November 22, 2017

My children are becoming increasingly giddy as we enter the holiday season. Whether it's excitement over the corn muffins and puppet show the Rose and Sunflower children will enjoy during their Thanksgiving celebration, or the infectious anticipation my 4th grader is experiencing in preparation for her first school concert in December, everything feels abuzz. Personally, I am looking forward to the Thanksgiving Assembly later this morning. Our grade school students' recitations and musical performances (both moving and humorous) always fill me with the same warmth of feeling that's animating my children. I am so thankful to be a part of this school and wish you a happy and pie-filled Thanksgiving!


Christina Dixcy
Communications and Outreach Director

Submissions to News, Notes & Updates are due the 1st and the 15th of every month.
Important Links
Imbue thyself
Thank you to Lisa Tassone for baking corn muffins for the Rose and Sunflower Thanksgiving celebration.

Thank you to Christine Boston for her assistance as Mother Earth at the Early Childhood Martinmas lantern walk.

Deep thanks to Lori and Bobby Hudak for organizing and hosting our first Bowling Fundraiser and Get-together. Thank you also to Jeff and ClareAnn James, Burrito Shack, and Kidzcuts for donating raffle items. We had a great mix of parents, grandparents, grade school and early childhood students, alumni, and friends. Everyone had a wonderful time bowling and chatting and there was some friendly competition as well. Smiles and high-fives were in abundance for strikes and spares and attempts to make those tricky splits. We raised $365 through bowling and raffle activities! Thank you to Dolr Bill's Bowling, who will be donating half of their concession proceeds as well. (Scroll down for photos!)

Thank you to all the Open House volunteers: alumni Elisa Navarro, Marley Marston, Lena DeFeo and Brady Knuff; alumni parent Jamie Baldwin; current parents Terrie Robinson-Nesto and Alex Exley; and of course Marleen De Grande who led us on the Walk Through the Grades. Thank you to current parents Wei and Gregor Betram who supply us with sophisticated Arogya teas for admissions events.

Thank you to Laura Selleck and Bill Hill for once again hosting our grade school Martinmas lantern walk at beautiful Warrup's Farm. And thank you to the Class of 2022 and their parents for organizing the walk.

Thank you to the Patalia family for hosting the Class of 2018's Diwali Party and fundraiser!
7th Grade Cornucopia Watercolor
Alumni Updates
As usual our alumni stole the show at our Open House, answering questions about their transitions to high school and beyond. One parent inquired if there was anything they felt they brought with them from their Waldorf education that set them apart in high school. Overwhelmingly the alumni spoke about relationships, community, and a sense of confidence in their capabilities even when faced with a new challenge or subject with which they were not yet familiar. Our alumni have noticed that they approach school--and life--from a collaborative perspective which they perceive as very different from their peers who hold a more competitive stance. HVWS alumni are “competitive” academically only in the sense they often are at the top of their classes in terms of grades, but they take great care in helping classmates when needed so that they can all succeed together. 

A snapshot of the alumni present:
Elisa Navarro (HVWS Class of 2009) graduated at the top of her class at Bethel High School. She then attended American University on scholarship and studied International Affairs. In January she will begin a year of service through AmeriCorps working for FEMA. Her interest is in disaster recovery and also refugee resettlement. Elisa just learned she was awarded the position of team leader and will be responsible for twelve 18-24-year-olds during their training in Mississippi. After training, their team will be dispersed to a disaster site, most likely Texas, Florida or Puerto Rico. We were fortunate to have Elisa working in the office for a few days last week--thank you, Elisa!

Marley Marston (HVWS Class of 2013) is a senior at Newtown High School. She is in the midst of applying to colleges, primarily in the New England area with one school in Florida as her outlier. She plans to compete in track in college. Marley throws the javelin, which she learned to throw for the Greek Pentathlon when she was in 5 th grade at HVWS.

Lena DeFeo (HVWS Class of 2015) is a junior at Bethel High School and just learned she was admitted to the National Honor Society. She is also a member of the National Art Honor Society and will apply for the National Language Honor Society as well. Lena plays field hockey and softball and was a Southwest Connecticut Scholar Athlete for softball.  She also participates in stage crew for school plays.

Brady Knuff (HVWS Class of 2016) is a sophomore at Wooster School. He began his own videographer and editor business specializing in aerial videography. For Brady’s HVWS graduation project he built his own drone. He is excelling at Wooster, finding the transition to high school quite seamless. Our colleagues at Wooster report that Brady, and all the other HVWS graduates that attend, stand out in much-appreciated ways--always engaged, always contributing, always adding positively to class dynamics and the school community. Brady plays varsity tennis and was selected as an all-league player his freshman year. He also plays both soccer and basketball at Wooster.

Further alumni updates:

Henry James (HVWS Class of 2017) will be performing in Shepaug High School's production of the musical, "The 1940s Radio Hour," on December 8 at 8 PM, December 9 at 2 PM and 7 PM, and December 10 at 2 PM. Call 860-717-2444 for tickets and information.
Upcoming Events
Advent Spiral
Lower Level, Compass Hall

Each child walks a spiral path created from pine boughs, crystals, and shells, lights a candle, and places it on the path to light the way for others.The walk along the path through the spiral represents the child walking through life on earth. The light of the candles suggests that people should be clear and bright of thought and warm of heart. Please help us maintain a mood of awe and reverence.

