Tuesday News - March 18, 2014

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.

Reminder: School is closed Monday, March 24 for a Faculty Professional Day.

Upcoming Events

Crusader, Muslim, and Jew

Class Play Performed by the 6th Graders

Wednesday, March 19, 11:00 a.m. & 7:00 p.m.

Community Hall, 57 Desert Rd, Freeport



We invite all members of our community - teachers, board members, parents, and friends of

the school - to join us for the opening lecture at the Northeast AWSNA Conference that we

are hosting this weekend.

Imbue yourself with the power of imagination

Keynote Address by Florian Osswald

Friday, March 21, 7:00 p.m.

Community Hall, 57 Desert Rd, Freeport

Imbue yourself with the power of imagination: Rudolf Steiner states that, " the only way to do this is to imbue the lesson content with will, a will rich in feelings.... Something which was once worked out imaginatively cannot be repeated in the same way years later because it is then intellectually frozen up. Imagination has to be constantly kept alive, otherwise its products will become intellectually frozen.“ (The Foundations of Human Experience, Lecture 14)

     Imagination enlivens pupils and teachers alike. It is a force which has the power to renew everything. How do we foster the power of imagination within ourselves? And when does it become sheer fantasy? Let us toss up the world and watch the wind of imagination blow through.

Florian Osswald has served as co-leader of the Pedagogical Section at the Goetheanum in Dornach, Switzerland with Claus-Peter Röh since early 2011. Born in Basel, Switzerland, Mr. Osswald trained as a process engineer. He pursued the study of special and curative education in Aberdeen, Scotland and in Dornach where he completed his Waldorf teacher training. For 24 years he taught mathematics and physics at the Rudolf Steiner School in Bern and Ittigen and has worked in various countries as an advisor to faculties and Colleges of Teachers.


Tough Guise 2

Thursday, March 27, 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.

Freeport Performing Arts Center

Admission is free but seating is limited so please

register by clicking on this link.

Due to mature content, we recommend this film for audience members who are 13 or older.

We are pleased to be co-sponsoring this film about violence, manhood and American culture with Boys to Men and TARP at the Freeport Performing Arts Center.  The film is the highly anticipated update of the influential and widely acclaimed Tough Guise. Tough Guise 2 stands to empower a new generation of young men -- and women -- to challenge the myth that being a real man means putting up a false front and engaging in violent and self-destructive behavior. The film will be followed by a panel discussion.
View the trailer.

Auction and Variety Show to benefit Tiered Tuition
Saturday, April 5, 6:00 - 9:30 p.m.

Community Hall, 57 Desert Rd, Freeport

See updates under From the Development Office


Admission Events

Tea and Play

Wednesdays, March 19, April 2, 9, 16, 30

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


Windows into Waldorf Early Childhood
Tuesday, April 8, 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, April 9, 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.


Waldorf Evening at Birth Roots
Friday, April 11, 7:00 – 8:30 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!


Early Childhood Open House & Puppet Show

Saturday, April 12, 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 noon

Early Childhood Center, 60 Desert Rd, Freeport

Come play, visit with our Early Childhood teachers, and learn about our unique Waldorf approach to Early Childhood education. There will be activities in every classroom and the puppet show, Snow White and Rose Red, will be presented at 11:30 a.m.


Bring a Friend Outreach & Enrollment Drive

A Real Life Story: We thought you might enjoy hearing about some real life referrals to help put the Bring A Friend campaign into context. This is Tay Veitch's (Board Treasurer) family's story:
     Our referral came from Dr. Paul Ritger when Phoebe, now 8 and in second grade, was at a check-up when she was four. Paul has been her doctor since her birth. We were unfamiliar with Merriconeag. He asked if we knew of the school and that it would be a fantastic place to send someone who was as engaged and curious about the world as Phoebe. He told us his family’s story, and of how well it prepared his children for college and beyond. He was also very helpful in addressing our questions and concerns about the school and Waldorf education as we began our process of investigating the school.
      Through this sincere, enthusiastic referral, the school gained new students, supportive parents, and a board member! And Tay's family is very happy that they've found the right place for their kids. What a great story!
      Please review the list of events on the calendar in the Bring a Friend flyer and consider how you can bring a friend.  Thanks for your support! Catherine Weiland (mom of Emma Tieman G6 and Oscar Tieman G4)

From the Development Office

Auction and Variety Show

to Benefit Tiered Tuition
Saturday, April 5, 6:00 - 9:30 p.m.

Community Hall

To whet your appetite here are some teasers of items that will be available at the Silent Auction. Send in your RSVP and Cash Raffle Tickets. Come One Come all!

Come the the Tuition Assistance Auction and Variety Show and you can walk away with a few days of natural bliss! You can revel in the fact that you are helping the school and possibly have this amazing two day get away for two at Chewonki's Debsconeag Lake Wilderness Camp. Spend a couple summer nights in a rustic cabin near the water. Truly remove yourself. Take a trip down a bumpy dirt road and then a boat across the lake to your cozy cabin. Fix a hearty meal in the simple kitchen and warm yourself by the woodstove. Spend the days swimming, hiking, exploring, and enjoying. Return refreshed. How can you pass up the chance to recharge? The chance to hang out for a fun evening with other wonderful Merriconeag parents and friends gathering to do something awesome for our school. Join us and get a chance at this amazing tranquil experience.


