Grades 1 to 8
Educating the Whole Child
The Waldorf curriculum awakens and nourishes healthy intellectual, physical and emotional development in students, and provides a dynamic, multi-dimensional educational experience. We educate the whole child, “head, heart and hands.”
How will your child benefit from a Waldorf education? Our students are not rushed through childhood by academic expectations that exceed their developmental stages. Instead, our teachers cultivate a life-long love of learning with an academic curriculum that is developmentally-appropriate and includes appealing, hands-on activities. Our children learn by doing, figuring out problems and finding opportunities while building respectful relationships in an environment that highly values individuality.
What does this look like in a classroom? Our students are engaged both physically and mentally with projects that strengthen the logical and creative sides of the brain. They do not sit still for long stretches of time or use screen technology that limits creativity and learning capacity by doing the work for them. Our students also spend a lot of time outdoors for projects, recess breaks, and on field trips. Our property includes five acres of forest and provides unique opportunities to engage children in hands-on learning.
A recent survey of North American Waldorf graduates showed 89% are highly satisfied with their choice of occupation and 90% highly value tolerance of other viewpoints. Read on to learn more about how we inspire learning. You can find more curriculum information on these pages:
The Class and Subject Teachers
In grades one to eight, ensuring a broad and balanced education requires the collaboration of many class teachers, subject teachers, support staff and specialists, as well as parental guidance. Teachers cultivate the academic and social potential of every student and create a supportive learning environment where students are accountable for their own work and the contribution they make to the group.
The class teacher is the child’s primary educator and mentor, and ideally remains with the students all the way from grade one to grade eight. In this way a deep relationship between teacher and child can develop, based on trust, respect and understanding and where each child’s individual needs are recognized.
The class teacher begins each day with a two-hour main lesson where the students focus on a core academic topic such as science, mathematics, language arts, or history. Each particular main lesson topic is explored intensely for a three or four week “block” during which students approach the subject from a range of academic, artistic and hands-on activities.
After the main lesson, each day is divided into four, 45 minute periods or 35 minutes for the younger students. During this time, subject teachers instruct the students in specialist classes such as French, German, handwork, music, eurythmy, physical education, woodwork, and visual arts. Whenever possible, subject teachers align their work with the content and rhythm of the main lesson. These subjects follow their own arc of development throughout the grades, again in relation to the growing needs and capacities of the student.