Author Archives: Molly Burke

DWS Soccer Players Head to State Championships

DWS Soccer Players Head to State Championships

Three High School students from The Denver Waldorf School have been playing on the Denver Christian Boys team this season. Senior Xilal Rima and Juniors Ian Connolly and Matthew Douglas-May will take the field in two playoff games this weekend in Colorado Springs. They are a strong team and beautiful to watch. If they win this weekend, more tournament games will follow. We wish them the best of luck!

2013 DWS Boys Soccer Action

2013 Boys Soccer Block

2013 Boys Soccer

2013 Boys Soccer Header

 

The DWS Junior Class Presents…

The DWS Junior Class Presents…

Junior Class Play Flyer

Friday & Saturday, Oct. 25th & 26th at 7 pm

In ancient times, knowledge was given through stories and parables. Humans instinctively knew the symbols and meaning hidden in the yarns that storytellers told.

As man matured and developed the capacities of reason, our understanding went from instinct to thought. Stories flowed from picture images to the abstract. The way to hold this thinking was through the development of an abstract alphabet, to written words, to books.

Books then allowed us to form our own pictures, to create dialogue human to human.
It has taken thousands of years to form this knowledge. What if it all suddenly went away? What if we were not allowed to read books and form our own pictures? What if we were not permitted to leave the cinema and talk with one another about what we experienced?

What if our feelings were spoon-fed to us, and our thinking took place without perspective?
Initially, Fahrenheit 451, a novel by Ray Bradbury, was a protest against censorship and government overreach during the Joseph McCarthy/House Un-American Activities (HUAC) Committee hearings of the late 1940s and early 1950s. The play is an updated version that takes on the power of technology and the two-dimensional nature of television. 

The 11th Grade will perform this fast-paced, challenging play on Friday and Saturday, October 25th and 26th at 7:00 p.m. in the Ginny Boone Oppenheim Festival Hall. All are invited and encouraged to support our students’ performance of this important work.

by Mr. David Johnson, Director

Back-to-School Preparations

Back-to-School Preparations

It’s that time of year! The Denver Waldorf School administrative offices are buzzing with activity as we prepare to welcome all of our new families and welcome back all of our returning families.

Emails with information and forms will be sent out on Monday, August 5th. If your student’s 2013-14 registration is complete and you do not receive your Back-to-School email, please contact Christa Gustafson, Main Office Manager, at 303-777-0531 x 100 or dws@denverwaldorf.org. We’re looking forward to a great year!

A Waldorf Spotlight on Rachel Ladasky

A Waldorf Spotlight on Rachel Ladasky, The Denver Waldorf “Bluebell Garden” Nursery

476095_10151122445125550_1500954163_o-1The Denver Waldorf School is opening a second, off-site nursery school to enhance our early childhood education program and meet the growing demand for Waldorf education in our area. We have located a church site at 17th and Dahlia in Park Hill and, if all goes according to plan, The Denver Waldorf School will open “Bluebell Garden” in fall of 2013. In preparation, The College of Teachers has offered Rachel Ladasky, Morning Glory Lead Assistant, the position of Lead Nursery Teacher and she has accepted.

6881168698_afe57bd532_o-1Rachel first came to The Denver Waldorf School as an intern in Morning Glory Kindergarten and then worked as a substitute and Lyre Assistant. She attended a Waldorf nursery school herself and was also a volunteer French teacher and substitute at River Song Waldorf School for two years. Rachel holds a BA in French and Education from Colorado State University and a M.Ed. in Early Childhood Waldorf Education from Antioch University New England. Congratulations, Rachel!

A Conversation With Rachel Ladasky …

Hi Rachel! Tell us about the name for the new nursery site?

“Bluebell flowers are known as fairy thimbles. As the fable goes, you ring a bluebell to gather the fairies in the forest. Bluebells are such delicate, sweet little flowers. They have this connection to the fairy world and the spirit world and that’s right where the little children are, still connected to the heavenly realm.”

Why did you want to become a Waldorf early childhood education teacher?

“In early childhood, everything is new and magical and exciting to them and watching it unfold is just incredible. The Denver Waldorf School Nursery Program is such a bridge between home life and Kindergarten. It’s their first experience of school, the whole world is new to them and they’re safe and secure. There is beauty everywhere and it’s a good place to be. I get to help them grow into themselves and be happy and secure.”

What are you most looking forward to next year?

“I’m really excited to have my own class and I’m really ready for it.
The space is so sweet and warm and cozy, it’s the perfect space to hold the children and gently introduce them to Waldorf education.”

You have spent time in more mainstream educational environments ~ what draws you to Waldorf education?

“Waldorf is so much more heartfelt and purposeful. Not just with the children but among the faculty as well. There is no way I could go back after experiencing and seeing first-hand the love the teachers here have for the children. Having such a strong philosophical foundation that we’re all working out of is so unique. To be in a school that honors the children’s development to help their growth versus focused on what they need to know, that is truly beautiful.
Here, it’s magical and it’s fun and it feeds my soul.”
~Interview by Jennifer Parker, Community Development Coordinator

Fall 2013 Middle and High School Cross Country

Fall 2013 Middle and High School Cross Country

runningclubCalling all runners!

The Denver Waldorf Middle and High School Cross Country teams are beginning to gear up for the fall season.

Our inaugural season last fall was a success and we’re looking for our second year to be even better. If you are interested in participating on the Cross Country team next fall, please let Jennifer Parker know at communicate@denverwaldorf.org so that we can add you to our email distribution lists.

All you need is a pair of good running shoes!

