Now Is The Month of May

Laura Selleck

Now is the month of May…

The May Fair is one of the loveliest memories at the Housatonic Valley Waldorf School. Another seasonal festival that is celebrated in most Waldorf schools, it is a time to celebrate renewal and the earth. Featuring many of the European traditions such as dancing around the Maypole, Morris Dances, songs of spring, live recorder music, and flowers that are gathered from the field, the roadsides, and even the florist, it is a day on which the community always hopes for bright, fair weather.

When green buds they are swelling…

Showing children the importance of valuing nature through beauty, dance, and celebration elevates the objective and opens doors to further exploration during all seasons. Though such things may no longer seem to be our society’s focus, thankfully there are still plenty of opportunities in every town, if we look for them, to explore open space, learn birdcalls, learn how to identify trees by their bark and silhouette, or learn how lawn chemicals that run into the watershed can compromise the quality of life. 

Fa-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la…

The May Fair celebration, held this year on Friday, May 2, starts at noon, when parents of young children make flower crowns on the Early Childhood Campus with materials brought from home. At 12:35, there is a picnic lunch on the Grades Campus for all families — bring your own lunch, or buy lunch from the 7th Graders to help them fundraise for their 8th Grade trip. At 1:30-2:50, Maypole dances by all the classes are featured on the Grades campus. A special opportunity of a dance for all who will caps the event.

Fa-la-la-la-la-la-la…

The towering Maypole, decorated with pastel streamers and crowned with flowers, is the centerpiece of the day. The children, instructed by Traditional Dance Teacher Patricia Campbell, gather in age groups and present their dances, accompanied by live music. The youngest are gently led through the simple choreography, while the Upper Grades students are able to complete more complicated ribbon weaves. There is also a Morris Dance Team outfitted in white, with bells on the knees and colored tags of cloth, which presents complicated sword dances and stick dances. The gestures of rapping on the ground are meant to wake up the earth so seeds may sprout. It is a thrilling feeling to carry on ancient, meaningful traditions at HVWS, and then pass them down to the next generation, which is just beginning to cross our threshold.

Welcome Spring!


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