Rose and Sunflower Classes: Friday, December 8, 4:30 PM
Teachers will e-mail parents with instructions for arrival times and procedures for each class.

Grades 1-8: Monday, December 12
Teachers will e-mail parents with arrival times for each class. In order to help things run smoothly, please arrive on time. Parents will enter through the door under the Compass Hall deck and exit through the back door in the Eurythmy room after the children have left. There will be parents on hand to guide you. For each class, once we have closed the door and begun we will not open the door again until we finish. Please wait quietly in the hallway until the door opens. Please do not enter through the exterior door.
Advent Wreath Lighting
Thursday, December 14, 8:30 AM
Atrium, Compass Hall

Parents are invited to attend the morning lighting of the advent wreath and caroling at 8:30 AM in the Atrium. Feel free to linger for a cup of coffee or tea and bring a treat to share in the Administration Cottage.
The Little Play of the Nativity
Lower Level, Compass Hall
Thursday, December 14, 7 PM
Friday, December 15, 11 AM (in-school performance for students)
The 8th grade is pleased to present The Little Play of the Nativity. Written by Arvia MacKaye Ege, a teacher at the Rudolf Steiner School in New York City, it is adapted from the medieval Shepherds' Play. Such plays were performed by parishioners in European churches in the Middle Ages to bring the Christmas story, simply yet vividly, to the common people. Melissa Merkling, who appeared in it herself in 1966 at the Steiner School, directs the play which she brought to HVWS in 2009. 
Holiday Concert
Thursday, December 21, 6:30 PM
Newtown Middle School, 1 Queen St.

Join us for a Holiday Concert featuring 4th-5th grade music and strings classes as well as the 6th-8th Grade Chorus and Orchestra. All are welcome!
New on the calendar in 2018:
Andes Manta Performance
Friday, January 12, 2-3 PM
Compass Hall
Parents, grandparents, alumni, and staff are invited to this in-school field trip. $15/person; seating is limited.
Andean music is one of the few authentic prehistoric culture forms to survive the five hundred years of European occupation of South America. Unlike gold and jewels, it could neither be melted nor stolen. Many indigenous South Americans believe that it is the music that preserves the heart and soul of the ancient ones. Far from being melancholy, the music of ANDES MANTA is a joyous celebration of daily life. Songs and festivals mark the blessing of a house, the birth of a child, and the cycles of planting and harvesting. Energetic music and dance animate religious festivals blending pre-Columbian and Catholic rituals. Playing more than 35 traditional instruments, ANDES MANTA brings the Andean universe to North American audiences.
The four Lopez brothers who make up ANDES MANTA, Fernando, Luis, Bolivar and Jorge, bring this unique art form to North America in its purest and most authentic form. Natives of the Ecuadorian Andes, the brothers learned their traditional folk music as it has been learned for thousands of years - passed from father to son, and brother to brother.
The music of ANDES MANTA is well known to presenters all over America for their virtuosity and extraordinary performances. From Carnegie Hall to the Discovery Channel, from the National Cathedral to Lincoln Center and in hundreds of schools and universities, their powerful and moving performance has played to standing ovation after standing ovation. To quote presenter Stephanie Korobov, SUNY New Paltz: "The crowd would not let them stop. These guys are magic."
Variable Tuition Deadline
Returning families interested in applying for Variable Tuition should do so by Friday, December 15.
The Rainbow Garden School Store
Open Tuesday-Friday 8:20-9 AM
Star Meadow, 40 Dodgingtown Rd.

Dr. Hauschka Order Deadline Extended to November 27

Any questions about the store, please feel free to write to volunteer school store manager, Natasha Daniels Pearson:
Wish List
Looking for a professional photographer who can donate their skills to photograph our grade school students' beautiful main lesson books. Contact Therese at or 203-364-1113 x102.
Exhibitor Tent
Our main pop-up tent is showing its age and we would love to replace it with one that includes removable sides for outdoor outreach events. If you, or your company, have one you could donate or if you have a potential tent connection, please contact Therese at or 203-364-1113 x102.
Bowling Fundraiser
Martinmas (Grades 1-4)
Diwali Party
Support HVWS While You Shop
Amazon Smile
If you shop through Amazon you may designate Housatonic Valley Waldorf School to receive .5% from your purchase. Please designate HVWS as your chosen charity and make your Amazon purchases at the Amazon Smile website. Amazon Smile

Box Tops
Please clip and save your box tops and send them into the office so 4th Grader Oliver Exley-Seidel can process them for the school.
Articles & Videos
The mission of the Housatonic Valley Waldorf School is to develop each child's unique capacity to engage meaningfully in the world.

Guided by the principles of Waldorf education, the faculty inspires in our students creative thinking, moral sensibility, and a passion for learning.

We offer a classical education that integrates experiential and artistic learning, in an environment emphasizing academic excellence, respect for diversity, and reverence for the natural world.

Our faculty, board of trustees, and parents work together, with dedication and warmth, to support our school community.
Housatonic Valley Waldorf School | 203-364-1113 ||