When parents are touring our school and walk into one of our early childhood classrooms we usually hear a sigh and often a comment like “I wish I could have come to school here”. When you see the orderly classroom filled with natural play objects, special art materials and wooden furniture you can see and feel that it is a place where young children can thrive. If, on your tour, you are able to see the teacher in a circle with the children reciting a story with movements and them imitating her every move and word, you will have a taste of the experience that the students receive every day in our unique program.
The Waldorf approach to early childhood education is largely imitative, sensory, and based on play. Our teachers create a thoughtful routine that provides a rhythm to the day, the week and honors the larger rhythms of the seasons. These rhythms form the basis of the stories, puppet plays, activities and artistic experiences that happen in the cozy home-like environment.
There is daily outdoor playtime and a warm snack is served to all of the children. We strive to create an environment and activities that are worthy of imitation in a setting that allows the child’s own imagination to flourish.
In Waldorf theories of child development there is an emphasis on supporting the childs’ physical development, motor skills and imitative capacity in approximately the first seven year period of life. This prepares a student to be fully capable to begin formal multi-disciplinary academic instruction in grade school.
We have the following programs:
- A 3 or 5-day preschool, typically for three year olds, called Chickadees
- A 4 or 5-day mixed-age kindergarten, typically for four to six year olds, called Willow Wind
- A mixed-age preschool/kindergarten combined class that runs a full day, 5 days a week, called Morning Glory