Waldorf in the News

Following the stories about our school, there are interesting articles related to the principles of Waldorf education.

Stories about Halton Waldorf School:

Grade 8 student to launch balloon to the edge of space with the Canadian Space Agency, July 17, 2018, Government of Canada website

Earlier this year, 14-year-old Krishna Nair contacted the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) looking for guidance from experts in the field of stratospheric balloon flights. As part of a school assignment [at Halton Waldorf School, Burlington, ON], Krishna developed Project Taurus, which involved the design and launch of a weather balloon. On her first attempt, Krishna could not complete the launch and retrieval of her weather balloon successfully; hence, the CSA is inviting her to try again during the STRATOS campaign held in Timmins, Ontario.

Experiential Learning:  A natural and intuitive way to learn, August 2018, City Parent

As technology continues to transform the way we live and communicate with each other, it will also change the way we work. This shifting landscape has resulted in a change to the required skillset of our future workforce. The World Economic Forum has identified the top three job skills needed in 2020 as complex problem solving, critical thinking and creativity.  

At Halton Waldorf School, we encourage the development of these essential skills through an experiential learning community. A rich academic curriculum is interwoven with daily arts, music, movement, and meaningful hands on experiences, which create opportunities for students to engage in their own learning. Read more…

Halton Waldorf School adding high school curriculums, June 11, 2018, InsideHalton.com
A private school in Burlington is expanding its curriculum to include high school. Currently an elementary school with 185 students, Halton Waldorf school is adding what it describes as “a fully-accredited, academically rigorous high school, making it a unified kindergarten through Grade 12 experience.” The school in the city’s east end will begin with a Grade 9 class this September. Construction of the secondary school will begin this summer on a property within walking distance of the current school, at the corner of Orchard Road and Dryden Avenue. There will be a temporary location of the high school nearby. The one-storey high school will be built in two phases and have a capacity for a maximum of 100 students.

April Open House, 2018, Snapd Burlington
Families were invited to visit the classrooms and playground at the Halton Waldorf School at their open house on April 28. Parents came to talk about their expectations, the kids just came to play, teachers and administrators answered questions on how the Waldorf school integrates academics and the arts. Halton Waldorf School is a private, independent, non-profit school offering programs for infants through to grade eight. The Burlington school belongs to a community of over 2,500 Waldorf schools world-wide.

Halton Waldorf School Presented with New School Award at Bay Area Science and Engineering Fair, March 27, 2018, BASEF.ca

Two of our grade 8 students Sydney and Krishna, participated in the Bay Area Science and Engineering Fair (BASEF) held at Mohawk College this past week. For over 50 years, the Fair has provided a forum for grade 7 – 12 students to develop their scientific skills. This year there were 450 participants and 350 projects presented.

Krishna and Sydney’s presentations of their Grade 8 projects at the fair resulted in Halton Waldorf School being awarded the BASEF 500 New School Award. The accompanying monetary prize will be used to buy new science equipment for the school. Krishna was also awarded the Silver Medal Merit Award for her project and a $1,000 scholarship to Mohawk College. Congratulations Sydney and Krishna!

Halton Waldorf School participates in postcard exchange in celebration of 100 years, February 14, 2018, InsideHalton.com
Students at Halton Waldorf School are participating in a worldwide postcard exchange to kick off the 100th anniversary of Waldorf education next year. Read more…

February Open House, 2018, Snapd Burlington
Halton Waldorf School prides itself on revolutionizing education by integrating academics and the arts. Families were invited to visit their classrooms, theatre and playground, as well as chat with teachers and administrators on the morning of February 3 at their open house. Read more…

October Open House, 2017, Snapd Burlington
For over 30 years, the Halton Waldorf School has delivered a rigorous and diverse curriculum that responds to the developmental needs of each child. On October 28, the community was invited to visit their classrooms and playground to see how they integrate academics and the arts. Read more…

The Orchard Street Festival, 2017, Snapd Burlington
The Halton Waldorf School hosted The Orchard Street Festival on October 1. The circus spectacular event was designed to bring the neighbourhood together to have fun, enjoy meeting each other and generate feelings of community pride. Read more…

Chalk it up to childhood fun, October 6, 2017, The Burlington Post
Hundreds attended last weekend’s Orchard Street Festival, an event organized by the Halton Waldorf School community. The event closed down a section of Orchard Road last Sunday afternoon.

