Urban Prairie Waldorf School
Administration Weekly Update - December 4, 2013
Upcoming Events   (7)
Thursday, December 5
8:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Holiday Craft Finishing Workshop

The Holiday Fair is drawing near and all the UPWS crafts are so close to being finished.  We need all hands on deck to help us put the finishing touches on our hand made craft items.  No amount of time is too small, even 30 minutes after drop off will help. Please contact Dona Nishi or Heather Berhalter with any questions.

Friday, December 6
5:00 p.m.
Community Tree Lighting and Caroling event with Alderman Solis

Alderman Solis has asked Urban Prairie students to sing for the second year at this annual event.  Families are invited to sing along with children.  Families should gather near the stage around 5:00 p.m. with an estimated performance time of 5:15 p.m.  Please sign up on the link below so that we can gauge how many families may be attending.

Please do not hesitate to contact Peggy Lofgren directly with any questions.


Saturday, December 7
1:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
City Garden & Urban Prairie Holiday Fair

See the Parent Council section for event details.

December 13, 2013
2:00 p.m., Seating begins at 1:30 p.m.
Shepherd's Play

Dear Parents,

As many of you know, each year the faculty presents the Shepherds Play, a nativity folk play passed down for generations originating on an island on the Danube River. The play is filled with lovely images, and is mostly about the hilarious shepherds who end up journeying to find the newly-born Christ child. The Shepherds Play is a tradition in Waldorf schools. While each school does it a bit differently, it is a wondrous thing to know that communities all around the world are also performing it, some probably at the exact same time.This year’s play will be held in the 1st Floor Hall at Urban Prairie.  Parking restrictions for Zone 5 will be waived but finding a spot can be difficult, so please allow extra time to find a space.
Part of the fun of the play is that the faculty members vehemently deny being in it.  We hope you will join us in upholding that mystery, especially for the young ones who actually don’t recognize their teachers in costume and really see shepherds, but also for the older ones as they still enjoy the tradition of secrecy.

UPWS children will be sitting with their class and we hope to see families in the audience. We ask that any  families attending with younger children have their child sit with them and please escort fussy young ones and crying babes out of the hall until they can return quietly.  Eating, phone usage, photography, and video recording during the performance will be prohibited.

Dismissal will be at 3:20 p.m. and there will be aftercare available for UPWS students after dismissal.

We look forward to seeing you at the play!

Saturday, December 14
9:30 - 11:00 a.m.
UPWS Open House

Would you like to share your family’s experience at Urban Prairie?  Do you have a friend who is considering our school?  Please join us at the upcoming Open House Saturday, December 14 at 9:30!

Wednesday, December 18
6:00 - 7:00 p.m.
Winter Garden Advent Observance

As the darkest days fall upon us, the festival of the winter garden celebrates our inner light.  Children are told a story by their class teacher and then proceed to walk a double spiral of pine boughs laid out on the floor.  In the center, there sits a lit candle on a log, on which the children light their own candles.  The path out is lined with gold stars, of which the children choose one to place their candle.  Placing the lit candle on the gold stars is symbolic of offering the highest part of ourselves in service to others.

This year we will hold two separate observances of Advent Spiral.  Children will walk the Advent Spiral during the school day with their teacher and class. Candles will be provided by the school.

There will be a separate community event in the evening with ambient live music for families and community members to walk the Advent Spiral if they wish.  We invite you to come at any point between 6:00 – 7:00 p.m. and walk the spiral.  If you would like to have your  grade school child(ren) join you for this evening observance you may do so.  We request that you bring your own candle.

Friday, December 20
3:00 - 4:00 p.m.
UPWS Holiday Break Gathering

Park your car instead of waiting in the pick up line and help your child clean out their cubbie and collect any school work to be brought home.

We will serve beverages and light snacks in the Hall for all to enjoy before leaving for the holiday break.

