Tuesday News - February 28, 2012

Click here for Tuesday News Archives

Click here to view our Google Calendar of Events.   

All submissions for the Tuesday News should be sent by Friday, 3:00 pm. to publicrelations@merriconeag.org

Merriconeag Waldorf High School Girls are

Repeat Class C Nordic State Champions!

And Merriconeag Boys Came in Second!

Congratulations to our teams and to our wonderful coaches,

John Tarling and Henry Heyburn!

More news on the State Championships below.


Upcoming Events

The Prep School Negro

This Thursday, March 1, 6:00 p.m.

UNE's Ludcke Auditorium

719 Stevens Avenue, Portland

Free and Open to the public

The film is followed by an

outreach workshop

with Director Andre Robert Lee.


Wondering why you should see The Prep School Negro?

     In The Prep School Negro, Lee prompts us to consider the meanings that home and school, class and race, aspirations and education play in our current lives and the lives of our children. What does it mean to belong in a school community and what can schools do to become more truly inclusive? We hope you'll come to this unique event and engage in this important conversation!

You will want to if any of the following questions are interesting to you.

1) What does it mean to encourage "diversity" and "inclusion" in our schools? Are there ways we could become more fully inclusive?

2) What are the implications of economic segregation for ourselves and our children, and how does school shape our likelihood of integration or segregation in terms of race and class?

3) What role does education play in creating access to the middle and upper middle class? What role do we, as citizens, play in shaping education policy that best serves democracy?

4) How do we maintain curiosity about experiences that are different from our own? What might we learn about ourselves or our children through listening to Andre's story? In what ways does his story reflect a more universal experience and in what way is it specific to him, to race, to class?

     This film is sponsored by the Friends School of Portland with the following co-sponsors: Merriconeag Waldorf High School, Cheverus High School, City of Portland, McAuley High School, NAACP Portland Branch, North Yarmouth Academy, UNE Multicultural Affairs, and Waynflete School.

An important note about the weather on Thursday and  this film: If we have a snow day on Thursday, please check the home page of our website to see if this film showing is still on for the evening.


Another chance to see eurythmy is coming right up this Friday!


Coming up one week from today:

Simplicity Parenting

Using the Extraordinary

Power of Less

to Raise Calmer, Happier

and More Secure Kids

A Public Talk by

Kim John Payne

Tuesday, March 6

7:00 p.m.

$10 at the door

 Because this talk is in lieu of a previously scheduled Early Childhood Parent Evening, we will waive the $10 fee for EC parents but they should feel free to make a donation at the door.


     We are pleased to welcome back Kim John Payne. He is a wonderfully warm and engaging speaker and you definitely don't want to miss what he has to say about this important topic. Since Kim's last visit to Merriconeag, he has published the book, Simplicity Parenting, which has been featured in Time and Parenting magazines and on NPR and BBC, as well as ABC, NBC, and CBS television.

To learn more about Kim and his work, click here

or visit simplicityparenting.com


From the Development Office



2011-12 Annual Appeal Update:

No class has reached 100% yet; the cake is still the prize.

Send your tax-deductible gift today! 

In gratitude, Lynne Espy 865-3900 Ext. 116, developmentcoordinator@merriconeag.org


Tuition Support Fundraiser and Silent Auction:

