dance for peace
dance for peace

education programmes




“Thank you Maria for your time and dedication. Your passion for teaching and your love of children is apparent in the beautiful connection the children have with you. The Memories of ‘The Seed of Life’ will be with them always.
‘The Seed of Life’ was a unique and special experience for my Reception children. The children were constantly in awe and marvelled at the unique experiences they were provided by Maria Savant. Over the weeks, the children were taken on the journey of the plant and experienced the stages of the life cycle through dance, singing, meditation and storytelling. Each week they had the opportunity to eat healthy foods which linked directly to the theme of the week – the seed, the plant, the flower and the fruit. This multi sensory approach provided children with the chance to use all their senses to broaden their understanding and experiences. The children were constantly engaged and were ‘present’ at all lessons, which reflected the deep connection the children made with Maria. There was a buzz and excitement the morning of each lesson. The children were utterly disappointed that the program has ended. However, the program does provide teachers with the opportunities to develop the ideas and values further through classroom experiences, as it links directly with the Australian National Curriculum. I feel the program has provided the children with a deeper respect for nature, time to be reflective and the opportunity to develop themselves as citizens of our world. ”
Aimee Papahristos St. Joseph’s Memorial School

“ I observed The Seed of Life performance with a group of 3 and 4 year olds. They were engrossed throughout the total experience. It’s impact with the learning was a wonder to see. Maria has spent over 7 years in the planning, evolving and production of this program and to see it come to life with children and responsive educators is a testament to her belief in its worth and her commitment to see it alive in schools. Maria’s educative background, her deep love, knowledge and reverence for life, her dance/drama skills and her belief in the spiritual enrichment of the child’s inner world, is evident in her work. I recommend Maria Savant in any educative area whereby her skills and aura can benefit children and fellow educators.”
–Penny Hewson ( formerly Kazimierczack) Retired Head of Early Learning DECS

“The Seed of Life Programme engaged children through wonder and awe as they were led into a mindfulness which allowed them to explore the infinite and the ineffable, in their own childlike way. This was evident through the children’s enthusiastic and respectful participation in class and in the conversations which occurred after the sessions. Through a multi- sensory approach which nurtured the senses, children were engrossed and engaged in a deep and valuable learning experience, which was recognised and valued by the classroom teacher. The programme integrated into many aspects of the Australian Curriculum and the moments of authentic learning, experienced through The Seed of Life, enriched children’s cognitive learning across the curriculum. The learning stemming from the past few weeks will continue to go on and evolve as moments are revisited and reflected on by the children and their class teacher. Many thanks Maria, for your sincere dedication to this programme and love of children.”
– Helena Card Assistant Principal (RIM) St. Joseph’s Memorial School.




“A big thank you to both Aimee and Maria for introducing the children to such an ‘out of the square’ learning experience, which has obviously engaged each and every child. Ruby and I enjoyed today’s performance immensely and it has been a real treat listening to Mason’s recollections of his ‘Seed of Life’ classes over the past few weeks – he has thoroughly enjoyed the experience !”
– Danielle

“ I loved The Seed of Life Performance ! Coming into the performance I was apprehensive about what to expect....I was expecting my daughter to look cute up on stage and do a small performance with her peers. Of course she was all that, but it was so much more. The discipline of the students ( to sit up correct and position hands appropriately), was the first thing to catch my eye. Maria took full control of the students and they respected her by responding.
The way Maria moved and showed enthusiasm definitely rubbed off on the students. I was concerned that 45 minutes could become too long to keep their attention, but they all seemed to be in awe of her and willing to impress. I was concerned that the students would not understand the concept of ‘ Seed of Life’ but I can see by your discussions with the students that they understood how we evolve.
I was very impressed with the whole performance and loved the feedback Em brought home each time they rehearsed. She was so excited to tell me about it. I especially loved the blessing – a lovely way to the end the performance."
– Dallas

“Aimee and Maria, we are so grateful for all the love and effort that was put into The Seed of Life. We all sat in awe and in tears watching Lachlan, so completely engaged and participating in the whole concert/performance. The many opportunities to get up, move, sit down, sing etc. provided Lachlan with the required movement to be able to settle. To see him seeking visual feedback using visual cues – amazing. To see him make eye contact thrilling! To see him move around the group while he was dancing, being aware of others and their space in the world – beautiful. There are so many other good things about The Seed of Life that have had a flow on effect in our home too. It has given us topics to discuss as a family, let us explore how our beliefs align with the program and how the principals fit into our family life. That Lachlan, mostly due to his medical/health issues, has had a severely restricted diet since birth, is now more willing to explore different foods or at least lick them is wonderful ! Our family appreciate the work and effort that went into this programme and for the opportunity to have our son involved in it.....It was so beautiful to watch my son dance so freely with such joy, to see him so engaged in such a beautiful programme. To see that he is valued and to feel the love in the room from Maria, embracing all the children was just so calming and so beautiful.”
– Melisa and Jake