Join us at the Tuition Assistance Auction and Variety Show, have a fun night, help the school, and the chance at a Soap Felting Party Pack for six children. Thanks to the Welch family of Entropy Farm you have the opportunity at a fabulous bit of soap felting fun for your children and their friends. You will have enough soap and roving, some from the sheep of Entropy Farm, for a happy gathering on a rainy day, a birthday party or just to bring friends together. It's only possible if you come on down to the Auction, a chance to win, a fun night, you cannot lose!

Generously donated by Portland Ovations: 2 best-available "A-price" tickets to Bobby McFerrin "Spirit You All" on Sunday April 13, 2014 at 7:00 pm at Merrill Auditorium, Portland.

Don’t forget to check your calendars and sign up for a Merri-Happening. No bidding is required, the price per person for each party is very reasonable and it’s easy to join in - on Auction night, just sign your name for the Merri-Happening that you want to go to, and pay the fee at check-out. Click here to check out our exciting array of Merri-Happenings for 2014.

VOLUNTEER to help set up for the event on Friday, April 4 or to help out during the event Saturday night. Here’s your chance to join in, meet parents and participate! Click here to sign up. Any questions, please contact Stacie Waldron at shamwald@maine.rr.com or Mary Martin at events@merriconeag.org.

Need a babysitter for the night of the Auction - FREE? Students (7th-11th) are offering their baby-sitting services for free in order to allow parents to go and enjoy themselves without the worry of expense! We expect more names to be added, keep checking.



News from the High School

High School Theme Week, March 10-14: This year's theme was "Doing Good Work" and the high school certainly lived up to those words. There was lots of good work done, including cleaning and organizing the Desert Road costume closet, transforming the Community Hall into a Waldorf student art gallery and preparing boxes of food for our neighbors in need at the Good Shepherd Food Bank in Auburn. One lovely act of Good Work was when each student in the high school created a knitted square for a baby blanket for high school teacher Ellen Labbe's baby, who is due in June. I wish that everyone could have seen the entire high school sitting around the Sage Room over at Pineland, sweetly knitting, chatting and joyfully creating.
      The true highlight of the week was a three-day residency with the Beehive Design Collective from Machias, Maine. The Beehive Design Collective is a wildly motivated, all-volunteer, activist arts collective dedicated to “cross-pollinating the grassroots” by creating collaborative, anti-copyright images for use as educational and organizing tools. They work as word-to-image translators of complex global stories, shared through conversations with affected communities. Two of the Bees, Emma and Marco, spoke of the amazing global work the Collective does. The Bees shared their latest project, nine years in the researching and making, with the students. The project is called Mesoamérica Resiste and illustrates stories of resistance, resilience and solidarity from Mexico to Columbia as the local communities strive to defend land and traditions, protect cultural and ecological diversity and build alternative economies in the face of the modern megaprojects planned for the region. Afterwards, our students were led through an exploration of their own community and its virtues, underlying values and stories. By the end of the three days, the students had created a large mural depicting in images the story of this community through their collective eyes. They titled their work, The Garden of MerriconEden. Emma and Marco were truly inspirational and left the entire high school with a beautiful picture of possible ways to interact with the world and make sense of its complexities. After some more work takes place, we hope to share the work with the larger Merriconeag community. To learn more about the Beehive Design Collective check out their website, http://beehivecollective.org.
      Of course, all good work and no good play makes for dull boys and girls. So one afternoon, the entire high school trekked over to the sledding hill at Pineland and played in the snow together before heading back for donuts, brownies and hot chocolate.
      Monday morning we went back to regularly scheduled block and skills classes, but for one week, we stepped out of our regular routines and rhythms and explored our theme as fully as possible, all the while doing good work.
David Barham

The students of the Merriconeag Waldorf High School worked with members of the Beehive Collective for three days during Theme-week 2014 to create this poster. The garden and the various scenes around it are meant to be a metaphorical representation of how the students see the Merriconeag community. There are four parts to the poster. The first is the garden itself. The garden is a depiction of the people and product of the community: the parents, teachers and especially students. Underneath and throughout the roots of the garden there are scenes representing what the students see as the root values of Merriconeag. Above the garden there are the external forces that have helped shape the garden. And, finally, outside of the garden there is the interaction between our community and the outside world. Joe Newlin, Class of 2014


School Community Updates

Ski Rental Returns: Ski season is just about over. We need to return the rental equipment. I will be collecting it on Tuesday, March 25th at 8:15AM in front of the Community Hall. All skis need to be cleaned of dirt and kick wax, poles wiped down, boots brushed off and ski bags shaken out prior to that morning. It takes about 10 minutes to clean everything. Thanks, Mr. Saccone.


