Community Events to engage the head, heart, & hands

Afterschool Programs

Rocket Club Alumnus: A Boy and His “Bottle Rocket”

Chicago Waldorf School alumni Jackson Lubin (grade school class of 2011) and current parent Judy Lubin were featured on the Science Channel in a show called Large, Dangerous Rocket Ships. Over Labor Day weekend, Jackson and Judy travelled to Kansas to take part in a national rocket launch and “odd rocket” competition. The challenge of the competition is to turn an ordinary object into a rocket.

Making an “odd rocket” is much more difficult than making a regular rocket; ordinary objects are not meant to fly!

As the main engineer and design expert on the team, Jackson put his skills to the test for this project. The team started with a 5 foot tall, 2 foot wide garbage can & recycling container shaped like a soda bottle. After 10 months of hard work, the finished rocket weighed over 100 pounds and was skillfully engineered to be aerodynamically stable. With the help of 10 pounds of solid rocket fuel, the soda bottle soared to over 4,000 feet and clinched second place in the competition. To learn more information about the project, visit Science Discovery and JLRockets.

Sumbitted by Judy Lubin, Chicago Waldorf School Parent/Rocket Club Advisor / Photo by Sather Ranum


Janet Oliver- The Eight Primary Reflexes

Full Day Workshops: Sat & Sun, November 5th & 6th

A former Montessori Pre-school teacher, with a Masters in Human Development and over a decade of clinical experience, Janet Oliver will present a workshop on the eight primary reflexes and their development and integration. Primary reflexes are instinctual movement patterns which help us to survive. These include the finger grasp reflux of a newborn or the startle ‘Moro’ reflex of a baby. They are not meant to last a lifetime, but rather organically integrate into our central nervous system. Children and adults who still retain elements of these reflexes can be frustrated because they are constantly being subverted by interfering instinctual responses. These reflexes may affect a person’s learning, behaviors, and well being.

This workshop is for any parent who would like insight into their child’s neurological development.

Janet L. Oliver has been in private, clinical practice in neurodevelopment and reflex integration for thirteen years. As a certified HANDLE Practitioner, her passion is in sharing the sensory motor developmental model for lifelong learning and efficient functioning. She works with public, Waldorf and Montessori Schools for teacher trainings and helping students with developmental delays.

The Janet Oliver workshop will take place at the Chicago Waldorf School in the Upper Eurythmy room. It is designed to assist body workers, occupational and physical therapists, teachers, parents and caregivers. Follow this link for the registration form for this workshop. For more information, please contact CWS Educational Support Teacher Cynthia Trevillion.

Simplicity Parenting Workshop with Susan Bruck

Simplicity Parenting Workshop

runs weekly, October 1st – January 7th

Today’s busier, faster society is waging an undeclared war on childhood. With too much stuff, too many choices, and too little time, children can become anxious, have trouble with friends and school, or even be diagnosed with behavioral problems. Now internationally renowned family consultant Kim John Payne helps parents reclaim for their children the space and freedom that all kids need for their attention to deepen and their individuality to flourish. Simplicity Parenting offers inspiration, ideas, and a blueprint for change.

CWS Early Childhood teacher, Susan Bruck, will be leading a workshop designed to help parents understand and achieve the goals outlined by Kim John Payne’s approach. All of the sessions will be held in the Parent-Child Room.

Attend our Free Introductory Session: Saturday Oct. 1st

*Session 1 is a Free introductory workshop but registration is required.

Session 1:*
Session 2:
Session 3:
Session 4:
Session 5:
Session 6:
Session 7:
Session 8:

October 1
October 15
October 29
November 5
December 3
December 17
January 7


The cost for the entire workshop series is $100 (price includes the Parent Workshop Handbook). Please register with the Main Office. Questions? Contact Susan Bruck at

Report: Rockets for Schools Launch & Science Fair

Thunder Rocket Club Takes Sheboygan By Storm

Or, rather, a storm took Sheboygan during the annual Rockets For Schools competition on May 20 and 21. But the launch continued even in the pouring rain, and the event was a fun experience for the Thunder Rocket Club and the other 50 teams that came to Sheboygan for the two day science fair and rocket launch. Lulu Johnson , Jackson Lubin, Augie Verciglio, Alex Bender-Hooper, Jimmy Geraghty, Gregory Levinson represented CWS along with advisors Brian Gleichauf and Judy Lubin. Club members Helena Joho and Cheyenne Patino could not attend, but were with us in spirit.

