Friday, December 2012
Chuck Ginsberg is parent to seventh-grader Ultra-Violet Archer. Chuck and his wife Hazel enrolled Ultra-Violet in Early Childhood where Chuck became a PTO representative. Chuck says that “I didn’t know it when I first came to Chicago Waldorf School, but I have always been a Waldorf person.” As a parent, Chuck sees the possibilities of a culture of philanthropy that supports our students, families, and community. As a realtor, Chuck donates 10% of his commission to the Chicago Waldorf School each time a Waldorf family uses his services. Here are his personal thoughts on the value of giving to the school...
“I treasure how Waldorf cherishes childhood and teaches a love of learning…it is powerful to see this education supporting our children on so many levels.
The first time I walked in the doors of a Waldorf School, I felt as though I was home. I treasure how Waldorf education cherishes childhood and teaches a love of learning. Understanding child development and observing the individual needs of each child is really amazing. I love the well-rounded education that our kids get. It is a beautiful sight to see how proud the first graders are when they knit their own hat, but I also see how Waldorf gives them the experience of being proud, shows them that creating something takes time and work, and strengthens their coordination and will. It is really powerful to see this education supporting our children on so many levels.
A few years ago I took a summer class on the book and story of Parzival, which was very difficult to read. I knew if an 11th grade CWS student could read it, I could too. When I was young, I learned I couldn't sing and that I didn't have any musical ability. But then in my late 40’s, Mr. Spade, the music teacher, showed me I did have a singing voice—we all have a singing voice—but some people are more naturally gifted than others. At 52, I started playing trumpet; again, if a 5th grade Waldorf student can learn to play trumpet, then I can too. To see the activities the kids do inspires me to try new things, which has enriched my life.
Education is a way to change our country and our world. We need citizens who can creatively problem solve, think critically, and who have the desire to help others. I give to the Annual Fund so the Chicago Waldorf School can continue its mission of educating free-thinking and strong-willed students. As a realtor, I donate 10% of my commission, to the Annual Fund or to the Endowment, for each Waldorf family that uses my services. It seems logical that our community would support each other in this manner. If we believe our kids are better prepared to face the world because of their education, then we owe it to them to build a community that supports each other. We need to educate our community and reinforce a message of philanthropy. Look at the labor of love our teachers demonstrate—I want to support them financially, so they can focus on their life’s work.
“Being involved with the Chicago Waldorf School as a parent has shown me the remarkable depth of what our children learn – and educates me as well.”
It gives my life meaning to work towards leaving more than a million dollars to a cause that I believe is vital. Our school does a great job envisioning the education of our students and meditating on our children, but who meditates on our financial abundance? As a real estate investor, I see the power of creating recurring monthly income. With that thought in mind, I hope to inspire our school to creatively build recurring income. By envisioning a culture of philanthropy and supporting the Chicago Waldorf School through annual giving, we create a community that is abundant and connected. We will give this educational gift to generations, if we intend it...”
Please make YOUR contribution to Annual Fund Today!
CLICK HERE for the Annual Fund webpage that links you to options for online payments via paypal or credit card.
Thursday, December 2012
Share these great gifts for the holidays! Enjoy the presence of student artworks all year 'round!
These beautiful calendars and notecards feature "wet on wet" watercolor artworks by students of different ages and grades that demonstrate the painting curriculum in Waldorf Schools. Enjoy the richness of student expression from a variety of Waldorf schools throughout North America like schools in Anchorage, Alaska; Nashville, Tennessee; Santa Fe, New Mexico; Chicago, Illinois; Shelby, Vermont; Costa Mesa, California; and many more. These featured images reflect traditional Waldorf thematic topics, subjects and projects explored in each grade.
CLICK HERE to see visual samples of the Waldorf student art in the 2013 calendar and notecards.
All new 2013 Waldorf School Calendars feature beautiful, lush, colorful Waldorf student artworks
Calendars are now selling for $16.00! (with further discounts for bulk purchasing of 15 or more)
2013 Calendars have all new artworks collected this past year while the Note Cards are available in a variety of designs, sizes and sets. Card sets range in price from $8 - $24 depending on size and quantity of cards and envelopes. They make great gifts! And use these cards for holiday mailings, gift cards and year 'round correspondence.
You have four ways to purchase calendars & cards: by above e-mail, phone, ORDER FORM or visit the school's main office.
Student Art holiday cards & Notecards for sale:
Above are a few samples of the many diverse watercolor artworks available in the card sets. To see ALL the artworks available in 2013 card sets and calendar, download this PDF of visual samples.
Current Card Sets for Sale include:
Holiday Cards (7" X 5") 24 cards / 6 images per set, includes 24 envelopes $24 per set
- Light & Joy Set (texts inside: non-denominational, seasonal greetings)
- Christmas Set (texts inside: non-denominational, seasonal greetings)
All cards below are blank inside (only the HOLIDAY CARDS have interior seasons greetings).
