News, Notes & Updates

May 2014, Vol. 2

Imbue thyself

Housatonic Valley
Waldorf School
40 Dodgingtown Road
Newtown, CT 06470

In This Issue
Puppet Show
Third Grade Play
Bake Sale
Foundation Studies
Summer Camp
iDevice Needed
Library Notice
Poster Distribution
Alumni Spotlight
Birth Announcement
Spring Benefit Gratitude
Important Links

Visit the Gallery page of our website to see more photos!

Seventh Grade Pizza Fundraiser

Sunflower Kindergarten Field Trip

2014 Spring Benefit

Our 10th Annual Spring Benefit and first-ever online auction were a huge success, not only because of the funds we raised for our beloved school, but because of the great fun we had the night of the event. Thank you to everyone (a long list) who made this possible, particularly our volunteer Spring Benefit Committee!  Look out for a final Auction-Ear and survey in the coming week.

The end of the school year is upon us (the last day of school is June 6th) but we still have a few upcoming events.  Our final Puppet Show of the year and the Third Grade class play are both this Saturday (see details below).  On the last day of school we have the Crossing The Bridge ceremony (families of graduating Kindergarten students are invited at 11), the all-school picnic, and the Seventh Grade's Sweet & Savory Bake Sale.  And, of course, if you haven't already, remember to sign up for Summer Camp!  Weeks are filling quickly.  Summer Camp begins July 7th.

Thank you to our faculty, staff, students, and parents for another wonderful year!
Happy Spring AND Summer, 

Christina Dixcy
Communications and Outreach Director

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Submissions to News, Notes & Updates are due the 1st and the 15th of every month. 
For a full calendar listing, please visit the Calendar page of our website.

Puppet Show


Lower Level, Compass Hall, 1 Jacklin Rd., Newtown


The HVWS Puppetry Committee presents The Little Light Horse by Susie Konig.
The puppet show in the Waldorf tradition features hand-sewn puppets, sumptuous plant-dyed silks, and a simple, age-appropriate performance style suited to young children's attention spans and level of awareness. A peaceful and enchanted mood prevails. Our Puppet Shows are appropriate for 3-8 year-olds. 


Puppet Shows are free, however the Puppetry Committee will happily accept a goodwill offering to support Women for Women International, an organization helping women survivors of war rebuild their lives:


Third Grade Class Play



Sweet & Savory Bake Sale



Save your dollars for the Seventh Grade's Sweet & Savory Bake Sale on the last day of school!

Interested in Foundation Studies?


The Foundation Studies Program in Anthroposophy and the Arts allows individuals to gain new perspectives on life and renewed impulses in their own personal and professional work. The program provides an opportunity for anyone interested in deepening their understanding of the sources of Waldorf Education and learning more about Rudolf Steiner's Science of the Spirit. For some participants, it can prepare the way for entering Waldorf teacher training programs.

HVWS hosted this program several years ago, and if there is enough interest we could do it again next school year.  Please contact Melissa Merkling,, if interested.

"No day should pass in our human life without our receiving at least one
thought that alters our nature a little, that enables us to develop instead
of merely to exist." 
~Rudolf Steiner

Summer Camp

Register now for Summer Camp at HVWS! Camp begins JULY 7. 


Looking for an iPad/Phone/Touch


The front office is looking for an iPad/Phone/Touch (recent enough to include a microphone) for credit card processing.  If you have an old device with which you are ready to part, please e-mail Alex Exley at

Library Note


Dear HVWS Library book borrowers,

With the end of the school year fast approaching, we would like to remind you that all borrowed books are due before summer break. We have return baskets in each library location: 

  • Sundial House, 
  • the Administrative Cottage, 
  • Rose Garden. 

Thank you, everybody, for following our Library procedures.  As you know, we are an all-volunteer service, and we depend on all of you to use our honor system when signing out and returning books.


Poster Distribution Volunteer Needed



Do you live in or around Monroe and would you be willing to distribute posters for HVWS events to local businesses?  If so, please e-mail Allison Valentino at
Alumni Spotlight

Bernardo Navarro, HVWS class of 2005, is a Grand Prize Winner of Fairfield University's Business Plan Competition for the SECOND year in a row! Bernardo was part of a team that competed in the Social Enterprise Track of the competition. Their winning entry, BoneSmart, is "a wearable, wireless, non-invasive medical device that will measure bone density and blood flow." Bernardo, who was an Accounting and Economics major, graduated from Fairfield University earlier this month. Congratulations, Bernie! Read more about the competition.


