Early Childhood

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Early Childhood 2017-07-18T15:59:07+00:00
Early Childhood

Lavender Kindergarten

We provide a nurturing and creative environment to gradually make the transition from life at home to elementary school in our Early Childhood programs. Our experienced teachers have the inclination and special training to create an unhurried atmosphere where children listen to stories, learn to work with others, practice life skills, and enjoy seasonal craft and artistic opportunities. The young child learns about the world through movement and naturally imitating everything he or she experiences.

 

Our school is a member of the Waldorf Early Childhood Association of North America (WECAN) and they have produced these short lovely videos about the six essentials of a Waldorf Early Childhood program. Watch these videos and come take a tour to see these principles in action.

Ample Time and Space

Caring Environments

Consistent Rhythms

Real Life Activities

Relationships Based on Love

Committed Educators

Our programs provide ample opportunity for active, creative play indoors and out and are full of activities, attitudes, and interactions that are worthy of imitation. Healthy physical, social and emotional development in a young child form a strong foundation for academic study in elementary school and beyond.

Enrollment Ages

Our Parent-Child classes for children 12 months to 3 years old.   To attend Chickadees Transitional Preschool a child must be 2 by June 1st and learning to use the toilet. To attend Buttercup or Sweet Peas preschool a child must be 3 by June 1st and toilet learned.  For our multi-age kindergartens, Lavender and Thimbleberry, a child must be 4 by June 1st. Kindergarten enrollment can be for one or two years. The Early Childhood teachers may do an individual assessment of a child close to the cut-off date to ensure best placement.

 

Schedule

The Chickadee, Buttercup and Sweet Peas Preschools, and Lavender and Thimbleberry Kindergartens follow the general schedule of the Whatcom Hills Waldorf School, from early September to mid June. Our preschool students arrive between 8:35 and 8:45 and the program ends at 12:45. Kindergarten classes begin at 8:30 am and end at 12:30pm.  Parents can add afternoons, which end at 3:00pm and afterschool care is available until 5:30.

 

Our Parent Child Classes have two terms per year and you may enroll in one or both terms per year.

 

Extended Care

Our Early Bird drop-in group starts at 7:30 am and is a flat rate of $2.50 per day.  The official time for the school day to begin is at 8:30 in kindergarten classrooms, 8:35 to 8:45 for preschools. The Sunflower program is an extension of the early childhood school day for those students needing a full day program.  This program starts at the end of the school day and lasts until 3:00. 

 

After school care is available on school days until 5:30pm for children four years old and older, is billed at $6 per hour for preregistered children.  If space is available, there is the possibility of drop-in care which is billed at $8 per hour. Planned after school care is reserved in advance; a form is available in the office and needs to be turned in by the 20th of the preceding month.

Parent & Child Programs

A comfortable and homelike class for parents or caregivers along with children aged 12 months to 3 years old. Our Parent Child Classes are a way to meet other families and learn more about parenting and Waldorf Education. These two hour, once a week classes are a gentle step into group activities and will include Waldorf parent education, parent-child rhymes and songs, craft activities and creative play.

 

Our morning will start with free play followed by circle time. Circle time is filled with seasonal songs and movement games. This will make us a little hungry so we will prepare and share a simple snack. After snack we will go outside for playtime. Storytelling and puppet shows will add a special sense of wonder to our class.

 

Our Parent Child classes are a perfect introduction to our school.  The program provides children with an easy transition between home and school life.

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Toddler Playgroup
For children ages 12 months to 3 years old

 

Classes are held in the Buttercup Preschool at Whatcom Hills Waldorf School.

Fridays: 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM

Session One will meet from September 15, 2017 to January 26, 2018.  There are 16 classes, cost $450.

Session Two will meet February 2, 2018 to June 8, 2018.  There are 16 classes, cost $450.

Class size is limited. Drop in rate is $30 per class. You may sign up for one or both terms.

Preschool Programs

Preschool serves as a gentle introduction to the experience of being away from home.  Our students have ample indoor and outdoor playtime, learn to work with others and enjoy seasonal songs, stories and crafts. With only 12 students and two teachers in a warm and unhurried atmosphere, your child will thrive.

 

We have two preschools to serve children who turn 3 by June 1st.  The Sweet Peas preschool is primarily for 5 day enrollments with some limited spots reserved for 4 day enrollment. The Buttercup preschool is primarily for 4 day enrollments with some limited spots reserved for 3 day enrollment. We have one transitional preschool to serve younger children who are 2 by June 1st; this Chickadee Preschool is currently a three day program only.  Our preschools begin at 8:35-45 am and end at 12:45 pm with options to extend the school day.  

 

A typical day in a Waldorf preschool classroom includes creative and imaginative play, snack preparation, seasonal songs and games in circle time, artistic activities and storytelling or puppetry.  The day and week will have a healthy rhythm of activity that the children come to know and love. You may hear about breadbaking, playing in the forest, painting and puppet shows at home. In parent meetings your teacher will lead discussions about child development, Waldorf education and parenting.  Joining the preschool is joining the community of Whatcom Hills Waldorf School.

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Buttercup and Sweet Peas Preschool
To attend Buttercup or Sweet Peas preschool a child must be 3 by June 1st and toilet trained.

 

Classes are held in the Preschool House at Whatcom Hills Waldorf School.

Mon – Fri: 8:35-45 AM – 12:30 PM
Fall, Winter, Spring

 

An extended day option is available until 3:00PM in the preschool.

Kindergarten Program

A Waldorf Kindergarten is an extension of the family experience, an intermediary step for the child between home and formal schooling. The goal is to provide a warm, calm, secure, and beautiful environment in which the imagination and creativity of the child will flourish. At the Whatcom Hills Waldorf School, children immerse themselves in the realm of imagination through stories, songs, puppetry and creative play. They enjoy tasks like baking, sewing, hammering, sawing, sweeping, gardening and grinding grain with their friends.  About half of each day is spent outdoors in a nearby forest or on our beautiful wooded site near Lake Whatcom.

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Lavender and Thimbleberry Kindergartens
For our kindergartens, Lavender and Thimbleberry, a child must be 4 by June 1st. Our Kindergartens are mixed-age classrooms. Most children spend two years in Kindergarten which provides a solid and balanced foundation for grade school.
Mon – Fri: 8:30 AM – 12:30 PM

 

An extended day option is available until 3:00pm with extended care until 5:30 if needed.