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Apr 28, 2012, 10:59am   #1
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meluvs2shop
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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.
Apr 28, 2012, 11:03am   #2
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http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Waldorf_education
Apr 28, 2012, 11:04am   #3
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http://www.whywaldorfworks.org/02_W_Education/index.asp
Last edited Apr 28, 2012 at 11:11am.
Apr 28, 2012, 12:14pm   #5
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Lakritze
My daughter will go to a Montessori oriented Kindergarten and we are thinking about a Waldorf school for later. Montessori and Waldorf are quite different but I find good things and things I don't like that much in both systems. I'm definitely not enough "granola" for Waldorf but the school in our town isn't as strict as many others as far as I have heard.
Apr 28, 2012, 12:31pm   #6
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If the public school system is good, I'd recommend private pre-k, but why not use your public schools for k-12? You are already paying for it in your taxes.

For pre-k, I took tours of places before deciding. Some pre-k's also offer camp too.
Apr 28, 2012, 1:37pm   #7
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vhdos
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My half-sister went to a Waldorf and then did some sort of alternative HS. It was a good experience for them and she seemed to get a decent education out of it. However, I must say that they are VERY granola (for lack of a better term). My half-sister is now in an artsy/alternative college and has not decided her future as of yet.
I guess that my advice is that if you are in a good school district, I would give that a try. We chose to live in the best school district in our state specifically because we knew that our children would get a good education without having to spend a fortune on private school. Of course, now we spend a small fortune on property taxes to live in the best school district in the state...
Apr 28, 2012, 3:21pm   #8
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Waldorf is probably the only real alternative to the public system in Germany - so if the kid needs less pressure and more time to focus on personal development, Waldorf is often the way to go (not only but really the only alternative). personally the only real criticism I have is that they grade work much later - which lots of people see as a plus. but most of the Waldorf kids in my city perform less successfully in their school leaving certificate (which is achieved through centralised exams) than kids from public schools (our public school system is excellent, real private schools are only for those that cannot manage otherwise in most cases). they are not as used to the pressure - I think for primary school that makes sense but I am not convinced once it moves on to HS. parents are not that 'granola' (alternative is what we usually say :-) in my city, they just like the alternative option. my bro was thinking to put his kid in a Waldorf-based KG but they had funny rules, like he can't play with his toy cars (that was the bottom line as he LOVES those), and things like this. you cannot interfere in people's private lives to this extent IMO.
Apr 28, 2012, 6:15pm   #9
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yes, i'm sorry for my lack of a better term but they're also called alternative schools here as well.
the school that i was looking at only goes thru 8th grade so for HS she would need to transfer. i'm not even sure Waldorf high schools are even offereed in our area yet. It seems some of the children do go onto top private high schools in my area after leaving Waldorf. I don't think I would want my daughter to continue an alternative setting after grade school tho. i'm glad you mentioned the toy cars b/c i know the Waldorf curriculum frowns upon TV, popular music, etc. my dd watches very limited TV (and doesn't watch everyday) but i would be lying if i said she never watches Elmo or Sid the Science Kid. i'm upset with myself b/c i completely forgot to ask the director what's their stance on TV etc. i've heard it's a NO NO but not all schools follow a strict guideline. also, all of their toys in the classroom and on the play ground were made out of wood. i was very impressed with the wooden Well that was made by the 3rd graders. it was beautiful actually. all third graders must build something as part of their curriculum. their tricycles on the playground were scary. definitely something out of the 50s. i love old vintage things sometimes, especially classic cars, but these classic tricycles were rather interesting to look at to say the least.


Originally Posted by lara0112
Waldorf is probably the only real alternative to the public system in Germany - so if the kid needs less pressure and more time to focus on personal development, Waldorf is often the way to go (not only but really the only alternative). personally the only real criticism I have is that they grade work much later - which lots of people see as a plus. but most of the Waldorf kids in my city perform less successfully in their school leaving certificate (which is achieved through centralised exams) than kids from public schools (our public school system is excellent, real private schools are only for those that cannot manage otherwise in most cases). they are not as used to the pressure - I think for primary school that makes sense but I am not convinced once it moves on to HS. parents are not that 'granola' (alternative is what we usually say :-) in my city, they just like the alternative option. my bro was thinking to put his kid in a Waldorf-based KG but they had funny rules, like he can't play with his toy cars (that was the bottom line as he LOVES those), and things like this. you cannot interfere in people's private lives to this extent IMO.
Apr 28, 2012, 6:24pm   #10
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That's a fear of mine. Will she lose focus on going to such a school? Will it be too liberal for her or a perfect fit? Who knows right now...
When I entered college I knew right away what my major was going to be, that was also the case for my husband. To this day we both use our majors in our respective careers. Maybe we're just lucky in that sense since so many people end up not using their degrees?


