Michaelmas Season at Waldorf School of Louisville


Michaelmas, Knighting & Dragon Faire

Brave and true I will be
Each good deed sets me free.
Each kind word makes me strong.
I will fight for the right,
I will conquer the wrong.

Like other Waldorf schools around the world, WSL celebrates Michaelmas by telling stories and legends of Saint Michael. At Waldorf, festivals mark the changing seasons and establish the rhythm of the year.  In the Classroom, children hear stories of courage and bravery. In our Faire and Festival life, the children process these stories though games requiring courage, strength, and teamwork.  In our Early Childhood program, we host the Festival of Courage, while in the Grades Program, we mark the occasion with a 2nd Grade knighting Ceremony, and a community wide Dragon Faire celebration after school.

What is Michaelmas, and why do we celebrate it at WSL?

Harvest festivals are celebrated at different times of the year by cultures all around the world, giving thanks and gratitude for the Earth’s bounty. Michaelmas is traditionally celebrated in late September, near the autumnal equinox. In the Northern Hemisphere this is a time when the warm slow days of summer are changing to crisp, cool autumn air. The trees are changing, and crops ripen, as the days grow shorter and we turn towards the coming darkness of winter. This time of transition coincides with the beginning of the new school year, and all the changes that enfold as children begin a new grade.  

Michaelmas has its roots in the pagan harvest festivals of the Middle Ages and celebrates the Archangel Michael. Michael is the only angel who is mentioned by name in all three of the sacred texts of the Torah (Judaism), the Bible (Christianity), and the Qur’an (Islam). He is a symbol of courage, goodness, and truth.
Celebrating Michaelmas is about finding the courage to look deep within and find our own pure goodness and truth. In this way we prepare the children to find the strength to overcome their own inner dragons.

Michael offers 4 gifts to humanity: strength, courage, the will to do deeds, and love. The dragons we all face are fear, greed, and judgment of others. We must not slay our inner dragons or we would not live in freedom. Instead, Michael teaches us that we must find the strength to overcome them. Our new Knights, and those children who have already experienced this rite of passage, are charged with embodying the spirit of Michael, and going out into the world as beacons of upright behavior, goodness, light and courage.

Michaelmas reminds us all that as the days grow darker we can find our own light within, and share it to illuminate the path for the children in our care and keeping.

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End of Year Round Up

The 2023-2024 School Calendar is Available Now Please note all dates are subject to change Last Day of School Thursday, 6/1/23  with a noon dismissal.

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