Seattle area preschools affiliated with the Waldorf Early Childhood Association of America
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What is a Waldorf-inspired preschool?

The Waldorf-inspired preschool is a place where the young child's whole being is nourished.

The intimate home environment is gentle on the developing senses of the young child. Subtle colors, natural play materials, silk cloths, baskets of shells, chestnuts or driftwood, and soft cloth dolls become the toys for children to enter into imaginative play.

Play is the 'work' of the young child, the medium through which the child learns and lives joyfully. In addition to play, various age-appropriate activities are presented each day, such as seasonal crafts, baking bread, gardening, water color painting, cleaning with soapy sponges, and cooking. Children enjoy daily wholesome organic snacks together.

There is an emphasis on connecting to the natural world and the cycle of the seasons. The children spend time in all of Mother Earth's elements, catching Fall leaves, squishing in mud, jumping in puddles, playing in the sun. They have time to turn over rocks to look for bugs beneath, to watch squirrels burying peanuts, and birds building their nests.This encourages the child to become a future steward of the earth, while helping them to become physically capable by laying the solid foundation of a healthy body with which to learn.

Everything the child experiences comes with love and joy from the being of the teacher. Stories are told from memory, puppet plays performed, songs and verses sung and spoken. Circle time is a focused time where the children move, speak and sing verses and games which reflect the cycle of the seasons.

Waldorf-inspired preschools are places where children learn how to be social. Teachers foster the idea of individuals becoming a true group, developing skills in communication and empathy, and learning to see and understand one another's strengths and challenges.

Families are cherished at Waldorf-inspired preschools. The preschool itself can become an extended family, with the community of parents forming a great network of family support.

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