|Smiling faces from wall to wall!|
On Saturday our halls and grounds were filled with children’s laughter, uplifting music, the delightful aromas of tasty food, and the unique joy that accompanies our annual Children’s Festival and Artists’ Market.
|Hey Mavis rocked the house!|
Over 700 visitors from the school and the greater Akron community joined us for this delightful celebration. We are grateful to Lerryn Campbell for once again directing the monumental task of coordinating staff, volunteers, and outside vendors, to bring this delightful day together for all to enjoy. Lerryn has risen to this challenge for many years, and the wealth of love and good spirit she brings to the task is infectious.
|Cookie Fairies from the Class of 2014|
We’re also grateful to the many, many volunteers who helped set up Friday night, worked in the craft rooms, served in the kitchen, and stayed after the Festival Saturday to get the building back in order. The Children’s Festival and Artists’ Market is a shining example of how we can all come together — heads, hearts, and hands — to create a magical experience for one and all.
One of Spring Garden’s most beautiful festivals is approaching: Advent. The Advent Spiral Garden is a reverent, candlelit ceremony which takes place during the school day. Students enter the darkened gym, where a spiral pathway of fresh pine boughs has been laid with a large, lit candle at its center.
Each student walks to the center of the spiral with an unlit candle, lights their candle, and places it somewhere along the spiral path as they wind their way back from the center. With each student, the light grows to illuminate the room, reminding us of the eternal light within us and within all mankind.
Parent volunteers sing meditative song, often referred to as angel voices, to help add reverence to the event. Adult volunteers are also needed to help lay the spiral, carve the apples used for candle holders, and retrieve students to participate in this beautiful, solemn event.
Last week families received their pledge packages for this year’s Annual Giving Campaign, and already the pledges and donations are rolling in! We have 100% participation from our Board of Trustees, bringing us to 16% of our goal of $25,000. 100% participation from our entire community is important. We need everyone’s help because having 100% of families, faculty and staff donate is essential when we submit grant requests.
Not only that, but your contribution helps make the Waldorf Difference by funding the materials we need for our wonderfully diverse curriculum. A $100 donation could buy:
- 14 paintbrushes
- Enough seeds to plant our entire 1/2 acre field
- Four wooden soprano recorders
- 28 main lesson books
- 2 days of electricity
- 12 skeins wool yarn
As Board President Karen Hodge noted in her letter, “We need your help to continue offering the Waldorf Difference to our community. Tuition and fundraisers cover the majority of costs of the outstanding classroom experience our children enjoy each day, but not all of it. The annual campaign bridges the gap. Truly, every dollar raised through the campaign benefits our children.”
Take a moment to make your tax-deductible pledge today. You can pay with check or credit card, or charge your donation in monthly payments through your MCA account. Drop your pledge card in the box in the lobby, or click here to make an online pledge today!
A Word About Picture Orders
Only picture orders that were submitted by the original due date of October 7 were delivered to the school this week. Picture orders placed after that date have now been sent to the lab for processing; you should allow at least two more weeks for delivery. If you have any questions, please email Nancy Williams directly.
Silver Graphics Order Deadline Extended
The deadline for ordering products from Silver Graphics has been extended until Monday, November 11. This is the final deadline, so be sure to get your orders in!
This Week’s Events …
- Wednesday, November 13
- Walk Through the Grades – 9:00 a.m.
- Book Study Group on Our Twelve Senses – 9:00 a.m. in the School Store
- Thursday, November 14
- Auction Planning Meeting – 9:00 a.m. in the School Store
- Parent Council Meeting – 6:00 p.m.
- Friday, November 15
- Hot Lunch Forms Due by 8:30 a.m. for November 19 Hot Lunch
- Saturday, November 16
- Children’s Festival and Artists’ Market – 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
- Work Day (to tear down and clean up after Children’s Festival) 5:00 – 8:00 p.m.
Mark Your Calendars …
- November 19
- Hot Lunch: Chicken nuggets with creamy mashed potatoes, hot vegetable, salad, and fruit. A vegetarian salad plate is available as an alternative.
- November 22
- Grades 7 & 8 Dance
- November 27
- Early Dismissal – 2:00 p.m.
- November 28-29
- NO SCHOOL – Thanksgiving Holiday
Thank you to all who have helped bring the festival this far. Now it’s down to the last minute. How you can you be a part of the magic? Invite your friends, family, hairdresser, grocery check out person, soccer friends, work colleagues, and anyone else you can think of!