Hunter Moore, HVWS Class of 2010, has been accepted to Maryville College in Tennessee on a full four-year scholarship to work with Mountain Challenge, LLC, an award-winning company focused on providing high-quality, safe outdoor experiences that are "designed to change the world for the better, one person at a time."  Hunter was chosen over applicants from all over the US.  He will attend NOLS (National Outdoor Leadership School) this summer to work with first responders in Wyoming.  Following his graduation from HVWS, Hunter attended High Mowing, the Waldorf high school in New Hampshire, for four years, earning commendation for his leadership qualities.  Congratulations, Hunter! 



Leo Rufus Koga was born to Charlotte Marie (Wittkofski) Koga, HVWS Class of 2002, and Maki Koga on May 19th. He weighed exactly 8 pounds.


Our Gratitude

Thank you to Jennifer Moscatello for donating an ironing table for the Sunflower class.


Thank you to Peggy McFarland for being our stalwart library volunteer.


Thank you, HVWS Community, for supporting the Seventh Grade pizza fundraiser last weekend! The rain, thunder & lightning did not deter us...Thank you, Joe & Therese for holding this fundraiser at your home. Thank you, Joe (head pizza chef), Therese (topping expert), Carolyn (boxing & cutting expert), Paige (cutting expert), Tom (oven expert), Rosemary, Jennifer, Nancy, Lisa & David (expert clean-up crew) for all of your support! Great work, Seventh Graders (topping experts & lightning-quick delivery experts)!


A huge thank you to volunteer extraordinaire Jo Hurley for running the Rainbow Garden School Store for another successful year!  Thank you also to Jo's volunteer crew: Amy Abramson, Allison Valentino, Allison Washington, Gwynneth Sobejko, Rose Witte, Denise Pedane, Heather Hiemstra, and January Cilento.  This year the store raised nearly $5000!


The Seventh Grade thanks Ben's Mason Supply and Hardware in Newtown for supporting our Chemistry project.


Thank you to the Fourth Grade Parents for providing another amazing faculty meeting meal.


Thank you, Deirdre McCann, Carolyn Storrier, Lola Strilowich, Sandy Proksa, and Terrie Nesto for baking for the First Grade Tea.


Spring Benefit Gratitude

Thank you to all who participated in our first-ever online auction, and who brought energy, enthusiasm, and FUN to our Spring Benefit Evening!


Sponsors & Donors:

The Spring Benefit would not be possible without the generosity of our Sponsors, all of whom have sponsored our event over multiple years.  Thank you!

True Blue Environmental Services

La Zingara Ristorante

Nanavaty, Nanavaty & Davenport, LLP

Newtown Savings Bank

Ridge Woodlands Tree & Forestry


Thank you to the 25 families and individuals who made donations and sponsored faculty tickets and the 45 families and individuals who donated to the Call From The Heart. Your generosity is truly appreciated.


Thank you to our wonderful auction donors:

a New Beginning, an AVEDA Lifestyle Salon and Day Spa * Acorn Talk Photography * Aliz Mihok * Amalia Pretel-Gray * Anne Novak Yoga * Arogya (Wei & Gregor Bertram) * Bella & Co. * Big Y Foods, Inc * Bistro Basque * Bistro Seven * Born of Earth * Breitling USA * Bridgeport Bluefish Professional Baseball * Candle Cafe West * Caraluzzi's Markets          * Carl Tichler * Charles Ives Authority For The Performing Arts * Chelsea Piers Connecticut * Chris Sheridan * Cider Mill Designs * Cobb's Mill Inn * Connecticut Science Center * Connecticut's Beardsley Zoo * Coralite Woodworks * D. Lew's Brew (David Lew) * Dale Tucker * Daniela Balzano * Deirdre McCann * Diane Rockwell * Discovery Museum and Planetarium * Downtown Cabaret Theatre * Dr. Hauschka Skin Care * Inc. * Elizabeth Eakins * Inc. Studio * Fat Cat Pie Co. & Fountainhead Wines (Mark Ancona) * Fitness Revolution * Fun Factor * Growing Solutions (Chris Baliko) * Hartford Wolf Pack * Healy Coaching Solutions * Heather Reilly, Metalsmith * Heather Testa Photography * In Its Place (Carolyn Storrier) * Infinity Theater Company * Integrated Pain and Stress Relief * Jeff & Henry James * Jessica Kagan Cushman Studio * Jo Hurley * John Fulton Diamond Jewelers * John's Best, Ridgefield * Juice Barre * KidCity Children's Museum * KidsPlay * Kirby & Kraut * Lake Compounce * Laura Stotz * Laura Vidal * Little Pub * Long Wharf Theater * Lore's Lanes * Louise M. Finlayson, Ph.D. * Love That Bag (Isabel Rooney) * Maka Bakhbava * Marlies Simfeld-Redpath * Molten Java * Monster Mini Golf * Nancy Disbrow * Nathan Pedane * Nigel Harrison and Marleen De Grande * Open Sky Yoga Barn (Cathy Whelehan) * Patagonia * Pilates with Rose (Rosemary Larkin) * Quassy Amusement and Waterpark * Rage Pies (Tom Storrier) * Redding Coffee Roasters * * Rick Rockwell * Ropes of Pearls * Sarah Pfisterer and Rick Hilsabeck * Scott Mikita * Simon Pearce * Simpson & Vail * SoundWaters * Splash Management Group, LLC * SportsCenter of Connecticut * Square Peg's Vintage Jewelry (Peggy McFarland) * Stew Leonard's * Svanda's Framing and Art * The Adventure Park at The Discovery Museum * The Apple Blossom School and Family Center * The 'New' Children's Museum * The Pumpkin Roll Lady * The Toadstool Forest * The Toy Room * The Valley Railroad Company * Thomas G. Dixcy * Thunder Ridge Ski Area * Tom Carey * Tomoko Nishimura * Trader Joe's Company * Uriel Pharmacy * Virginia Wilkes Stafford * Walk in Balance Massage * Warrup's Farm (Laura Selleck and Bill Hill) * Wild Soul Soap * Wildtree * Yale Peabody Museum * Yolie Moreno