Documentary photography:
Louise Bagger Photography


education programmes








“Early in term two I had the privilege to work with Maria. Her spiritual guidance and openness allowed the children in my class to feel comfortable, unique, valued and close to God. As they participated in the ‘Peace Walk’ each child was given the opportunity to meditate peacefully and embrace God in their own individual way. It was a wonderful experience for the children and it gave me the opportunity to be close to them without any noise or distractions. The children’s feedback was priceless as they reflected on their own experience. Thank you Maria for visiting our school and providing a warm and relaxing environment for the children and myself to be with God.”
– Mary Pieto

“The Peace Path is an artistic tool for transformative teaching, an opportunity for educators to reconnect with some core values of life and to extend this into their pedagogy and practice. A pedagogy and practice which is transformative and allows children’s spirituality to flourish. Time spent on the peace path in this ‘temple of mindfulness’ enabled children to engage in the deep peace that resides within the moment. To witness the outcome of children’s learning from the programme was for me, a demonstration of children’s profound capacity for voice and agency in moral and spiritual expression and thinking. As the Assistant Principal walking the path with the staff, we were offered a time for silence, deep contemplation and beauty. To have quiet time to allow the humble dignity of one’s presence and inner space, to be ignited through meditation was a gift. Thank you Maria for bringing this deeply nourishing experience into our school for the staff and students of St. Joseph’s Memorial Primary school.”
– Assistant Principal (RIM)/Curriculum Coordinator
St. Joseph’s Memorial School

“What a wonderful journey it was for the children and myself to explore pathways of the labyrinth and to celebrate the feelings of peacefulness and reflection it offered. The children enjoyed the peacefulness of the experience and they all appreciated a moment to think about their relationships with others. Words that came up in reflection were; calm, relaxing, peaceful, angelic, prayerful, fun, lovely. Thank you for the experience Maria.”
– Andrew Meriggan



“ When I walked the path I felt; silence, respect, togetherness, equal, relaxed – a feeling I had never felt before. I felt calm, like I did in meditation. I never knew I could do that.”
– Year 4/5 student

“ When I stood in the centre I felt unwrapped and meaningful, like I was in my own world.”
– Year 4/5 student

“ When I picked up my stone, I felt this was a very special stone on the path. I felt like the stone had all my extremely special treasures in it. ” Year 4/5
– Year 4/5 student

“ When I walked into the labyrinth, I felt so peaceful and calm, like I was in a netherworld, in an endless ocean.”
– Year 3 girl

“ I felt God calling me to lead.”
Year 2 boy

“ I felt God was holding me.”
Year 4 girl

“ As I walked the path, I felt God filling me up.”
Year 4 girl

“ I felt calmness.”
Year 2 girl

“ I was called to ministry.”
Year 2 boy

“ When I came into the centre I felt God saw me.”
Year 3 girl

“ When I went into meditation in class with Ms. Savant, I felt myself was like I exploded out of my body and fell into my heart.”
Year 5 boy

“ Walking the path allowed us to enter our hearts and minds and reflect on the meaning of our lives. We were guided on a sacred journey on the labyrinth taking deep breaths in time with every step. We thought it was a good time to reflect on what we have achieved in life and what we still have to do for the future.”
Year 7 girl




“I was surprised at how moved I was by allowing myself to be absorbed in the process. Walking the path allowed me to be quiet and focus inwards and allow the daily tensions and niggles to dissolve. It was a very nurturing and reflective experience. This small but meaningful moment was enabled by the physical environment and ambience that I was momentarily encapsulated in.......The physical environment was very carefully and professionally crafted by Maria. The skills and insight for this creation are a result of her many years of teaching in schools; of a very deep personal spiritual journey and an appreciation of the healing power of inner reflection and meditation; a background in dance and drama that allows Maria to understand the power of a well crafted ‘setting’ integral to the holistic process. I can truly see the benefit for children who may undertake the Peace Path Process. Maria has created an opportunity for children to be educated and encouraged to explore, understand and nurture their inner be thoughtful and considerate and to be aware of themselves and their relationships with others.”

“Thank you for inviting me to experience the Peace Path. It was an hour out of my busy life that was invaluable. I got to stop, refocus on my inner self and it has made me realise the importance of looking inward to get a greater clarity when looking outwards to what is important. I will be spreading the word.”

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