School Newsletter
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Leaflet 29 | Term 4  | 03 December 2022
"The basis of artistic creation is not what is, but what might be; not the real, but the possible. Artists create according to the same principles as nature,
but they apply them to individual entities, while nature, to use a Goethean expression, thinks nothing of individual things. She is always building and destroying, because she wants to achieve perfection,
not in the individual thing, but in the whole."

- Rudolf Steiner
Upcoming Calendar
Class 7 Farewell - Sat 3 Dec, 9.30am - 12.30pm
KG Advent Spiral - Sun 4 Dec, 3pm - 7.30pm
Class 8 Outing - Tue 6 Dec, 8.15am - 10.30am
Class 4 Outing - Tue 6 Dec, 10.30am - 1.30pm
PG Advent Spiral - Wed 7 Dec, 8am - 12.15pm
Class 5 Outing - Wed 7 Dec, 10am - 2.30pm
HS Handball Tournament - Wed 7 Dec, 10.30am - 1.30pm
HS Soiree - Wed 7 Dec, 6pm - 10pm
PS - Star Tree Festival - Thu 8 Dec, 6:45pm (arrive) / 7:00pm (start)
Kindergarten Biggies Farewell - Fri 9 Dec, 8am - 11.30am
Class 5 Celebration - Fri 9 Dec, 3pm - 9pm

Please note these times/changes for the last week of school
No extramurals 
- Mon 5 Dec to Fri 9 Dec
HS - ends early - Wed 7 Dec, 1:30pm
PG - last day of term - Thu 8 Dec, 12:15pm
PS - ends early - Thu 8 Dec, 12:30pm

KG, PS & HS - end of term - Fri 8 Dec, 11:30am

For the latest updates to the school calendar please click HERE

Aftercare will close at 2:00 PM on Friday, 9 December - the last day of term.
Holiday Club Programme

Don't forget to register for the Holiday Club programme. For details, click on this link to open the Registration Letter and this link for the Registration Form.

Library Books
Please return any outstanding library books before the end of term.
Primary School: Star Tree Festival

The Primary School teachers warmly invite all Primary School parents, guardians and children to come together in community in the Big Hall on Thursday 8 December to close our year in reverence at our Star Tree Festival.

  • Children to classes at 6.45pm
  • Parents to hall 6.45pm so we can start at 7.00pm


  1. We ask that all parents and children wear all white, or a white top and dark pants.
  2. Children in their last year of Kindergarten are welcome, but alternative arrangements need to be made for younger children.
  3. NO CELLPHONES OR CAMERAS will be permitted.
(See article below about the festival)
High School Soiree

Dear High School Parents and Guardians -

We are almost at the end of the 2022 academic year and after three years the High School will be hosting our end-of-year festival in the form of a Soiree. New matric parents and students are invited to an evening of fun, entertainment, good company and food. This is optional for the new matrics.

The Soiree will take place on Wednesday evening, 7 December, from 18h30 until about 22h00. The theme for this year is a Wacky Masquerade Ball. The children (and you if you wish) will dress up and wear a mask, any type of mask. The classes have been divided up into 3 groups each. Each child in the group is responsible to bring either a salad, main meal or dessert for 4 people. We have given the children some options but will leave it to your discretion. Ask them what they are supposed to bring.

  • Salads: Potato, pasta, bean or green salad.
  • Mains: Roast chicken (cut into portions), lasagne, curry, etc.
  • Dessert: Ice cream, fruit salad, sorbet, frozen yoghurt, cake, etc.

The school will provide juice, water and snacks for the tables.

We regret that no siblings from Primary, Kindergarten or outside of Michael Oak High School may attend.

We hope to see you there.

Warm regards

The High School Faculty

Featured article: David Machado

Leave everything a little bit better than you found it

It is with a heavy heart that I write a parting editorial for Michael Oak’s Leaflet.

The theme of what I wanted to say was sparked by watching a World Cup match. After a thrilling and unexpected win over former champions Germany, the majority of the stadium was clearing out, while a large contingent of Japanese supporters remained. They weren’t staying to continue their celebrations but rather to clean up the stands that they and other spectators had occupied. Normally, after a match, there are food and drink containers left around for the stadium’s cleaning staff to clear out yet, not for the first time at a World Cup game, the Japanese fans went up and down the aisles with rubbish bags picking up the litter before leaving. 