Thank you to St. Francis of Assisi for hosting us in their beautiful Parish Hall, Carrie Reilly and her crack team of caterers for providing an amazing feast, the Anconas and Fountainhead Wines for providing excellent wine and beer, Lisa Tassone and La Zingara for donating delicious cannoli, and Yolie Moreno for making it possible for us to dance the night away to Milton and his band.



Thank you to those who lent a hand (or equipment) before or during the Spring Benefit: Karen Beckman, Susan Runge, Gwynneth Sobejko, Dale Tucker, Allison Valentino, Sandy Proksa, John Alvord, Chris Sheridan, Laura Selleck, Denise Pedane, Laura Stotz, Jacinta Ancona, Joanne Andruscavage, and Bayley Storrier.


Thank you to our creative and talented class teachers and students for their GORGEOUS classroom projects as well as the following helpers who assisted in seeing the projects through: Gwynneth Sobejko & Laura McKinney (Rose Kindergarten), Alex Exley & Christina Dixcy (Sunflower Kindergarten), Marlies Simfield-Redpath (First Grade), the Second Grade Parents, Natasha de Castro & Marlies Simfield-Redpath (Third Grade), Denise Pedane, Eric Lifgren & Sally Schwager (Fourth Grade), Jo Hurley (Fifth Grade), Edward Wittkofski, Charlotte Koga, & Lone Cedar Studio (Sixth Grade), and Carol Reznikoff (Seventh Grade).


Last but not least, THANK YOU to our excellent, enthusiastic, hard-working, and thoughtful 2014 Spring Benefit Committee: Nathalie Bennett (we'd be lost without your amazing and generous design skills), Marisa DelMonaco (our fearless leader who volunteered to steer this ship and remained calm and graceful throughout), Heather Hemphill (who worked tirelessly on this committee bringing in auction donations while not yet even the parent of an enrolled student), Eric Lifgren (a NATURAL auctioneer and perhaps our most enthusiastic committee member), Jennifer Moscatello (our excellent Auction-Ear copywriter and all around team player), Marlies Simfield-Redpath (who not only found our venue and worked on the committee, but as a class parent helped see TWO classroom projects through to completion), Carolyn Storrier (a master organizer and auction donation solicitor), Lola Strilowich (who is ALWAYS ready to lend a hand with whatever needs doing, procuring), Rose Witte (who jumped right in learning and working on the online auction program), and Allison Valentino (who was not technically a committee member, but put in tons of behind-the-scenes work on the online auction).  


Thank you, everyone, and please consider lending a hand next year, our 25th Anniversary year! 


"Unselfish and noble actions are the most radiant pages

 in the biography of souls." 

~David Thomas





Here are the most recent articles posted on the HVWS Facebook page. If you haven't already, Like us on Facebook you'll never have to wait to read the articles we post!


Suggested Links:


Serious reading takes a hit from online scanning and skimming, researchers say 

The Washington Post


IN DEFENSE OF BOREDOM: It Can Lead to Imaginative Play, Creativity and the Great Outdoors 

Children & Nature Network


Shielding kids can harm their growth 

The News-Times


Waldorf Students Grow Food for Cafeteria Year-Round 



5 Toys Your Child Doesn't Need (& 5 They Do) 



Children & Nature Network

The mission of the Housatonic Valley Waldorf School is
to develop each child's unique capacity
 to engage meaningfully in the world.
    Guided by the principles of Waldorf education,
the faculty inspires in our students
creative thinking, moral sensibility, and a passion for learning. 
We offer a classical education that integrates
experiential and artistic learning, in an environment emphasizing
academic excellence, respect for diversity,
and reverence for the natural world.
    Our faculty, board of trustees, and parents work together,
with dedication and warmth, to support our school community.