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Apr 29, 2012, 9:39am   #16
alliemia's Avatar
love shopping!!!
Originally Posted by lara0112
I think that is great and every system has its ups and downs - I am just not a fan of the school extending beyond its actual borders and interfering in what my child does at home. so to some extent you have to sign up for their philosophy, and so it would be a good idea to ask in advance what it is that they 'believe in', kwim? yeah, the wood thing, I am all for beautiful wooden toys, except most kids don't like them LOL
I agree. I think if the school tells you what you can/can't do outside of school hours, that's sort of impeding on the parents desicions.
Apr 29, 2012, 9:40am   #17
labelwhore04's Avatar
Member
I don't know if i see the point in private schools. I went to a public school, as did all my friends and they're all at top universities in Canada.(McGill, University of Toronto, University of BC, etc). Maybe the public school system in the US is worse than it is here but i don't see a difference in 'success' between public/private school kids.
Apr 29, 2012, 9:44am   #18
Lakritze's Avatar
Parents have told me that their kids love wooden toys and the simple things. The kids use their imagination and get creative in their play. I buy a lot of wooden toys for my daughter, too.

And I have to say that I LOVE Waldorf dolls. This is Jula, my daughters doll (even though she's too young to play with her already).
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Apr 29, 2012, 10:08am   #19
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Originally Posted by Lakritze
Parents have told me that their kids love wooden toys and the simple things. The kids use their imagination and get creative in their play. I buy a lot of wooden toys for my daughter, too.

And I have to say that I LOVE Waldorf dolls. This is Jula, my daughters doll (even though she's too young to play with her already).
yeah, I probably phrased that a bit too general that most kids don't like them - we have our share of wooden toys and I like them more than lots of plastic stuff. cute doll
Apr 29, 2012, 10:59am   #20
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In Love
Oh yes, the bookstore at the school was so impressive with their adorable dolls and such.
I will say, when I saw some of their wooden toys I was impressed at what the children were doing with them in the classrooms. I'm going to see if I can find it online, but it was tall and an open/bulky piece of wood. The kids were climbing on it like a horse and by using two them they could build houses with it (or so i was told...imagination i suppose), I was amazed. It looked like a headboard almost. Its def something I wouldn't expect to see in a kindergarten class.

And not to mention their massive wooden playground built by the third graders, and the beautiful well.

Sadly, I'm a victim of marketing and have very little wooden toys.
Last edited Apr 29, 2012 at 11:05am.
Apr 29, 2012, 11:07am   #21
meluvs2shop's Avatar
Thread Starter
In Love
Originally Posted by Lakritze
Parents have told me that their kids love wooden toys and the simple things. The kids use their imagination and get creative in their play. I buy a lot of wooden toys for my daughter, too.

And I have to say that I LOVE Waldorf dolls. This is Jula, my daughters doll (even though she's too young to play with her already).
Awe she's cute! My daughter is not really into toys, except she does like Barbie.
Apr 29, 2012, 3:55pm   #22
wordbox's Avatar
so in love!
Originally Posted by labelwhore04
I don't know if i see the point in private schools. I went to a public school, as did all my friends and they're all at top universities in Canada.(McGill, University of Toronto, University of BC, etc). Maybe the public school system in the US is worse than it is here but i don't see a difference in 'success' between public/private school kids.
In the U.S. it depends heavily on where you live, not just your state but right down to the school district. Public school funding has been slashed for many places, states are dealing with major budget problems and sadly schools are often the target. Class sizes are enormous in some areas. One teacher teaching 30+ elementary school kids is not exactly ideal or efficient.

Our district isn't terrible but has its own issues... yet I'd still choose it over the local private school, which I don't find impressive. There are a lot of factors to take into consideration. But if there was some awesome private school here and we could afford it, I would definitely consider it.
Apr 30, 2012, 7:36am   #23
glistenpearls's Avatar
Ex-Sydneysider
Originally Posted by wordbox
In the U.S. it depends heavily on where you live, not just your state but right down to the school district. Public school funding has been slashed for many places, states are dealing with major budget problems and sadly schools are often the target. Class sizes are enormous in some areas. One teacher teaching 30+ elementary school kids is not exactly ideal or efficient.