Board News   (1)
Committee on Board Development Seeks a New Member
The Committee on Board Development is responsible for the development, assessment and education of the Board.  This includes conducting interviews of potential new Board candidates and Board assessments throughout the year.  If you are interested in serving on this committee, please email board.development@urbanprairie.org.

News from Parent Council   (3)
City Garden UPWS Holiday Fair
Thank you again to everyone who has helped make an item to sell, signed up to volunteer or donate food, and for inviting your friends and neighbors!
Friday, 12/6 from 1pm – 6pm, we will be setting up at City Garden, 920 W 19th Street. If you are free and interested in moving furniture or setting up the cafe or UPWS table of crafts and books, we would love your help.
Saturday, 12/7 from 10am – 1pm, we will continue setting up. Children are welcome to help, just let us know in the notes section of the sign up.
Saturday 1 – 6 pm – The Fair!

  • Dress Warmly – The forecast calls for cold and sun. The activities are both inside and outside.
  • Bring cash and credit cards – Most of the activities at the Christmas Fair are free, but you will have the opportunity to buy handmade gifts, or to make your own candle, and for these you may use your credit card.
  • Parking will be at a premium – 19th Street will be closed.  You may have to park a few blocks away.

Unlike the other big festivals of the year, the Fair heavily relies on the active participation of the community. We still need baked goods, paper goods, and volunteers for set-up, some cafe and Urban Prairie Table shifts filled, and clean-up. Please get involved: http://www.signupgenius.com/go/10C0E48ABA92BA5FA7-holiday

Cafes and Drink Tent, 1:00-6:00pm
Not one but TWO cafes filled with delicious things to eat and drink, as well as an outside drink tent. One will feature LIVE MUSIC, including the inaugural performance of the City Garden Faculty Choir at 2:00pm!
Candle-dipping – 1:00-4:30pm
A beautiful and ceremonial candle creation process using quality beeswax. Due to the extreme high cost of beeswax this year, candles will be $7 a piece to make. Children under age 7 must be accompanied by an adult.
Kids Crafts, 1:00-6:00pm
Craft projects for children of all ages!
Winter Fairy House, 1:30-4:30pm 
For children under 7. The mushroom house will host a winter fairy who has gifts children can purchase for a penny or a seed or pretty stone or bead.
Puppet Show (twice) – 1:30pm and 4:00pm
For children ages 2-7 only. The Elves and the Shoemaker performed by City Garden faculty.
Story Time (twice) – 2:00pm and 3:00pm
For grade school children only, 6 years old and up (NO grownups allowed). Told by Urban Prairie faculty.

Petting Zoo and Pony Rides, 2:00-4:00


Tree-lighting Ceremony, 4:45ish (sundown)

The crowning event! There will be community singing!! We’ll hand out lyrics to Deck the Halls, O Come All Ye Faithful, Angels We Have Heard on High, and Silent Night. You may practice at home this week!
The highlight of the fair is to all gather around a Christmas Tree and sing carols, and watch it light up the evening. It is such a beautiful way to begin the darker winter season.
All times are approximate, but we hope you can join us, and invite your friends and neighbors. Feel free to send out the attached poster, too!
Become a morning drop off volunteer!

Please complete this doodle poll with your DECEMBER availability. Remember, if each family donates one morning of their time from 7:45 – 8:15 am, everyone will have a great drop off experience throughout the month. Three parents are needed each morning.  MANY THANKS TO THOSE PARENTS WHO HAVE VOLUNTEERED SO FAR THIS SCHOOL YEAR!

December Drop Off Volunteers

Take Charge of Education®

Target wants to help Urban Prairie! If you have a Target Red Card, designate Urban Prairie Waldorf School as your school. Target will donate up to 1% of your REDcard purchases at Target stores in the U.S and at Target.com. They send the school a check each year! Right now, six parents are signed up for this program and have raised over $1000.00. Can we raise that number this year? Applications are available in the office or at your local Target Store’s Customer Service desk.