2020-21 Events coming soon, including virtual Adult Ed evenings. Please check back for details.
* Items marked with an asterisk are open to the public. Please join us!
Community Potluck Picnic
Sunday, September 22, 2019 4:30-6:30 pm
Come join us for fun and good food! This popular all-school picnic is a wonderful opportunity to meet and mingle with new and returning families, as well as Acorn Hill faculty, staff and board members. Please bring a dish to share – main dish, side dish/salad, or dessert. Label your dish as gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, nuts, etc. Also bring a picnic blanket or chairs, plates, bowls, utensils, napkins and drinks.
Family Pumpkin Carving
Sunday, October 27, 2019 3-5 pm
An annual favorite! Parents attend with children to carve a pumpkin while enjoying snacks, music and storytelling. Bring a pumpkin, safe carving tools and newspaper for this fun event.
Thursday, October 31, 2019 5-6:30 pm
Halloween night is an exciting time, but it can also be frightening and overwhelming for young children. This event is an ideal way for young children to experience the nature of Halloween in a safe and fun environment, sheltered from overpowering impressions. Children and their families will gather in costumes on the playground. Each family brings a jack-o-lantern (perhaps carved at the Family Pumpkin Carving) and wholesome treats or treasures to distribute to trick-or-treaters.
A Hard Road to Freedom: The Civil War, African Americans and Emancipation – the story of how the end of slavery came to Maryland
Thursday, November 14, 2019 3:15 -4:30 pm
Parents and Board members are invited to join our Faculty & Staff meeting for this special presentation. Adults only.
CR Gibbs is the author/co-author of six books and a frequent national and international lecturer on an array of historical topics. He has appeared several times on the History Channel and French and Belgian television. He wrote, researched, and narrated “Sketches in Color,” for WHUT-TV, a 13-part companion series to the acclaimed PBS series, “The Civil War.” He has appeared on BET, C-Span, and The History Channel and is a D.C. Community Humanities Council Scholar.
Please join us!
* Give Your Child the Gift of Waldorf Education: Exploring the Life-Long Benefits of Waldorf Education
Wednesday, November 20, 2019 7:30-9:00 pm
Open to the public, grandparents and friends welcome!
* Waldorf curriculum, from nursery through high school, teaches to a child’s developmental needs
* Waldorf education fosters critical thinking, empathy for others, and a love of learning
* Waldorf education leads to academic success
Jennifer Page is the Faculty Chair (Head of School) at the Washington Waldorf School. She is a graduate of Northwestern University (BME) and the University of Georgia School of Law (JD), and has been involved in Waldorf education for over 20 years. As a trained Waldorf teacher and administrator, she has served in many capacities. For the past two years, she has represented AWSNA and Waldorf Education in meetings with the Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos. Jennifer’s teaching experience includes middle and high school music and history in the Chicago and Atlanta area public schools, elementary and middle school class teaching at the Washington Waldorf School, and coaching varsity track and field and softball. She practiced law in Maryland and the District of Columbia, and was the former Director of the Simple Abundance Charitable Fund. She and her husband Greg have three adult children, all of whom attended the Washington Waldorf School.
Tea & Talk: The Kindergarten Year at Acorn Hill
Thursday, November 21, 2019 9:15 -10:15 am
Thinking about the kindergarten year and what’s next after Acorn Hill? Parents are invited to join Faculty Chair Kate Gage for a Tea & Talk: The Kindergarten Year at Acorn Hill during Handwork in the Willow Room. Hear from current and alumni parents about the value of the kindergarten year at Acorn Hill, as well as transitioning to other schools.
* Adult Ed: Smooth & Easy Transitions with Young Children
Thursday, December 5, 2019 7:30 -9 pm
Side-step power struggles and increase your enjoyment of your children with tried-and-true methods to help transitions go smoothly. Whether trying to get out the door, leaving a fun activity, or doing something your child would rather not, Faith’s workshop will leave you with practical tools and new energy to help your days go more smoothly.
Faith Collins is a parenting coach, public speaker, and author of the book Joyful Toddlers & Preschoolers: Create a Life that You and Your Child Both Love. She teaches for a LifeWays North America and runs outdoor parent-child classes in her Play Garden. She lives with her husband and daughter in Denver, CO. Learn more at http://JoyfulToddlers.com
* Wee One Shoppe
Saturday, December 14, 2019 9:30 am-12:30 pm
Open to the public, grandparents and friends welcome!
