Next Wednesday (4/6), WSB’s Ecoliteracy & Sustainability Coordinator, Michel Anderson, will be offering a presentation at theEducation Summit, which is part of the Local Solutions: Eastern Regional Climate Preparedness Conference. The conference is sponsored by the EPA and Antioch University; and author Bill McKibben (of 350.org) is a featured keynote speaker. It will be held in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor at the Sheraton Hotel.
Michel’s presentation, Earthling Power: How Nature Study & Play Shape Our Understanding of Community, is based on his work at the Waldorf School of Baltimore. Here’s a description: When children fall in love with nature the world changes — a bewildering dimension opens and they realize we are no longer at the center of the universe. We are but a single creature among many; we are one of the Earthlings. When we study and play in the forest the presence of the other Earthlings (and the odd powers they exhibit) rouses our curiosity. And it’s exactly this interaction that teaches us about our primary power . . . our imaginations. Nature is the great equalizer. When we are enmeshed in the more-than-human world we realize that community isn’t solely a human affair — it is the domain of Earthlings. Big, small, bipedal, rooted, or tailed, we all play a vital role in shaping and maintaining a healthy, Earthy community. In this session we will explore how nature-based education and play fosters a more encompassing, complex, and joyful understanding of community, and how this orientation is necessary in building our sustainable future.
This morning Ms. Smith’s 3rd Grade class visited Roseda Farm in Monkton, MD. Roseda Farm proudly uses sustainable, traditional, small scale practices to raise cattle for meat. The students got to see inside the barn, pet a two-hour-old calf, play with the farm dog, and climb straw-bales (and frozen compost piles). You can purchase Roseda Beef at their farm store (15317 Carroll Road, Monkton, MD 21111). Farm store hours are Tuesday – Friday 10 am. to 6 pm. and Saturday 10 am to 4 pm. Roseda beef can also be purchased online at http://www.roseda.com/RosedaFarm/purchase-beef.html.
Ever dream of starting your own small farm? Future Harvest – The Chesapeake Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture will be hosting a workshop series on small-scale and urban farming. Nine workshops for only $50 (the three urban farming workshops are $30)…and it starts next week! Check out more info here: http://bit.ly/1CjNkrD.
In other news, today WSB’s 5th grade worked on labeling the honey jars. Each student designed a label, so you will have a variety of artwork to choose from. We still have a bit more to get done before our honey will hit the market. We’ll be selling 1.5 oz and 3.75 oz jars to raise fund to our honeybees. Pricing and selling will be the next topic of our honey business discussion.
On Monday, Dec 1st WSB had the pleasure of hosting Jayna Powell from Paul’s Place. She came to speak to our middle school students about poverty in Baltimore City as well as the steps Paul’s Place is taking to combat it. She brought a series of photographs entitled “Faces of Hope” which tell the individual stories of Paul’s Place guests. Check them out — they are currently on display in the lobby and middle school classrooms. WSB is working with Paul’s Place this holiday season to help unsure our city’s residents in need have a wonderful and dignified holiday. Please consider donating to our Food & Toy Drive. It will be running until Dec 11th. Check out this list of the desired food and toys: Holiday2014 Food and Gift Shop
WSB will be explore a yearlong partnership with Paul’s Place. More info on that will be forthcoming.
And if you’d like to know more about Paul’s Place you can check out this 8 minute film below:
Our Waldorf Fair was last weekend, and I’m happy to report that practically everything used for food & drink was successfully composted. All of your plates, forks, and cups, will be broken down into nutritious compost. The Waldorf School of Baltimore would like to thank Waste Neutral for taking care of us this year — they came yesterday to pick it all up and did so as a gift to the school. And the school would also like to thank all of you, fine readers & attendees, for disposing of everything properly and helping us host a zero-waste event!
Photos of WSB’s grounds and composting systems are featured in a short video about Waste Neutral, a local waste management & composting business. The video is part of a series called “We the People 2.0” which is a collection of inspirational shorts about people doing great things to improve our planet. The videos are a project of WSB parent & Sustainability & Global Awareness Committee member, Julie Gabrielli. Watch ’em all!
Greetings. Spring is here . . . Today! And as the light and warmth returns, our 3rd Grade Class is gearing up for their annual farm trip to Hawthorne Valley Farm in Upstate New York. We will be leaving on Monday, April 22nd and returning on Saturday, April 27th. For some of our students this will be their first experience away from home and on a farm. The students will participate in a plethora of activities — from cooking & cleaning to wood chopping, animal husbandry & yogurt making. (And I will spend a great deal of time enjoying the food they make and beating them at tether ball.) Before officially working for the school, I volunteered to be a chaperone on the farm trip in 2011. Below are photographs I took on that trip. If a picture is worth 1,000 words, you can consider this slideshow my 38,000 word essay on the experience. Enjoy.
Tonight I will be starting the Baltimore County Master Gardener Program. Classes will run from January 22nd to April 9th on Tuesday and Thursday evenings. This is part of WSB’s effort to expand our school’s garden this coming spring. We’re hoping to make the garden a central place for our students to grow and learn. We are also looking into the possibility of opening the garden to the wider community. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know your interest and commitment level to gardening this summer — this information will allow me to plan just how vast our garden can grow and be sustainable. This is a fantastic opportunity for you and your children to learn and grow together throughout the summer months . . . not to mention revel in the satisfaction of harvesting the bounty of your efforts (literally!). Please be in touch.