grass, and traditional Balinese mud walls.
For energy supplies, we are experimenting with micro-hydro power generation as well as producing methane from cow manure to fuel stoves and developing a gasification unit that will use rice husks and other organic materials to produce electricity.
Green School’s curriculum combines demanding academic content taught through a holistic approach that aims to inspire and enhance all of a child’s capacities. The School’s Learning Village, for example, gives students a chance to apply lessons to specific disciplines and real business situations, making abstract ideas come to practical life. Students are involved in everything from manufacturing their own chocolate to helping manage the organic fields, bamboo plantations, and rice paddies that are integral to the campus.
We are inviting you to get involved. Write a story about Green School, help sponsor a local child, or let others know about this vision for education that can make a real difference in the world. We appreciate each and every member of our extended community who share these beliefs and want to help leave the world a better place.
Visit our website www.greenschool.org for more information on who we are and what we have to offer.
Contact: Meliana Salim Marketing & Public Relations Manager meliana@greenschool.org

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FLjQVrhMf3Y&NR=1 School design


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n6YjpTNR9ko&feature=related Green School


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AWaIUx3L3ZU&NR=1 Green School – Planting bamboo


http://www.slideshare.net/johnbali/green-school-bali-78-class-what-we-know-building-a-bamboo-clubhouse Kids building a clubhouse


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NlSJ7URvnLk&NR=1 Press release from people who started the school


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ZWbv21Vfrk&feature=related Bamboo and sustainable advertising


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DvGFEmyo8pY&NR=1 John & Cynthia Hardy – their very unusual eco-home in Bali


Over twenty years ago I had the pleasure of spending considerable quality time as a backpacker in the heart of Bali. I was touched and deeply influenced by the rich social fabric of these simple-living islanders. It seemed they were always celebrating something or preparing for the next celebration. For them life was art.


To a certain extent my family and I have taken those Balinese messages and assembled them into a quality lifestyle that resounds with simple ritual and celebration.


First of all, Christmas in the southern hemisphere feels a little strange as its original date was established based on the pagan festivals of the coming of light. December 25th is a few days after winter solstice and is the first day that was obvious to our ancestors that the days were getting longer and, hence, the light was returning. It is my understanding that’s Jesus’ actual birth date was in January. Here in New Zealand Christmas falls in the heart of summer, creating stress for people as they attempt to finish off activities and shopping in this busy, outward and naturally warm time.


What do we do now? Both daughters make their own Christmas cards. The youngest, who is almost 16 now, still makes paper snowflakes and festoons the French doors in our living room with them. Soon I will prune several large branches from a cedar hedge to create a ‘Christmas tree’. The girls will decorate it with many, mostly handmade, decorations.


For the past three years the girls and I have sung Christmas carols at homes for the elderly. That is an extremely rewarding pastime. Our family will host an annual summer celebration on December 21st on the beach below our house. These events are attended by an eclectic crowd who follow a diverse range of religions and beliefs. We share a meal, leap over the fire to strengthen friendships, sing together, swim and relish the spirit of friendship. I usually attend carol singing at a couple of local churches. I sang in the church choir as a boy so it feels great to share these traditions. On Christmas Eve I’ll join a few friends for Sanskrit chanting. We have no family nearby, so Christmas day is a quiet family affair followed by a get-together with another immigrant family (from England) who are actually like family for us. All in all, it is a season rich with celebration and low-cost sharing.