Tag Archives: waldorf

day 3350: first day of third grade!

day 3350: first day of third grade!

i’m not sure odin could be more excited to go back to school!

he had a great first day. a sure sign that he’s in a waldorf school – he’s most excited about being able to work in his class knitting projects at home this year instead of feeling rushed to get them in class.

he’s not as excited about having his picture taken before school, hence the “fake smile” :-)

on getting sent back to first grade.

on getting sent back to first grade. I.

after the fire at organic valley headquarters, we’re still figuring out where the displaced folks are going to end up for an extended period of time. for a short period of time some of us ended up in odin’s waldorf school, which also used to be a the public school so it has the “feel” of both worlds. in some ways, it feels just like a school i might have gone to when i was a was a kid. and in other ways it feels like a waldorf school. they sure know how to put a chalkboard to good use!

on getting sent back to first grade. II.

yes, i’ve literally been sent to first grade room. odin never tires of saying, “ok bye! have fun in first grade!” when i leave the house in the morning. all things considered, it’s not bad at all expecially considering it’s only a half a block from my house. and, on occasion, i get to sit in the hallway on linoleum floors and almost feel like i could be back in grade school while listening to listening to violin practice.

on getting sent back to first grade. III.

but it’s only temporary, they have to get the school ready for the kids coming back in the fall and we have to find more appropriate digs while the headquarters gets rebuilt.

Pleasant Ridge Organic Hot Lunch

Plesant Ridge Organic Hot Lunch from Gracie Hallberg-Cain on Vimeo.

an alum of odin’s school, the pleasant ridge waldorf school, made this video on their all-organic-made-from-scratch hot lunch program for her senior project at the sister school youth initiative high school.

it’s a remarkable video that shows the power of teaching children well about the importance of knowing where their food comes from and how it’s grown and prepared ( and enjoyed )!

i’m happy that odin believes this is “normal” and sad that it’s not.

buy raffle tickets, enter to win great prizes and help odin get a new puppy!

update- 03.16.13: thanks to everyone who bought a ticket – we sold almost all of them this year! which means odin gets a puppy and you all helped support his wonderful school. thank you! we mailed everyone their ticket stubs this week, but you might not get them by the raffle drawing tonight depending on snail mail travel times. either way, the tickets have all been given to the school and if you win i’ll certainly let you know by tomorrow. thanks again! ( expect updates on the puppy soon )


every year odin’s school has a fund raising raffle which requires the parents to sell $1,000 worth of tickets. we “buy” what we don’t sell. because kris and i are horrible salespeople, last year we didn’t sell any and “won” second prize, which was nice, but we don’t want to do that this year :-)

because we live in a small town with a lot of other parents who are also selling tickets it’s a tough sell to “locals”. so this year, we’re asking for your help. please consider buying a ticket or two or five or ten! they’re $20 a ticket. please send me an email ( eric snowdeal org ), facebook message, twitter direct message or comment on this post with a way to contact you and i’ll let you know how to send me money. we’ll set aside tickets in your name and let you know if you win.

as an added incentive, we’re also in the market for a new malamute puppy for odin! malamute puppies are not cheap and we’ve set a goal that we’ll get the puppy if we sell at least half the raffle tickets. so if getting a chance to win a trip to belize isn’t incentive enough, THINK OF THE PUPPY FOR ODIN!

update:

it occurs to me that if you’re newer than 4 years or so around these parts that probably you don’t know that one of the reasons odin is especially excited about possibly getting a malamute puppy is because of the fact that he has a very distant memory of mauja the malamute who was part of our family for 10 years and was the most lovable, obstinate, cantankerous, loyal, bullheaded malamute ever. and we all loved him dearly. here are just a few of my favorite photos of odin and mauja.

day 96: odin unexpectedly meets mauja!

day 105: odin versus the inchworm. I.

day 124: off weego! I.

day 141: attack of the malamute tongue! I.

day 160: supermega fun time on the cradle swing. I.

day 195: happy, happy funtime with the malamute!

day 231: reading in the bath ring! II.

day 302: soooooo close to crawling! outtake.

day 304: ten months! or countdown to a Very Special Birthday!

day 395: odin learns to share! III.

day 404: relaxing in little bay de noc! II.

day 433: curiosity might someday kill the cat.

day 445: scenes from the dinner table. III.

the handsomest dog, ever?

the downside of cruising with a malamute who has recently gone swimming.

more details on the raffle:

we need the money and tickets set aside by march 8th when we have to hand them in in time for the raffle on march 16th. again, tickets are $20 a piece.

Grand Prize
Belize—in the heart of Central america
All expenses paid trip for two to Belize, in the heart of Central America. Seven days and six night of beaches, rain forests, Mayan ruins, and exotic animals. Winner may specify time of travel
(12 months to redeem.) Or $4,000 cash.

Second Prize
Continental U.S.—Getaway for Two
Two plane tickets within the continental U.S. 4 weeks
advance notice required, $500 limit per ticket. Or $1,000 cash.

