Early Childhood

The Early Childhood Program at Prairie Moon Waldorf School

The Waldorf early childhood program fosters the development of the whole child—physically, emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually and nurtures the beginning of a life-long love of learning.  The program provides a healthy environment that nourishes the senses through imaginative play, artistic activity, simple crafts, language, verse, song, puppetry, fairy tales, and storytelling. The early childhood teacher’s goal is to create a harmonious environment that is nurturing, ordered and beautiful and to provide a comfortable transition from home life to school life.

Features of the program include:

  • Belief that imitation of the beautiful, meaningful and true enables the child to go forward in life with a sense of initiative and purpose.
  • Preserving the child’s sense of wonder and imagination.
  • Children should experience a balanced rhythm that inspires both inward reflection and outward action.
  • A teacher should cultivate the healthy development of the child’s will.
  • Whole foods and grains are provided at mealtimes.
  • Such activities as watercolor painting, modeling with beeswax, coloring and finger knitting help children develop small motor skills, coordination, and the ability to concentrate.
  • Only playthings made of natural materials such as silk scarves, wooden and cotton dolls and animals, wooden stands and toys, are provided.
  • Each child’s innate capacity for wonder, reverence and awe is nurtured and strengthened by the preparation for and celebration of the seasonal festivals.
  • Counting games and rhythmic activities build a solid foundation for arithmetic and number skills taught later in the grades program.
  • A country setting that allows for expansive play outside and gardening as part of the daily and weekly routines.
  • A homelike environment enables the child to comfortably flow between social and individual activities.
  • Structured group activities and free imaginative play are balanced.
  • Songs, nursery rhymes, poems, games, fairytales, puppets and plays cultivate familiarity with language and strengthen the memory, imagination and listening skills.
  • Circle time, snack time and story time teach the children to cooperate with a group and follow the leadership of the teacher.

Here is an article published in our first year as a school highlighting Prairie Moon’s early childhood program, from 2006.

© 2012 - Prairie Moon Waldorf School