Imagination. Community. Independence.
These are all aspects of the Waldorf senior curriculum that were effectively demonstrated during this year’s Senior Project Presentation Week. Students each wrote a research paper, developed an artistic/technical project and gave half-hour public presentations on topics ranging from Australian Aboriginal Art to 3-Dimensional Printing. This integration of both academic learning and practical work allowed them to think imaginatively and to see information in both historical and contemporary aspects.
The auditorium acted as a showcase of creative thinking as attendees could travel back to the summer of 1968 and return to contemporary motorcycles all while listening to the calming drops of water echoing from a green flow form. Meanwhile, the seniors demonstrated confidence while presenting their projects and entertaining questions from the audience.
On a daily basis, students, teachers, families and community members were in attendance, all dedicated to supporting the development of these seniors. It was great to see that the seniors did not shy away from their peers, yet asked them for help in the development of their presentations. They used their families for support in their yearlong endeavors. And, they formed strong relationships with their faculty advisors, the mentors that led them along the way.
Apart from strong support, these students were also able to develop themselves as independent beings that are now ready to be active members of society. They have become experts on food and culture, hypnosis, and the Beatles; and the depth of their knowledge was shared with the community in their presentations. Through research, writing, art and participation, these students were able to develop on their own and guide their way through this process. Some seniors have even developed goals to continue future work according to the topics of their presentations.
Seniors, we thank you for a year of hard work and dedication. Everyone in the audience picked up some unique insights and information thanks to you!
Submitted by Brittany Aller
This story was just reported from the front office on Wednesday…
Youngest benefactors show their support for faculty.
Yesterday, CWS 1st graders, Madeline Wild & Ella Majeski, found $5.00 on the beach during park time. After consulting with each other and considering all their options, they mutually decided that they wanted to contribute their new found wealth to the Teachers, so they approached Maureen Flannery in the Main Office and asked to donate their money to the Year of the Teacher effort.
We wanted to thank our newest benefactors to the school for their gift and for the smile that their gesture has brought to our lips as we reflect on their generous act of giving.
All for One & One for All
“The healthy social life is found when in the mirror of the human soul lives the whole community,
and in the community the strength of the individual human soul is living.” ~Rudolf Steiner
For the last four years BIC (Building Intentional Community) has looked deeply into the social dynamic of bullying, teasing & exclusion to implement practical social inclusion strategies, for building agreement, & furthering communication.
With the guidance of Kim John Payne’s Justice without Blame strategies we have experienced these intense social encounters as a rite of passage - not the absence of peace, but the beginning of it.
Therefore it becomes crucial that conflict is not avoided but channeled. Putting our training into action we recognize that the nature of these encounters can be guided with consciousness & wisdom to bring healing & wholeness.
Human beings need a healthy social environment in which to grow and develop.
Human beings need to take increasing responsibility for their actions as they grow from childhood into adulthood.
Goals & Actions
Provide structure and support for individuals seeking resolution of a conflict.
Cultivate the development and practice of conscious, shared agreements that will establish healthy relationships between students, teachers, staff and parents.
We are working with the PTO to bring BIC to the ‘Commons on the Corner’ and we hope set up possible outside speakers on topics of Restorative Justice & Social Intelligence;
We’ve added a BIC parent member to the Welcoming and Circle of Friends Committee
We hope to create an informational DVD on social inclusion with the communications dept.
Sharing Tips and updates about social inclusion strategies:
Announcements will be presented in the school bulletin
Faculty members of BIC have presented BIC initiatives at full faculty meetings, and will continue with monthly check-ins
We are implementing community surveys to make sure your voice is heard
PACT (Peaceful Action for a Community of Tolerance)
We must strive for a positive learning environment in our school, and as students in the school we will follow this PACT. We want a community where each person is:
Listening with acceptance and striving for understanding without judgment.
Being interested in each other’s opinions and celebrating the diversity in our school.
Taking action and speaking out whenever there is exclusion, gossip, or ridicule.