The first day included a presentation of the science project that the team had put into the payload of their rocket. Thunder Rocket Club choose a very sophisticated, challenging and unique payload project. The Rockets For Schools folks said they had never seen anything like our design. The team managed to mount three wind turbines onto the outside of the rocket, and keep them mounted on a vehicle travelling over 330 mph – a major engineering challenge!

The purpose of the turbines was to collect the energy from the air force during acceleration of the rocket. The original plan was to turn the energy into electricity, but the generators were too heavy. So, the team did what good scientists everywhere do and redefined the scope of the project to make it more achievable. The team measured the amount of energy in terms of RPMs of the turbines. They used a bicycle speedometer on one of the turbines to calculate the RPMs. A video camera inside the payload allowed them to read the speedometer and to directly count the revolutions of the turbine. They then calculated the amount of volts and amps that could be produced from the spinning of the turbines. They predicted that they would obtain 3000 volts in flight, yeilding 7.5 watts of power.

The team managed to mount three working wind turbines onto the outside of a rocket travelling over 330 mph – a major engineering challenge!

The launch of the 6 foot tall rocket took place on the second day of the event. In typical Rockets For Schools fashion, the rocket was launched into Lake Michigan. The Coast Guard retrieved the rocket from the water. Fog kept the Coast Guard from taking their boats out, so the launch was delayed a few hours. But when the fog cleared, the Thunder Rocket Club was second on the pad, so we beat the rain. The rocket roared off the pad on a Cesaroni I285 motor. Before the launch, we were a bit anxious because the turbines could possibly have adversely affected the stability of the rocket. But the rocket flew straight as an arrow! The video showed that the turbines worked exactly as intended, spinning freely to collect the energy from the acceleration throughout the flight. When the rocket hit the water, however, the plastic turbines shredded down to the wheel-core. So, the payload is not re-usable. But it worked! A successful launch!

Says participant Lulu Johnson, “After working so hard on the rocket and preparing the presentation, it felt good to represent our school with our beautiful rocket. It was also interesting to see other school’s rockets and payload projects, and to find out that so many people in the Midwest alone were interested in rocket science.”

You can find more photos and details on the launch and the preparation at

CWS Student Athlete Profile

Keven Henley Wins Award for Illinois Swimming’s Discover 2010-11 Short Course Yards Top Ten

Ten swimmers for the YWCA Flying Fish made Illinois Swimming’s Discover 2010-11 Short Course Yards Top Ten list for their age in one or more events: CWS student, Keven Henley, was lauded along with students, Lucy Myers, Ana Woods, Ryan Knohl, John McBratney, Blake Morgan, Kyle Grant, Grant Smith, Nick Killeen, and CJ Smith.

The Flying Fish Swim Team is the largest in Illinois, and draws members from Chicago and its North Shore communities of Evanston, Wilmette, Winnetka, and Glencoe, as well as from Glenview, Niles, Lincolnwood, and Skokie. Flying Fish High School swimmers include swim team season members from Evanston Township, New Trier Township, Niles North, St .Ignatius, Waldorf and Northside College Prep High Schools, as well as Loyola Academy. Learn more about the YWCA Flying Fish Swim Team and the YWCA Evanston/North Shore by visiting

See the article at its source The Winnetka Glencoe Patch

Thunder Rocket Club in Mid-West Science Competition

CWS Students Preparing a Wind Turbine Rocket

The Thunder Rocket Club is finalizing preparations for its big launch on May 20th and 21st. Thunder Rocket Club will be one of 60 teams from four states participating in the Rockets For Schools competition. The contest is held each year in Sheboygan, WI.

Team members have been busy building a 6 foot tall, 4 inch diameter rocket that will carry a science project thousands of feet above the ground. The rocket will be launched on an I-class high power motor that is 250 times more powerful than the model rocket motors that you can see launched at the local parks.

