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Sparkle! Event and Online Auction

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Bid for a getaway at Sugarloaf; a windjammer cruise; horseback riding lessons; restaurant meals; a CSA share; bodywork sessions galore; and much, much more. February 28 through March 14, Ashwood Waldorf School is hosting an online auction. The array of offerings includes items for all budgets and tastes. Online bidding is easy and quick.

Ashwood is also hosting a gala event at the Rockport Opera House: Sparkle: Music, Food, and Community, on March 28 at 7:00 p.m. Showcasing music by the
Gawler Family and Friends and a dance performance by Droplet Dance, the evening also features great food, a cash bar by 40 Paper, a silent auction, and a 50/50 raffle.
Tickets for the celebration at the Rockport Opera House are $20 advance online at Bidding Owl or at Ashwood Waldorf School, $25 at the door.


Middle School Presents the Pirates of Penzance

By Rachel Sizeler-Fletcher, Grade 7

By Rachel Sizeler-Fletcher, Grade 7

The pirates are coming to Rockport! Ashwood Waldorf School’s middle school will present Gilbert & Sullivan’s swashbuckling comedic operetta, The Pirates of Penzance, at the Rockport Opera House on Thursday, March 19 at 11:00 a.m. and Friday, March 20 at 6:30 p.m. The public is invited. A $10 donation is suggested. Under 16 free.

Adapted for teen voices, this production includes all of the elements for which the Victorian-era theatrical partners W.S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan are so well known.

Startling plot twists, physical comedy, word play, sword play, and more all come together in this classic musical comedy to create a perfect storm of romance, adventure, hilarity, and hijinks.

The Pirates of Penzance includes one of the most famous patter songs in the history of musical theater, “I Am the Very Model of a Modern Major-General,” sung in this production by Isaiah Doble. The show also features Aspen Laurita-Spanglet as the courageous Mabel; Caleb Edwards as Frederic, “the slave of duty;” Ryan Hart as the Pirate Queen; Julian King as the Sergeant of Police; and Kate Kemper as the lovesick and matronly Ruth.

Backed by a 24-member chorus of bumbling constables, sentimental pirates, and feisty maidens, the cast not only upends a few gender stereotypes, but may just give audiences a whole new perspective on what it means to be a teenager. Chorus members include: Jasper Berryman-Moore, Elsa Chandler, Leah Doolen, Sylvan Eichenlaub, Morgan MacDougal, Jacob Mills-Lightner, Eli Moore, Sofia Mott, Ocean Rancourt, Daniel Snider, Yonah Wienges, Michael Frampton, Cullan Hamilton, Isabella LaBranche, Andrew Levitt, Jasper Louden, Frances Ostensen, Anikka Reinwand, Rachel Sizeler-Fletcher, Ella Finger, Tessa Mott, Zaela Newcomb, Kayla Olds, and Christian Ray.

Zoot Student Art Show

zootZoot Coffee on Elm St. in Camden, Maine is hosting an exhibit of artworks by Ashwood Waldorf School students during the months of December and January.

Ashwood’s professional faculty is devoted to challenging and engaging each student through a curriculum that integrates science and mathematics with literature, history, and the arts.

Every Waldorf student can play an instrument, paint, draw, and create handcrafts. However, we are not an art school. Waldorf schools around the world integrate the arts into every subject to bring lessons to life and draw out the children’s inherent capacities. The classroom atmosphere fosters interest, wonder, and enthusiasm.

In kindergarten and the lower grades, children paint with watercolors weekly. Younger children focus on the primary colors; later, they encounter more colors and techniques. They also have regular opportunities to color with crayons and model with beeswax. In the early grades, teachers emphasize the artistic process; as the children mature, the result of their artistic work becomes more important.

In the upper elementary grades, students continue with watercolor painting, and may also work with pastels, draw with pencils and charcoal, and paint in layers. Students paint and draw still-lifes and portraits and depict moods and landscapes. Students work with clay in many settings, integrating the arts into other subject areas.

Form drawing is a unique component of the Waldorf curriculum and has both pedagogical and artistic value. Form drawing in first grade leads to the formation of the letters of the alphabet. As the grades progress, form drawing hones fine-motor skills and hand-eye coordination, which leads to later precision in free hand geometric drawing.

Stop by and feast your eyes!

All Hallows’ Eve Walk 2014

all hallows flyer 2014 jpg

Ashwood Waldorf School’s annual All Hallows’ Eve Walk will be on Friday, October 31 from 4:15 to 5:30 p.m. at Merryspring Nature Center, Conway Road, Camden. The All Hallows’ Eve Walk is specially designed as a gift for young children, a place where the littlest ones in our community can have a happy and scare-free Halloween experience.