Back by popular demand, join us for socializing, crafting, and shopping!
A special event for children ages 3 to 8. Secret Shopper opportunity for children! Parents, your children will be able to go through the Wee One Shoppe set up especially for them. With elf-en volunteers helping them (no parents allowed!), your kids will be able to buy small gifts for family members, specifically purchased or made and priced starting at just $1. Children will have fun wrapping and tagging their gifts as well. What a sweet surprise for you to enjoy something they selected all on their own! While the children pick out something special, enjoy baked brunch goodies and a cup of coffee, and explore the Acorn Hill merchandise for sale in the lobby. Join your children in decorating a gingerbread person and while they make a small craft at the outside picnic tables. There will be lots of opportunity to play outside—dress appropriately!
Delicious brunch sale included. Please join us!
* Adult Ed: The Benefits of Movement with Nancy Blanning
Learn how we can support our children’s healthy development toward warm, rich interactions in our every day lives.
Thursday, January 16, 2020 7:30-9 pm
We are honored to have Nancy Blanning, a master Waldorf educator and early childhood movement specialist speak to our community next week. The planned presentation on “Creating Calmness” scheduled for January 28th is postponed until next school year.
What does it mean to be a human being? The joy of movement in early childhood and of exploring the natural world, the richness of human companionship, our warm interest in each other—these require no special training or expensive classes. Wisdom speaks to us each day. Nancy Blanning offers her thoughts on healthy child development and how parents can take advantage of the curriculum life offers.
Nancy Blanning is an early childhood movement specialist and has been teaching in Waldorf settings for over 40 years. She has been on the faculty of The Denver Waldorf School for the past 25 years. Her first 17 years were as a lead Kindergarten teacher and for past 12 years, she has been the school’s educational support teacher. Nancy is a frequent keynote speaker at national and international early childhood conferences. She is editor of the Waldorf Early Childhood Journal, Gateways and is the author or editor of several books, including: Walking with Our Children: The Parent as Companion and Guide. She has been a member of the the Sunbridge Institute faculty since 1994 and the Sunbridge Waldorf Early Childhood Teacher Education Program Co-Director since 2015. Ms. Blanning travels to schools in the US and Canada to provide teacher mentoring and evaluation and conduct developmental observations. Nancy’s main focus is therapeutic education with a special emphasis on developmental movement as supporting young children’s physical incarnation and sensory development.
Please register to reserve your spot!
* Candlemas Bonfire & Heritage Potluck
Sunday, February 9, 2020 4-5:30 pm
If Candlemas day be sunny and bright,
Winter again will show its might.
If Candlemas day be cloudy and grey,
Winter soon will pass away.
Candlemas, better known in these parts as Groundhog Day, has long been celebrated in various cultures to mark the middle of winter. It falls on February 2nd – midway between the winter solstice and spring equinox – and is one of the cross-quarter days that make up the wheel of the year, along with Halloween, May Day, and Midsummer. It is a time for reflection of new beginnings and renewal, marked by increasing physicality.
Gather around the bonfire, bring a dish to share, and join the Acorn Hill community for this midwinter celebration of light, music and warmth. For the entire family!
Racial Awareness and Mindfulness 2020 – Allyship Workshop
Saturday, February 29, 9 am – 1 pm
Child care provided
Please join us for Acorn Hill’s annual diversity workshop, which is open to parents, faculty and staff and Board members.
“Allyship” as an active way of life that utilizes bridge-building to ensure equality, opportunity, and inclusion for everyone.
Do you seek to promote racial equity as an ally, but don’t know where to start? Join us for Service Never Sleeps‘ half day allyship workshop. This training will equip you with tools to be an active ally for racial justice through methods of centering people of color, influencing others, and continuing your own self-work journey. You’ll leave this intensive fast-paced workshop feeling committed to the allyship lifestyle, and prepared to facilitate change in all of your spaces.
Whitney Parnell originally developed the concept of the 8-hour dream in college: If an individual went to bed amidst the current state of social injustice, and a fraction of society committed to serving in one small way, that same individual would awaken from a full night’s sleep to witness a tremendous change. Service Never Sleeps launched in 2015 as a program under the Aspen Institute’s Center for Urban Innovation’s Urban Innovation Lab. Through the Aspen Institute’s year-long incubation, Service Never Sleeps has emerged as one of the most innovative nonprofits of its kind as the go-to for effective Allyship. 1200 Allies trained since 2017.