Saturday March 31, 6:00 - 9:30 p.m.
      Forty percent of the families at Merriconeag rely on some level of tuition support. Whether or not you receive tuition support, it is clear that everyone benefits immensely from a more socio-economically diverse community, both in the classroom and within our parent community. Merriconeag’s annual Tuition Support Auction is the fundraiser in which we show our commitment to economic diversity and tuition support. Please demonstrate your support for all of the families that rely on tuition support, and your appreciation for the whole community that benefits by this diversity, by getting involved in this important fundraiser.
Listed below are the numerous ways in which you can make a difference:
1.) Come to the Auction and bring a friend: The fundraiser will be successful, and the party will be lots of fun, if everyone comes. Mark your calendar and get a babysitter so you can enjoy the evening. That includes ALL families, from early childhood through high school - we want to see you there. If you bring a friend from outside the community, they come for free!
2.) Donate a service or item to the silent auction
A large and active Auction Committee is working on soliciting donations from businesses as well as our parent body for the Silent Auction. All of us have something of value to offer – a service or an item that can be donated to help raise money for tuition support. Click here for 2012 Auction Sponsorship and Donation Forms If you haven’t yet submitted your auction donation form, please do so by March 12th. Hard copies can be submitted to any MWS office; send email submissions or direct questions to the Auction Committee volunteers who are spearheading the solicitation effort:
o ECC Coordinator: Julia Dodge (jdodge5@maine.rr.com)
o Grades Coordinator: Susan Stark (sstark@bates.edu)
o High School Coordinator: Katy Neveu (kneveu@mac.com)
o Board Coordinator: Barbara Kappelmann (boston97@roadrunner.com)
o Faculty Coordinator: Lynne Espy (developmentcoordinator@merriconeag.org)
Check it all out on our Auction FaceBook page! All donated auction items will be posted on our Auction Facebook page, so that you can see photos and descriptions of what others are donating. This should spark your imagination as to what YOU could donate, and get you excited to bid on these items at the Silent Auction.
What can I donate? Here are some examples, but this shouldn’t limit your ideas. Ask yourself: what could I offer? What might others want?
• Movement classes, workshops or retreats: yoga, pilates, zumba, meditation, T’ai Chi, dance, eurythmy, gymnastics...
• Gift certificates to alternative healing modalities: Massage, Rolfing, Polarity therapy, cranial manipulation, dietary or health consultations...
• Music classes, catered meals, dance lessons, ski clinics, computer consultation…
• Handmade toys, clothing, artwork, jewelry, footwear, household items…
• Artwork: photography, paintings, felted wall hangings, pottery…
• Support: house-cleaning, fresh eggs each week, home-cooked meals...
• Tickets to the theater or performance, or to a Patriots, Bruins, or Red Claws game…
• High tech goods: laptop, iPod, iPad2, Kindle, or cool software apps….
• Vacation destinations: a week or weekend at a ski or summer house….
3.) Be an Auction Sponsor: On the first page of the donation form, you will see all the benefits of being an auction sponsor. Sponsor the Auction as an individual, in memory or in honor of someone, or as a way to promote your business! Each dollar raised goes directly to tuition support, and your sponsorship comes with great visibility and benefits. Contact Lynne Espy (developmentcoordinator@merriconeag.org) soon if you are interested in being a sponsor.
4.) Buy a cash raffle ticket –Soon to be available in each office, and to be mailed in your invitation which is coming the end of next week, cash raffle tickets are $25 each or 5 for $100. It’s a 25/75 split – you keep 25% of all proceeds from the cash raffle. Last year the total cash raffle amount was $10,145 and the lucky winner took home $2,486! You do not need to be present to win, there is no limit to the number sold, and anyone (family, neighbors, friends) can purchase cash raffle tickets.
5.) Volunteer at the Auction: We will need volunteers to work a shift to make the magic of the evening happen! Look for further details about volunteering the night of the auction. We still need a Staffing Coordinator – we have online signup, but this job involves some follow-up phone calls and some “job training” guidance to volunteers the night of the Auction. Please let Lynne know if you can fill this volunteer job!
What will happen on Sat. March 31st? This year’s theme is GAME SHOW NIGHT, and you are welcome to dress accordingly (ideas will be offered in coming weeks, but feel free to review the TV games from the 70’s) or come as you are and we’ll happily provide some adornments. There will be delicious hors-d’oeuvres (from Catering to You), homemade desserts, student and parent-made items, the infamous silent auction, a return of the highly successful ‘reverse auction’ (to be described in a subsequent issue) and of course game shows involving parent and faculty contestants! Don’t forget, the auction isn’t just about fund-raising through shopping—nearly half of every admission ticket purchase price goes directly to the Tuition Support Fund. It’s sure to be a great evening – you won’t want to miss it!
Many Thanks! Lynne Espy and the Fabulous Auction Committee



From the Admissions Office



We appreciate the efforts of all school community members to introduce new families to Merriconeag. Please continue to tell your co-workers, neighbors and friends about upcoming admission events (listed below and on our website under News & Events), or have them contact Lyn Baird at 207-865-3900, ext. 103 or email, admissionsdirector@merriconeag.org.



