Deciding on the right preschool program is always a stressful time for parents. If you are considering enrolling your child in a Waldorf preschool program, then you’ve come to the right place!
Here is some information to help you decide if a Waldorf early education program will meet the needs of your child:
Waldorf Preschool Program Basics
Waldorf preschools use a model of teacher-led curriculum with learning opportunities being generated through wholesome natural environments, materials, play, and situations. It is believed that it is through appropriate play that children learn to appreciate their place in the world.
For example, the preschool teacher may read a story and then the children will be asked to dress in clothing items made of natural materials and act out a scene from the story. They may also be asked to sculpt a character from the story out of natural beeswax modeling clay. Through these actions, the children are learning listening comprehension, acting, and art skills.
Intimate Learning Environment
While Waldorf programs are teacher-led, classes should be small in size. Each child should have adequate interaction time with their teacher during the day. There should also be enough children present so that group play activities are possible. Waldorf philosophy believes that learning environments should be similar to those of a child’s home but with additional children to share learning with.
Wholesome Organic Food Preparation and Consumption
One of the tenements of the Waldorf philosophy is that children should be raised both eating and preparing wholesome organic foods. In preschool programs, children will learn how to garden, pick, and prepare simple fruits and vegetables. Additionally, during the winter season, there may be lessons on baking bread and making simple stews.
Natural Play Materials and Art Supplies
Children in Waldorf school programs are introduced to natural play and art materials. It is believed that children for centuries have learned about their world through materials easily accessible for everyone. For this reason, you will see the following supplies often used in Waldorf early education programs:
- natural fabric dolls
- natural fabric costumes
- beeswax modeling clay
In addition, paper made of cotton fibers is often used with natural pigment paints.
By exploring a variety of preschool program options for your child, you can locate the preschool program that will meet your child’s needs and provide them with a year of fun and learning. If you feel that a Waldorf early childhood education may be the answer for your child, then you should contact a local Waldorf preschool for a consultation appointment and a tour. For more information about your child’s education options, contact a company like Foundations Child Development Center Inc.