Tuesday News - January 7, 2014

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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

Upcoming Events

Community Meeting

Thursday, January 9, 6:00 p.m.

Community Hall

On Thursday evening we invite you to meet the members of the Board, learn about our finances, and the OneMerriconeag Strategic Plan. Our priority is to share and discuss this important information with the school community.
      We will present a comprehensive background and explanation of our school's revenues and expenses as a way of addressing the school's financial health and the growth we are nurturing. This evening will offer you time for questions, answers, and dialogue about the Board's work and steps into the future.


Saturday Craft Morning
Saturday, January 11, 9:30 - 11:00 a.m.
Early Childhood Center, 60 Desert Road, Freeport
These craft sessions provide an opportunity for your friends and neighbors to get to know us better. Please spread the word! Dancing Snowflakes: Come make snow fairies with fleece and listen to a story about Jack Frost. For children under 7 and their parents. $5 per child. Registration is appreciated but drops-ins are welcome. For more information and to register, please contact Heidi Drexel, Early Childhood Enrollment Coordinator, 207.865.3900, Ext 163 or hdrexel@merriconeag.org.



Waldorf Evening at Birth Roots
Monday, January 13, 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.

Birth Roots Prenatal Resource Center
101 State Street, Portland

Waldorf Schools strive to honor and protect the important phase of life that is childhood. Come learn about the Waldorf approach to parenting and early childhood education. We will discuss how we can shape our time and space in ways that best support the healthy development of the young child. Share in discussion and learn new ideas!

Windows into Waldorf Early Childhood
Tuesday, January 14, 9:00 – 10:00 a.m.

Early Childhood Center, 60 Desert Rd, Freeport
This event is for prospective parents interested in Waldorf early childhood education.After a glimpse into a kindergarten classroom, we will discuss our unique approach and answer questions. Adults only. Please register by calling or emailing Lyn Baird, 865-3900, Ext. 103, admissionsdirector@merriconeag.org.


Tour of Grades 1 - 8
Wednesday, January 22, 2014

8:15 - 10:30 a.m.
57 Desert Road, Freeport, ME

(Begins in the Community Hall)
A distinctive feature of Waldorf elementary education is the two-hour “main lesson” period that begins each day. During this period the class focuses on a particular curriculum topic over a three-week block of time (e.g., fractions in 4th grade, geology/mineralogy in 6th grade, Civil War in 8th grade). Call 207-865-3900, Ext.103 or email admissionsdirector@merriconeag.org, to sign up for this tour. We are also happy to arrange other times for you to observe classes. . .just call.


A Journey To Nepal
Thursday, January 23, 7:00 p.m.

Community Hall, 57 Desert Rd, Freeport

2013 alumnus Teagan Wu will give a presentation on her semester abroad in Nepal. She will plan on giving others an understanding of the customs and spiritual aspects of another culture while sharing her own insights and discoveries. Through stories and photos, she will paint a picture of her experience from city and village home stays and an independent study project to trekking in the Himalayas. She will also share how her Waldorf education has affected her outside the classroom setting. While away, Teagan gained a new appreciation for her education and would love to share these insights with the school community and any others who would like to come. In addition, there will be a sampling of a traditional Nepali dish.


Merriconeag Parent Dance
Saturday, January 25, 7:00 -11:00 p.m.
Community Hall , 57 Desert Road, Freeport
Live Band, food, BYOB, donations accepted. Sponsored by Parent Connections.



Early Grades (1 – 3) Information Night
Monday, January 27, 2014, 7:00 – 8:30 p.m.

Grades 1 – 4 Building, 57 Desert Road, Freeport
Join our teachers for a lively introduction to the joy and wonders of the Waldorf early grades. Learn how we use stories, songs, games and artistic activities to engage both the intellect and the feelings, and how this approach lays the foundation for imaginative thinking. Our approach to writing, reading, math, science and art are all topics to be addressed. For more information or to register, please contact admissionsdirector@merriconeag.org or 207-865-3900, Ext.103.


On Going:

Circus Atlantic:

Circus Arts After School Classes continuing at Merriconeag!

Mondays and Wednesdays
January 13 – April 23 (No class February Vacation or April Vacation)
Cost: $450.00
Track 1: 3:30–5:00pm
Track 2: 5:00–6:30pm
Coaches: Steve Corning, Blain Tully, Virginia Fullgar, Janette Fertig

Sign up today!

Click here to register.


Visit Maine's Only Waldorf High School
  where the academic is brought to life

through exploration, enquiry, and experience
Parent & prospective student visits arranged at your convenience.

New Gloucester Campus, 83 Pineland Drive
Call 207.865.3900, Ext. 103 or email, admissionsdirector@merriconeag.org to schedule.


Tea and Play

Wednesdays, Jan. 8, 15, 22, 29

9:00 – 10:00 a.m.