This story makes me so happy whenever I talk to people about it and it gives me such hope for humanity. It is such a simple thing to do yet sends such a powerful message of respect and integrity. One fan was quoted as describing what they were doing; “This place is not ours, so we should clean up if we use it. And even if it is not our garbage, it’s still dirty, so we should clean it up.”

This concept of leaving a place better than you found it is something that I will always try to do and encourage my students and colleagues to do the same. It could be as simple as picking up litter but we should also all strive to leave a small legacy with the people and places we come across. As a teacher, part of our calling is to touch the lives of our students not just academically but also in values and ways of being. I like to think that I have left Michael Oak a little bit better than I found it - not because I am a perfect person or a master of my subjects, but simply because I see that as my primary role as a teacher. 

I will try to keep the Japanese supporters' mentality in mind as I continue my journey and I hope that you all will too. It is not an easy task to be this selfless 24/7 but it's an idea that could change the world. It's for a similar reason that I got my first tattoo, some years ago, as a reminder with the words: "do good things and good things happen".

David Machado
High School teacher

From Primary School

Star Tree Festival

Dear Michael Oak Community

We look forward to sharing our Advent Festival with you - a festival of expectation and preparation for something new to be borne out of the future.

We hope to create a space where we can go inward - to experience a sense of quiet beauty, and reverence, - a pregnant stillness where something of potential can emerge.

This is beautifully expressed by Martha Postlethwaite in her poem - Clearing.

“Do not try to serve
The whole world
Or do anything grandiose
Instead create a clearing
In the dense forest

Of your life
And wait there

Until the song
That is yours alone to sing
Falls into your open cupped hands
And you recognize and greet it
Only then will you know
How to give yourself
To the world
so worthy of rescue.”

Quiet interest is a powerful force. We witness this when we are fortunate enough to experience attentive listening which can open our hearts to see more deeply and to make new discoveries.

We hope to engage your interested participation in experiencing traditional symbols in a new and universal way.

The words below carry the central theme of our festival.

“ If as Herod we fill our lives
With things and again with things.
If we consider ourselves so unimportant
That we must fill every moment of our lives
With action; when will we have
The time to make the long slow journey across the desert
As did the Magi?
Or sit and watch the stars
As did the shepherds? Or brood over the coming
Of the Child as did Mary?
In each one of us there is a desert to travel.
A star to discover, and a Being within ourselves
To bring to life.”

- Anon

With warm greetings

For the Festival Group

From High School

Class 10s Orange River Camp

The class 10s had the wonderful opportunity to go down the Orange River at the beginning of November.  This was a physically challenging 60 km adventure that tested the students. 

They can all be very proud of themselves for completing this challenge.

Sarah Ferguson-Brown
Class 10 Guardian

Class 11 Camp

Class 11 had a chance to experience some of the highlights of the glorious Cederberg in early November when they visited Driehoek farm for a three-night getaway.  The well-equipped chalets allowed for a modicum of creature comforts while the deep stillness of this beautiful mountainous valley seeped into everyone.

The magnificent Tafelberg loomed over us in all its majesty, luring a small party of us to attempt to scale its steep foothills on our first morning at the farm. We set off and rested under a dignified (and very rare these days) old Cedar tree and admired its position in the centre of a small kloof of spooky rock sculptures. 

Onwards and upwards our small band climbed to a hidden rock shelter adorned with paintings and handprints of ancient people. Through the sculpted landscape we ventured and, after a small ankle injury and a rumble in our stomachs were led down a steep section of the mountain in a beeline for the chalets. Scratched, burnt and exhausted, we arrived back to find everyone else in various stages of relaxation under the trees next to the swimming hole or in their rooms escaping the afternoon sun.

The following day we set off as a group to explore the arches, caves and tunnels of the Stadsaal area with its fascinating and well-preserved paintings and graffiti from Afrikaner leaders of a bygone area.  After soaking up the history and the lunar landscape, we needed a swim so off we went to the wonderful Maalgat pool where a few brave souls jumped off the high platform into the fresh mountain water.