Developing a lifelong love of reading, September 2017, City Parent

The first time you hear your child confidently read aloud from a book is a very special moment. You feel excited that a whole new world has opened up for them and proud that they have mastered such a difficult task.  Read more…

4th Annual Waldorf Founders’ Cup Golf Tournament, Snapd Burlington
Halton Waldorf and Toronto Waldorf Schools hosted their 4th annual Waldorf Founders’ Cup Golf Tournament at the beautiful Indian Wells Golf Club last month. The day included lunch, a round of golf, a cocktail reception after golf, dinner and a silent auction.

‘Wired Child’ Author Talks to Burlington Parents About Setting Screen Time Limits, InsideHalton.com
 California psychologist Richard Freed spoke to about 50 people gathered Saturday at Burlington’s Halton Waldorf School. Read more…

How to Know When They’re Ready, Spring 2017, Kids Naturally
Transition to grade one can be a big change for some children. Read more…

Halton Waldorf School Winter Open House 2017, Snapd Burlington
Halton Waldorf School invited the community to come see how they are revolutionizing education. Families were invited to visit their classrooms and playground to see how they integrate academics and the arts.

Partnering Aldershot Press, Winter 2017
Compassion Society, with the generous help of scores of donors and more than a dozen of its own volunteers, was able to provide Christmas gifts for 863 people – 409 children and 454 adults. “Baskets of Love” were prepared by Halton Waldorf Grade 8 students and their teacher, Tammi Gerrard.

Culture in The Orchard, October 2016, SnapdOakville
Halton Waldorf School hosted Culture in The Orchard on October 1, for the whole Halton community to come and enjoy. There were art displays, both from the students and from members of the Art Gallery of Burlington, who brought their travelling roadshow to the school for their final visit of the season. The Burlington Student Theatre performed and presented their 2017 line up, and the Southern Ontario Lyric Opera….

Loving My School From Day 1!, Fall 2016, Kids Naturally
How do you enhance childhood and family experiences? Check out Waldorf….

Halton Waldorf School Spring Open House, 2016, Snapd Oakville
Halton Waldorf School held their Spring Open House on April 23rd at their beautiful location in the Orchard Park neighbourhood. Parents and potential students had the opportunity to visit the classrooms, enjoy the playground and walk through the forest trails. Student work was on display in all the classrooms, and a dress rehearsal was in full swing for the upcoming grade eight students’ play. All this, combined with teachers, parents and current students on hand to answer any questions, gave parents a real feel of the school and what it had to offer to their children.

Hand craft felting project feature in Kids Naturally, Spring 2016
Halton Waldorf School’s grade six students make stuffed elephants based on their own paintings….

The Prince and the Pauper, Grade 8 play, Snapd Burlington, Spring 2016
On April 29, the Halton Waldorf School’s eighth grade class performed their spring play “The Prince and The Pauper.” The graduating class performs a different fantastic play each spring, and this year was no exception! The play was produced by the Grade 8 teacher, Suzanne Hill, and directed by Yo Mustafa. With great acting and a few laughs, the play was a success. Food and beverages were also served.

Burlington Post Readers’ Choice Awards – Best Private School, March 2016

Arts and Science Workshops at HWS, Snapd Burlington, Winter 2016
Halton Waldorf School presented a morning of free arts and science workshops led by the faculty members. Eurythmy, felting and a science lab were all available in the class rooms. The supplies were provided, giving parents, guests and members of the community an opportunity to explore and learn in a Waldorf environment.

Hands on learning: Waldorf system helps children’s development, Kids Naturally
An article written by Halton Waldorf School
As early as infancy, as children suck on fingers and grasp objects of interest, their hands transmit important sensory information to boost brain development. In Waldorf education, hands on learning is a fundamental part of the philosophy and children learn best when they are both mentally and physically engaged…

Halton Waldorf School 30th Annual Christmas Fair 2015, Snapd Oakville
Halton Waldorf School held their 30th Annual Christmas Fair on November 22nd. There were festive activities, delicious food and lots of options for gifts from local vendors. There were also great activities for children to participate in; candle dipping, decorating candleholders or cookies, going on a forest quest or see a puppet show. For the more adventurous ones there was an outdoor obstacle course or zip lining to try. This was a terrific event and a great way to kick off the holiday season!

Halton Waldorf School Christmas Fair 2015, Snapd Burlington
The Halton Waldorf School held their 30th annual Christmas Fair on November 22. This event would not have been possible without the help and support of all the parents. Everyone was invited to join in on candle dipping, cookie decorating and other crafts. There was a puppet show and a choir singing beautiful Christmas carols. There were a number of gifts and goodies available from a number of different vendors – a great way to kick off the holiday season!