Informal, optional practices for both Middle School and High School runners will begin on Tuesday, July 23 and will occur every Tuesday and Friday morning from 7:00 am ~ 8:00 am.

The team will meet at the Boat House at Washington Park. Just show up when you can. Depending on the interest, we may increase the frequency of the runs after the first couple of weeks.

Formal practices will begin Monday, August 19 (time and location TBD).
The first race of the season is Thursday, Sept. 5.

For questions or summer workout ideas, please contact any of the coaches:

Oza and Milan Klanjsek – oza_miki@comcast.net
Tim Williams – timbobwilliams@gmail.com

We hope to see you there!

Preschool/Kindergarten May Day Celebration!

Preschool/Kindergarten May Day Celebration!

Celebrating the coming of spring every year means so much to the children in our nursery, preschool and Kindergarten classes. Each day the children go outside for their nature walk and observe the buds sprouting and the flowers blooming. This sort of experiential observational learning forms the basis for math, science and physics classes in later Waldorf education.

These photos were taken courtesy of Larkspur Preschool/Kindergarten parent and photographer Ingrid Welch (http://www.gypsymamaphotography.com/).

DSC_0016

DSC_0075

DSC_0104

DSC_0008

DSC_0116

DSC_0122

DSC_0138

DSC_0155

DSC_0164

DSC_0180

DSC_0215

The Denver Waldorf School End-of-Year Sale

The Denver Waldorf School End-of-Year Sale

by Ben Drotar, Development Director

2012-11-08 11.50.27

Don’t miss The Denver Waldorf School Store End-of-Year Sale on Thursday, May 30 and Friday, May 31!

The Sale will feature over-stock inventory items including toys, art supplies, projects and fashion items. We will be selling used books at great used-book prices.

The sale starts at 2:00 pm on Thursday, May 30th and will continue before the Grades 3~5 Evening Strings Concert.

The sale will open again at 8:00 am on Friday, May 31.

Do you have used books that need a new home? Donate them to the school by May 29th to be included in the sale.

The Class of 2013 Presents ‘The Matchmaker’

The Class of 2013 Presents ‘The Matchmaker’

DWS Parent Bruce Kelley shared these amazing photos of The Denver Waldorf School Senior Class Play “The Matchmaker” by Thornton Wilder.

The Class of 2013 performed “The Matchmaker” on Friday, May 17 and Saturday, May 18 at The Bug Theatre in Denver, CO.

Matchmaker1

Matchmaker2

Matchmaker3

Matchmaker4

Matchmaker5

Matchmaker6

Matchmaker7

Matchmaker20

Matchmaker21

Matchmaker22

Matchmaker25

Matchmaker28

Matchmaker30

Matchmaker31

Matchmaker32

Matchmaker33

Matchmaker34

Matchmaker35

Matchmaker36

Matchmaker37

Matchmaker39

Matchmaker41

Matchmaker42

Matchmaker43

Matchmaker45

Matchmaker46

Matchmaker47

Matchmaker48

Matchmaker49

Matchmaker50

Matchmaker51

Matchmaker53

Matchmaker54

Matchmaker55

Matchmaker56

Parent Survey: 93% Report Overall Satisfaction with The Denver Waldorf School

Parent Survey: 93% Report Overall Satisfaction with The Denver Waldorf School

by Judy Lucas, Administrative Director

This year we asked the parent body for assistance in identifying our strengths as a school, and areas for improvement or priorities and strategies for change. We are mandated to survey our parent body as part of our re-accreditation process with the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America and the Association of Colorado Independent Schools.

Here are some of the findings, as identified by administrative staff and members of The Denver Waldorf School Strategic Planning Committee.

Several survey invitations were sent out to over 1,500 people in our community over a five-week period in January and February, garnering 142 individual responses. Thank you to everyone who participated.

Overall Satisfaction

The survey found that 93 percent of parents surveyed reported mid-high to high overall satisfaction with The Denver Waldorf School.

ACIS pie chart1

Specifically, 68 percent of parents rated their overall satisfaction with the school as “high,” while another 25 percent rated their satisfaction with the school as “mid-high.”
Another 4 percent rated their satisfaction with the school as “mid,” 1 percent gave a “low-mid” rating, and only 1 percent rated their overall satisfaction with the school as “low.”

Of the parents surveyed, 85 percent said the school has met, more than met or exceeded their expectations on a list of areas including educational philosophy, parent-teacher relationships and experiential education.

When it came to selecting a school, 93 percent of parents surveyed reported The Denver Waldorf School was their first choice.

Responses varied as to the most important reasons for choosing The Denver Waldorf School.

ACIS pie chart2

Approximately 20 percent said “educational philosophy” was among the top five most important reasons.
Another 12 percent said it was the “sense of community” that was the most important; 12 percent also said “experiential education.” The “breadth of curriculum” won 11 percent.

Overall, a majority of parents agreed that “teaching at the school is of a high quality.”
Another majority of parents agreed, “my child has a positive attitude toward the school.”

Strongest Attributes
Parents offered many comments about the school’s strongest attributes, which included a sense of community, quality of education, curriculum, respect for the children and experienced, caring faculty who get along well with each other.

Weaknesses
Among areas for improvement, parents highlighted the lack of a gymnasium and proper performance space, the campus facility and trying to do too much with too little. Others mentioned inadequate parking, not enough racial/ethnic diversity, new parent orientation, security and the length of time it takes to make decisions.

The Strategic Planning Committee is identifying the appropriate groups within the school to take on the specific areas of concern. Thank you to everyone who participated in the survey.