A feeling of social inclusion is key to a child’s happiness and success in school, and the conscious development of social skills from an early age may be one of the most lasting benefits of a Waldorf education.
The Waldorf model takes the long-term view that, as with academic learning, healthy social interaction must be self-motivated. Our teachers seek to provide students with important social skills that will enable to them interact compassionately with others, to create a sense of community, and to confront and resolve conflicts within their community.
For more about social skills in the Waldorf Curriculum, read this three part series from professor and Waldorf parent Stephanie Greer.
It’s almost August and the kids go back to school on August 26th! Here are some August dates to keep in mind. Mark your calendar or Download ours HERE.
Office reopens (Closed starting July 25)
New Family Orientation – 6 PM
Welcome Back Dinner – 6:30 PM
Reconnect with your school community! We hope to see you all there for this adults only event, sponsored by the Parent Council.
Early Childhood Open House – 10 AM
Young students and their families are welcome to come and get acclimated to their early childhood classroom, classmates, and teachers.
First Day of School – 8:15 to 8:30 AM drop off
Rose Ceremony – 9AM
All are welcome to watch our Grade One students formally enter the grades, with the guidance of their Grade Eight buddies.
Early Dismissal – 2 PM
For the Labor Day Weekend
August 4th from 9 a.m.-11:00 a.m., join us to experience the rhythmic, warm, sensory-rich experience of a Waldorf Early Childhood class.
On this day, you can join your child and walk through the rhythmic, warm, sensory filled experience of a Waldorf early childhood classroom The morning will include circle time, bread baking and story time lead by our Nursery Preschool teacher, Miss Kathy.
This unique experience is free, but registration is required due to limited space.
As a special offer, parents who choose to apply for preschool following this experience will be discounted the application fee ($70). Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you have questions.
There are many examples of how Waldorf education introduces learning material in an age-appropriate manner. Most parents are concerned about how and at what age academics are introduced, but “age-appropriateness” in learning also encompasses considerations of when young minds are ready for formal music training, when children are socially able to grasp and relate to world history, or when Socratic inquiry in science can resonate within a curious adolescent.
Rich Edwards, father of two Spring Garden Waldorf alumni, says the age-appropriate curriculum was one of the most important factors in the decision to give his daughters a Waldorf education.
The question of age-appropriateness applies to foreign language, physical education training, even recess time. Here are some examples of age appropriate curriculum at SGWS:
- No standardized testing for young students (SGWS begins standardized testing in Grade Four)
- No homework for young students (homework typically begins, in small amounts, in Grade Three)
- Lots of outdoor and active time, in both learning and free play, for all students
- Teaching of reading and math concepts begins in Grade One (not Pre-K)
- Foreign language begins when children are young (Grade One)
- Music begins in Pre-K; Music training (pentatonic flute and choral) in Grade One
- Cooperative games begin in Grade One / Competitive sports begin in Grade Five
- Nature studies for science in Grade One / Science lab work in Grade Seven
See these resources for more information on age-appropriate curriculum:
Moving Through the Grades Curriculum Articles:
Many of our prospective parents wrestle with the decision of whether to send their children to a public school or to Spring Garden Waldorf School. There are many differences between public education and Waldorf education, though a general summary might be that Waldorf education places a high value on art, critical thinking, and creativity, and does not begin academic instruction before the age of seven. Public school, on the other hand, puts a high value on standardized and measurable academics, with a focus on math and reading starting at age five.
Watch this video to learn why one public school teacher chose to send her son to Spring Garden Waldorf School. Or for read this article more information about the differences between Waldorf and Public school.