To handle this much power, the team had to use sophisticated rocket building techniques to ensure aerodynamic stability throughout the flight. Because hobby rockets don’t have electronic guidance, like NASA rockets do, they are guided by their fins and the way the fins work with the laws of aerodynamics. The team attached the fins into the interior of the rocket using high tech bonding agents. The rocket just needs some paint before it is ready for launch!

Good luck in Sheboygan Thunder Rocket Club!

The competition will include a presentation of the club’s science project. The team chose to focus on renewable energy. They mounted three wind turbines into the upper portion of the rocket (the payload). When the rocket lifts-off, the air flow from the acceleration will turn the turbines. Size and weight restrictions placed by the Rockets For Schools organization prevented them from installing motors to collect the electricity generated by the turbines, so they will calculate mathematically the amount of power collected based on the speed of the turbines as they spin during the rocket’s acceleration. To ensure that the rocket maintains aerodynamic integrity after the addition of the turbines, the team had to design the science project in a computerized simulation program. This helped them to recognize that 3 turbines would be more aerodynamically stable than 1. It was quite a feat of engineering to mount 3 working turbines into a 4 inch tube!

Thunder Rocket Club members are: (Science Project Team) Louisa Johnson , Jackson Lubin, Augie Verciglio, (Construction Team) Alex Bender-Hooper, Jimmy Geraghty, Helena Joho, Gregory Levinson and Cheyenne Patino. Team advisors are Brian Gleichauf and Judy Lubin.

High School Math Club Update

CWS Math Club Competes in State Finals.
Mathlete, Liam Lundy, Places in Division 1A

Eight members of the high school math club competed in the Illinois Council of Teachers of Mathematics state finals on Saturday, April 30th. The team met at school at 6:00 a.m. and drove down to the University of Illinois with former coach Brian Gleichauf and current coach Katie Sullivan. Unfortunately coach Robert Wilson was unable to attend, as he was on the 8th grade class trip. The math club competed against the top scoring math students from all over the state of Illinois and proudly represented the Chicago Waldorf School. Liam Lundy’s score in the individual 10th grade written contest earned him 12th place out of 122 students in division 1A.

After Liam’s individual contest, he headed over to join Francisco “Paco” Alvarez, Alex Morson, Mercedes Randolf, Vlad Yourtchenko, Gabrielle Anspach, Maddie Lawson, and Rochelle Peterson in the 8-person contest. The team gave the contest their best effort and had an enjoyable day. After competing, the team went out to lunch to celebrate and then headed back to school. Having 8 students qualify for the state contest is a record for the Chicago Waldorf math club and the team is motivated to continue on their upward path by improving their performance and increasing the club’s membership next year.

Thunder Athletics

Swim Team Athletes Demonstrate Excellence

Congratulations to CWS student athletes, Armel Cazedepats and Keven Henley! Their YWCA Flying Fish swim team excelled at the recent Sunkissed Invitational Jr.-Sr. Swimming Championships. The team beat two meet records, five team records and achieved 141 personal bests and five first-place swims! The Flying Fish team earned gold and silver medals in swim team relays at the competition. CWS student athlete, Keven Henley, was a member of the relay team that took 1st place in Boys Senior 400 yd. Freestyle Relay and 2nd place in Boys Senior 400 yd. Medley Relay.

These athletes worked extremely hard all season and we are proud of their dedication and accomplishments! Great job Keven & Armel!

CWS Model United Nations Team Enacts World Diplomacy

The Model United Nations (MUN) Team is one of the many student initiative groups (SIGs) available to high school students at CWS. Students join a SIG and participate in that special interest club throughout the year.

Recently Chicago Waldorf School’s Model United Nations Team presented at a Model UN at Northwestern University. Here is a report from team member–and 10th grader–Liam Lundy:

“The conference was attended by more than 500 students from twenty-six high schools from around the eastern United States. CWS students, Cairo Fultz, Clay Shane, Nick Park-Reynolds, Rachel Osran, Vlad Yourtchenko and Seth Brav-McCabe represented Egypt in various UN bodies while Sarah Price represented the Secretary of Communications and I represented a member of the Greek Resistance.