Keeping each other’s confidences.
Viewing the teachers as allies, and seeking their help in difficult situations.
Practicing forgiveness, and making apologies.
Speaking our minds while respecting the boundaries, thoughts and feelings of others.
Being responsible for the consequences of our speech and actions.
In this environment, we hope everyone will feel free to be themselves and speak their opinions,
honestly, respectfully and with conviction.
Our Indicators of Progress/Success
Conflicts are resolved in a timely and satisfactory manner
Members of the community feel safe in raising an issue, concern or question. They are willing to ask for help and choose to participate in the social inclusion process.
Parents, teachers and staff utilize BIC and PACT for support with social inclusion issues.
Members of the community are confident that CWS provides a healthy environment for learning and social development.
In reflecting back on all the work we’ve done over the past three years, our foundation is strong, our purpose clear and in alignment with the mission of CWS, our resolve is engaged as we continue, with your help, to Build Intentional Community.
Rudolf Steiner’s words are especially relevant to this issue of building intentional community with the developing child contributing to and learning in a healthy and happy environment:
“Our highest endeavor must be to develop free human beings who are able of themselves to impart purpose and direction to their lives”—-Rudolf Steiner
Submitted by Hazel Lucchesi Ginsberg
From Coach Robb Gill—
Soccer and Track & Field Season Begins
The girls’ soccer team will be playing their first game today at St. Scholastica at 4:30pm Come on out and cheer on the team; 7416 Ridge Blvd. (Map) The girls are looking very good and they are anticipating a solid season.
The boys’ track and field team has started their training. This is the first year for the team, and they are looking forward to the joys and tribulations of being involved in such a physically demanding sport. Look to the bulletin for more reports as their first events approach.
Lattes with Luke at Commons on the Corner
Wednesday, March 11th, 8:15 – 10:30am
Parent Child Room, 1301 E. Loyola
Join Luke Goodwin, Administrative Director of CWS, for lattes and conversation in this small group setting. The Commons offers a warm and informal space to ask questions, discuss their concerns, and learn sometimes surprising information about our community.
Direct questions to Commons on the Corner Leads, Christine Carroll or Karen Hallmann
Knitting with Megan Cummins
Thursdays, 3/10 and 3/17, 8:15 – 10:30am
Parent Child Room, 1301 E. Loyola
What do you get when you rub two sticks together? Fire, right? Well, we are igniting the fire of learning by rubbing those sticks together – and adding wool. Yes, it’s time to learn to knit. This is a great skill and a lot of fun too! We will learn how to knit from fellow CWS parent and Urban Prairie handwork teacher, Megan Cummins. We will learn to cast on, knit, purl and even bind off. Don’t get cold feet… Why? We will learn how to make socks too!
Please register with Parent Education Lead, Lisa Rekstad.
Saturday, March 19th, 1-3pm
2135 W. Wilson Avenue ($5 donation suggested)
Are you itching to make music with others? Are you looking for something fun and low-stress to do as a family on the weekends? If so, we have the event for you. Once a month, CWS families are invited to take part in informal jamming session. Bring your instruments, and the kids! Not musical? Not a problem. Just come and hang out, listen and talk with others.
To RSVP and for more info, go to www.meetup.com/CWS-After-Hours/
Friday, March 18, 7:30pm - 10:30pm
Film Screening at:
Living Water Community Church
6808 North Ashland Boulevard
The Recyclery is closely connected with the lives of Chicago metal scrappers so it was natural that they were aware of the development of this film about local Chicago resident scrappers. The Recyclery is proud to host a screening of this documentary. A Q&A with the filmmakers will follow.
Set in Chicago’s labyrinth of alleys, Scrappers is a vérité portrait of Oscar and Otis, two metal scavengers who search for a living with brains, brawn and battered pickup trucks. The 2008 financial collapse and crackdowns on undocumented immigrants jeopardize their means of providing for their families.
