In our first high school forum of the year, students had the great honor to welcome Passamaquody Storyteller, Allen J. Sockabasin, author of An Upriver Passamaquody and of the delightful children’s book Thanks to the Animals. Mr. Sockabasin started by showing our high schoolers a 30-minute film on the history of Native Americans, particularly of the Passamaquody people of Maine, stressing the importance of language preservation. The Native Americans for centuries lived in villages that depended on subsistence living through gathering, hunting, fishing and working in the woods, with an emphasis on sharing and helping one another. They met many hardships through racism and dubious “progress” that brought an end to their traditional way of life, especially their language, their religion and their self-governance.
Mr. Sockabasin’s spoke with great sadness as he talked to a subdued audience about his life-long struggle to try to preserve the traditional language and cultural way of life of his Passamaquody ancestors.
After an hour of reflecting and answering numerous questions asked by the high school students, who seemed very moved and keen to understand his struggles, Mr.Sockabasin grabbed his mandolin and invited our students to join in an impromptu musical fest. Although we had very few instruments at the High School on Thursday, as it is not our instrumental music class day, we had enough so that Jack Pierce, Phineas Samuelson and Tim Morse grabbed fiddle and guitars while Liza jumped to the piano. They all joyfully improvised to accompany Mr Sockabasin in some country songs in English and in the Passamaquody language, including a rendition of Elvis Presley’s “You Ain’t Nothin’ but a Houndog”! After sitting for two hours, all students were happy to jump to their feet to sing along, clap hands or … dance the Hokey-Pokey in Passamaquody! No more sadness in the air! The forum ended in joy, bringing this ancient language again back to life for the benefit of our willing young crowd.
After accepting our thanks and a Merriconeag School hat, Mr. Sockabasin left us on his way to Portland to receive the Fourth Annual Sampson Center Catalyst for Change Award from the Sampson Center for Diversity in Maine. Mr. Sockabasin is officially recognized for “his tireless work for his community and the State of Maine. . . ” and for his great “contribution to civil rights and social justice in Maine.”
Merriconeag Waldorf High School is very grateful to have had the honor to meet and learn from Mr. Sockabasin. Special thanks go to high school parent Marianna Tupper, who brought Mr. Sockabasin to our attention and helped organize this Forum. Submitted by Régine Whittlesey
Tues, Oct 14, 5:45 pm
Tues, Oct 14, 7 pm, Community Hall. Open Community Meeting: "Sharing the Strategic Plan"
Wed, Sept 15, 8 - 9 am. Couldn't make the Tuesday evening Community Meeting? Have more questions from Tuesday night's discussion about One Merriconeag? Please come for coffee to share your thoughts in a personal conversation with a few board members and staff. We want to hear from you.
Craft Blitz with Sandy Pearson:
Wed, Oct 15, 3:05 - 4:30 pm,M & M Room, Handcraft Building.
The items you make in this class will be sold at the Fall Fair, so on top of all these other reasons to come, you will feel good about supporting Merriconeag!
Children in grades 4 and up are welcome to attend the afternoon session if they are able to participate. We are not able to offer aftercare for younger siblings.
MS XC Race :
Thurs, Oct 16, MS Final XC Race at Twin Brook, Cumberland, ME, CCC Invitational hosted by Greely:
3:30-Boys Team of 7 Race
4:00-Girls Team of 7 Race
Early Childhood Parent Evening:
Thurs, Oct 16, 7 pm, Early Childhood Center.
Craft Social Parent Evening.
HS XC Race :
Fri, Oct 17, HS XC WMC race at St. Joseph's College.
(1:45 course walks begin, 3:00 VG, 3:30 VB, 4:00 JVG, 4:30 JVB)
See directions on blog by clicking on the link below.
EC Michaelmas Celebration:
Sat, Oct 18, 9 - 11 am, Early Childhood Center.
High School Information Evening:
Wed, Oct 22, 7 pm.
Desert Rd, Campus, 57 Desert Rd, Freeport.
Featuring Marisha Plotnik will present "From Clapping to Calculus" about how the foundation laid in the early Waldorf elementary years leads to a meaningful, rigorous and appropriate mathematics program in the middle and high school years. Evening also includes our high school teachers and students discussing our unique program and Beth Caputi,
our college guidance counselor, sharing her experience of working with our students, and why colleges are eager to have them. Bring your questions.