Waldorf schools honour and protect the wonder of childhood. Every effort is expended to make Waldorf schools safe, secure and nurturing environments for children and to support their need to play, be a part of nature and build strong foundations for future success. Waldorf education has a consistent philosophy of child development underlying the curriculum. All subjects are introduced in an age-appropriate fashion from Kindergarten to the grade school. Waldorf schools produce well-rounded graduates who are academically advantaged and who consistently gain admission to top universities.
Regardless of the capacity of a child we defer formal reading until the child has reached Grade 1. This allows a child to defer abstract training until their change of teeth, and so enjoy the immersive, dreamy world of early childhood. A simple yet rich range of experiences without academic stimulation strengthens children’s well being and provides a strong foundation for physical health, future work and future thinking.
Our education suits a wide range of children and is helpful to children who enjoy insightful teachers and a warm and friendly environment. The confidence and support of parents who have a good understanding of the schools ’aims is very helpful to their children.
All sciences begin with simple nature experiences in kindergarten and the early grades, and advance with the study of chemistry, biology, botany, zoology, modern physics acoustics, heat, magnetism and electricity in upper grades. The emphasis is on direct encounters with observable phenomena: “Describe what happened. Evaluate what you have observed. What are the conditions under which the phenomena appear? How does this relate to what you already know?” Then students are asked to think through the experiment and discover the natural law that stands behind and within the phenomena
A full assessment of each student’s progress is provided in the form of a year-end narrative assessment in all subject areas. These assessments are supported by teacher conferences and class meetings throughout the year.
The reasons for this have as much to do with the physical effects of the medium on the developing child as with the questionable content of much of the programming. Electronic media are believed by Waldorf teachers to seriously hamper the development of the child’s imagination – a faculty which is believed to be central to the healthy development of the individual. Computer use by young children is also discouraged. Waldorf teachers are not, by the way, alone in this belief. Several books have been written in recent years expressing concern with the effect of television on young children. See, for instance, Endangered Minds by Jane Healy, Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television by Jerry Mander, or the Plug-In Drug by Marie Winn.
Waldorf schools are non-sectarian and non-denominational. They educate all children, regardless of their cultural or religious backgrounds.
Dr. Rudolf Steiner was a highly respected and well-published scientific, literary and philosophical scholar who was particularly known for his work on Goethe’s scientific writings. He later came to incorporate his scientific investigations with his interest in spiritual development. He became a forerunner in the field of spiritual-scientific investigation for the modern 20th century individual. His background in history and civilizations coupled with his observation in life gave the world the gift of Steiner Waldorf Education. It is a deeply insightful application of learning based on the Study of Humanity with a developing consciousness of self and the surrounding world.
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