High School Students shoveling ice rink
Weekly Bulletin

December 19, 2013


The Hartsbrook School

193 Bay Road
Hadley, MA


Main Office:



Quick Links



Solstice Celebration

Helen Hills Hills Chapel

Thursday 12/19

7-10 pm


Winter Break

12/23 -1/3

Half Day 12/20

Assembly 12/20

11:30 am to 12:30 pm


All School Open House 

Saturday, 1/11/14

10 am to noon

Bring a Friend!

Parent Meetings


Next Parent Council Meeting

Monday 1/13

Holiday Thoughts

Recent days have brought us the peacefulness of staying home when it snows, interspersed with the incredible busyness of the holiday season with its parties, performances, assemblies and special events. On the world stage, the death of Nelson Mandela has also given us a reason to pause for a moment and consider his impact on world events. In considering his life, it is worthwhile to realize that his strength came from his inner life which led to his ability to seek reconciliation and forgiveness.
As we all take a break from Hartsbrook for the next two weeks, I hope that the season brings all of you some time to reflect on how light can illuminate darkness, a message we also see in the various religious celebrations that occur at this time of the year, and I wish all Hartsbrook families joyous holidays and a happy New Year!
Louise Spear
Faculty Chair


  Please join us for our annual



Thursday, December 19, 2013 at 7:00 pm

Helen Hills Hills Chapel, Northampton


Hartsbrook High School hosts an evening of song, dance, comedy and revelry. 
Join us as we raise our voices to celebrate the Solstice
and mark the turn of the year.  


Gather to share the light of candles, the spirit of song 
and the soul of fellowship.  


Alumni, friends, family and the community are welcome!


Children are expected to sit with their families for the entire program.



Friday ~ Join Us! 
Holiday Assembly~ Our seasonal celebrations conclude on December 20th, 11:30 am to 12:30 pm, when we gather for The Hartsbrook School Holiday Assembly in Piening Hall.      
Friday Community Coffee~ Please join us under the canopy on Friday for Community Coffee.
Scrip Sale~ Scrip will be for sale under the canopy on Friday. Stop in to complete your last minute shopping!

Winter Break Office Hours

All school offices will be closed on December 24th -25th and December 31st -January 1st so that our staff can observe the holidays. We will also be opening at 11:00 on Monday, December 23rd. The Main Office will be open from 9:00 - 3:00 on all other days of the break. The Business, Enrollment, Operations and Development offices will also be open but call first for an appointment.

Burrito Order Forms~ Due After Break

Burrito order forms will be due in the New Year by January 10th.  Order your burritos now for the winter and spring! The senior class sells burritos to help support their service trip to Costa Rica. For questions, contact. Thomas Heineman 
Click Here for: Burrito Order Form

Seeking Host Family for Spring Semester

Host Family sought for an exchange student from China from January through June 2013, Yingyuan would be joining the 10th grade and needs a loving stable home to support his arrival and assimilation into our school and American life. You will receive room and board compensation. For more information contact Lara Radysh at ExchangeProgram@Hartsbrook.org

Vote For Hartsbrook!

The Florence Savings Bank Customer of Choice Grant Program closes at the end of December, vote now! Last year the Hartsbrook School Scrip program received $2,500 Grant based on the number of FSB customers that voted for our school. We will provide paper ballots at the Main Office and at Friday morning coffee or you can vote electronically : VOTE HERE 

Proposed Tuition Model

Watercolor of Tree-4thG

It was a pleasure for the Hartsbrook Board of Directors to meet with parents in the School community twice over the past month to discuss changes that have been proposed to the School's tuition schedule.


On November 18, the Hartsbrook Parent Council invited the Board's Finance Committee to present information and take questions about tuition at the School.  After a very lively discussion that elicited a wide variety of questions and ideas from parents, the Council urged the Board to schedule a follow-up meeting for the entire Hartsbrook community; and, indeed, the Board hosted a community-wide meeting to discuss the tuition question further on December 10.  A presentation was followed, once again, by a constructive discussion that gave parents a chance to pose questions, air their concerns and share thoughts on tuition and the broader realm of school finances.


The essential change to the School's tuition schedule is to shift the scheme for Grades 1- 8 from a "flat" tuition structure to a graduated tuition schedule of  "steps" covering grades 1 through 12.  Currently, all students in Grades 1-8 are charged the same tuition.  Under the new tuition schedule, students in the upper elementary grades will be charged a small amount more, in annual tuition, than students in the lower grades and tuitions in the high school will rise over a three year period at much lower rates than in the elementary grades.




From the Board of Directors

There's Still Time to Make a Year End Donation!

