The Bulletin

Local Happenings

Announcements from our Community Members:

Please help make the famous May Fair Flower Crowns on Friday, May 13th.
Come to the school Auditorium anytime from 8:00am to 3:00pm, Friday, May 13th,  (the day before the May Fair). Even an hour of your time would be greatly appreciated.  No experience necessary. Other dedicated flower crown makers will show you how to craft these fabulous icons of Spring. The 4th Grade is happily assuming the task of organizing all the materials for the crowns, making crowns and selling them on the day of the fair, but the 4th Grade needs help from the whole school to make enough crowns to supply the fair.

Why else should you join us?  Because it’s really fun and we get to talk while we craft! 

Submitted by the May Fair Flower Crown Committee (4th Grade)
Jackie Votanek / Kim Piehl / Karen Brennan / Sheila Donohue


Housing Needed: Host a Waldorf Teacher
Chicago Waldorf School will be hosting the 2nd week of the Teaching Sensible Science course Saturday, June 18-Friday, June 24, 2011. Thirty Waldorf teachers from around the country (including eight CWS teachers) are expected. This course is designed for Waldorf class teachers who wish to deepen their practice and understanding of the teaching of science in grades 6-8.

This course, which is highly regarded and very popular, is only sporadically offered and we’re very fortunate to be able to continue to host it at CWS. In order to make it economically feasible for as many Waldorf teachers as possible to come, we’re looking for housing in our community. If you have a spare bedroom and would also be willing to provide breakfast (there is a stipend of $30 per night for a shared room or $40 per night for a private room), please contact Colleen Everhart at or at 773.590.1409.

Maroon 5? Save the Date!.... For our Faculty, Alumni, Alumni Parents, Current Parents and Trustees Join the school community in our CWS Summer Social at Ravinia event. We have 70 tickets reserved at Ravinia to see BoDeens on Friday, July 29. Have a beautiful summer outing and a fun night of music. Please save the date! More info at
Interested? Contact Jackie Johnson at 312.828-8458 or

Attend the Tenth Annual Chicago Green Festival
Saturday, May 14 & Sunday, May 15
Sat- 10:00am to 7:00pm /  Sun- 11:00am to 6:00pm
McCormick Place / 2301 S. Lake Shore Drive

Chicago’s Green Festival inspires and promotes the connection between change and sustainable progress for people, communities and businesses. Green Festival’s interactive marketplace and learning environment provides solutions to help make healthier lives—socially, economically and environmentally.

This 10-year-old ‘Party with a Purpose’ is an exciting weekend experience for individuals, friends and families. Festivities include presentations by more than 125 renowned authors, leaders and visionaries, informative how-to workshops, cutting-edge films, enriching kid’s activities, organic beer and wine, delicious organic vegan and vegetarian cuisine, diverse live music and an amazing marketplace of more than 300 green local and national businesses and organizations.

For more info visit:

Women & Children First Bookstore’s First Ever Kids’ Swap Night!
Friday May 20th, 6:00pm to 8:00pm / $5.00 admission fee; free pizza and soft drinks

Come swap books! Bring books you’ve read and don’t want to keep and exchange them for ones you haven’t read yet. Kids ages 6 to 10 should come between 6 and 7 pm; kids ages 10 to 14 should come between 7 and 8 pm. We’ll be offering pizza and soft drinks throughout the evening, and our friendly, well-read staff will be talking about their new favorites. Bonus: take home a free advanced reading copy of a forthcoming hardcover!

His Holiness the XIV Dalai Lama will be in Minneapolis in May and in Chicago in July:

Bridging the Faith Divide: A Public Talk by His Holiness the Dalai Lama
Sun, July 17, 1:30pm to 3:30pm
at UIC Pavillion. 525 S Racine Ave., Chicago. For tickets call the UIC Box Office at 312- 413-5740 or online purchases at

Building Bridges: Religious Leaders in Conversation with the Dalai Lama
Mon, July 18, 9:30am to 11:30am
at Harris Theater for Music and Dance, 205 East Randolph Drive, Chicago. For tickets call the Harris Theater Box Office at 312-334-7777 or online purchases at

For more tour info visit:

Thunder Athletics

From Coach Robb Gill—

High School Soccer Update

The heavy rains of April of 2011 will not soon be forgotten, as it did make Chicago a very green place as well as led to many games being cancelled. The Girls’ Soccer team went through a rough start of their season but the team is slowly developing into a solid unit under the direction of their outstanding head coach, Adrianna Kondrat. Their last game was their best game to date, as they were able to fight to a tie with the Stars of the Universal School of Bridgeview. The girls will now go into an 8-on-8 Tournament hosted by the Metropolitan Prep Conference. We are very excited about 8-on-8 soccer because it is made for small teams like the Thunder. The girls’ first IHSA play-off game is against the Stingers of St. Scholastica on Tuesday, May 10 and the game will be played at St. Scholastica’s soccer field.