Write down your volunteer times so it is easy on the day of the festival to be where you are needed.
Managing a classroom of young children is a monumental task. Anyone might be tempted to use a chart, a visual, to help the children see the consequences of their behavior, but these tools have become the center of a debate among many parents, educators and psychologists.
In Waldorf schools, reverence for the child’s individuality applies as much to their personality as it does to their learning style. Teachers work to build social cohesion and empathy among students. The consistency of the one classroom, one teacher model in Waldorf is key to the success of our students learning to behave within a community of peers. Parents will be hard pressed to find a behavior chart in a Waldorf school. Which, according to recent research on the topic, is a good thing.
We all know stress has long term negative effects on health. So, in an age where younger and younger children report feeling increasingly stressed, adding shame to the mix is ill advised. As it turns out, the stress hormone, Cortisol, spikes in children as young as four when they experience embarrassment or shame.
In this recent article in Psychology Today, Understanding Children’s Emotions: Pride and Shame, author Ken Barish, Ph.D. (Pride and Joy: A Guide to Understanding Your Child’s Emotions and Solving Family Problems) states the importance of the issue at hand.
“A child’s need to feel proud, and to avoid feelings of shame, is a fundamental motivation, and remains fundamental, throughout her life. It would be difficult to overestimate the importance of these emotions in the psychological development – and emotional health – of our children.”
But if teachers don’t use shame, then how can they let children know that what they’ve done is wrong? Aren’t guilt and shame an essential part of learning right from wrong? Dr. Gwen Dewar sees a difference, and speaks to it in her recent article at Parenting Science – Correcting behavior: The magic words that help kids cope with mistakes.
“Psychologists make a distinction between feelings of guilt and feelings of shame. Feelings of guilt are linked with a desire to make amends. Feelings of shame tend to make people angry—and not necessarily repentant. In fact, people who feel shamed may be less likely to take responsibility for their transgressions (Tangney et al 1992).
Also in Dewar’s article, she cites a study that observed how children reacted to different types of correction and then measured the effectiveness of three different types, the first of which, called “Personal,” resembles the behavior-chart method of correction.
The study, Correcting behavior: The magic words that help kids cope with mistakes (Kamins M and Dweck C. 1999. Person versus process praise and criticism:Implications for contingent self-worth and coping. Developmental Psychology 30(3): 835-847.) defined three types of correction, summarized here as:
- Personal – You failed.
- Outcome based – This is incorrect.
- Process Based – This is incorrect, can you think of another way?
As one might expect, process-based criticism is the most effective for inciting change and continued trial and learning. Most children experiencing the Personal Criticism model said they would not repeat the task at hand. And while this study did not directly deal with moral-based behavior mistakes, some experts infer that a similar approach to ethical behavior modification would be more beneficial than a “you failed” chart system.
So, shame is not only detrimental to health and self esteem, but is also the least motivating form of criticism and zaps kid’s resilience and desire to learn by trial and error. While most wouldn’t blame teachers for using stoplight-type charts to help control a mob of misbehaving kids, experts are beginning to agree that it’s not the most effective means of modifying behavior in the classroom.
This Weeks Events …
- Thursday, November 7
- School Store Catalog Party -8:30 – 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 – 7:30 p.m.
- Friday, November 8
- School Store Catalog Party – 8:30 – 10:00 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
- Early Childhood Lantern Walk (Miss Olga, Miss Julie, and Miss Kathy – Please see emails from your child’s teacher for details
- Saturday, November 9
- Work Day – 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
- Parent-Child Class Martinmas Lantern Walk – Please see Miss Roberta for details
- Sunday, November 10
- Open House – 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Mark Your Calendars …
- November 11
- Board Meeting – 6:30 p.m.
- November 13
- Walk Through the Grades – 9:00 a.m.
- Book Study on Our Twelve Senses – 9:00 a.m.
- November 14
- Parent Council Meeting – 6:00
- November 16
- Children’s Festival and Artists’ Market
- Work Day – 5:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Children’s Festival and Artists’ Market November 16
Great news! 91.3 The Summit will be broadcasting from the Children’s Festival from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.! We are thrilled to have their support for this event.
Mr. Vargo is planning something fun for a craft, too! Make sure you come on Festival day to see what it is!
If you are interested in having a vendor table on this day you must turn in your vendor form asap. The available spaces are quickly filling. You can download a vendor form by clicking here.
