Children’s Program

The Wake Up Festival offers a one-of-a-kind children’s program for children ages 3—13 during each day of the Festival. The curriculum includes outdoor exploration, storytelling, music-making, puppet shows, creative projects, and more. Led by experienced Waldorf educator Melina Claire Ponak, the children’s program allows your child to dive into their own unique celebration of play while you enjoy your transformational experience at the Wake Up Festival. Childcare is offered daily during the main Festival and Pre-Festival during the times listed below.  Parents will need to pick up children during meal times.

Pre-Festival

Monday, August 18th Orientation with parents at 4:30 pm
Tuesday, August 19th 9:00 am – 4:30 pm
Wednesday, August 20th 9:00 am – 4:30 pm

Main Festival

Wednesday, August 20th Orientation with parents at 4:30 pm
Wednesday, August 20th 6:00 pm – 10:30 pm
Thursday, August 21st 9:00 am – 10:30 pm
Friday, August 22nd 9:00 am – 10:30 pm
Saturday, August 23rd 9:00 am – 10:30 pm
Sunday, August 24th 9:00 am – 12:30 pm

Melina Claire PonakMelina Claire Ponak is a Waldorf Educator passionate about creative early childhood education and storytelling. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in the History of Ideas from McGill University and has extensive training in Waldorf pedagogy, medicinal herbalism, and therapeutic relations. She attributes her successful career as a teacher to her childhood love of voraciously devouring stories of all kinds, with a special preference for ancient myths and any story accompanied by music. While working on an organic farm, she discovered her beloved musical instrument: the Resonator Bells. With them she began to work as a freelance storyteller, puppeteer, and Waldorf Early Childhood educator. She resides in Boulder, Colorado where she teaches at Boulder Waldorf Kindergarten, a lovely farm-school, and Nevei Kodesh, a Jewish Renewal Congregation.

Children’s Program Registration

Main Festival Children’s Program $289

Pre-Festival Children’s Program $129

When you register for your Wake Up Festival pass, you will be given the option to add the children’s program to your purchase. If you have already purchased a Wake Up Festival ticket, please login to your registration and add the children’s program option.

“Truly, the best conference I have attended, not only because of the quality of presenters, but because of the experiential emphasis and the flowing structure.”

—GH

As the event approaches, you will be contacted by the Children’s Program facilitator and asked to fill out an information form and sign a waiver. These documents, as well as a letter to the parents and full activity schedule, can be viewed here.

As you prepare your children for the Wake Up Festival, please keep the following in mind:

  1. The program will begin with an orientation for parents and children to meet Melina and her staff. Breaks will be taken during meal times, and parents will be responsible for picking up their children for meals and returning them to the Boulder Field Room.
  2. We invite you to bring sharable toys and picture books. Some examples are blocks, trains, stuffed animals, and dress-up costumes. We ask that you not bring electronic toys—anything that brings them joy and doesn’t beep, flash, or come from a TV show is welcome.
  3. Snacks will be provided. The snack menu will be finalized after we review your information sheets, which ask about your child’s preferences and allergies.
  4. Please send each child with a backpack, a water bottle, sunscreen, a sunhat, sturdy shoes, swimsuit, and anything else you know they like to have outside.
  5. Every day includes time at the pool! The YMCA provides towels and there will be a lifeguard on duty, so just bring a swimsuit.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact Melina Ponak at melinaclaire@gmail.com or 303.527.0062.

“The Festival was by far the most inclusive, well-organized, most participatory, and well-balanced event of its kind that I have had the honor of attending. I really appreciated both the depth and breadth of offerings, the experiential nature, and the outstanding quality and range of presenters.”

—FT