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EARLY CHILDHOOD2022-08-11T17:54:48-07:00

“The essential task of the early childhood educator is to create the proper physical environment around the children. ‘Physical environment’ must be understood in the widest sense imaginable. It includes not just what happens around the children in the material sense, but everything that occurs in their environment, everything that can be perceived by their senses, that can work on the inner powers of the children from the surrounding physical space.” ~ Rudolf Steiner, The Education of the Child

Waldorf Pedagogy for the Young Child

Each day children are greeted by their teacher and welcomed into a beautiful classroom. They enjoy seasonal songs, movement, storytelling, puppetry, crafts, painting, soup and bread making, beeswax modelling, and creative play.

We strive to present our young students with a world of beauty to nurture their sense of ease, joy, and peace. Young children are very open to their environment, and their capacity to live deeply into all that surrounds them is at the root of their learning. We endeavour to provide an environment worthy of imitation. Children can play imaginatively and creatively, gradually developing a balanced feeling life, leading to a solid and creative capacity for thinking and lively intellectual life.

Young children benefit from a strong sense of routine and predictability, and we work with a very regular rhythm for our daily and weekly activities. Music and verses accompanied by movement; stories; practical activities including cooking, gardening, sewing; and artistic activities like painting, modelling and drawing; all contribute to the balanced, joyful, and healthy development of young children.

Parents of children in the Vancouver Waldorf School find themselves supported by a community of families who share and explore the challenges and experiences of bringing up children today.

Our early childhood center offers programs for young children from 18 months to 6½ years of age and is fully licensed. Our staff meet all licensing requirements and are experienced child-care providers with Waldorf training. We are full members of the Waldorf Early Childhood Association of North America (WECAN).

“Feelings are for the soul, what food is for the body.” ~ Rudolf Steiner

Head, Heart and Hands

Arts & Crafts2021-11-12T13:58:23-08:00

Wet-on-wet watercolour painting, beeswax modelling and crayon drawing, finger knitting, soup making, and bread baking lay the groundwork for artistic techniques useful in later years.

Circle Time2021-11-12T14:14:49-08:00

Stories, singing seasonal songs, reciting nursery rhymes and playing circle games boost memory work which is the foundation for healthy brain development. Circle time includes rich, pictorial language, rhythmic movement to delight the imagination of the growing child. A child’s love of reading begins with the sharing of stories.

Creative Play2021-11-15T23:24:03-08:00

Play is the central activity of early childhood education. Children delight in simple activities like baking bread, games, gardening, painting, arts and crafts, and even tidying up. We consider imagination an essential foundation of creative and critical thinking in later life.

Imitating Life2021-11-15T23:26:19-08:00

Participating in practical activities such as cooking, cleaning, and gardening, are a rewarding beginning of the organizational skills needed in life. Children are provided with a worthy environment to imitate in a healthy and meaningful way. Social responsibility starts with caring for our environment; we work together and with each other.

Literacy & Numeracy2021-11-12T15:31:25-08:00

Our approach builds a foundation of literacy that supports deep comprehension and a lifelong joy of reading. Stories, songs, verse, and nursery rhymes build vocabulary, memory, and sentence structure. Teacher-led games and activities promote an understanding of value and interest in numeracy.

Meals & Snack2021-11-29T18:44:47-08:00

Children enjoy a hot snack and lunch every day and participate in baking bread and making soup for the group. Grains include rice, millet, oats and quinoa. Eating together with their teacher and expressing gratitude for the food supports healthy eating habits, digestion, and organ development.

Movement2021-11-12T14:31:17-08:00

Movement helps integrate the senses, develop motor skills, and build cooperation. Fine motor skills are developed through cooking, painting, circle time, and free play.

Music2021-11-12T13:11:21-08:00

Children sing throughout the day. Music becomes a soothing influence, often used to transition children from one activity to another and foster musical appreciation.

Outdoor Exploration2021-11-12T15:38:26-08:00

Young children learn about nature through first-hand experiences and discovery. During daily outdoor play, children run, climb, build forts, and experience the seasons in all kinds of weather. Classes explore the gardens, chicken coop and beehives, and nearby Hunter Park.

Early Childhood Faculty
Early Childhood Centre
Summer Camp

“Play is serious business for children, as important for them as work is for adults.”

“Play is serious business for children, as important for them as work is for adults.”

Jack Petrash, Author and Educator

Early Childhood Programs

Preschool

We offer a two-day or three-day mixed-age preschool program for children aged 3¼ and older. Our day begins at 8:30 am, with the option of a 12:00 pm or 3:00 pm release.

Three-Day Preschool
Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday
8:30 to 12:00 pm

Three-Day Aftercare Option*
12:00 to 3:00 pm

Two-Day Preschool
Thursday and Friday
8:30 to 12:00 pm

Kindergarten

Our kindergarten program offers mixed-age classes for children ages 4½ and older. Our day begins at 8:15 am, with the option of a 12:20 pm or 3:00 pm release. Children may attend for one or two years until meeting grade 1 readiness requirements.

Kindergarten
Monday – Friday
8:25 to 12:30 pm

Kindergarten Aftercare Option*
12:30 to 3:00 pm
*includes 5 mornings plus a choice of 1 – 5 afternoons.

After School Program [link]
3:00 to 5:30 pm

Parent & Tot

For parents/caregivers and their child, 18 months – 3½ years old.

Parent & Tot Classes
Monday – Marigold
Thursday – Poppy
Friday – Cedar & Primrose
Saturday – Mulberry

Spend a gentle, nurturing morning with your child in our once per week parent & tot class and be supported in parenting, meet other families, learn and share from personal stories, and experience Waldorf education for the young child.

Young children and parents are welcomed into a warm and beautiful environment of play, song, meaningful work, and community. Parents learn techniques to support their child’s unfolding capacities and create a healthy and balanced home life through guidance and demonstration. We warmly welcome all families, including prospective, adoptive, foster, single-parent, and LGBTQ families.

“Our highest endeavor must be to develop free human beings who are able, of themselves, to impart purpose and direction to their lives.”

“Our highest endeavor must be to develop free human beings who are able, of themselves, to impart purpose and direction to their lives.”

~Rudolf Steiner

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Accepting applications for 2022-2023 school year

We have a rolling admissions policy and accept students throughout the year when space is available. Join an information session or meet individually with our Admissions Coordinator (admissions@vws.ca) to learn more about the Vancouver Waldorf School.
Visit our Admissions Process page to learn more.

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