In our Waldorf-Inspired Kindergarten, stories, songs, activities, festivals, and celebrations carry us through the cycle of the year. This curriculum brings physical, social, and pre-academic opportunities to meet the needs of this age child: spatial awareness, large and small motor skills, listening skills, social dynamics, math, science, English language arts, imitation, and imagination.
We experience science, math, language arts, and social science throughout the year aligned with the Idaho State Standards. The rhythm of each week features a variety of activities: washing and drying of napkins and placemats, kneading bread dough, crayon or pencil drawing, jump roping, handwork/crafting, watercolor painting (wet on wet), clean-up procedures, and beeswax modeling. Daily activities include inside (in the open-air classroom) and outside play times: including clean-up circle time that involves group movements/verses/songs. In addition, our curriculum includes but is not limited to counting and scheduling, snack, lunch, and clean-up storytime, caring for ourselves and the environment, learning class rules, etiquette, and weaving throughout the year. The following is a seasonal summary of our block rotation for the Syringa Sunflower Kindergarten. This is an overview of the curriculum. The rhythm of the year and the needs of the students will merit changes in the following block rotation overview.
In Kindergarten, we emphasize:
Imitation: Children this age learn through imitation. The teacher may perform various meaningful, practical activities that the children will watch and imitate in multiple ways.
Play: Play is the quintessential activity of children. It is the serious work of childhood. In play, children learn to experience the possibilities of life.
Movement: Children need to move their whole bodies. The Kindergarten is designed to encourage large-scale activity and play.
Fantasy and imagination: We encourage and nurture a child’s capacity for fantasy and creativity through storytelling, songs, puppetry, poems, and more.
Natural rhythm: Children need familiarity and predictability in their lives. We maintain a daily, weekly, and seasonal rhythm throughout the curriculum.
Learning readiness: We emphasize activities to build social skills, fine motor skills, large motor skills, listening skills, memory, spatial skills, and more.
Social development: We emphasize social development and cooperative learning, such as concentration, courtesy, social habits, classroom habits, and spatial awareness.
Outdoor Education: Our outdoor education program includes, weekly hike days and full outdoor education days in fall and spring. During the months of January and February, we have an XC-skiing program every day.
The Kindergarten curriculum includes:
- Music, games, and finger play to develop rhythm and counting skills
- Hands-on activities such as gardening, cooking, nature walks, and seasonal activities to introduce science, math, and geography skills, concepts, and vocabulary
- Multicultural stories provide an introduction to social studies
- Auditory activities, visual discrimination, and organizing of time and space to prepare for 1st-grade readiness
- Songs, stories, puppetry, and poems to develop listening skills and memory
- Knitting, sewing, and workbench activities (hammering, measuring, and sawing)
- Beeswax modeling, painting, fingerplay, lacing shoes, and buttoning to develop fine motor skills
- Interactive play, baking, and circle time to develop social skills
- Play and activity to develop large motor skills
- Gardening, farming, and time in nature to foster a sense of wonder