We returned home the following day with memories of stars and red rocks with beautiful blue skies that seem to stretch out for eternity.

Matthew Dowling
High School Teacher

Sports and Extramurals

Volleyball Match

Michael Oak’s first volleyball match against a fellow Waldorf school in Constantia was played in a true spirit of friendship and sport. It is clear that this sport is creating an excitement and buzz in the school and it was a fitting end to the volleyball program for 2022.

Approximately 20 learners descended on the scenic Constantia grounds with beautiful mountain views on a hot sunny Tuesday to take on their fellow Waldorf counterparts. 

The class 7s played the first set and in a spirited performance lost the set 21-7. Set two saw our more senior players win the set 21-17 and the third and final set, 21-13. 

As a bonus play and in the true sporting spirit both teams mixed and played a fun game where the points didn’t really matter. 

All of the learners are now even more keen to play other schools in the area. 

Big thank you to the parents who pitched in the lifts and the solid support from the sidelines. It was well worth mentioning that some learners came along to support the team. Michael Oak was strong in both team spirit and team presence.

Coach Ravi

Our Community

Dads, Dudes & Kids Camp 2023

SAVE THE DATE: 10-12 March 2023

Our Dads, Dudes and Kids Camp for 2023 will be held from Friday 10 March to Sunday 12 March 2023. This is a highlight of the school year for the Primary School. Please save the date and look out for pre-camp meeting dates and further details early next year. 

Wishing you a wonderful holiday!  

The Camp Committee

Piano Examination Results

This year the following six Michael Oak pianists played face-to-face piano examinations . . . the exams happening again after a "covid break" of three years.

The results from the September session of ABRSM (Royal Schools) exams:

  • Shazadi Jardine, grade 1 distinction
  • Amelie O'Hagan, grade 2 merit
  • Anna van Helden, grade 2 distinction

The results from the October session of Trinity College London:

  • Tara Younge, grade 2 distinction 
  • Shan-Ian Yang, grade 3 merit
  • Anna Verboom, grade 3 distinction 

Congratulations to them all! 

And particular extra commendation to Anna Verboom. She was awarded 100%, a rare and special achievement in music exams!!

Jean Cohen
Piano teacher

The 12 senses - an introduction

Our senses are the windows for our soul into the physical world. Well-known are the five senses sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch. Later in history, the sense of balance and the sense of movement (proprioception) were added.

Besides those seven physiologically described senses, Rudolf Steiner found five more senses, which give us direct access to the world without the necessity of conclusion or deduction by the means of our mental capacities.

These senses are:

  • the sense of life,
  • the sense of warmth,
  • the sense of speech or language,
  • the sense of thoughts, and
  • the sense of the other self.

Of course, we need our mental capacities to put into context our sensual experiences with our memories and acquainted knowledge of the world, but the sense perceptions as such are primary processes.

These 12 senses can be grouped into:

  1. the lower senses, which are mainly connected to our bodily existence: the senses of touch, life, movement, balance.

  2. the senses which give us access to the physical world surrounding us, which are the senses of smell, taste, vision and warmth.

  3. the social or higher senses, which open us up to the experience of a social and/or spiritual sphere. These are the senses of hearing, speech/language, thoughts and the other self.

The lower senses are the base of development of the higher senses and as such need a careful education, especially in our times, as experiences within this sphere are often reduced and poor due to our modern life.

When looking closer to this matter we find that psychological disturbances such as anxieties, restlessness, hyperactivity are closely connected to underdeveloped, neglected or disturbed lower senses.

The deficient development of certain skills, for example mathematical or geometric skills, disturbances of speech development, auditory perception or dyslexia may also have their origin in poorly fostered or disturbed lower senses.

Even concentration problems and difficulties with conducting a task to its end are often caused by deficiencies or neglect within the sphere of the lower senses at an early age.

Meanwhile, it is well known in science research that for children, each hour in front of a screen means an hour less for their healthy development and thus may result in severe developmental and/or psychological problems.

The task of Waldorf education is to support each child by an understanding of his or her individual development through the seven-year periods, in which the development of the 12 senses is embedded.