Tuesday, March 6, 8:15 – 10:30 a.m.
Tour Grades 1 – 8

In the elementary and middle grades, the two-hour period that begins each day focuses on a particular topic such as history, science, math or literature. Observe our teachers and students as they move through this morning period.
Wednesday, March 7, 2:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Early Childhood Information Session

Learn about our unique approach to meeting the needs of today’s young children. See our beautiful indoor and outdoor environments, designed for play and exploration. Just for adults.
Fridays, 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. March 2, 9, 16, 30
Tea and Play

While your child plays near you, share a cup of tea with our Early Childhood teachers and learn more about our programs for young children.
Thursday, March 15, 8:30 – 11:00 a.m.
Observe High School Classes

9th & 10th grades – The Art of Poetry with David Sloan
11th grade – Atomic Chemistry with Jeff O’Brien
12th grade – Modern History with David Barham


School News

The Fruits of the Eurythmy Block: Grades five through eight and a high school group worked very hard this past month in a eurythmy block taught by Rima Meadow. In the sharing on February 17 the students were "all eyes," eager to see what the other classes had accomplished. It was a program full of wonderful music played by Katy

Stetson. Highlights were copper rod tossing by the 5th grade, "Horatio" by the 6th grade,

humoresque complete with black and white costumes (an award-winning theme these days it seems) and a poem of Hilaire Belloc done by the 8th grade which was dedicated to Mr. Richardson. The high school group performed a full and lively piece of music (Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata, 3rd movement) and there were nearly enough colorful gowns to go around. Phoebe and Emma Dolan did a lovely duet to Beethoven's Emperor Piano Concerto (3rd movement) in full gowns and transparent silk eurythmy veils.
      We are now looking forward to the performance this Friday, 10:45am, by Eurythmy Spring Valley, the fairy tale of "The Goose Girl at the Well." Submitted by Barbara Richardson



Eighth Grade Africa Block: 

     At first I thought the Africa block was going to be a real let-down. Suddenly, all of Africa came into view with its beautiful bursting colors of the sunset, the dyes and the stories of ancestors that have been woven into the bright textiles, the strong and unforgettable smell of the coffee that they drink every day, and the beat of the drums that moves the hearts of the African people.
      One of the exercises we did was the ritual of dying fabric with the native African colors of acacia and indigo. With Kelly Barham leading the way, we embarked on this project. She gave us a blank piece of cloth. The first thing to go through my mind was, "What am I supposed to do?" She explained that we would be sewing combinations of patterns and dipping our cloth iin either the indigo (deep blue) or the acacia (brown). When we took them out of the dye and pulled all of the threads out and dried them, our created fabrics looked like masterpieces and were displayed in the Community Hall.
      The second thing we did was roast our own coffee. Starting with un-roasted green Ethiopian coffee beans, we put them in a cast-iron pan and turned the heat to high. We roasted them until they were black. Mrs. Rackmales then took out a mortar and pestle. We put in some blackened beans and started grinding them until they were brownish-black coffee grinds. Then we put the ground coffee in a jabena (an Ethiopian clay coffee pot) and filled it with boiled water. A little while later we poured the coffee into cups and drank it. It tasted a little different than the coffee I normally drink!
      My favorite part of the whole African experience was the drumming with Michael Wingfield, an African drummer. He brought with him around 20 drums, ranging in different sizes, all packed into the back of his small Volvo. We spent the day learning three different rhythms. One meant 'past history', one was a Carnival rhythm and one had to do with reading the future. We also learned about the history of West African drumming. At the end of the day, we performed all three rhythms for the 3rd, 5th, 6th and 7th grades. It was a lot of fun to be connected to the African culture.
      I came out of the Africa block knowing more than I ever anticipated. I really liked this block.
Written by Joshua Dow, Eighth Grade (Drawing by Fiona Ahearne)