Our district isn't terrible but has its own issues... yet I'd still choose it over the local private school, which I don't find impressive. There are a lot of factors to take into consideration. But if there was some awesome private school here and we could afford it, I would definitely consider it.
When we bought our house 5 years ago, the school district within our area was great. 2 years ago they annexed our street and now we are going under a different school district which p%$#^ us off. It is likely that we sell the current house and move where the good school district is but that's not for another 5 years from now, in the mean time they are staying at private. The boys started montessori when they turned 1 last January.
Apr 30, 2012, 8:09am   #24
meluvs2shop's Avatar
Thread Starter
In Love
Originally Posted by labelwhore04
I don't know if i see the point in private schools. I went to a public school, as did all my friends and they're all at top universities in Canada.(McGill, University of Toronto, University of BC, etc). Maybe the public school system in the US is worse than it is here but i don't see a difference in 'success' between public/private school kids.
Sadly the city I grew up in has an awful public school system. But now that I live in the burbs it's def a much better system but I don't live in the best public school system. Like I said above, it's solid and has a good reputation but not the best. I think my local public high school could use higher math scores.
May 14, 2012, 5:04pm   #25
buttercup784eve's Avatar
No wire hangers!
I think this is one of those situations where you love the "idea" of the Waldorf school, but may not fit in with their philosophy. I know that some of them are pretty strict about TV watching, characters on clothes, and things like that. I would worry that my kids would be going to school and talking about things they saw on tv which would be frowned upon.

I'm a big believer in not trying to fit a square peg into a round whole. I know a few people who struggled and went without in order to send their kids to expensive private schools, only to eventually pull them out because they just couldn't fit in with the other kids lifestyles.

I think that as long as the education levels are nearly equal you should go with the school that will fit your family the best.
May 14, 2012, 6:43pm   #26
jillybean307's Avatar
Wanderlust
Originally Posted by meluvs2shop
Hello Everyone! I'm starting to look at PreK and Kindergarten for my almost 2.5 year old daughter so she can be guaranteed entrance in a private school setting for 1st thru 8th grade. Originally I was only thinking about private school for HS bc tuition is so expensive for even PreK. Plus i wasn't sure that was necessary just yet. We live in a really good public school district so that's always an option as well. I just know that if i start my daughter early, like PreK, she's most likely guarenteed a spot come first grade. These liberal non-secratarian schools are far less expensive then some of the Quaker and other private schools near my home. There's also private Christian schools that are less expensive as well. Around the same amount as a Waldorf education. All of this brings me to my next point. Most good schools have a waiting list so starting now and getting on the list is advised. I went to the Waldorf school yesterday and really liked a lot of things about it. Especially the fact that a few parents were hanging around on campus having coffee and knitting. Very idyllic but I don't knit! But I did get a great sense of community. I'm just not sure if the education is a good fit for our family or my family is not "granola" enough! Lol I will say my Pro list was a lot longer than the cons side.
If you or someone you know has any experience with a Waldorf education
I would love to hear your thoughts and opinions. Also, any educators as well.
Since you asked for educators to weigh in, I hope you don't mind that I contribute. I teach at a university (one with a lot of "well educated", private school kids). As someone who grades *a lot* of student writing, the most important thing is that you find a school that challenges your student. One of the problems now is that so many private schools inflate grades & don't challenge students. If parents are paying $30,000 a year for tuition, they want their children to have a 4.0, so the teachers at these schools don't always challenge their students or force them to think for themselves.

There are times when I look at students essays, and have to say, "This is a college paper. Please stop using smiley faces instead of proper punctuation." And these essays are from students who went to very highly regarded private schools.

More alarming to me, is that often these kids cannot deal with feedback that is constructive. Since they've never received anything less than an A, they fall apart when they get an A- or a B. I had one girl this semester who received a 1 on a quiz because she just cannot keep up with the work/has stopped caring. She went to the best high school in the state.

I'm not saying all private schools are like this, or that there aren't terrible public schools--I'm just saying that private schools don't promise a better education in many circumstances.

I would suggest waiting until your daughter is a bit older & seeing how her personality & interests develop before she goes off to a private school. She might be really good at math & science so a Waldorf school wouldn't be the best place for her--you'd want to put her in a math/science magnet school. Or she might be someone who does really well in an open environment & excels at a Waldorf school.

My best advice is to pick a school that has a rigorous writing program. It's a skill that will serve your children well no matter what field they go into & a skill that they'll be expected to have when they start college. It's something that's not emphasized enough thanks to No Child Left Behind & those dopey standardized tests.
May 22, 2012, 7:29pm   #27
meluvs2shop's Avatar
Thread Starter
In Love
Thank you so much for your opinion. I always enjoy reading your well thought out responses. You're 100% correct, I love the idea but don't stand by everything that the school and parents adhere to.

Originally Posted by buttercup784eve
I think this is one of those situations where you love the "idea" of the Waldorf school, but may not fit in with their philosophy. I know that some of them are pretty strict about TV watching, characters on clothes, and things like that. I would worry that my kids would be going to school and talking about things they saw on tv which would be frowned upon.

I'm a big believer in not trying to fit a square peg into a round whole. I know a few people who struggled and went without in order to send their kids to expensive private schools, only to eventually pull them out because they just couldn't fit in with the other kids lifestyles.