Winner of Best Documentary Feature and Audience Award at the 2010 Chicago Underground Film Festival.
“You want green, there ain’t nobody greener than Oscar and Otis.” -Roger Ebert
See this profile of the movie on WBEZ and view a preview clip of the movie at http://www.scrappersmovie.com/
Doors open at 7:30pm. Film starts at 8pm. $5 admission at entrance.
Come for the film and stay for the community discussion with the filmmakers afterward.
Calling all Chili Cooks and Eaters…
It’s Time to Beat the Chill and Heat It UP!
Sunday March, 20, 2011. Noon - 3:00pm.
Glenwood Bar, 6962 N. Glenwood, Chicago, IL
It’s the Chili Cook-off to benefit the Glenwood Sunday Market!
EAT!: $25 advance at Brown Paper Tickets, $30 at the door. Join in the fun for the best darn Chili Cook Off this side of the Mississippi!!
We are putting a call out to everyone to support this event. Our funds are low for the 2011 Season and your help is very important!
Also, Learn & Grow Winter Workshops
Sunday, 3/27 Composting in the Concrete Jungle
Build an indoor vermicomposting bin; keep plants happy with homemade potting soil & compost tea.
Sunday, 4/24 VIP Container Veggie Gardening
No space? No problem! You can still grow organic veggies at home. Learn strategies for successful, pint-sized farming.
Sunday, 5/29 Permaculture & the Cost of Food
Artificial prices, artificial food. Let’s talk about the benefits of shopping from local, responsible farmers. How can we eat responsibly and within a budget?
Suggested Donation $17 or purchase a 3-class pass for $40
Register at the Glenwood Market or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Chicago Waldorf School supports teachers’ professional development in innumerable ways through its membership with the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America (AWSNA). Most recently our school hosted the Great Lakes/Ontario regional AWSNA conference that welcomed teachers from over 30 Waldorf Schools in the surrounding 9 states. Keynote speaker presentations, community resource sharing and an offering of over 15 independent workshops provided diverse opportunities for teacher & administrator training, community building, and institutional development.
Chicago Waldorf School hosts 120 teachers & administrators for Regional AWSNA Conference
While our students were off enjoying a midwinter break, our teachers and staff were busy hosting the AWSNA Great Lakes Regional Conference. Over 120 participants from the Midwest braved a Chicago winter to gather together for lectures, workshops and conversation. Keynote speaker and Waldorf science teaching expert, Michael D’Aleo, spoke on a theme he called, Riding the Tiger.
In presentations over the course of the three day conference, D’Aleo explored the challenges of collegial relations in a fast paced, ever changing world. D’Aleo characterized our “tiger skin” as our inner world of emotions and offered that when we move beyond our own self interests we can meet change with equanimity and courage. Then we not only survive, but we thrive. He challenged us to look at what he referred to as our generic relationships. Do we behave in certain patterns within our families? Do we see co-workers only in specific roles? Are we afraid to challenge each other? Are some people authorities, others subordinates? D’Aleo also explored how a Waldorf curriculum develops courage, a necessary virtue for living in the modern age.
In the Early Childhood program the children are given many opportunities to meet the physical world. They run, climb, jump, fall. They meet the earth and courage grows. In the grades, courage wells up as a true inner experience of soul life. The rich imaginative pictures that come out of the curriculum enliven the child’s sense for how the outer world can resonate in one’s own being. In the high school, students develop the courage to think their own thoughts while searching for the universal. Alongside courage, they also develop the ability to love the other. How inspiring!
We began every day by singing with our own Mr. Spade. There was also group eurythmy with former CWS teacher and friend, Barbara Richardson. Several of our faculty and staff led workshops on topics as varied as the meditative life of the teacher and school governance issues. During the delicious meals there was plenty of time for talking about our school communities and the common issues we all are facing. At the end, many participants said that they not only loved the conference, but they also loved being in our beautiful school.
Thank you to our hardworking teachers and staff members for making this conference possible!
Submitted by Carol Triggiano