Hear Ye!  Hear Ye! Holiday Shoppers

Remember To Pick Up Scrip Gift Cards THIS WEEK!!

With the purchase of scrip for everyday purchases 3-18% rebates are given to our school. These purchases have the potential to be a big money maker for our school. For example, if every family used $100 of scrip for their weekly food purchases, it would amount to over $30,000/year of "free money" for our school.



Please help us find out what you think of SCRIP, take a short survey here:  SCRIP SURVEY


Pick up your desired Gift Cards at the Main Office or Friday Morning Community Coffee. 


For questions, contact Vesna in the Main Office (413) 586-1908 or Heidi Moskovitz (413) 219-1289. Thank you Karen Bates for the Scrip Committee

7th and 8th Grade Clothing Drive ~ Thank YOU!

The Eighth Grade, Mrs. Hopkins, Mrs. Nickel
The Seventh Grade, Ms. Damon

St. Lucia Day

On December 13th, the second grade helped us observe the Swedish tradition; St. Lucia Day. A procession of second graders offered homemade St. Lucia buns to everyone in the school. This is part of an overall theme in second grade which is to look at the higher and lower parts of human nature through the study of holy people and of the fables.

Adventures in the 6th Grade

The Sixth Grade has had a number of exciting adventures over the course of the this first semester. 


Cape Cod Audubon Sanctuary

It began with a camping trip to Cape Cod and the Audubon Sanctuary where we watched the sunrise over the estuary, rode bikes on the rail trail and went on a marine life cruise.  



Caving Trip with Adventure In Adventure Out

Shortly after this trip, we delved deep into the earth, with Adventure In Adventure Out, as we explored a labyrinth of passages during a caving expedition.




Middle Ages, Heraldic Shields and our Class Play

Finally, the sixth grade made a brief foray into the Middle Ages during our production of Sir Gawain and the Loathly Lady.Students designed and painted their own Heraldic Shields following the rules of heraldry and each was made a knight or lady of "Sixthgradelot" during a knighting ceremony held on St. Nicolas Day.




Anne Haendiges, 6th Grade Teacher 

The 7th & 8th Grade Chorus

The 7th and 8th Grade Chorus performed last week at the Helen Hills Hills Chapel. Their performance was part of the Northampton Acadamy of Music's Holiday Choral Festival.

10th Grade Physics ~ Motion and Mechanical Forces


In the 10th grade physics block students are analyzing motion and mechanical forces.  Ordinary activities like throwing a ball or swinging on the swings get broken down into components of motion in different directions and combed over for evidence of forces in action.  In this investigation we are using a computer program to locate a projectile in flight in each frame of a video.  


 The x coordinate of the location is plotted in red, showing a steady movement towards the left, simply due to the launch velocity, and the y coordinate of the location is plotted in blue, showing the effects of gravity causing it to slow as it goes up, then turn around and accelerate downward, eventually bouncing off the ground to form another parabolic arc.


Rosemary McNaughton

High School Physics and Math

News From the Cow Barn

Perhaps you have already swung by the cow barn this past week, or plan to do so as part of your Christmas celebrations (certainly they like carols to be sung to them)! And you will have noticed that Felix and Sorrel, our two Jersey working steers, are no longer there, and in their place are two small Holstein calves ...and you may have asked yourself...what has been going on in the cow barn??? Why all the changes??? These are not our cows!


Felix and Sorrel became part of our herd 2 summers ago with the hopes that they would be trained to the yoke and be able to pull a cart. Caleb (8th Grade) has taken on this task coming each day to the barn to work with them. For many months they listened to their driver with care and attention and Caleb also learned how to listen and acquire the skills needed to train them. However, on turning 15 months of age, their adolescent Jersey feisty-ness became increasingly hard to work with and it became clear to all of us working with the steers that this plan needed to be changed.


Our good friend Mike Austin, who trains oxen and has supported Caleb and myself as we embarked on this journey, offered to take Felix and Sorrel and gave us two small Holstein calves, for us to continue this work. So, over Thanksgiving, Fire and Cracker came to Hartsbrook and since then, when the weather allows and the ice is not too slick, Caleb hitches them to the yoke and attaches a pair of wheels as part of their training. It is Caleb's goal to train them to pull a cart each day, laden with animal manures and food waste, down to the compost piles...using draft animal power and relying less on Ms. Robb's truck (and the gas needed to power it), Hartsbrook will attempt to become a little less reliant on fossil fuels and a little more "green". So far, things are going well, but much will depend on their willingness to work together as a pair and whether they will accept their young trainer. But of course, we hope they will turn out to be a "crackerjack" team! 