Halton Waldorf School Fall Open House 2015, Snapd Oakville
Halton Waldorf School, an independent, accredited, non-profit school, recently held an Open House at their beautiful location in the Orchard Park neighbourhood of northeast Burlington. Parents and potential students had the opportunity to visit the classrooms and playground, walk through the forest trails, see the outdoor bread oven, the woodworking shop and much more. Student work was also on display in all the classrooms, from kindergarten to grade eight. All this, combined with the teachers, parents and current students on hand to answer any questions, gave parents a real feel of the school and what it had to offer to their children.

Waldorf Says No to Wi-Fi, Burlington Post
You may think Steve Jobs would not agree, but administrators at the Halton Waldorf School believe the late Apple co-founder would be OK with how they operate their business.
The private school in Burlington has an ‘old school’ attitude towards technology, banning computers from its classrooms and having no Wi-Fi capability throughout the Orchard Road facility….

HWS “Snapd” During Christmas Fair 2014
Check out these photos and article by Teresa Baerg of Snapd Burlington.

Stories related to the principles of Waldorf Education:

Silicon Valley school with no computers, CNN
Watch this three minute news feature and see why these high-tech parents choose a no-tech school for their children.

Physically active math, spelling lessons multiply academic success, CBC News
Adding jumping jacks and running on the spot to math and language classes helps students to learn, say Dutch researchers, adding to findings on the benefits of physically active lessons. In Wednesday’s issue of the journal Pediatrics, researchers compared standardized math and spelling test scores for 499 children who were randomly assigned to physically active math and language lessons or regular instructions for two years. The students in the physically active group were four months ahead of the others….

Is there hope for a Return to Common Sense in Early Childhood Education?, AlterNet
I have watched in disbelief as preschoolers have been pushed to acquire knowledge at younger and younger ages. I have been involved in education long enough to know that, much like the children riding the painted ponies on the carousel of time in Joni Mitchell’s song, “The Circle Game,” education trends often go round and round. So after years of (erroneously) pressuring early childhood programs to prepare children for college and career, perhaps we are finally seeing the light at the end of what I see as a very long and dark tunnel of developmentally inappropriate expectations and instruction for our youngest learners. As an early childhood educator….

A teacher gave her 8-year-old students iPads and discovered one huge drawback, Quartz
When Launa Hall, a teacher in northern Virginia, gave each of her third graders an iPad, they were psyched. Many of them had never had a tablet, and the appeal, was immediate and powerful, she writes in the Washington Post.   …But there was a cost. Kids stopped conversing with each other as much….

Knitters and Coders: separated at birth?, Computer Science for Fun
People often say that computers are all around us, but you could still escape your phone and iPod and go out to the park, far away from the nearest circuit board if you wanted to. It’s a lot more difficult to get away from the clutches of computation itself though. For one thing, you’d have to leave your clothes at home. Queen Mary Electronic Engineer Karen Shoop tells us about the code hidden in knitting, and what might happen when computers learn to read it….

Why We Need to Separate Kids from Tech — Now, San Jose Mercury News
It doesn’t seem that long ago that many parents felt guilty for using even the highly acclaimed “Sesame Street” to baby-sit their kids while they cooked dinner. But a not-so-funny thing happened on our way to our high-tech-enamored world of 2015: Children’s recreational use of screens, phones and entertainment media has exploded. “It’s up considerably from years past,” says Richard Freed, a Walnut Creek child and adolescent psychologist, in his new book, “Wired Child: Debunking Popular Technology Myths.” Digital entertainment is now the “dominant activity in their lives,” says Freed, who is also the father of two daughters, 11 and 7….

Why Our Children Need to Get Outside and Engage with Nature, The Guardian
A growing body of evidence is starting to show that it’s not so much what children know about nature that’s important, as what happens to them when they are in nature (and not just in it, but in it by themselves, without grownups). Respectable scientists – doctors, mental health experts, educationalists, sociologists – are beginning to suggest that when kids stop going out into the natural world to play, it can affect not just their development as individuals, but society as a whole….

Why Schools are Failing Our Boys, by Jennifer Fink, The Washington Post
My 8-year-old son has been struggling in school. Again. Re-entry after winter break has not been easy for him. The rules and restrictions of school – Sit Still. Be Quiet. Do What You Are Told, Nothing More, Nothing Less. – have been grating on him, and it shows. His teacher recently emailed me; she’d noticed a change in his behavior (more belligerent, less likely to cooperate) and wanted to know if there was anything going on at home. My guess, I said, was that he was upset about having to be back in school after break. I was right. The lack of movement and rigid restrictions associated with modern schooling are killing my son’s soul….

