In 1996, I created the start of curriculum intended to help children connect to the larger natural world around. This was important to me because 1) I grew up in the city and 2) at the age of 18, I was fortunate to make friends with a group that prided themselves on a daily practice of watching the sunset.
This was the first time I ever felt dedicated to something that had to do with having peace in nature. From the observation of the setting sun along the horizon, and witnessing the changing cycle of the moon, I felt I came to better know myself and my place in the world.
In college, I created a mission statement and I called my mission:
Earth Appreciation as a means of Social Living
The mission of “Earth Appreciation as a Means of Social Living” is to provide children with experiences that bring about the understanding and enjoyment for diversity within the web of life. Creative processes enable children to discover how actions and attitudes effect life as a whole while promoting an ethic of respect and appreciation necessary for sustainable living. The experienced sense of community will then act as a guiding force to inspire children to create positive goals and healthy lifestyles.
Last year, in cleaning out the garage, lo and behold, I found my old work and almost twenty years later, I could proudly recognize that I was accomplishing this goal. It had become possible through my work as a Garden Teacher, by running summer camp programs and in 2015 I expanded my work to include teaching meditation, yoga and stress relief to college-age adults.
I’m happy to bring my love of life to children and as I teach, I aim to be present in the moment, with my students and also curious about my students, about who shows up and how. For the part of me that discovered personal strength and power as a teen helping to cook for my big family, for the part of me that found joy in motherhood, and happiness in friendship with young humans, I do this work, of facilitating children outdoors, where nature can nurture. My heart is happy being a friend and mentor to young children in need of a kind-loving role model.
Bio: Celosia Arcadia, also known as Miss Moon, has been leading outdoor, garden adventures and classes for children ages 3-12 since her days at the Women’s Herbal Symposium when her thirteen year old daughter was just a babe. Celosia has taught after school at Kenwood Elementary; at Earth Camp; for the Sebastopol Community Cultural Center, and Mary Collins at Cherry Valley. Her education has included studies in the Hutchins Liberal Arts program at Sonoma State, classes at IET (now known as Bauman College), The California School of Herbal Studies, The Feldenkrais Training Resource Institute, and OAEC’s School Garden Teacher Training.
Miss Moon brings a love of life and a spirit of magic into her work with children amid Mother Nature. Miss Moon aims to inspire children to be curious, passionate, aware, kind, humorous, fair and sharing with all things in the living world while celebrating diversity. This is Earth Appreciation and it is a means of social living, that we may be more healthfully connected to the larger world around.