School Director Notes | December 2015


jane_zeender2015Dear SMWS Community,

How I love the month of December and the Winter Holiday Season! Regardless of your own spiritual path, there is something magical and reverent about these long, dark days, and the light shining forth from candles, twinkly lights, and the stars that blaze their glory each and every evening. Because my work days tend to be so long, I have been taking my daily walks in the dark, wandering around North Boulder, looking up into the starry sky, and asking the big questions of our lives- “why are we here and what is our work on this earth, right here, and right now?”

Coming through the past few months, some of these questions have been answered in my own journey. My work, in this time, place, and stage, is to continue to raise my children into morally upright and balanced human beings, to support my husband in his life’s journey, and to shine my light on the shadows that have been living at Shining Mountain Waldorf School. A wise woman and colleague once told me that in places of great light the shadows also live, and Shining Mountain is one of those places. As the darkness of the winter is reaching its peak, our spiritual light is blazing stronger than ever. We, as a school, will continue to strive to stand in the light, to shed light on the shadows that may surround us, and to walk each day doing our best to make the decisions that will serve this school and these children well for many years to come. I hope that each of you will commit to joining me, the Board of Trustees, the College of Teachers, Faculty, Staff, and other parents- past, present, and future, on continuing on this journey into the light together.

I love the festival life of this season. I love the Advent Spirals, the visit of St. Nicholas and his mischievous helper, Rupert, St. Lucia, the Holiday Bazaar, Winter Faire, Winter Concert, Winter Assembly, and the mornings on the last week of school that we spend caroling around a warm fire on the Lower School Courtyard. I also love thinking about the question that I will bring into my meditative life during the Holy Nights: that time between the longest day of the year and early January. This year I will be asking the universe to send our school a new Pedagogical Director, someone with a huge heart, deep connection to Waldorf education and anthroposophy, and a dynamic vision for how we can transform our school in this next cycle of its life. Last year, during the Holy Nights, I had three consecutive dreams about Stacie Schaefer, surrounded by a group of children. I reached out to her and told her, “Stacie, I think you should apply to be next year’s first grade teacher!” She informed me that she would meet with me after the Holy Nights, and that is what she did. She told me that she had also had dreams that “a group of children were calling to her.” She then went to spend some time with our rising first graders in the kindergartens, and, indeed, these were her children. What question will you be asking during the Holy Nights this year?

With many blessings to you and yours this holiday season.

In love and light,