Please register to reserve you spot!
* Cancelled: Auction Social. The Online Auction Continues!
Online Auction open until Saturday March 14, 10 pm
- Acorn Hill’s composting initiative, which would allow Acorn Hill classrooms to separate and compost organic materials through a food waste recycling service. Our vision is for Acorn Hill to not only be a leader in childhood education, but also serve as a model of how schools can incorporate sustainable practices that will protect the planet and promote healthy living.
- Classroom and playground upgrades. Examples include: painting of classrooms, new shed, carpets, push carts, wheel barrows, brooms, shovels and rakes, and a log swing!
- Diversity fund – Support Acorn Hill’s mission of creating a diverse and respectful community. “Acorn Hill commits to making our school a place where families, faculty and staff of diverse backgrounds feel welcomed and expressly valued. Our faculty and staff strive to bring students to an understanding and experience of the common humanity of all the world’s people–transcending stereotypes, prejudices, and divisive barriers. We will undertake the work necessary to prepare our children and ourselves for the challenges and joys of life in a diverse society.”
Virtual Adult Ed Evening – How Best to Support Your Child During This Challenging Time
Tuesday, April 7, 2020 8:30-9:30 pm
Join us as we welcome a panel of Acorn Hill teachers who will discuss ideas and share information on common behaviors of children. We will send a Zoom link to all registrants.
* Virtual Adult Ed Evening – Gender Diversity in Early Childhood
Tuesday, April 21, 2020 8-9:30 pm
More than ever before, we understand that gender is a complex integration of biology, development, socialization, culture and context. Children may begin to identify and explore their gender identity as early as their toddler years. In this workshop, we will define many of the terms that are used to describe gender diversity, examine contemporary statistics and scientific findings about gender, look at a timeline for early gender concept development, and discuss ways to provide a supportive and anti-bias environment for all children. This event is open to the public. This session will be led on Zoom by Emily Ederer of Silver Spring Day School’s training institute.
Please register to reserve your spot!
* Virtual Adult Ed evening – Easing the struggles: How do we work through difficult moments in our day with young children
Tuesday, May 5, 2020 8-9 pm
In this Adult Ed evening, we will explore how to structure the day to minimize struggles and how to manage challenging behaviors and tantrums when they arrive. Katherine Scharff holds a certificate in Waldorf early childhood education, is a Simplicity Parenting family-life coach, and serves as Director of the Early Childhood Education Center at Sophia’s Hearth Family Center. She is also a preschool teacher and parent-child teacher at the Waldorf School of Saratoga Springs. Katherine is trained in the Pikler approach and is also a registered nurse. Please register on our website and you will be sent a zoom link on Tuesday. This Zoom Event is open to the public.
* Cancelled: Spring Fair
In lieu of an in-person Spring Fair, we have put together a Spring Fair 2020 newsletter filled with fun activities for you and your family. Enjoy!
Originally scheduled Saturday, May 9, 2020 10 am-2 pm
Join us for this annual and popular family event! Children enjoy outdoor games like the popular marble run, and a special Toddler in the Woods area with activities perfect for little ones. There will be children’s crafts such as making pom-poms. Other highlights include a marionette play, the sale of used books, toys and jewelry and crafts lovingly handmade by our very own parents. Plus, a plant sale, taco salad lunch, and delicious homemade baked goods. Go Green and bring your own utensils, cups and plates for lunch! Not to be missed! All are welcome!
* Virtual Adult Ed evening – Stories and Puppetry as a Healing Art for Young Children
Tuesday, May 19, 2020 8-9 pm
Join us as we welcome Sandi Zeese presenting Stories and Puppetry as a Healing Art: Choosing age appropriate stories for young children, how to tell them, and how to make your own.
Sandi retired from class teaching in June, 2014 and continues to mentor new Waldorf teachers. In October 2018 and again in February/March 2019, Sandi was invited to China to present conferences for teachers and workshops on the many ways to incorporate the “Mood of the Fifth” in Waldorf Kindergartens (circle, story, lullabies, transition songs, gesture and atmosphere), and to give classroom mentoring in several schools near Hong Kong and in Shanghai. She continues her work with the lyre and singing, and is a board member for the Anthroposophic Health Association, representing singing therapy. Sandi has two children who attended Acorn Hill and went on to graduate from the Washington Waldorf School.
This Zoom Event is open to the public.