News from AWSNA             May 2012

Happy spring to you all!

In this issue we review the Lakota Service weekend and the wonderful alumni event in Washington, D.C.

We also list some other news items that you can find out more about on our news page on the Why Waldorf Works website. In particular, don't miss the article in the Washington Post that features the Washington Waldorf School and the excellent article in the Wall Street Journal about the negative impact of i-technology on children.

Don't forget to send us your news and events to include on our website and FaceBook page. We look forward to hearing from you.

                          Frances Kane             Patrice Maynard 

   Administration           Development & Outreach


Waldorf School Communities from around the Continent participated in a service trip to Lakota Waldorf School in April 

Lakota signpost 


Pine Ridge Oglala Reservation, SD- AWSNA's 2nd Annual Alumni Service Weekend was a miraculous success in that it accomplished all the ambitious goals it set for itself! 53 volunteers accomplished a deck, an outhouse, beautiful silk curtains, a playhouse, a loft, garden bed prep and dozens of toys for the little ones!


Heartfelt gratitude to volunteers from these schools:    


Anchorage Waldorf School

Lakota horses

Waldorf School of Baltimore

Beaver Run/Camphill Special School

Chicago Waldorf School

City of Lakes Waldorf School

Detroit Waldorf School

Four Winds Waldorf School

Hawthorne Valley School

Kimberton Waldorf School

Orchard Valley School

Susquehanna Waldorf School

Waldorf Institute of Southern California

Waldorf School of New Orleans

Westside Waldorf School
A Child's Garden of Thyme

Youth Initiative High School


Thanks also to Tabor White Buffalo for fabulous coordinating. AWSNA was represented by Patrice Maynard, Frances Kane, Sarah Dinan, Trish Lynne, and Anamyn Turowski, as well as all the Board members. We also send a HUGE shout-out to volunteer-extraordinaire David Maynard for incredible planning and execution and to Bob Amis, his second in command, who trucked the requisite tools by van from Minnesota on top of steady hard work. And Lowe's Lumber was very generous with their contributions, without which much of the construction would have been almost impossible.


"Pilamaya ye" in Lakota means "You make me feel grateful."  This year of such fine publicity and continued resiliance in the strong work in our schools is remarkable. Pilamaya ye, all parents, administrators, and teachers for your work, your commitment and your sacrifice to make Waldorf Education and genuine freedom possible for the children of North America.


The Lakota Waldorf School was founded in 1992 by a group of Lakota parents committed to a vision for their children's education that includes traditional Lakota values. Located in the heart of the Pine Ridge Oglala Reservation, the school "strives to initiate the educational process while maintaining the Lakota language and culture. Our goal is to empower our Lakota children so they will create positive active futures for themselves and their community."


The Pine Ridge Reservation where the school is situated within the Shannon County where the per-capita income makes it the second poorest county in the USA with an average annual income of $3,700.00 and an unemployment rate of 80%. Residents suffer from serious illnesses like diabetes, heart disease and chronic health conditions at levels vastly disproportionate to the national average. The life expectancy rate on this reservation is 48 years for men and 52 years for women. The school dropout rate is over 50%, the incidence of teen suicide is 150% above the national average. Almost 50% of the residents on the Pine Ridge Reservation live under the poverty level. Even in the year 2011 there are still residents on the reservation without plumbing facilities, without kitchen facilities and no electricity. The Lakota people are much, much more than that, however! Despite these harsh conditions, despite of poverty and suppression, the Lakota people still proudly live a rich culture, work toward maintaining the cultural heritage and toward the revival of their language.


Learn more about the Lakota Waldorf School on their website, and more about the service weekend event on the AWSNA Alumni Corner or on the www.whywaldorfworks.org site or friend us on facebook.


Lunch BreakThis is the second annual alumni service week sponsored by the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America (AWSNA). Last year members of the Waldorf community met at the Waldorf School of New Orleans. Projects there included lazure painting of classroom walls, building a large storage shed and a porch for play. Volunteers also designed and built a playground. Several staff members from New Orleans are joining the Lakota service weekend in gratitude for what was accomplished at their school last year.


Read more: Why Waldorf Works.


Waldorf Alumni Night


Letter from Patrice Maynard:


"Last night's Alumni event was simply wonderful!!  Mary was there with me and the thing was as perfect as it could be.  Diane Barlow from Princeton is to be heartily commended for hauling the details on arrangements.  The restaurant was great and we were in a back room designed for this perfect thing.  We had about 75 people by my estimates.  Nancy from the Princeton Waldorf School will get all the names assembled for all the participating organizations:  Waldorf School of Princeton; Waldorf School of Garden City; Washington Waldorf School; Green Meadow Waldorf School; and the Waldorf School of Baltimore; along with AWSNA.  


"The food was abundant and good.  The bar was busy with both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages - even Panachés, half seven up and half beer.  People who came were so happy and grateful we had all done this.  We had 12 or so "door prizes" that we drew for from business cards or little substitute cards people filled out.  The delight in the gifts was immense.  Bees wax, AWSNA Publications; Renewal subscriptions; Waldorf paraphernalia from all the schools; and crayons were among the coveted items!  Everyone who won reacted as if they were selected by royalty for a fine reward!  


