Waldorf School at Moraine Farm | Blog

Studying Virtue

SwordsAndShields (1)

Perhaps you’ve noticed the sixth graders looking particularly noble and valiant lately. On Friday evening, May 30, 2014, a beautiful knighting ceremony was held for them to culminate their studies of the Early Middle Ages.

Each student carved a wooden sword and painted a shield in preparation for knighthood. They also learned about what virtue is, and how thinking about virtue has changed through the ages. They considered perspectives from the age of the Greeks and great philosophers like Aristotle, the Romans and what they valued, and how the concept of virtue changed in the Middle Ages, including the ideals of Saint Thomas Aquinas.


During their preparation for knighthood as a modern rite of passage, the sixth graders were expected to help others. The students did more around the house to help in family life, and also sought places to assist those in need outside of family life. Some helped prepare or serve meals to the needy, one helped neighbors with young children, and others helped with spring cleaning in their neighborhoods.

I hope you got to see the symbols of knighthood that each child made – their swords and shields – while they were on display outside the sixth grade classroom and in the first floor hallway!

–Connie MacLeod, Sixth Grade Teacher

A Case for Writing by Hand

This happens to be the most emailed story on the New York Times web site today. At Waldorf schools, handwriting is an integral part of how students learn to read and write.

What’s Lost as Handwriting Fades
Even as the emphasis shifts to the keyboard, experts say that learning to write by hand improves motor skills, memory and creativity.

Does handwriting matter?

Not very much, according to many educators. The Common Core standards, which have been adopted in most states, call for teaching legible writing, but only in kindergarten and first grade. After that, the emphasis quickly shifts to proficiency on the keyboard.

But psychologists and neuroscientists say it is far too soon to declare handwriting a relic of the past. New evidence suggests that the links between handwriting and broader educational development run deep.

Read more here:http://nyti.ms/1kyavGp

Saturday Doll-Making Workshop in March and April


Spots Still Available in Saturday Doll-Making Workshop

Saturdays March 15 through April 5, May 10 and 17.
Time: 9:30 am until 12:30 pm
Fee: $100 for all materials and fees.
Choice of skin color and hair colors available.
Class size is limited and basic sewing skills required.
Email heather@collispuro.net and return a $50 deposit.

Annual Fund Success!

Annual Fund Challenge Met!  $10,000 Gift Spurs Success

Thanks to a wonderful response from the CAWS community, we met our challenge goal of 90% participation in this year’s annual fund! As a result, CAWS will receive an additional $10,000 gift from a generous, long-time donor.
This strong level of support resulted in our raising more than $55,000 for the 2013-14 annual fund. These gifts came from many sources, including:

    •  77 CAWS families
    •  100 percent of our Board of Trustees
    • 100 percent of our full-time faculty and staff
    • Grandparents, alumni parents and friends
    • A private foundation

All who contributed were automatically entered into a drawing for two free tickets on Cape Air, compliments of Stella Wolf, Goldenstar Teacher (see winners, below!).
We extend our deepest thanks to all who showed their support and found a way to contribute. The annual fund is the single greatest fundraising effort we undertake each year, and its success is crucial to the financial health of our school.
With appreciation,
Lori Etringer and the Development Committee


Fifth Grade Grandparents Win Cape Air Tickets
Robert and Dolores Lowe of West Virginia were selected as the winners of our annual fund drawing for two free tickets on Cape Air. Tickets are good anywhere Cape Air flies, including the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, the Cape and the Islands, Maine and New York.
“We are thrilled. We’re not used to winning anything,” Robert said. The Lowes made their gift to the annual fund because of their grandson, Samuel (grade 5). “We think Sam is getting a good education, and we want to support the institution that is providing it,” Robert said, adding that they are eager to plan their trip on Cape Air.
Special thanks to Stella Wolf for arranging for the tickets and deep appreciation to the many parents, grandparents, alumni parents, faculty, staff, trustees and friends who contributed to the annual fund. Thanks to all of you, this year’s annual fund was a great success and will help our school meet core operating costs.
With thanks,
Lori Etringer

Inside the Waldorf School of the Peninsula

The New York Times sparked national media coverage with it’s front page story on why Silicon Valley parents are turning to Waldorf education. This film picks up where that story left off. “Preparing for Life” takes viewers inside the Waldorf School of the Peninsula where the focus is on developing the capacities for creativity, resilience, innovative thinking, and social and emotional intelligence over rote learning. Entrepreneurs, Stanford researchers, investment bankers, and parents who run some of the largest hi-tech companies in the world, weigh-in on what children need to navigate the challenges of the 21st Century in order to find success, purpose, and joy in their lives.

See For Yourself Why Waldorf Education Works


See For Yourself Why Waldorf Education Works

Cape Ann Waldorf School, CAWS, Beverly MA Independent School Pre-k-8

On Saturday, October 19, from 10 a.m. to noon, families of students entering Pre-K through Grade Eight are invited to Cape Ann Waldorf School to learn more about Waldorf education.  Parents and children can speak with teachers, parents and students, and experience for themselves some of the activities that enliven a Waldorf classroom.

Kelly Hiselman, the school’s admissions director, is organizing the open house.

“At Cape Ann Waldorf School, and Waldorf schools all around the world, our goal is to ignite each child’s passion for learning,” Hiselman explained.  “We do this by focusing on how and when children develop, and tailoring the curriculum to the needs of the children in each grade level.  We also make sure the lessons are multi-sensory, and filled with opportunities for students to experience the material first hand.  In other schools children may read a story and write about it, and that’s it.  Our students may read and write about the same story, but they may also turn it into a play.  At many schools, music class is focused on listening to and appreciating music.  At our school, every student plays an instrument, so each of them can create their own music.  Through drama, movement, handwork and storytelling, we give our students continuous opportunities to directly experience what they are learning about.  This approach makes learning more fun, and more effective.  When you talk with our eighth graders, the results are impossible to miss—they love learning, they are self-aware and self-confident, they are creative, and they are completely engaged with the world around them.”

Parents at the school agree.  Jonathan Cosco is the parent of a current fourth grader.

“So many parents are focused on rigorous academics, because they want their kids to be ready to compete at the next level.  Waldorf students get great academics, but they get a lot more than that.  Parents here know that when our kids move on to high school and college, they will be prepared not only to compete, but to collaborate and to innovate—and these are the skills kids need to be successful today.”

The school’s approach to media and technology has been covered in recent years by national media outlets like the New York Times and CNN.

To learn more about Waldorf education, check out those sources, visit theschool’s website, and come to the Open House:

  • 10:00 a.m. – Live music from students, Classroom tours all morning
  • 10:30 a.m. – Puppet show from Early Childhood faculty
  • 10:45 a.m. – Lower Grades Watercolor Painting
  • 11:00 a.m. – Lower Grades Kinesthetic Mathematics Lesson
  • 11:30 a.m. – Puppet show from Early Childhood faculty
  • 11:45 a.m. – Middle School Science Experiment

Cape Ann Waldorf School has been serving children on the North Shore for 27 years and is part of an organization of Waldorf schools throughout the country. The school draws its students from more than twenty communities north of Boston.

The school’s 10-acre campus is located on Moraine Farm in Beverly—170 acres of protected forest, meadows and farmland.  The school’s non-profit neighbors at Moraine Farm include The Trustees of Reservations, who operate a community supported agriculture program, and Project Adventure, a leader in experiential adventure-based educational programs.

Visit CapeAnnWaldorf.org to learn more about the school, its curriculum, community, and partners.


Saturday, October 19 at 10 a.m. to Noon



Waldorf School at Moraine Farm

701 Cabot Street
Beverly, MA 01915

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