See Chicago's Youth Circus w/ 1st Grader Ellis Rekstad

10th Annual Spring Circus on May 13th & 14th

This year CircEsteem celebrates its 10 year anniversary. Since 2001, they have worked to unite thousands of youth from diverse backgrounds and build self-esteem and mutual respect through the practice of circus arts.

Come see Ellis Rekstad (CWS first grade) perform in the circus on Saturday, May 14th.

Join CircEsteem for their 10th Annual Spring Circus on May 13th & 14th at the Francis W. Parker School located at 2233 N. Clark St. in Chicago.  In celebration of 10 years of spectacular shows, the 10th Annual Spring Circus will take audiences back in time to the early days of the big-top, when children of all ages were awestruck by feats of strength and entertained by comical performances.

Additionally you can join them for a benefit reception on Friday May 13th before the show at 6:00 pm and enjoy refreshments and stories from CircEsteem graduates.  All proceeds benefit the CircEsteem Scholarship Fund allowing the dream of college to become a reality for many youth.

Tickets to the show and benefit reception can be purchased online at Brown Paper Tickets, or by calling CircEsteem at 312.731.HAHA (4242).

Editorial from the Author of Fast Food Nation…

Why Being a Foodie Isn’t ‘Elitist’

At the American Farm Bureau Federation’s annual meeting this year, Bob Stallman, the group’s president, lashed out at “self-appointed food elitists” who are “hell-bent on misleading consumers.” His target was the growing movement that calls for sustainable farming practices and questions the basic tenets of large-scale industrial agriculture in America.

The “elitist” epithet is a familiar line of attack. In the decade since my book Fast Food Nation was published, I’ve been called not only an elitist, but also a socialist, a communist and un-American. In 2009, the documentary Food, Inc., directed by Robby Kenner, was described as “elitist foodie propaganda” by a prominent corporate lobbyist. Nutritionist Marion Nestle has been called a “food fascist,” while an attempt was recently made to cancel a university appearance by Michael Pollan, author of The Omnivore’s Dilemma, who was accused of being an “anti-agricultural” elitist by a wealthy donor.

This name-calling is a form of misdirection, an attempt to evade a serious debate about U.S. agricultural policies. And it gets the elitism charge precisely backward. America’s current system of food production—overly centralized and industrialized, overly controlled by a handful of companies, overly reliant on monocultures, pesticides, chemical fertilizers, chemical additives, genetically modified organisms, factory farms, government subsidies and fossil fuels—is profoundly undemocratic. It is one more sign of how the few now rule the many. And it’s inflicting tremendous harm on American farmers, workers and consumers.

This name-calling is a form of misdirection, an attempt to evade serious debate about U.S. agricultural policies.

During the past 40 years, our food system has changed more than in the previous 40,000 years. Genetically modified corn and soybeans, cloned animals, McNuggets—none of these technological marvels existed in 1970. The concentrated economic power now prevalent in U.S. agriculture didn’t exist, either. For example, in 1970 the four largest meatpacking companies slaughtered about 21 percent of America’s cattle; today the four largest companies slaughter about 85 percent. The beef industry is more concentrated now than it was in 1906, when Upton Sinclair published The Jungle and criticized the unchecked power of the “Beef Trust.” The markets for pork, poultry, grain, farm chemicals and seeds have also become highly concentrated.

America’s ranchers and farmers are suffering from this lack of competition for their goods. In 1970, farmers received about 32 cents for every consumer dollar spent on food; today they get about 16 cents. The average farm household now earns about 87 percent of its income from non-farm sources.

While small farmers and their families have been forced to take second jobs just to stay on their land, wealthy farmers have received substantial help from the federal government. Between 1995 and 2009, about $250 billion in federal subsidies was given directly to American farmers—and about three-quarters of that money was given to the wealthiest 10 percent. Those are the farmers whom the Farm Bureau represents, the ones attacking “big government” and calling the sustainability movement elitist. Food industry workers are also bearing the brunt of the system’s recent changes.