More Than a Thousand “Experience a Revolution” With Rob Stewart and BurlingtonGreen, by Jackie Prime
Rob Stewart, award-winning biologist, conservationist, photographer and creator of acclaimed films Sharkwater and Revolution, took the stage for two inspirational events at the Performing Arts Centre on October 21st, 2014. Stewart shared stories…

Here’s Why Writing Things Out By Hand Makes You Smarter, by Drake Baer, Business Insider
Typing is fast. Handwriting is slow. Weirdly, that’s precisely why handwriting is better suited to learning….

Learning How to Juggle, by Mr. Burnstein and Jackie Davis, City of Lakes Waldorf School
This is a lofty goal but it is by no means impossible. In fact, I am quite confident that we can get there…if…the students practice, practice, practice. Juggling will come easily to a few, can be attained with some hard work by most, and will be challenging and difficult to some. The hardest part is to persevere and not get discouraged if it is taking time. I will support each student the best I can to make sure they succeed. We have already begun to take several steps to learn this skill. I have given clear instructions and the students are on the road to success, but I need your help!  ….

Technology in the Classroom: Is it a Good Thing? by Shawna Cohen, October 8, 2014, Today’s Parent Magazine
As a former chair of student council at her daughter’s Toronto public school, Stacie Smith helped raise more than $40,000. Most of that money went into increasing technology in the classroom, including buying a set of iPads for the kindergarten class, laptops for the grade-six class and SMART boards for the teachers who wanted them. Three years later, Smith regrets that decision big time. “If I had to do it all over again, I’d make a different choice,” she says, adding that she feels the money could have been better spent on sports equipment. That’s because Smith has since learned more about the negative impact of technology on young learners—thanks in part to her position as a marketing and communications consultant for the Toronto Waldorf School, a private school that famously eschews technology….

“Steve Jobs was a Low-Tech Parent” by Nick Bilton, September 10, 2014, The New York Times
When Steve Jobs was running Apple, he was known to call journalists to either pat them on the back for a recent article or, more often than not, explain how they got it wrong. I was on the receiving end of a few of those calls. But nothing shocked me more than something Mr. Jobs said to me in late 2010 after he had finished chewing me out for something I had written about an iPad shortcoming.

“So, your kids must love the iPad?” I asked Mr. Jobs, trying to change the subject. The company’s first tablet was just hitting the shelves. “They haven’t used it,” he told me. “We limit how much technology our kids use at home….”

“The Over-protected Kid” by Hannah Rosin, March 19, 2014, The Atlantic
A trio of boys tramps along the length of a wooden fence, back and forth, shouting like carnival barkers. “The Land! It opens in half an hour.” Down a path and across a grassy square, 5-year-old Dylan can hear them through the window of his nana’s front room. He tries to figure out what half an hour is and whether he can wait that long. When the heavy gate finally swings open, Dylan, the boys, and about a dozen other children race directly to their favorite spots, although it’s hard to see how they navigate so expertly amid the chaos. “Is this a junkyard?” asks my 5-year-old son, Gideon, who has come with me to visit. “Not exactly,” I tell him, although it’s inspired by one….

“Is Cursive a Lost Art?” by Harry W. Pope, March 25, 2014, Parents Canada
In the English speaking world, linking letters together first started to appear in a limited way during the 11th century, but handwriting resembling anything close to what we would recognize today did not come into its own until some 600 years later. Despite undergoing many varied changes over the passing years, it remains with us today. But for how much longer? Is cursive handwriting a dying art, and if it is, will anyone care?

A study conducted by Marianne McTavish, a professor who specializes in language and literary education at the University of British Columbia, showed a surprising result. Students were required to complete various writing tasks on a computer and by hand. The results showed that children who write well not only have better confidence and self-esteem, but also demonstrate far better concentration and an increased ability to express themselves creatively….

“The Rise of Alternative Education in China” by Johan Nylander, March 27, 2014, for CNN
When five-year-old Xiao Ge starts primary school in Guangzhou next year, she won’t endure strict discipline and mountains of homework. Unlike the school life of most children in China, her days will be filled with art, music and creative learning at a private Waldorf school.

Xiao is part of a fast-growing number of Chinese children whose parents are turning their backs on the state-run education system, which is based on rote learning and limited critical thinking. Instead, they are choosing independently-run schools that use the Waldorf, Montessori, or Reggio Emilia pedagogies….

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