Wind your way through the enchanted, jack-o-lantern lit woods. Catch glimpses of princesses, knights, dragons, and characters from your favorite tales and legends. Come in costume if you like (not scary, please.) The walk is for families with children aged nine and younger. There will be ghost stories by the campfire for children aged 9 to 14. Free cookie and cider for all! FMI: (207) 236-8021 or

Forest Kindergarten’s First Weeks

forest tree
For three glorious Wednesday mornings, Ashwood’s newest Early Childhood program, the Forest Kindergarten, has been going to the woods! When the children arrive at school, they put their backpacks, containing a full water bottle and a change of clothes, on an outside bench, go to the bathroom, then don their rain pants and say goodbye to their parents.

Once everyone has arrived, we say goodbye to Ms. Beth and the children in her group. The children take their backpacks, Jen and I hoist our bags (the teachers’ bags carry a water jug, towels, snack food, ropes, tools…) onto our backs, we sing a gathering song, and head for the woods; one adult in front (usually holding a hand or two), the other at the back.

The morning walk is a very social time. Children have many stories to tell, usually triggered by something we see. Looking at tracks: “Oh, I wonder which animal passed through this muddy puddle?” Stories emerge from the children, often based on their observations or experiences and always enriched by their imagination.

On our way we greet “grandfather maple tree”; we notice his little round holes from the sap collected in past winters (an occasion for children to tell about maple syrup experiences, pancake breakfasts, etc.) We tell him how we look forward to collecting some of his sap late next winter. We notice “squirrels’ restaurants,” stumps covered in acorn or pinecone debris; see how this week there are many more yellow leaves…. Marvel at how Big Rock sits all alone at the edge of the woods…. Many of those passing remarks and the stories we create and tell are foundations for future scientific learning. In the Forest Kindergarten we observe, marvel, wonder, and learn to feel at home in the woods.

When we arrive to our “home clearing” by the stream, we have a short greeting and seasonal circle, a game or two, and then the children take off to play. During that time the teachers, always with some children’s help, occupy themselves at preparing our snack; tying colored strings between trees to mark the boundaries; fixing tools; building a temporary shelter (ropes and a tarp, until we have a permanent one). These activities render our space more hospitable and allow us teachers to roam close by without hovering over the children. We influence or transform (if necessary) the children’s play without words, just by imitation. The children play in total freedom and safety!

With a flute song, the children are called to snack. Mud-covered hands are roughly washed in some puddles before a real tub wash, a rinse with clear water from our jug, and drying. We sit on the leafy ground, around a tablecloth, sing a grace in French, eat our snack, and return to play until story time, at the end of the morning. Then we go back to Rosewood, dirty, hungry, and tired. What a treat to arrive to a classroom where the table is set and lunch smells SO GOOD! The “indoor” kindergarteners and their teacher have been busy! The Forest Kindergarten day ends with cleaning up, changing into clean clothes, and sitting at the table for a lunch of delicious soup!
-Marianne Bockli

Dollmaking Workshop

Ashwood Waldorf School is offering an opportunity to create a beautiful, soft doll in time for holiday giving on four Mondays evenings: Nov. 3, 10, 17, and Dec. 2. from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m.

Ashwood’s early-childhood teacher, Beth Lunt, will provide free instruction, and guide participants in purchasing necessary materials.

Call or email to register (by October 20), or with any questions: 207.236.8021 info@ashwoodwaldorf.orgdoll

Trip to Beech Hill

Friday, September 19, first, second, and third graders ascended Beech Hill on a clear and lovely day.
beech group

Apple Picking

First, second, and third grade students picked apples on Friday, September 19. It was a glorious, bright fall day, and the fruit was plentiful. A fine time was had by all!

apple picking

Seasonal Handwork Workshops

Creating beautiful handwork can enrich our connection with the changing seasons. Cherry Short-Lee, longtime parent-child class leader and one of Ashwood’s founders, has offered to share her enthusiasm and expertise with parents of children ages 18-36 months, with or without their children, this fall. In three sessions, October 7, 14, and 21, from 9:00 – 11:00 a.m., learn to create grapevine wreaths and decorate them with natural materials to reflect the changing seasons. Sessions are free of charge; fee for materials is $5.00.

Register no later than October 2 by phoning or emailing Judith Soleil: 236-8021 ext. 105;

Parent-Child Classes: Register Now for Fall 2014

Marianne Böckli, Ashwood Waldorf School’s Forest Kindergarten teacher, will lead Ashwood’s Parent-Child classes this fall. Classes will be offered on six Tuesday mornings from 9:00 – 11:00 a.m., beginning October 28. Cost for the six sessions is $150, and you must register by October 21.

Parent-child classes are a gentle and nurturing program for children ages 18 months to three years and their accompanying caregiver.

While children engage in creative play with simple, natural toys, adults may work on a craft project provided by the teacher, help with snack preparation, or discuss parenting or child development. A walk through the woods on one of our trails, time on the playground to climb and swing, and a goodbye song together complete the morning.

Ashwood’s Parent-Child program nurtures the whole family (moms, dads, babies, toddlers, and grandparents are all welcome) and provides a bridge from home to school. When ready, young children may transition to Ashwood’s mixed-age Early Childhood classroom.

Contact Judith Soleil: 207.236.8021