Next year we are looking forward to enlarging the MUN program and going to two conferences. Model UN is a great program. It offers a unique opportunity to learn about international relations, practice public speaking, develop writing skills, and have a great time while doing so. I have done MUN for three years now and my public speaking skills, writing ability and knowledge about the world have greatly benefited.”

David Massie is faculty advisor to the CWS Model UN Team. He added this reflection,
“…Representing the Egyptian delegation, our students prepared for this conference by studying Egypt’s modern history and its position on specific current issues. They arrived on campus armed with position papers they had written on their assigned topics, such as atomic energy, food and agriculture, and the international Olympic movement. Participating in this event allowed the students to practice the arts of debate and coalition building. After their four day adventure, our team felt a much-deserved sense of accomplishment…”

Other SIG opportunities for High School students include Student Council, The Green Team, Student Ambassadors, Yearbook, Amnesty International and more.

Summer Camp Opportunity For Kids

Dive in to a summer of Waldorf-inspired activities at the Chicago Waldorf School Summer Camp

The camp is lead by CWS teacher, Ileana Valencia, who has been with the school for 20 years, is the current Chair of the Foreign Language Department, and is a trained teaching mentor. She will be joined by two assistants.

Activities include:

● Arts ● Nature Crafts ● Sports ● Explore the Neighborhood ● Beach Afternoons ●
● Free Play ● Weekly Field Trips ● Age Appropriate Activities ● And More… ●

Enroll your children in CWS summer camp in as many week-long sessions as you wish.

The sessions run from June 13 – July 29, 2011 from 9:00am – 3:00pm
Early drop-off begins at 8:15am

Week 1: June 13 – June 17
Week 2: June 20 – June 24
Week 3: June 27 – July 1
Week 4: July 5 – July 8

Week 5: July 11 – July 15
Week 6: July 18 – July 22
Week 7: July 25 – July 29

Rates: $200/week (for 30 camp hours) plus a one-time $60 supply fee
$160 for July 5-8 (week 4 has only 4 days due to the July 4th holiday)

For more information—or to receive or submit a camp application form—contact Maureen Flannery at the Chicago Waldorf School: 773.465.2662 or

Music Night at Waldorf

Wednesday, April 13, 7:00 pm

In the CWS Auditorium

All members of the CWS community are invited to hear our student musicians play in various groups and orchestra.

Our grades 5-8 band and orchestra, high school jazz band and high school chamber ensemble will all perform for the community. The public is welcome to attend.

Notes for parents:
Students should arrive at 6:30pm wearing concert dress- black and white (no jeans, t-shirts, gym shoes). Grades 5-8 go to their classrooms; High School jazz band meets at the music room and High School ensemble meets on the stage.

Sign up for the Arcturus Sumer Intensive Program

Here’s a unique opportunity for deep study to learn more about the principles behind the pedagogy. Presented by the Arcturus Rudolf Steiner Program:

Arcturus Summer Intensive
JUNE 27th – JULY 1st, 2011

Arcturus is the Waldorf teacher training program that also educates individuals in the foundations and insights into Waldorf Education. More info is available at the Arcturus website.

The Summer Intensive includes these workshops:

Gardening by Patricia Holdrege
What could be more hands-on than a city garden? During this workshop we will be getting our hands in the earth at a neighborhood community garden. Come ready to learn the basics of city gardening, composting, warm composting and wear clothing appropriate for gardening!

Painting & Drawing out of Plant Observation by Frances Vig
Our lives are shaped by our individual experience of the world, yet often we do not really see what is in front of us. Using painting and drawing, we will work with the colors and forms in nature not only to examine what we know but also to learn to see nature in a different light. We will work with practical exercises in perception and journal our observations as an approach to learning to see nature anew. All levels of experience are welcome!