Originally Posted by vhdos
My half-sister went to a Waldorf and then did some sort of alternative HS. It was a good experience for them and she seemed to get a decent education out of it. However, I must say that they are VERY granola (for lack of a better term). My half-sister is now in an artsy/alternative college and has not decided her future as of yet.
I guess that my advice is that if you are in a good school district, I would give that a try. We chose to live in the best school district in our state specifically because we knew that our children would get a good education without having to spend a fortune on private school. Of course, now we spend a small fortune on property taxes to live in the best school district in the state...
Apr 28, 2012, 6:34pm   #11
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while our public school system is solid and has a good reputation but locally its not ranked in the top 10 in, "the region's best performers." it has been in the top 20 tho and that included all the counties in my state.

let's see, how can i phrase this...if my daughter is anything like me in school then the local public system works out great. if she likes school but doesn't love it, likes to play sports or be involved in theater...perfect! plus it's very small (which i love...i went to large schools).

now, if she's going to be anything like my husband then we need something more challenging. so far she seems to be more like my husband (she's social too but that's from both of us). he loved school and went to a private HS which challenged him immensely which is why he got into his top college choice, which is also private.


Originally Posted by alliemia
If the public school system is good, I'd recommend private pre-k, but why not use your public schools for k-12? You are already paying for it in your taxes.

For pre-k, I took tours of places before deciding. Some pre-k's also offer camp too.
Last edited Apr 28, 2012 at 6:48pm.
Apr 28, 2012, 6:37pm   #12
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one thing that also made me chuckle was i wore my missoni poncho to the school yesterday with jeans and b/c knitting is such a big part of their school some parents and even the director assumed i knitted it and asked me about it. LOL i wish i was behind the missoni empire...
Apr 28, 2012, 11:32pm   #13
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lara0112
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Originally Posted by meluvs2shop
yes, i'm sorry for my lack of a better term but they're also called alternative schools here as well.
the school that i was looking at only goes thru 8th grade so for HS she would need to transfer. i'm not even sure Waldorf high schools are even offereed in our area yet. It seems some of the children do go onto top private high schools in my area after leaving Waldorf. I don't think I would want my daughter to continue an alternative setting after grade school tho. i'm glad you mentioned the toy cars b/c i know the Waldorf curriculum frowns upon TV, popular music, etc. my dd watches very limited TV (and doesn't watch everyday) but i would be lying if i said she never watches Elmo or Sid the Science Kid. i'm upset with myself b/c i completely forgot to ask the director what's their stance on TV etc. i've heard it's a NO NO but not all schools follow a strict guideline. also, all of their toys in the classroom and on the play ground were made out of wood. i was very impressed with the wooden Well that was made by the 3rd graders. it was beautiful actually. all third graders must build something as part of their curriculum. their tricycles on the playground were scary. definitely something out of the 50s. i love old vintage things sometimes, especially classic cars, but these classic tricycles were rather interesting to look at to say the least.
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
Apr 29, 2012, 9:29am   #14
v
vhdos
Member
Originally Posted by meluvs2shop
That's a fear of mine. Will she lose focus on going to such a school? Will it be too liberal for her or a perfect fit? Who knows right now...
When I entered college I knew right away what my major was going to be, that was also the case for my husband. To this day we both use our majors in our respective careers. Maybe we're just lucky in that sense since so many people end up not using their degrees?
It's funny you posted this because that was my concern for my half-sister as well. However, I must say, that she seems to have much more focus than I thought she would. When I said that she has not decided her future plans as of yet, I think that given her age, that's pretty normal. I wouldn't say that she has less focus than her peers, who attended public schools.
Apr 29, 2012, 9:35am   #15
v
vhdos
Member
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
It has been my experience as a preschool teacher (I taught preschool several years ago) that children do like wooden/simple toys. Unfortunately, in this day and age, kids have so many high-tech choices and when given a choice between simple and hi-tech, hi-tech usually wins. I have seen some pretty amazing, imaginative play with wooden/simple toys
Sorry for going off-topic...
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