Festivals at the Waldorf School of Bend
Joyfully punctuate the school year and celebrate the mighty, rhythmic breath of the earth. Sunlight, and our own inner light, are at the heart of every festival. Honoring the cycles of light connect us to nature, each other, and ourselves.
Children (and adults) thrive on repetition and consistency. Family traditions and holidays follow us throughout the year and generations. It is a mark in the calendar that asks us to reflect upon and celebrate our own experiences of seasons, spiritual growth, and soul cycles.
Michaelmas: A celebration of Courage
Students learn the heroic story of St. George, a brave knight, who with the help of the archangel Michael, tames an evil Dragon. This theatrical festival portrays the courageous knight’s undoing of the dragon’s sinuous influence and the villagers overcoming the fearful darkness within their own hearts.
Timed to correspond with autumnal equinox, Michaelmas festival acknowledges that the light of shining sun is retreating to the southern hemisphere, thus our inner light is called upon to shine throughout the coming winter’s darkness. In other words, this is a festival of summoning strength and warmth within ourselves because outward light is not in endless supply.
Autumn Journey: A celebration of Transformation
Autumn Journey is a beloved celebration of human and earthly transformations through the seasons. The school is magically remade into interactive vignettes where men and women, kings and queens, singing angels, makers, bakers, millers, wizards and musicians all invite participants to help in their tasks.
In the end, journeyers are rewarded for all their work on this earth with a tasty treat, music, and cider. With resolve in our hearts, wishes whispered to the wizard, wayfarers can go into the depths of winter.
Martinmas – St. Martins Day: A celebration of Virtue
The essence of Martinmas Festival is based on the story of St. Martin of Tours, a Roman soldier who abandoned his position of high rank and wealth to devote his life to serving the poor and the outcasted.
As we journey into the darkest time of the year, it is increasingly important for each of us to kindle warmth and light in our hearts. Martin’s generous gifts remind us to share with those in need. Lower grades students make this virtue visible through crafting lanterns and walking in reverent song through our communities. Upper grades share and give away their light by providing service to the community.
Advent: A celebration of Reflection
The word “Advent” means “coming” or “arrival.” It is a wonderful time for reflecting on the passing year and anticipating what may be to come. Each week honors one of the kingdoms of nature – the minerals, the plants, the animals, and humankind. As Winter lays a coverlid over the earth for its deep rest, we must be wakeful!
Spiral of Lights: A celebration of Light
At the time of the longest night, we find joyful celebrations of returning light, and lengthening days on Winter Solstice. Spiral of Lights festival symbolizes how our inner light must shine ever brighter against the cold, the hurry of the holidays, and the dormant earth.
This is a celebration of quiet confidence, of carrying light in darkness, and of sharing that light with others. The Winter Spiral is an experience of reverence in a season of business. To behold this journey is a moving experience, and adults and children alike carry away from the festival a quiet confidence amidst the harried merriment of the holidays.
May Faire: A celebration of Renewal
The May Faire is a celebration of May Day, an ancient festival welcoming spring. Dramatic skits of Lady Spring defeating King Winter captivate the children. Fresh flowers and crowns abound and maypole dances are performed by each of the classes. Food, music, games and crafts create a fun, festive environment for our entire community!
Fifth Grade Pentathlon
Sixth Grade Medieval Games
As part of their history study the 6th graders experience a coming-of age knighting ceremony, and participate in a variety of thematically inspired games and challenges.This event in shrouded in mystery and very little is revealed to the children before they participate. During this event not only do they have to overcome their own fears and challenges, but they must also work socially with a group of children they do not know to overcome the tasks presented. Many teams may not finish the tasks at hand until they realize how to work with their teammates, a challenge for many sixth graders.