"Among the guests were a big-ish contingents from the Waldorf School of Garden City and from the Washington Waldorf School.  We also had a graduate from a Waldorf School in the Ukraine whose wife is a diplomat and who was in DC for special meetings for two weeks and who found out about the event and came.  Also a graduate from Detroit who lives three blocks from the restaurant was there.  A young woman from Columbia came with her aging mentor/adopted grandmother.  She wrote to me last year lamenting that she wants to be a Waldorf teacher but there is nothing about Waldorf in Columbia. I encouraged her by e-mail to read and to write to Waldorf Institutes in America and Germany (she is multilingual and teaches English as a second language in Columbia).  She, with tears in her eyes thanked me for opening doors for her because she followed my advice and is submitting a paper to Jost Shieren at Alanus to see if she can be accepted into their program and if she can find funding to go.  Diane Barlow found her a home to stay in for this event and encouraged her to come and she got help to come and she came!  I have Columbian coffee as a gift of thanks from her (as if I had anything to do with it!).  She was very excited to be with us.  


"We also, Mary and I, got business cards from a woman who stated to us both that "Waldorf Education saved her life."  She now works for MSNBC and told us she would do anything for us to help.  :-)"


Other stories and articles that can be linked to from our web site:

Honolulu Waldorf School and its athletes have had much to celebrate this year. In addition to celebrating its 50th anniversary, the school launched its first-ever ILH canoe paddling team, thanks to the efforts and experience of long-time paddler and canoe coach Tambry Young.


Sports-a-holic Sara Rose Thibaut wouldn't know what to do if she didn't have sports to play.

Years ago the three-sport athletes were the norm at most high schools. Nowadays they are rarely found. Thibaut, a 17-year old Folsom resident who is a junior at Sacramento Waldorf High School in Fair Oaks, competes in five sports and in the fall she plans to add a sixth.


An article in San Diego Magazine talks about how the Waldorf School of San Diego Bans Technology to Improve Learning: Bonnie Holden, the school's Director of Pedagogy, says, "Our curriculum asks the question 'What does it mean to be human?' ... We draw. We paint. We sculpt." Students in the school's high school program are allowed to work with computers, but Holden admits they are more likely to build computers than log into them. She says, "We think that anything we use with any machine we want to be a master of it. We should know how it works."


Interview with Waldorf alum and super-model Sojourner Morrell, who is currently on the cover of Italian Vogue. The New Jersey native kick-started her career after landing a spot in Prada's 2012 resort presentation, followed by a solo spread in British Vogue's August 2011 issue, which then resulted in spring 2012 runway slots at Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacobs, and even Tom Ford. Now in her sophomore season, the established equestrian (she was the first woman accepted to the Spanish Riding School in Vienna, mind you) walked the couture runway for Chanel, nabbed Jil Sander Navy's spring campaign, and appeared in editorials for Interview, Dazed & Confused, i-D magazine, and New York Magazine.


The Glitterary Writing Award winner In the age 14-18 category is Emma Wu Shortt of Eugene Waldorf School. All the Young Writers Association's Glitterary winners will be honored at the Eugene Public Library on April 28. Congratulations, Emma!


Lori Kran speaks at TEDxCincinnati on Waldorf Education: Remember how you loved your favorite teacher - it changed your life. In this TED video, Lori Kran explains how Waldorf Education infuses a heart connection first to engage deep passion. Students leave prepared to go into the world understanding the needs of others. One practical example is a 4th grade Waldorf teacher directs teaching fraction math not simply by conceptualizing a pizza diagram, but by eating the pizza by its fractioned slice.


Read more on Why Waldorf Works.  

How You can Help to Further
Waldorf Education
Lakota student
We want to remind you of some ways you can further Waldorf Education in North America: Sign up to receive the enews and on the Alumni Corner on 
Why Waldorf Works to stay informed about Waldorf news; find us on Facebook; support your local Waldorf school every way you can; use GoodSearch (instead of Google) when surfing the web. You can also support AWSNA online on Why Waldorf Works. Thank you for your commitment to Waldorf Education!


Read more on Why Waldorf Works.  



Visit our Events page on  Why Waldorf Works to learn about what's happening in the world of Waldorf Education. Some highlights include:     


2012 Handwork Research Conference


Bay Area Center for Waldorf Teacher Training Summer Intensive


2012 AWSNA Summer Conference: June 23-29

Working With Young People Answering the Call of the Future


Learn -Work -Share: A new Youth Initiative for 16-30 year olds runs from July 4-21st 2012 at the Rudolf Steiner Health Center in Ann Arbor.   


2012 Association of North American Waldorf Music Educators (ANAWME) Summer Music Conferences


RSF Social Finance's The Economics of Education


Please send us your events so we can include them in our calendar. We look forward to hearing from you.


Like us on Facebook  


You are welcome to send Waldorf-related events for posting on our web site.

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AWSNA provides leadership to schools by facilitating resources, networks and research as they strive towards excellence and build healthy school communities. The Association performs functions that its member schools and institutes could not do alone, including:
·    Outreach and advocacy
·    Accreditation and school support services
·    Professional development activities
·    Research and publications
Please contact us if you have any questions about AWSNA or this or any other newsletter


Leader of Association Administration              Leader of Association Outreach and Development
Frances Kane                                                     Patrice Maynard
fkane@awsna.org                                              pmaynard@awsna.org
2344 Nicollet Ave S.                                           38 Main Street  

                   Minneapolis, MN 55404                                       Chatham, NY 12037
                   612-870-8310                                                      518-392-0613