And more changes are on the way too......Miss April came to us over a year ago and calved a beautiful young heifer, Skye, born at Hartsbrook this past April. What a great mother she has been, standing perfectly still and patient as her young calf nursed, nourished by her rich Jersey milk. But as a milking cow, willing to stand patiently for young hands to learn how to coax milk from her, and being willing to let her milk down, it has been a very different story. She is what we call a one-person milker; cooperative and faithful to one person, but very unwilling to tolerate anyone else. The cows play an enormously large role in the life of Hartsbrook. They stand as the culmination of our children's studies of the animal kingdom and animal husbandry. 


The cow stands supreme among the world of farm animals, balancing the universe and the earth in one large, sentient being. Working with these creatures is a gift beyond measure and being able to sit astride a milking stool, head resting upon the flanks of a cow and feel the enormous presence of these creatures as you hand milk, is an immeasurable gift. Enabling our 6th Graders the opportunity to experience this is an important part of the agricultural arts curriculum. So, we will be looking for another, more suitable cow, to bring to Hartsbrook in the spring. I am very happy that Miss April will be going to a young farming family in New York State, setting up their first CSA and livestock operation and searching for a Jersey cow who will give them heifer calves and rich Jersey milk for their young family. I know that they are very excited to be receiving her! Skye is old enough now to be weaned from her mother and so will stay with us here at Hartsbrook, enjoying the new found status of being the "oldest kid on the block".


Nicki Robb, Land Stewardship

Celebrating Our Community

Preparing for Life

Produced by the Waldorf School of the Peninsula, Los Altos, CA, the film:


  "Preparing for Life"


explores how a focus on creativity, resilience, innovative thinking, and social and emotional intelligence over rote learning prepares students for our current times.


A great production. Watch now:  http://youtu.be/B-ZSeepDmPE


Community Bulletin Board 

SEEKING CHILDCARE: Local Waldorf Family seeks childcare/play buddy for a sweet one year old boy. Playing, story time, meals and tidy up. Hours are flexible, some weekends. Please call Torrey at 413.717.0443  


BUCHE DE NOEL: Order your traditional French Buche de Noel cake for the holidays.  $25 for small (serves 6) and $45 for large (serves 12). Made by French chef Didier Voisin. Call 413-256-0177  for orders  and for questions. 


WALDORF DOLLS FOR SALE: Handmade with exquisite attention to detail and with deep intention, Q'ewar dolls from Peru have been delighting children for many years. Created by women of unique skill in both doll making and knitting, these dolls have gained the attention of quality Waldorf toy suppliers in the past few years, including  Nova. I have several dolls on hand for sale, mailed directly from the US liaison of the Q'ewar project. For more info  www.qewar.com or to see photos of the dolls, email Beth: volkmann@comcast.net.  


WALDORF NATURAL GIFTS: Hedgehog Farms, a Holiday Fair vendor, has an online store with kite paper, felting wool, felting and knitting needles, crayons, modeling beeswax and candle decorating wax, books, wooden cars and puzzles, and more! Just in: 24 count Stockmar colored pencil tins and plant colored beeswax! Call if looking for something not on eBay: we have more items than are listed. Save on shipping and arrange local pick up. We can even gift  wrap and ship out-of-town! Contact Lisa Seymour: 413-586-9741 or email: hedgehogfarms@charter.net


CHRISTMAS TREES:   Come visit Hillside Christmas Tree Farm in the beautiful western hilltown of Chesterfield for cut-your-own or pre-cut fraser firs, balsam firs or native white pine Christmas trees.. We also sell wreaths, roping and live trees. Hours are all day on Saturday and Sunday. Rt. 143, Chesterfield, 5 miles from Williamsburg - 413 296 4068.    We also sell our trees at Atkins Farms in Amherst if a drive to the countryside does not fit into your week-end plans. 

Louise Spear

The Community Bulletin Board is for small classified-type advertisements. Each submission costs $5.00, is limited to 3 paid repeats and should be no more than 4 lines of text, about 45 words. Payment for Community Bulletin Board submissions should be made by Friday of the publication week. Please drop off or mail payment, to The Hartsbrook School, 193 Bay Road, Hadley, MA 01035.  No charge for advertisements for free events or nonprofit organizations. Submit ads to: bulletin@hartsbrook.org.


General Policy for the Bulletin  No political or religious advertisements.  No competitive program advertisements.  No fundraisers.  The editors will decide placement of advertisements and may edit for content and length.  The Hartsbrook School retains the right to choose not to print any advertisement.

Hartsbrook: Clarity of Thought ~ Warmth of Heart - Strength of Purpose