Early Childhood Center, 60 Desert Road, Freeport

For prospective parents. Bring your child, share a cup of tea with us and learn more about our programs for young children. Story time is at 9:30. For more information: 207.865.3900, Ext. 163, or hdrexel@merriconeag.org


From the Administrator

Handwork Update
      We are very pleased to announce the new interim handwork teaching staff for the remainder of the school year. On December 20, following an interview on Dec. 18, with Sandy Pearson, Lynn Thurrell and myself, the school hired Ananda Kayman to teach handwork in grades 5, 7, and 8, beginning this week. This followed careful review of applications from people outside of the school, as well as applicants from within our community.
      Ananda is a graduate of Pine Hill Waldorf School and High Mowing in Wilton N.H. She has a Masters of Arts in Counseling Psychology combined with a passion for fine arts and fiber arts. This commitment to working with hands and heart started in her childhood both at home and at the Waldorf Schools in NH, and was deepened through her studies at Maine College of Art and Haystack Mountain School of Arts and Crafts.

     Simone Halstead, who joined the handwork teachers in November to help with the 4th grade handwork projects, has agreed to complete the year with this class. Simone is a Co-Founder of the Heartfelt School in Portland, ME. She holds advanced degrees in Early Childhood Development and Psychology, as well as undergraduate studies in Art. Her vast repertoire of handwork skills has been a great match with the 4th grade.

     Simone Halstead, and Ananda will be working closely with Sandy Pearson before school starts in January, and then for the first two weeks of the New Year. Lynn Thurrell will continue teaching handwork in 6th grade, in addition to 1st, 2nd and 3rd grade handwork, for the remainder of the year.

     We are grateful to Sandy Pearson, who came out of her “year’s leave of absence” to guide this transition and teach classes on Wednesdays. Also, Suzie Peirson and Jill Fox, who supported this transition by taking some of their classes extra periods, and assisting with interim teachers. Regine Kusche stepped in to help with costumes in 7th grade and finished the moccasin project with the class before the break. Moriah Moser, former class teacher at Merriconeag, offered support with the 5th grade art classes. Special thanks for the outpouring of support from parents to assist in classes, where needed, during this transition.
Christine Sloan

Winter Wonderland and Icy Nightmare!
Dear Parents,
      Yesterday’s storm, and the subsequent ice build-up on driveways and walkways, created a very serious situation at school. Initially, at 5 am, Mr. Hight reported that our snow removal crew was at school, dealing with thick ice, but hopeful that a two hour delay would bring warmer temperatures and safer conditions. By 8:15, a call came through that the heavy rain was washing away sand and salt on the drive, and proving ineffective in removing the ice build-up. Three cars had slid off the main driveway and the EC drive was impassable. We immediately closed school, changed messages, website, and contacted teachers and parents who we knew were driving from great distances. By early afternoon, a power outage on Desert Road shut down all of our systems for several hours, which effects heat, phones, computers and septic systems. It was a good day to stay home!

     For those of you who did not check emergency closing information, we are very sorry for any inconvenience you may have had getting to school and back home. We are concerned that this winter will continue to present challenges. We urge all parents and teachers to sign up for the emergency closing alert (http://www.wcsh6.com/weather/resources/text_alert/default.aspx), mentioned below. In the case of wide spread power outages, our options for notifying parents become more limited, as it affects phone and website access and e-mails sent from our home locations. When there has been a two hour delay we encourage you to check the phone message and or website a second time, before leaving home.

     Special Note: Two hour delay for Merriconeag means that all sections of the school, EC through High School, begin programs at 10:20. High School Vans leave Desert Road for Pineland at 9:55. The safety of our families and colleagues is at the center of these early morning decisions about delays and closings.
With an eye toward spring and mud season,
Christine Sloan


Snow Days and Unexpected School Closures:

Although the inside cover of your school directory/handbook details

our snow and unexpected closing policy, we have included it here

again for your review.


There are three ways to check on school closings
· Radio stations WGAN-AM (560), WMGX-FM (93.1), WYNZ-FM (100.9), and WPOR- FM (101.9)
· Local TV stations, Channels 6, 8 and 13
· School answering machine: Freeport Campus (EC- G8) 865-3900
General Guidelines for Merriconeag EC - Grade 8 Desert Road Campus:
- If Freeport Public Schools are closed, we are closed.
In the past, we have closed school to protect the safety of families and faculty memebers driving greater distances than our local school systems cover, Please be sure to chek specifically for Merriconeag's closing.
General Guidelines for Merriconeag High School, Pineland Campus:
- If Freeport Public Schools are closed, the High School is closed.
- If Gray/New Gloucester is closed, the High School is closed.
- If Freeport is open and Gray/New Gloucester is on a two hour delay, van riders will be dropped off at the Freeport Campus at 8:10, have supervised study hall in the Community Hall, and then be shuttled to the Pineland Campus for a 9:20 class. 
If an excessive number of cancellations occur where Gray/New Gloucester is closed while Freeport remains open, the high school will arrange to hold classes on the Desert Road Campus.

WCSH 6 TV offers an automatic text alert for you computer or wireless phone, at the following website: 



Read (Listen to or Watch) This

For 2014, Tweet Less, Read More
By Frank Bruni, The New York Times, The Opinion Pages
Published: December 30, 2013

Make 2014 the year your kids play
By John Bare, CNN Opinion, Schools of Thought
Wed January 1, 2014


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