Education for the 21st Century
"We need a world from which the workings of the old causes have disappeared, a world from which a new light will ray out into the future. The world is not subjected to perpetual metamorphosis into different forms (which is our common habit), but the old is perfected and becomes the vehicle of the new."
Rudolf Steiner

Dear families,

In a few short days, we will welcome everyone back to school for 2020! This is a time for setting fresh intentions and a re-set. What are your dreams for this new year? How can we best impact the world around us in a positive way? Our faculty and staff are currently studying Waldorf educator Torin Finser's 2019 lecture: The Future of Waldorf Education: Beyond 100 . Finser outlines the core principles of Waldorf Education (which include a developmentally appropriate curriculum and seeing the individual as a whole human being) as pillars. "Those principles, unalterable facts upon which Waldorf pedagogy rests, are like the pillars of the temple of Poseidon in Greece," he says. He calls upon Waldorf schools to examine these core principles: to personalize them, to explore that which is essential to the work of our educators, our Board, our administrators, and our parents. The act of examining our core principles itself brings new life into the movement and invites a rebirth of our educational model, he says. Having celebrated 100 years, how do we effectively shift into the next 100 years, carrying forward the traditions that nourish us while also welcoming in new forces and new ways of thinking? Click here for the full lecture.

We have our annual Community Financial Update coming up on Wednesday, January 8, as well as some wonderful Parent Education events to put on your calendar, a Curriculum Night exploring grades 1-3, a lecture on mental health put on by our High School Wellness Club, CIF boys' HS soccer (come out and support our fabulous Wildcats- next home game is Jan. 22!), Middle School Basketball, and more.

Happy New Year!

Alyssa Hamilton
WSOC Communications Coordinator

January 2020 Calendar
Mon 1/6 • Playgroup and Bridge Session begins
Mon 1/6 • School Resumes
Mon 1/6 • Early Childhood Application Deadline
Tue 1/7, 8:45a - 10:00a • Room Representative Meeting
Wed 1/8, 4:00p - 5:30p • HS Boys Soccer @ Compton Early College HS
Wed 1/8, 5:30p - 6:30p • Annual Community Financial Update
Wed 1/8, 6:30p - 8:30p • First Grade Readiness and Curriculum Meeting
Thu 1/9, 2:00p - 2:50p • College of Teachers Office Hours
Fri 1/10, 3:00p - 4:30p • Middle School Basketball Practice
Fri 1/10, 3:15p - 5:00p • HS Boys Soccer vs. California Lutheran (away)
Fri 1/10, 5:00p - 9:00p • Foundation Studies
Sat 1/11, 8:00a - 4:30p • Foundation Studies
Sat 1/11, 10:00a - 11:30a • Playgroup Parent Meeting
Tue 1/14, 5:45p - 8:00p • "Let's Talk," HS Wellness Club presentation, Meadows Hall
Tue 1/14, 6:00p - 7:30p • Grade 4 Parent Meeting
Tue 1/14, 6:30p - 9:00p • Foundation Studies
Wed 1/15, 6:30p - 8:00p • Grade 12 parent meeting
NO SCHOOL Fri 1/17 • Parent/Teacher Conferences
Fri 1/17, 3:15p - 5:00p • HS Boys Soccer vs. Rio Hondo Prep (away)
Sun 1/19, 6:00p - 8:00p • High School Orchestra MLK Celebration Concert
NO SCHOOL Mon 1/20 • Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
Tue 1/21, 6:30p - 8:00p • Grade 11 parent meeting
Wed 1/22, 3:15p - 5:00p • HS Boys Soccer vs. California Lutheran (home)
Wed 1/22, 5:30p - 7:30p • Curriculum Evening
Fri 1/24, 3:00p - 4:30p • Middle School Basketball Practice
Fri 1/24, 5:00p - 6:00p • Grade 5 Play
Fri 1/24, 6:30p - 8:00p • HS Burns Supper
Sat 1/25, 9:00a - 4:00p • Middle School Basketball Tournament
Mon 1/27 • High School application deadline for new students
Mon 1/27, 6:15p - 8:00p • Ms. Barbara Pre-K parent meeting
Tue 1/28, 6:00p - 8:00p • Ms. Catherine Pre-K parent meeting
Tue 1/28, 6:30p - 8:00p • Grade 9 parent meeting
Wed 1/29, 3:15p - 4:45p • HS Boys Soccer vs. Lifeline Charter
Fri 1/31 • Annual Giving campaign ends
Fri 1/31, 3:00p - 4:30p • Middle School Basketball Practice
Fri 1/31, 3:30p - 4:30p • HS Boys Soccer vs. Unity Mid College HS


Dear Families,

The end of our Annual Giving Campaign is fast approaching. We have 28 days left to reach $100K!  If you have already participated, thank you! If not, we need you! Please join teachers, staff, board members and fellow parents in making a gift or pledge to Annual Giving so that we may achieve our goal of raising $100,000 in 100 days. Our collective participation is needed to make this goal and meet the school’s funding needs. It also sends a powerful message within our community that we are all in this together and are committed to our school's success. 


