Play, The Work of Childhood
The Waldorf Kindergarten is a haven for childhood, where the young child can develop at a pace that is nurturing and unhurried. Kindergarten classrooms are harmonious, homelike environments that are beautiful, warm and nurturing. In these environments, imagination and creativity flourish with children participating in meaningful tasks that develop coordination and cooperative social skills, while unfolding creative and imaginative capacities that build a strong foundation for later academics. At this age, children respond to their environment and learn by imitation, so kindergarten teachers model reverence for beauty and goodness.
Children have ample time for free, imaginative play. The kindergarten room, bathed in natural light, is filled with natural, open-ended play things such as cut rounds of branches, polished stones, wooden toys, handmade dolls, beeswax and shells. Fibers such as wool, silk and cotton also provide varied textures that enhance the child’s sensory integration. The wooden play kitchen and doll corner invite children to play the roles of life that they experience all around them. The open-ended quality of these simple, natural toys leaves much to the child’s imagination. Our classrooms embrace the motion that is characteristic of all young children and give time and space for the children to move and climb.
The rhythm of the day flows seamlessly from imaginative play, to a seasonal circle time of songs, verses and movement, a time for tidying the room, a shared wholesome snack around a beautifully set table, outdoor play, stories and puppet plays. Kindergartners always enjoy an abundance of fresh air and spend a good portion of every day outdoors.
We currently offer two mixed-age Kindergarten classes: The Rose Garden and Butterfly Garden. Our kindergarten classes welcome children 3 years to 6 years of age and are guided by a lead teacher with an assistant. Classes are held Monday through Friday from 8:30am to 12:30pm. We have options for children to attend 2, 3 or 5 days each week. For those parents who require care for their children in the afternoon, there is a lunch / nap option from 12:30pm to 3:00pm daily. During the lunch / nap program, children sit together to enjoy a packed lunch from home and then rest during a peaceful quiet time.
If a child has been able in his play to give his whole being to the world around him, he will be able in later life to devote himself with confidence and power to the service of the word ~ Rudolf Steiner