Angelika Schütze


Rudolf Steiner:  
Menschenkunde GA 293, 8.Vortrag                              
Das Rätsel des Menschen GA 170, 7. und 14 Vortrag
Grenzen der Naturerkenntnis GA 322, 8.Vortrag
Georg v. Arnim:
Bewegung, Sprache, Denkkraft
Henning Köhler:
Von ängstlichen, traurigen und unruhigen Kindern
Vom Rätsel der Angst

Fundraising for Michael Oak
Raise funds for the school every time you use your MySchool card.

Apply for your card online at or come to the office.
Interested in advertising in our newsletter?
See details at the bottom of this section.
Excellent Gardener Seeks Work
Lot - our excellent gardener, is looking for an extra day of work. Lot is Chatama’s son and is trustworthy, hard working and versatile. Contact Ilana 0763967977 or 0217950965 for references and Lot’s contact details.
Malawian Domestic Seeks Work
Stella - our Malawian domestic for the past 6 years is looking for additional work. She is extremely hard working and a lovely presence in the home. She works for 2 other Waldorf families. Contact  Ilana 0763967977 or 0217950965  for references and Stella’s contact details.
Garden Cottage to Rent
Lovely furnished garden cottage to rent on the doorstep of Michael Oak Waldorf School. One large bedroom en suite, lounge, study, recently renovated full, separate kitchen. Plenty of newly built-in cupboards.  Under cover private braai patio with built-in braai and lots of outdoor space.  Off-street parking with separate access. Suitable for a single person.  R8500 per month includes electricity and water. Telephone or Whatsapp Lorraine on 083 530 8181.  Optional additional 40sqm studio available to rent as well.  Available from 9 January 2023.
Holiday House Offer
Do you have friends/family visiting Cape Town over Christmas/New Year? Our 4-bedroom house in Plumstead will be available to rent between 27 December and 14 January. If you are interested, contact Helen on 083 941 9323.
Holiday Accommodation

We have a yoga studio in lower Kenilworth with an ensuite bathroom and kitchenette available for holiday rental. It opens onto a garden patio with a plunge pool and includes off street parking. This would be suitable for a couple looking for affordable rustic accommodation over the holiday period. Available to friends and family in our community. Different options are negotiable from R800 to R2 200 for the 3-bedroomed house. Contact Philippa 084 269 9884.

Xmas Organic Body Product Workshops

Body Sense studio will be hosting personal workshops in early December. Gather a group of besties and book an evening of delight learning to make your own organic skin products body butter, face cream, make up, deodorant , toothpaste, candles and cards. BubbleS and Beauty!  From R500p/p  from 6-9pm 6-10 people. Contact Philippa to make a booking 084 269 9884

Job Openings at Waldorf Schools
Extramurals and Courses at Michael Oak
Courses, Events & Services in the Community
Advertising in the Leaflet
Adverts will be published a maximum of 3 times per school term.
Posters should be 560px wide with text large enough to read on a mobile device.
Please send community notices and display adverts to:

All advertisers are expected to make a contribution to our Bursary Fund. 
Minimum donation of R50 for community notices and R100 for display adverts.
Please use these bank details for EFT transfers: 
Standard Bank  /  Branch: 02510900  /  Acc. No.: 071885382 
Acc Name:  Michael Oak School Fundraising   /   Ref: ‘Leaflet-Ad’

DEADLINE for all adverts is Thursday 12 noon

Please note that advertisements and posts do not necessarily represent the
views or opinions of the Leaflet editorial team or Michael Oak Waldorf School.
Term Dates 2023

The 2023 dates will be as follows:

PS & HS: Tuesday, 17 January - Friday, 24 March 
PG & KG: Wednesday, 18 January/Thursday, 19 January - Thursday, 23 March
Note 1: KG staggered start: younger children start on Wednesday and older children on Thursday
Note 2: PG also has staggered start from Wednesday, 18 January

PS & HS: Wednesday, 12 April - Friday, 23 June
PG & KG: Wednesday, 12 April - Wednesday, 21 June

PS & HS: Tuesday, 18 July - Friday, 22 September
PG & KG: Tuesday, 18 July - Thursday, 21 September

KG, PS & HS: Tuesday, 10 October - Friday, 8 December
PG: Tuesday, 10 October - Thursday, 7 December

School Ending Times 2022

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