To donate, please click here. . On behalf of our students and faculty, thank you for supporting WSOC. Happy New Year all!
Community Events
Wed., Jan. 22
5:30pm - 7pm
Eurythmy Hall
GRADES 1 - 3 curriculum will be explored, all parents welcome to attend!
Babysitting available by Grade 8, on campus
Parent Enrichment Save the Dates:
Technology and Media Series
Wednesday, February 26, Eurythmy Hall. Screenagers: The Next Chapter. Film Screening. From the director of SCREENAGERS: Growing Up in the Digital Age comes Screenagers NEXT CHAPTER: Uncovering Skills for Stress Resilience, about helping young people thrive in our screen and stress-filled world.

Filmmaker and physician Delaney Ruston uses a personal lens and professional eye to help us all flip the script on stress, anxiety, and depression. We follow Delaney as she finds herself at a loss on how to help her own teens as they struggle with their emotional wellbeing. Ruston sets out to understand these challenges in our current screen-filled society, and how we as parents and schools empower teens to overcome mental health challenges and build emotional agility, communication savvy, and stress resilience.
Tuesday, March 31, Meadows Hall. Diana Graber (CyberWise): Raising Humans in a Digital World: Helping Kids Build a Healthy Relationship with Technology . Graber, an expert on digital literacy, writes for, is interviewed by, and speaks often about technology's impact upon human behavior. Her no-nonsense approach comes from being an educator, media producer, academic, and most of all, a mom.She developed (and still teaches) Cyber Civics™, the popular middle school digital literacy program currently being taught in schools in 42 US states and internationally.

Thursday, April 30, Meadows Hall. Ben Klocek : Transforming Habits of Tech: Creating a World that Reflects the Heart. While Diana Graber focuses on children's tech use, Ben Klocek's (he's a web designer and artist) focus is on personal parental habits with tech: creating a family culture that reflects your values, and guidelines for coming to agreements about tech use.
Giving the Gift of Music: HS Outreach
In the spirit of the season of gratitude, our high school Chamber String orchestra shared the gift of music this last December. 

On December 7, at the MIX in Santa Ana (a Community Development Center serving several hundred children and families with limited resources), our HS Orchestra performed festive holiday tunes and enjoyed a picture with Santa.
St. John's Manor, a senior home in Costa Mesa, invited our HS Strings to perform on December 18 and as a thank you, gave the students sweet treats.

"What an honor it was to share the gift of music!" said WSOC Director of Music Debora Wondercheck. "These outreach opportunities are what the holiday season is truly about."
WSOC HS Homecoming & Los Posadas
WSOC Wildcats Celebrate More Wins, Finish Second in Championship
WSOC Wildcats Basketball Boys' and Girls' teams both celebrated victories on our Dec. 14 Homecoming weekend, and our Boys' team ended the season Dec. 20 on a high note, garnering second place in their first-ever CIF championship. Go Wildcats!
"Out of this World" Homecoming Dance
On Friday, Dec. 13, WSOC grades 9-12 enjoyed a Homecoming Dance on campus, put on by our own Student Council. The theme was "Out of this World," and students enjoyed an evening under the Milky Way for a night of "stargazing" and dancing.

"Homecoming was a night filled with music and laughter, and we're so grateful to our student council for facilitating such a fun event," said 12th grader Lily L. 
Los Posadas Celebrates Latin Culture

On Thursday, December 19, our high school celebrated its annual "Los Posadas," part of a larger Latin American tradition that reenacts the story of Joseph and Mary seeking shelter in Bethlehem. The celebration includes a delicious spread of regional treats and an open invitation to WSOC alumni to drop by and enjoy the feast and share stories of post-high school life with our students.