During the 1970s, meatpackers were among America’s highest-paid industrial workers; today they are among the lowest paid. Thanks to the growth of fast-food chains, the wages of restaurant workers have fallen, too. The restaurant industry has long been the largest employer of minimum-wage workers. Since 1968, thanks in part to the industry’s lobbying efforts, the real value of the minimum wage has dropped by 29 percent…. (click here to continue the article at its source).

By Eric Schlosser, published: April 29
This article originally appeared in the Washington Post

Physical Clown Theater for Kids

500 CLOWN TRAPPED premieres May 6 - May 21, 2011

500 Clown presents this play in a co-production with Adventure Stage Chicago

500 Clown is just a bunch of clowns, literally! Hailing from Chicago,  this theater company performs theatrical clown for adults and now kids! In their own words, “For years we’ve been asked if we have a show for all ages. Well, we’ve made one. Its for ages 5 and up, with our signature mix of high physicality, raw emotion, and powerful storytelling. In 500 CLOWN TRAPPED we humbly stand upon the shoulders of Keaton, Chaplin, and Looney Tunes; we get entangled in our fair share of slapstick mishaps and vaudevillian turns; we exercise our untiring resilience as well a new set of muscles (literally); and some excellent folks join us for this new ride. 500 Clown Trapped is conceived by Producing Artistic Director Adrian Danzig (who also performs). Paola Coletto directs.

For more info on the show go to 500 Clown and if you want to read even more, read this article about the show in Time Out Chicago Kids.

To purchase tickets visit the Adventure Stage Chicago Box Office.

Invite Friends to Join Our Eurythmy Festival

Thursday, May 5th at 10:45am & 7:00pm

A Eurythmy Festival showcasing the work of students in grades 4 through 11 is scheduled for Thursday, May 5th. There will be both a daytime performance (from 10:45-Noon) and an evening performance (7:00-8:30pm).

Eurythmy is a feature unique to Waldorf education. The beautiful art of eurythmy introduces students to the frameworks underlying speech and music through movement. Development of concentration, spatial orientation and dexterity are enhanced as the rhythms of speech and music are experienced through the whole body.

CWS Model United Nations Team Enacts World Diplomacy

The Model United Nations (MUN) Team is one of the many student initiative groups (SIGs) available to high school students at CWS. Students join a SIG and participate in that special interest club throughout the year.

Recently Chicago Waldorf School’s Model United Nations Team presented at a Model UN at Northwestern University. Here is a report from team member—and 10th grader—Liam Lundy:

“The conference was attended by more than 500 students from twenty-six high schools from around the eastern United States. CWS students, Cairo Fultz, Clay Shane, Nick Park-Reynolds, Rachel Osran, Vlad Yourtchenko and Seth Brav-McCabe represented Egypt in various UN bodies while Sarah Price represented the Secretary of Communications and I represented a member of the Greek Resistance. 

Next year we are looking forward to enlarging the MUN program and going to two conferences. Model UN is a great program. It offers a unique opportunity to learn about international relations, practice public speaking, develop writing skills, and have a great time while doing so. I have done MUN for three years now and my public speaking skills, writing ability and knowledge about the world have greatly benefited.”

David Massie is faculty advisor to the CWS Model UN Team. He added this reflection,
“...Representing the Egyptian delegation, our students prepared for this conference by studying Egypt’s modern history and its position on specific current issues. They arrived on campus armed with position papers they had written on their assigned topics, such as atomic energy, food and agriculture, and the international Olympic movement. Participating in this event allowed the students to practice the arts of debate and coalition building. After their four day adventure, our team felt a much-deserved sense of accomplishment…”

Other SIG opportunities for High School students include Student Council, The Green Team, Student Ambassadors, Yearbook, Amnesty International and more.

Make Flower Crowns for May Fair. Volunteers Needed!

The beautiful flower crown on the little girl in the 2011 CWS Mayfair mailer and poster?

Someone in our community made that!

Please join the CWS community to make flower crowns this Friday, May 13 any time between 8am and 3pm, in the entrance/lobby of the Auditorium.  Stop by and make just one (or as many as you have time for!). All materials will be supplied, and helpful instructors will be on hand.

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