A UNIQUE WAY OF LEARNING
Waldorf education is a holistic teaching method that doesn’t just rely on intellect but rather engages a child’s entire being for learning. Every subject is taught through art, music, movement, and story, allowing students with a variety of learning styles to thrive and achieve deeper comprehension. The playing field is leveled so children don’t just learn through textbooks and lectures. On any given day you may find a class painting, hiking, or singing while learning.
EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION
Our early childhood programs nourish the senses of the growing child through a healthy, warm, inviting environment. Our teachers nurture each child and family with care and intention. A balanced structure and curriculum lays a strong foundation for a child’s future academic success in the grade school.
- Activities of daily life: folding laundry and washing dishes
- Storytelling, puppet shows and finger plays
- Simple, natural materials and toys and handcrafted dolls
A significant transition happens between kindergarten and first grade. First grade provides a strong framework for classroom dynamics, desk-based work and group interactions. The curriculum introduces daily routines, methods and exercises from which academic, communicative and social skills develop.
- Four functions of math (Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication and Division)
- Reading, writing and spelling (taught using fairy tales)
- Spanish, music, watercolor painting (and other additional learning opportunities)
As children enter their second year of grade school, they are becoming more aware of their experience in a larger world and of the values and perspectives of others. Their sense of the inviolate security of immediate family is challenged and enhanced as they begin to establish a self-image that exists independently.
- Increasing complexity of four math operations
- Reading, writing, & spelling (taught using fables & legends)
- Symmetry & mirror drawing, Spanish, music, flute, crochet
At around nine years of age, students enter third grade and begin to experience a new sense of self as they ask and are confronted with the question, “Who am I in relation to others and to the world?” Waldorf educators identify this important transition and realization of selfhood as the nine-year change. At this time students move their feelings inward as they become more independent in thought and action.
- Long division & multiplication
- Old Testament bible stories, American Indian tales & legends
- Poetry, grammar & punctuation, Spanish
- Structure building, agriculture & gardening, music, recorder, crochet
Students are discovering the complexities of human motivations and emotions in the fourth grade. They study Norse Mythology and folktales that reflect human characteristics in the stories of the Norse Gods. These traditional tales center on strength of character, courage, self-sacrifice, and perseverance while revealing hidden motives, a character's fallibility and the challenges of working at cross purposes with others.
- Fractions, geometric forms
- Norse mythology, composition & book reports
- Spanish, local history & geography, zoology
- Mapmaking, orchestra, clay modelling, embroidery
Fifth grade is referred to as the “golden year” because students at this age are enthusiastic about learning, eager for new challenges and capable of hard work and creativity. Even in the social arena, they display a harmony that will soon be transformed by the pending complexities of the adolescent years.
- Decimals, fractions, metric system
- Descriptive writing
- Spanish, ancient history covering: India, Persia, & Greece, Greek mythology
- Botany & zoology, U.S. geography
- Wood carving, knitting on 4 needles, orchestra, Greek Pentathlon
At this stage of development the student’s world is delineated in absolutes (more inclusive thinking will develop in the future). The sixth grade curriculum focuses on strong guidelines and clear differentiation concepts as well as a morality of right and wrong.
- Business math, geometric drawing, & equations
- Physics, geology, botany, ancient Rome, medieval Europe, the Crusades, & Islam
- Expository, descriptive, & narrative writing
- North & South American geography
- Spanish, orchestra, recorder
Along with the changes brought about by puberty, adolescents begin to turn inward to seek themselves. The child at this age experiences a conflict in wanting to be accepted by the group, yet recognized as an individual. New powers of intellect emerge as critical thinking blossoms. The seventh grade curriculum aims to meet these developments through the themes of discovery, exploration, and transformation.
- Algebra, chemistry, physics
- Research papers, meteorology, astronomy, physiology
- Platonic solids, World & European History 1400-1700 (the Renaissance, Reformation, & Age of Exploration)
- African & European geography
- Woodworking, sewing, Spanish, orchestra
With the advent of puberty, eighth-graders’ capacity for logical thinking and independent judgment fully awakens. The class teacher brings enthusiasm to the individual student’s search for truth. The robust eighth grade curriculum allows the students to experience a sense of completion as they stand at the doorway to adulthood and prepare to leave our school.
- Geometry, chemistry, physics, physiology, Shakespeare
- Geography of Asia & Antarctic, World History 1700 – present,
- Spanish, orchestra, sewing, black & white charcoal drawing