2014 Yearbooks Now on Sale: The Gyre, Merriconeag’s All School yearbook, is now on sale! *Since we need a total quantity to finalize a price, the price below is estimated. If we sell a lot of yearbooks, the price will go down. If we don’t, then the price will be as listed. So, the maximum you will pay is $40 per book. The deadline for purchase is March 31, 2014. After March 3, we will determine the final price and you will be billed for your yearbook(s). Please note: Students in grades 8 through 12 will receive and be billed for a yearbook unless they have opted out below. All others students (grades EC through 7) are asked to complete the order form linked below to order a copy of this year’s yearbook.  For order form, please click here: Yearbook Order Form.


Community Made Crafts: Please join us in the Farmhouse on Wednesday mornings from 8:30-10:00 for crafting, socializing and fun. We have planned lots of interesting projects, starting with a felt bird garland. You are also welcome to continue with your own work and enjoy the group camaraderie and support. No experience or special skills required!


Athletic News - Sports Updates

March 2014: Middle School Nordic Skiing: The middle school Nordic team capped off another wonderful year with a girls’ first place and boys’ third place finish at the State meet in Fryeburg! Sixth grade participation was especially appreciated this year – as they represented almost half of the team. The newcomers to the team practiced hard and participated in races as they became ready. There is no requirement to ever race, but rather to join the team with a good attitude, consistently attend practices and races (to practice on the race course, cheer or race), improve technique and hopefully increase enjoyment of this lifelong winter sport! The season got off to a challenging start with some practices being cancelled due to either lack of snow or…too much snow (snow day!), but ended with many days at Pineland and a few good skis at Fogg House.

     The end of this season is also the end of Amy Ireland and Bjorn Laukli’s six years of coaching the MWS Middle School Nordic team. They have shared endless enthusiasm, knowledge, and experience of the sport with the team over the years. All this has been brought to MWS skiers with patience, steady encouragement and palpable passion for the sport. Amy and Bjorn have placed an emphasis on technique, commitment, dressing in layers and having fun! Bjorn’s knowledge – and slight obsession with perfecting wax for any given snow conditions – has been shared with students and many assistant coaches over the years! Other teams at the State race always walk by the MWS tables to see what wax Bjorn is using.

     Our Middle School skiers have been so lucky to have such talented, dedicated coaches over these past six years. And, Amy and Bjorn have been lucky to receive 6th, 7th and 8th graders who often join the team as experienced, coordinated, enthusiastic skiers after their years on the snow in Movement class with John Saccone. Many kids who join the team are ready for the challenge of more diligent training and embrace technique pointers. Amy and Bjorn have led our boys’ and girls’ teams to an impressive number of state meet wins over the years. We really are “the little school that skis big”! Please share your gratitude with Amy and Bjorn for all they have given to our school and the Nordic team over six years. Perhaps the biggest thanks will be seeing some of the kids that started with them out on the trails – be it at Pineland for fun or at races in the future – loving skiing! Thanks for everything, Amy and Bjorn and congratulations to the middle school team for another wonderful season! – Lisa Mainella for MAC (Movement and Athletic Committee)



Alumni News

Csfriedman.mediumGreat News from Charley Friedman, 8th Grade Class of 2002 & Founder of Flowfold
I just wanted to pass along some news to the MWS community about Flowfold. I couldn't have made it this far in business without the skills learned at Merriconeag! Charley

     Flowfold was selected as one of the 12 semifinalist in Gorham Savings Bank’s LaunchPad competition. Gorham Savings Bank designed Launchpad to help address the funding challenges start-up companies face. A public vote will determine which companies advance to the final round. Voting will occur on Gorham Savings Bank’s website from March 18th through March 27th. The winner of Launchpad will receive a $30,000 grant.

    Flowfold was founded by Charles Friedman and Devin McNeill in 2011 after graduating from the University of Maine. Flowfold designs, produces and sells everyday carrying gear made from pre-consumer waste. Flowfold offers customers unique products that are high quality and environmentally responsible but also affordable. Flowfold currently sells to over 100 retail stores as well as online (www.flowfold.com).

     The Launchpad Grant would open opportunities for Flowfold. The grant would help Flowfold develop an online ecommerce strategy, refine product packaging and point of purchase displays, and continue to expand the product line.

Gorham Savings Bank names semifinalists for LaunchPad competition Press Herald Link. 

Congratulations and good luck, Charley!


From the Business Office

gift card.jpgAre you looking for another great way to support Merriconeag? Purchase a Hannaford/Bow Street Market Gift Card at school and we earn 5%.

Great news! Merriconeag has raised over $4400 from the sale of the Hannaford gift cards since we began the program just over a year ago.. We place our order for new cards and reloading existing cards every Thursday morning as long as we meet the minimum order of $1000. Grocery cards are a great way to buy your food supplies AND support the school.Simply take your payment to Lisa in the Grade School office and note new grocery card or reload on the memo line of your check. We will let you know when the purchase/reload is done. Contact the Business Office, Ext. 151, with any questions.

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Also Available: Scrip Gift Cards - New retailers are added almost every day!  Merriconeag is also a member of ScripZone, an online retailer of Gift Cards. With your purchase of gift cards, and there are hundreds to choose from, Merriconeag receives a percentage of the total amount of your purchase. We do accept credit cards!  Read more



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