I think that as long as the education levels are nearly equal you should go with the school that will fit your family the best.
May 22, 2012, 8:03pm   #28
meluvs2shop's Avatar
Thread Starter
In Love
Originally Posted by jillybean307
Since you asked for educators to weigh in, I hope you don't mind that I contribute. I teach at a university (one with a lot of "well educated", private school kids). As someone who grades *a lot* of student writing, the most important thing is that you find a school that challenges your student. One of the problems now is that so many private schools inflate grades & don't challenge students. If parents are paying $30,000 a year for tuition, they want their children to have a 4.0, so the teachers at these schools don't always challenge their students or force them to think for themselves.

There are times when I look at students essays, and have to say, "This is a college paper. Please stop using smiley faces instead of proper punctuation." And these essays are from students who went to very highly regarded private schools.

More alarming to me, is that often these kids cannot deal with feedback that is constructive. Since they've never received anything less than an A, they fall apart when they get an A- or a B. I had one girl this semester who received a 1 on a quiz because she just cannot keep up with the work/has stopped caring. She went to the best high school in the state.

I'm not saying all private schools are like this, or that there aren't terrible public schools--I'm just saying that private schools don't promise a better education in many circumstances.

I would suggest waiting until your daughter is a bit older & seeing how her personality & interests develop before she goes off to a private school. She might be really good at math & science so a Waldorf school wouldn't be the best place for her--you'd want to put her in a math/science magnet school. Or she might be someone who does really well in an open environment & excels at a Waldorf school.

My best advice is to pick a school that has a rigorous writing program. It's a skill that will serve your children well no matter what field they go into & a skill that they'll be expected to have when they start college. It's something that's not emphasized enough thanks to No Child Left Behind & those dopey standardized tests.


i love hearing from educators especially from someone in higher learning.

for now i have decided that a Waldorf Education is not for us. it may be down the line or like you said, she may excel in math & science and we will pick a school based on that. but I loved what you said about picking a school that teaches children how to write. My husband is an excellent writer and I know that that is something he will harp my daughter about.

Your insight on some of these top private schools was fascinating to me. Our babysitter goes to a very expensive private school and I wondered if she faces the same fate. that of course is none of my business since i'm not her parent but she does seem extremely smart and very mature. But I think that's just her personality and has nothing to do with her schooling at all. however, I'm shocked that parents shell out all this money and their children in some cases don't deserve that grade or the students are not being challenged enough. i was under the impression that a lot of these expensive schools were very challenging. a friend of ours had to pull his daughter out of a top private school b/c she was overwhelmed and wasn't handling the stress of that particular school very well. but that's another story. in my neighborhood the Waldorf school is half the cost of a so called good private school but for now I'm going to wait before we start writing big checks.
Jun 12, 2012, 5:01pm   #29
jillybean307's Avatar
Wanderlust
Originally Posted by meluvs2shop


i love hearing from educators especially from someone in higher learning.

for now i have decided that a Waldorf Education is not for us. it may be down the line or like you said, she may excel in math & science and we will pick a school based on that. but I loved what you said about picking a school that teaches children how to write. My husband is an excellent writer and I know that that is something he will harp my daughter about.

Your insight on some of these top private schools was fascinating to me. Our babysitter goes to a very expensive private school and I wondered if she faces the same fate. that of course is none of my business since i'm not her parent but she does seem extremely smart and very mature. But I think that's just her personality and has nothing to do with her schooling at all. however, I'm shocked that parents shell out all this money and their children in some cases don't deserve that grade or the students are not being challenged enough. i was under the impression that a lot of these expensive schools were very challenging. a friend of ours had to pull his daughter out of a top private school b/c she was overwhelmed and wasn't handling the stress of that particular school very well. but that's another story. in my neighborhood the Waldorf school is half the cost of a so called good private school but for now I'm going to wait before we start writing big checks.

Mel, I'm very late replying to this (I was actually on vacation for the past few weeks between teaching at my university & teaching a gifted & talented program at a private school!). My friends and I were talking about this thread, and we all agreed on one thing in particular--so much of learning & the love of learning starts young & at home well before your child ever reaches a school. I'm a book worm (obviously). I would have been a book worm at the most expensive private school in the country and I would have been one at the worst public school in the country, just as a child with zero interest in school would be bored at a very expensive private school and at the worst school in the country. People who want to learn, who have that thirst for knowledge will always find a way to learn & be challenged.

I also just wanted to clarify that I'm not anti private school (admittedly I'm very pro-public schools--especially for high school), but I've attended a variety of schools in my career (public high school, very expensive & well respected private university, private Catholic university for my first MA, and a public university for my PhD), it's more a matter of finding the right fit for your child throughout their school career. Expensive/private does not automatically equal better, and it's important to keep that in mind as you research.

Best of luck on your search!
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