School Community Updates

March Parent Teacher Conferences
Thursday, March 22nd and Friday, March 23rd
      March conference sign-ups for Grade School parents are available online. Click here for instructions for sign up and click here to schedule your conference with your class teacher(s). Winter Progress Reports will go home with students a week before conferences on Friday, March 16th. At the grade school, teachers are continuing to work towards greater participation from subject teachers at conferences. Do not be surprised to see one or more subject teachers at your conference.

     EC conference sign-ups are available outside classroom doors.

     High School parents will receive a conference scheduling link by direct email. Second quarter HS reports went out via email the week before vacation. If you have not received this email, please contact Susan.
Christine Sloan and Lisa Mainella

Craft Afternoons with Sandy Pearson: Wednesdays 3:30- 5:00 p.m. in the new Handcraft Building.
These afternoons are for parents, friends of the school, and 4th graders and up. Please sign up with Lisa in the Grade School office. Please note: If childcare is an obstacle, please contact Lisa in the grades school office (officemanager@merriconeag.org). There are plenty of sitters available!


New: Wednesday, Feb 29 & Mar 7, 14, 21

Crochet Hats

Enjoy chocheting a hat in new spring colors. Beginners welcome. Yarn and pattern supplied. Bring a size "J" crochet hook. Limit: 12 participants. $25.



Last Chance to Order Yearbooks: 
--All students in Grades 8 - 12 will be billed automatically for a Yearbook! Therefore, if you are a student in Grade 8 - 12 and you do NOT want a Yearbook, please fill out a form telling us so, or you WILL get a Yearbook!
--Students in the ECC through Grade 7 will not be automatically billed, so if you are a student in the ECC - Grade 7 and you want a Yearbook, please fill out a form telling us so. 
Forms are available in all the offices. Books are going to cost $40 each this year, and all forms need to be in by the end of this week.
      If you have any questions regarding the Yearbook, please don’t hesitate to contact the Yearbook staff. 
Thank you. Johanna Flath, Skyler Samuelson and Jack Pierce

Please make note of a new address for the Neveu Family: It is 62 Rich Road, Brunswick, Maine, 04011. Their phone number is 319-7950.



Athletic News - Sports Updates

High School Nordic Skiing:

Zoe Chace-Donahue, Emelie Chace-Donahue and Samantha Pierce

swept the top three places in the girls' freestyle race last Tuesday at Black Mountain.