Large Notecards (7" X 5") 12 cards / 4 or 6 images per set, includes 12 envelopes $16 per set
- Legends Set (4 images)
- Distant Places Set (6 images)
Medium Notecards (5" X 3.5")12 cards / 4 or 6 images per set, includes 12 envelopes $12 per set
- Sea Voyages Set (6 images)
- Tropical Set (6 images)
Small Gift Cards (3.5" X 2.5")12 cards / 4 images per set, includes 12 envelopes $8 per set
- Flowers and Sunshine Set (4 images)
- Animal Kingdom Set (4 images)
Promote Waldorf Education. Share these examples of student art and expression with your family and friends!
Tuesday, December 2012
It can be challenging to support our children sometimes if they are wired to be a little on the anxious or intense side. These periods of feeling overwhelmed often strike without warning. Sleepovers, tests, teams, all these can trigger anxiety or upset which can lead to worry, sleep problems, and general stress.
As parents, it can be hard to hold these emotions because it just feels like "too much" sometimes. Or, it could be that our own anxiety gets activated which can make it doubly hard to contain a set of charged feelings. But there are ways to tackle this very common problem. Below is a mind–body toolkit to support kids with their intense feelings:
• Images and imagery are wonderful tools to help children calm down and relax. Ask your child to think of a picture of an animal or a place or something that helps her relax. You can remind your child to think of this image when they are feeling stressed.
Here is a parent's "mind–body toolkit" to help support kids with their intense feelings...
• Try belly breathing together so your child can practice relaxing his or her body. Once they get the hang of it they can learn to breathe through an anxious or upset feeling.
• There are also many wonderful guided imagery CDs your child can listen to practice relaxing and feeling calm.
• Create or buy a feelings chart so you and your family can talk about all the feelings you may have had in a given day. Read stories like My Many Colored Days by Dr. Seuss or The Feelings Book by Todd Parr so your child can develop their feelings vocabulary.
• Ask your child to draw how he or she feels so they can get some of it out and down on paper.
• Try role playing – a great way for kids to act out their concerns. Parents and even siblings can act out a problem to its resolution. This is especially useful with separation issues, school issues, bullying/cliques.
Research shows that telling the story of what happened can help a child process and let go of a stressful incident. Developing a vocabulary of feeling words and creating space to calm down the mind and body will help support you and your child. Each time your child tries out one of these tools, his or her brain will be learning new ways to cope with their intense feelings.
Submitted for CWS's Building Intentional Community (BIC) by Hazel Archer Ginsberg, BIC parent member
Monday, December 2012
Dr. Aurora Hart has deep ties to the Chicago Waldorf School. She began her Waldorf education at the age of three in the Early Childhood Program. She attended CWS through 8th grade, and graduated from Mr. Starzynski’s class in 1994. She graduated from Evanston Township High School and went on to receive her B.S. in Biology and Psychology from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.
In 2008 Aurora received her Doctor of Dental Surgery from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She now works as an associate dentist at Brighton Park Dental Center on the southwest side of Chicago.
In 2009 Aurora married fellow CWS alumnus Michael Hart. In 2011 they welcomed their first child, Wade Hart, into the world. The Hart family currently resides in Chicago’s West Loop neighborhood.
“Overall, the most important skill that I took from my Chicago Waldorf School experience was the essential ability, desire and will to learn.”
Dr. Hart credits CWS with much of her success. “My time at Waldorf played an incredibly vital role in my development both as a person and as a professional,” she says. “My Waldorf education gave me a confidence and self-assurance that can be difficult to cultivate in young people, especially young women. I was able to make strong emotional connections to my teachers and classmates that made my learning environment feel more like a home and less like a classroom. School was always a safe place where I was comfortable being myself.”
Dr. Hart also recognizes the unique role of her Waldorf education in her current work as a dentist. “While at CWS I was always drawn to the arts, particularly handwork and clay modeling. I was a very busy and active child, and both of these classes required me to slow down and really focus. The fine motor skills and artistic eye that these activities helped to develop continue to serve me well as a dentist.”
“Overall, the most important skill that I took from my CWS experience by far was the essential ability, desire and will to learn,” says Dr. Hart of her experience as a student in a Waldorf classroom. “The abilities and strong will to learn that Waldorf cultivated served me well and helped me to adjust to a large high school and a challenging college career.”
“My Waldorf education gave me a deep confidence and self-assurance that can be difficult to cultivate in young people...”
When asked about how she became interested in becoming a dentist, Dr. Hart says that “my decision to enter the dental profession was strongly affected by my desire to combine a love of both science and the arts. Every day in my career I get to put both my scientific knowledge and my artistic eye to use while helping the individuals in the community that I serve. I feel lucky to have found a profession that brings me such joy and satisfaction every day.”