Rudolf Steiner Life & Work by Rick Spaulding and Jim Kotz
Celebrating the 150th anniversary of Rudolf Steiner’s birth.
From an early age Rudolf Steiner was fascinated by modern science, yet due to his experiences of the spiritual world, was not able to find the connection between the natural world, the world of science, and the truths he had discovered regarding the spiritual world. With the help of Goethe’s Color Theory, Steiner strove to bring clarity and a new terminology to unify science, the spirit, and the natural world. In addition to learning about Steiner’s biography, there will also be a focus on his 1924 lectures to farmers.

Math Team earns high rankings from ICTM

CWS High School Math Team Headed for State Finals!

April 30th at the University of Illinois

The high school math team’s strong performance in the Illinois Council of Teachers of Mathematics (ICTM) Regional Competition earned them the opportunity to advance to the State Finals. Both the Freshman/Sophomore 8 person team and Liam Lundy, as an individual, will be competing on April 30th at the University of Illinois. Students competing in the State Finals include Paco Alvarez, Alex Morson, Merci Randolph, Vlad Yourtchenko, Gabby Anspach, Liam Lundy, Rochelle Peterson and Maddie Lawson. Other math team members include Rosie Fitz, Quinn Kennelly, Jhanneau Roberts, Alice Blehart, Cameron Fife and Joanna Northage-Orr.

This is the first time that the Chicago Waldorf School has qualified as a team to attend the State Finals. As small as our school is, the Freshman/Sophomore 8 person team earned a score equal to or higher than many schools much larger in size, such as the University of Chicago Laboratory School, St. Ignatius, Lane Tech, Lake Forest, Highland Park and Glenbrook South.

Each year, the math team has grown in size and improved their performance in the ICTM Regional Competition. The team is currently coached by Katie Sullivan and Robert Wilson and was started and led by Brian Gleichauf for several years. Brian and Katie will be traveling with the team to the State Finals and are helping the team gear up for the competition in bi-weekly practices.

Submitted by Math Team faculty advisor, Katie Sullivan

Congratulations to our Math Team for their impressive performance
we wish them strong will and calm focus for their impending conference!

Join the 2011 Circus Club!

CIRCUS CLUB 2011 begins next week.

Now you can join the circus without running away from home! Join the Waldorf Circus Club with your friends, right here in our own gymnasium…

Registration is still open to Chicago Waldorf School families. Circus Club is open to grades 3-12. All classes (except Advanced) are from 3:00-5:00PM and the entire program runs from March – May.

Mondays 3:00-5:00pm (Begins March 7)
Classes will be taught by Actor’s Gymnasium staff. Students in grades 3-12 students will stretch, tumble and be introduced to the Spanish Web, trapeze, silks and more.

Tuesdays 3:00-5:00pm (Begins March 8 )
Groundwork skills such as tumbling, juggling, unicycle, spinning plates, acrobatics/balancing and clowning. Taught by Meshu Tamrat and Andrea Shaffer; new this year: Advanced Jump Rope Tricks taught by Ashley Gambill.

Tuesdays – Advanced Session 5:00-6:30pm (Begins March 8 )
Danger Hour – for students interested in tumbling, sports acrobatics and break dance
Advanced Aerial – for students with previous experience and the desire to work one-on-one with an
aerialist to develop a routine. Students in the advanced class can work on both ground and aerial elements and will perform either at the Big Show or during the MAY FAIR, or both.

Fridays 3:00-5:00pm (Begins March 11)
Classes will be taught by Actor’s Gymnasium staff. Students in grades 3-12 students will stretch, tumble and be introduced to the Spanish Web, trapeze, silks and more.

The BIG Show: A Public Performance (Friday, May 27th at 6:00pm)
All students will perform in a show on Friday, May 27th. On that day, students will stay
after school for a dress rehearsal and will be fed dinner, and then will perform in the show.

What will you need?
Students should come to each class prepared. They should have a snack in their lunch (students will not be permitted to go to New Leaf after school) and should have appropriate clothing. Clothing should be stretchy, and not baggy. T-shirts, leotards, sweatpants, shorts and leggings are all appropriate. Students will be in socks or barefoot most of the time.

Enroll in Circus Club Now!
Space is limited and enrollment will be on a first come/first served basis. Those with questions
should contact Ms. Shaffer at or at 773.465.2662 x8323. Thanks!