States Recap

     The trip to Rumford started on Sunday morning. After a light lunch and quick wax job, the team previewed the 5k CL course. Most had skied the course earlier this year at the Sassi race and were getting to know the course well and dialing in the best lines and waxes. The efforts worked as Zoe Chace-Donahue blistered the CL course in a very fast 16:05 for the win by 56s over Emelie Chace-Donahue. Samantha Pierce continued her late season break out with a 7th followed by Teagan Wu in 9th, Carlin Tindall in 13th and Jesse Saffeir in 14th to take a commanding lead in the Girls team results.
      For the boys Jack Pierce lead the way in 5th followed by Eli McCurdy in 7th, Ben Tindall was just outside the top 10 in 11th, Graham Roeber, 12th, John Burgess,15th and Lars Gundersen, 38th. The boys after day one were second to NYA with a good cushion over 3rd place, Freeport. The CL race conditions were about perfect as the temperatures stayed cold enough to provide good glide and allowed the wax team to find a good grip wax, this was a big improvement over the WMC CL wax result. A large thanks to Henry Heyburn, Ben Pearson and Jason Donahue for help in the wax room.
      The Freestyle race on Tuesday was late in the day so it was challenging to keep the team busy but not too busy during the day. We contested an impromptu scavenger walk, splitting the group in boys and girls teams. The boys used a creative and liberal interpretation of the rules and appeared to win, however special consideration was given to the intrepid girls who walked almost to West Paris to find the school on the search list and were awarded the win.
      The Freestyle 5k race was on the traditional Rumford HS course and included a single one lap course. Zoe Chace-Donahue again finished 1st for her fifth Class C Championship! Emelie Chace-Donahue was close in 2nd -17s, Samantha 3rd -24s, giving the girls a rare podium sweep. Teagan improved to a fine 7th and another top ten finish, followed closely by Jesse in 12th and Lily Tupper in 15th as the girls ran away with the Championships.
      The boys closed the States racing with great skiing, Jack had another top result in 5th in 12:19 for 5K - do the math, this is FAST! Eli continued his late season surge with a 6th -13s after Jack, Graham was next in in 12th followed by Ben in 14th, John, 15th and Zach, 34th.
      Congratulations to the Boys State Class C Runner ups and the Girls repeat Class C Champions. A special thanks to the parents for supporting the Christmas Camp and the WMC as well as the State Championships. Susan Sonntag and Jennifer Chace especially did the hard advance work planning the food, transportation and lodging all year and Carol Wu kept us well fed at States. Thanks! Coach John Tarling

Click here for more race results.


Middle School Nordic Skiing:

The Merriconeag Middle School Boys finished 1st overall

in the Maine Junior Ski Club Championships

and the girls finished 4th!

     The Merriconeag Middle School Nordic team found snow, sun and success at the Maine Junior Ski Club Championships held at Starks Hills in Fryeburg. Fears that the skiers might need a new wax conducive to mud skiing were quickly allayed when skiers, coaches and parents happily approached a stadium area filled with plentiful snow, along with the usual colorful array of team tents and tables, a potpourri of smells from steaming cook pots, and the joyous blaring of music, horns and cowbells. With warm, sunny conditions and lots to cheer about, it was a memorable day for athletes and spectators alike.

     The boys team had an amazing competition, showing incredible depth and finishing first overall among the 11 teams that participated. In the skate race, Elias Henze, Tucker Pierce and Bennett Hight placed 4th, 5th and 6th, respectively, with Nicholas Neveu rounding out the team scoring (22nd). In the classic race, Elias Henze achieved the podium with a 3rd place finish, despite a missed start and fall. He was quickly followed by Tucker Pierce (4th), Ethan Humphrey (6th) and Even Laukli (8th). Tom Kolle 11th and Bennett Hight (12th) also had impressive classic races.

     The girls team had an excellent overall 4th place finish, led by Lily Johnston – who made the podium twice with 3rd places in both the classic and skate competitions – and by Fiona Ahearn, who finished 8th in the classic and 11th in the skate. Other team scorers were Sofia Laukli (13th in classic, 23rd in skate), Siona Henze (21st in classic) and Ava Haig (31st in skate).

     The other Merriconeag skiers who competed turned in fine efforts as well, and along with other team members, parents and other supporters, exhibited fine sportsmanship and spirit as they exuberantly cheered the competitors on. Full race results can be viewed at MJSC Championship.

     Special thanks go to head coaches Bjorn Laukli and Amy Ireland, who again gave freely of their time and expertise in guiding the team to another successful season. We are so fortunate to have them working with our children. Thanks also to assistant coaches Tom Henze, Rosita Moore, Adrian Bossi, Jim Ahearn, Curtis Bohlen, and Deirdre Barton for all of their help, especially during practices. Recognition should also be given to Greta Parsons for coordinating team communications and other behind-the-scenes tasks, and to parents for all their support – especially for their wonderful food and other offerings on race day. It was truly a team effort. Congratulations to all! Submitted by Will Johnston




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