"Los Posadas," explained high school Spanish teacher Sra. Rey, "is a traditional Latin American religious celebration and is brought to our students as a cultural tradition. This enhances and deepens their understanding of Latin culture, which in turn complements their Waldorf education."
Alumni Corner
WSOC Alum Grant Meadows Garners Graduate Degree in Nuclear Engineering

 WSOC alum Grant Meadows recently attained his graduate degree in Nuclear Engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, located in the capitol city of Madison, Wisconsin.

"I picked the school because they have a great nuclear engineering program. My undergraduate degree and my graduate degree are both in Nuclear
Engineering," he said.

What is next for Grant? "I imagine myself working at a company local to the area called Phoenix Nuclear Labs, which makes nuclear fusion reactors, and is moving into a field making “neutron rays” of objects for clients. Neutron rays are images similar to x ray images, but work better with heavy, dense elements, whereas x rays work better with lighter elements, like hydrogen and carbon."

How did being a Waldorf student shape his experience in advanced education? "I think Waldorf helped me in two ways: first, the curriculum discouraged usage of electronic devices until I was older, which increased my attention span. Sitting in nuclear engineering classes often requires an hour of trying to understand every formula and derivation written on the board, as well as anticipating how to use the formula. Using electronic devices too much seems to shorten my attention span, imperiling my success.

"Second, Waldorf helped me develop ways at looking at problems from different or varying perspectives, which a lot of engineers are surprisingly incapable of doing. I attribute this skill to the diverse curriculum at Waldorf, which contributed to my creative development, and hence this skill," he said. "Engineering can sometimes require a staggering amount of creativity, something not always known among the general public."

"Personally," added Sandy Meadows, Grant's mother, WSOC alum parent and WSOC Scrip founder, "it is attributed by this Mama that it was his hours, upon hours, UPON HOURS of knitting (we called him the Master Knitter) that helped his brain develop at that crucial young stage, ‘knitting’ his neurons together!"
WSOC On and Off Campus
WSOC HS Girls' Soccer Starts Season with Victory
"Our High School Girls' soccer program is in full swing with Coach Lars (WSOC HS Alumni ‘17), playing their third game against Samueli Academy Charter School. The team played a beautiful game, showing teamwork and enthusiasm. Freshmen Hannah Lieberman and SuDaerra Hoffman kept up a stifling defense that allowed offensive playmakers like juniors Jillian Tubbs, Camilla Gavrilov, Lauren O’Neil, and Emma Turner to take the 8 - 0 victory on our home field!"

-WSOC Athletic Director Armando Castro
Grade 6 Business Math Gets Real with On-Campus Market

Ms. Fabian's Grade 6 got a very hands-on lesson in business math when they were tasked with creating goods to sell at a special on-campus market on December 17 . They had to take out "loans" from parents to procure the raw materials for their hand crafted merchandise, which ranged from laser-cut bookmarks to sweatshirts with custom designs to beeswax orbs (team members Jack G. and Kelvin H., pictured above). They were allowed to keep their profits and share them with a charity of their choice.

"The students learned a great deal not only about business math, but about how a business actually works," said Ms Fabian. "Some were shocked that they had to actually pay their loans back, and that it wasn't all straight profit!"

Said Grant C., whose teammates included Mateo T., Teddy C., Jeff B. and Roy B. (pictured below, left), "We created sweatshirts with custom designs. Most of the class created products that could be sold anywhere, not just at school. It was a great experience, and we still have custom orders to fill."

"I really enjoyed learning about interest rates and marketing, and selling what we made," said Pearla H., who designed and hand-sewed bookmark covers that were sold with the laser-cut wooden bookmarks created by her team (Kaili H., Noah C., and Pearla H., below, right).
Winter Festival and Advent Spiral Celebrations 2019
Photo credit: Ziqi Sang ; Indoor Early Childhood Advent Spiral photo: Terri Webster
Community News & Announcements
AmazonSmile = Easy Fundraising Opportunity
AmazonSmile is a website operated by Amazon with the same products, prices, and shopping features as . The difference is that when you shop on AmazonSmile , the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price of eligible products to the charitable organization of your choice.

Every item available for purchase on Amazon   is also available on AmazonSmile ( ) at the same price. You will see eligible products marked "Eligible for AmazonSmile donation" on their product detail pages.

Just click on the icon above and choose WSOC as your charity. Each time you order, our school receives a donation. It's that simple!
Waldorf Lectures
Boxtops 4 Education
 Click here for WSOC College of Teachers, Board Members and Administrative Rotation
Waldorf School of Orange County
2350 Canyon Drive
Costa Mesa, CA 92627-3948
(949) 574-7775