Sign up today for the many opportunities available to support the Festival. You can work at home or here on Festival day. It takes many hands to pull off this magical day for children, so jump in and sign up today. Sign-up sheets are posted outside Amy Hecky’s office. If you’re not sure how best to help, email Lerryn Campbell or Amy Hecky and they will help you decide.
The Children’s Festival and Artists’ Market will be Saturday, November 16, from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Welcome, New Students!
In October we welcomed two new students and their families to the Spring Garden community. John McCollough joined Ms. Hunko’s Class 7; his mother is Marie Dutt and his grandmother is Margo Haren. Maria Barton joined Mr. Gannon’s Class 5; her mother is Kathy Barton. Please join us in welcoming these new community members!
November Hot Lunch Dates and Menus
On Tuesday, November 12, our hot lunch will be cheese quesadillas with brown Spanish rice, hot vegetable, and fruit salad. Order forms are due by 8:30 a.m. Friday, November 8 — if you have not received a copy,click here to download one on PDF.
On Tuesday, November 19, we will serve chicken nuggets with creamy mashed potatoes, a hot vegetable, tossed salad, and fruit. A vegetarian salad plate is available as an option. Order forms for theNovember 19 hot lunch are due by 8:30 a.m. on Friday, November 15 –click here to get a copy.
We always need volunteers to help with hot lunches — if you have the time and want to spend a busy and fun morning in the kitchen, please sign up on the sheets posted near the parent mailboxes.
Silver Graphics Orders Due Friday
Last week, order forms for Silver Graphics were placed in your mailboxes. To order, attach a check made payable to Spring Garden Waldorf School to your order form and place it in your Parent Council Rep’s mailbox. (You may keep the sample prints at the bottom of the form.) Order forms are due Friday, November 8, by 3:00 p.m. Original artwork will be returned after all orders have been received. Products will arrive at the school before the holiday break.
School Pictures Are Here!
This afternoon we placed all student pictures in parent mailboxes. If your order is missing or incorrect, please contact Nancy Williams directly via email.
Auction Survey — Your Input Is Needed!
Please click here to follow the link to a very brief survey about your experiences at past SGWS Annual Auctions, even if you’ve never attended. Please take a moment to complete this survey by Monday, November 11 (it will take less than 5 minutes to complete). Your feedback can help us ensure that this important event is as enjoyable and beneficial as possible.
School Store Catalog Party Thursday and Friday!
Our second annual Catalog Party is this week! Follow these links to start browsing catalogs from Grimm’s Toys and Brown Sheep Yarn, orclick here to see catalogs from Camden Rose Toys, Sarah’s Silks, Steiner Books, Sunbeam Candles, Uriel Home Remedies, and Uriel Facial Care.
As promised, one featured item from each catalog will be available on these dates only for 20% off: canopies from Sarah’s Silks, Drawing with Head, Hand, and Heart from Steiner Books, Candle for Peace Manifestations Aromatherapy Pillar from Sunbeam Candles, lanaloft worsted handpaint yarns from Brown Sheep, and the cold care kit from Uriel.
Please encourage friends and family to participate, too! Enjoy complimentary refreshments, a chance to win door prizes, and a fun shopping atmosphere. Anyone unable to shop in person may use this order form. Thank you for supporting SGWS by making purchases through your school store!
Sale Dates and Times:
Thursday, November 7 8:30 – 10:00 a.m.
3:00 – 7:30 p.m.
Friday, November 8 8:30 – 10:00 a.m.
11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
The Early Childhood classes — Miss Kathy, Miss Olga, and Miss Julie — will celebrate Martinmas with a lantern walk during the school day on Friday, November 8. The three classes will walk down to the creek together during their outdoor playtime, to sing songs and leave seeds and crumbs for the forest animals.
Martinmas celebrates the life of St. Martin and reminding us that we each have a light inside of us that we can share with the world. This is a simple celebration, intended to both observe the changing of the seasons and inspire generosity of spirit.
St. Martin was a soldier in Rome in the 4th century. Legend says that one wintry night, he met a poor beggar, half dressed and freezing. Martin removed the heavy cloak from his shoulders and, drawing his sword, cut it in two, and gave half to the beggar. That night, Christ appeared to Martin in a dream, wrapped in the same piece of cloak Martin had given the beggar, and said, “Martin has covered me with this garment.” Martin became the patron saint of beggars, drunks, and outcasts, dedicating his life to helping others.