Third Prize
Vernon County—Weekend Getaway for Two
Two nights at the Nature Nooks retreat on the West Fork of the Kickapoo River,
plus dinner for two at the Driftless Café. (www.naturenooksretreat.com)

Fourth Prize
Woodcut Print
“Snowy Owls”: original Nick Wroblewski multi-color woodcut print,
framed and matted. (www.nickwroblewski.com)

Fifth Prize
Stay at home
A quilt, a book, and a tree to plant. Stay at home and plant
a tree, because the center of the world is right here!

follow this link for more details on the raffle and prizes.

day 3058: school assembly and stone soup!

day 3058: school assembly and stone soup!

friday school assembly is one of the many neat things about odin’s school. first thing in the morning, the kids all gather together in the gym and each grade take a turns performing a little play or song they’ve learned in front of the other grades and many parents who are able to attend.

it’s a simple and clever way to get the kids to gain confidence in performing in front of a crowd which is a skill that will serve them well over the years.

on this particular day, odin’s teacher was also happy to announce they harvested 835 potatoes from their school plot. they gave the big ones to Jim The Cook and made themselves stone soup from the rest.

They believe this is Completely Normal and The Way It Is Everywhere.

day 2979: first day of unicycle lessons!

day 2979: first day of unicycle lessons! I.

right before we left for vacation we were walking by odin’s school playground and noticed a bunch of kids on unicycles. as it turns out, they’ve been having classes there every wednesday night over the summer and odin definitely thought it was something he’d really, really, really like to learn. and you know what? i’ve always wanted to learn how to unicycle too, so we made a plan to start going to lessons after we got back from vacation.

unfortunately in the few weeks that passed, the instructor of the class left town but some of the kids have decided to keep teaching the classes themselves which is some excellent initiative for kids that aren’t much older than odin.

the first step to learning how to ride a unicycle involves getting used to balancing and pedaling by slowly moving along while holding on to a fence. according to the kids, you’ve graduated from the first level of unicycle training when you can move along two panels of the fence without holding on at all. usually it take about a month of once-a-week practice to gain mastery over the fence.

day 2979: first day of unicycle lessons! II.

watching the other kids do bunny hops and ride backwards and forwards is just the right motivation for odin to quickly graduate from holding onto the fence.

day 2979: first day of unicycle lessons! III.

what luck! holding hands with poppi is totally within the rules of beginner unicycling :-)

one day odin will find something that is difficult to learn, but unicycling will apparently not be that thing. after one day of practice he was already close to being able to move along two panels of the fence without holding on. it’s highly doubtful that he’ll need the whole month to graduate from the first level.

his poppi on the other hand, well that’s another story…

maybe one day we can bring the darth vader bagpipe unicycling tradition to viroqua.

day 2764: playing flute at school assembly.

day 2764: playing flute at school assembly.

odin’s school has a regular “all grade” assembly where the first through eighth classes perform a variety of artistic endeavors in front of the whole school and assembled parents. this week, odin’s class played an orchestrated flute song.

in addition to the general awesomeness of seeing him play orchestrated music, it struck what an ingenious trick the assembly is to get the kids used to thinking that it’s completely normal to play in front of an audience.

it’s such a great confidence builder that will certainly do them well later later in life.

day 2645: on conquering fear and doubt and casting dragons out.

day 2645: on conquering fear and doubt and casting dragons out.

odin went to sleep repeating the refrain sung by the entire school in the michaelmas assembly:

When within I conquer fear and doubt / michael in heaven casts the dragon out!

he said he wasn’t afraid in the slightest bit about standing up and singing in front of the whole school and all the parents.

he said simply, “i love that song.” before falling fast asleep.

i love that he was standing next to freya when he was singing the song and came home and probably saw his magnificently metaphorical birthday box with the dragon slaying motif.

talk about myths to live by!

day 2518: The Last Day of the Last Year of Kindergarten.

day 2518: The Last Day of the Last Year of Kindergarten. I.

sigh. the day finally arrived. odin’s last day of kindergarten. a bittersweet day to be sure. of course, odin is nothing but excited because not only is it the last day of school, but the Summer Birthday Kids also collectively celebrate their birthdays.

the parents of the Summer Birthday Kids are also excited because they get to have a special morning with the kids where we hang out with them in the play yard before the bell rings and go for the children on their morning walk and watch a special little celebration filled with laugther and songs and stories.

as is quite typical of a waldorf education kindergarten morning at his school, odin begins by climing his favoritest tree!

i’ll bet he’s climbed this tree every day for the past two years ( for those that don’t know, in a waldorf school kids usually don’t start first grade until they are seven, so odin is finishing his second year of kindergarten ).

day 2518: The Last Day of the Last Year of Kindergarten. II.

he’s looking for a caterpillar that he discovered in the tree yesterday and was very eager for us to see it, but alas, the caterpillar had wandered off.

day 2518: The Last Day of the Last Year of Kindergarten. III.

looooooots of running and laughter in the morning. it’s seems like A Proper Way to start the day and i can’t imagine it any other way ( sitting at a desk?! ).

day 2518: The Last Day of the Last Year of Kindergarten. IV.

then we went on a walk and watched the children empty their compost into the compost buckets and even got a little tour of the greenhouse where the older kids are growing all sorts of green things for the school garden.

day 2518: The Last Day of the Last Year of Kindergarten. V.

and then it was time to take off the outside shoes and light candles and listen to songs and a wonderful story told by Miss Shannon about birthdays and make music and watch odin walk over a “Rainbow Bridge” laden with silk scarves to mark the passing of The Kindergarten Years ( no cameras allowed for that part :-)

’twas, indeed, a wonderful morning.