Many families at Marin Waldorf School were first drawn to Waldorf education when they discovered our magical early childhood programs. Every year, our skilled and nurturing early childhood teachers create a warm, homelike environment for their young students, with natural rhythms, homemade snacks, and lots of stories and outdoor play.
Our preschoolers and kindergartners generally spend a large part of their day outdoors, with large oak- and redwood-shaded play yards just for them. Even so, it was hard to imagine our cozy early childhood classrooms moved almost entirely outdoors! But, as we prepared to reopen campus, early childhood, like the rest of our school, is taking advantage of our abundant outdoor space.
Behold the magical environment our early childhood teachers created for Marin Waldorf School Outdoors. From the new vegetable garden in the Hollyhock classroom to Ms. Sarah’s seasonal felted fairy wearing her face masks, not a detail has been overlooked. Welcome home, students!
Our Hollyhock kindergarten teacher, Nicole, weaves a new story into her morning circle each week, drawing in the children’s attention as they say good morning to each other and learn new songs and full-body movements to accompany the tale.
Since our campus close in March, Nicole has shared a morning circle with Hollyhock families every week. In this charming circle, she leads the children on a visit to the farm with her assistant teacher Jennifer. This circle includes two songs in French, which a kindergartner can pick up and repeat easily, even if they don’t understand the language!
In addition to building a warm classroom community each morning, the morning circle is a time for kindergartners to learn by listening and repeating, to develop balance and motor skills by following the teacher’s movements, and to use their imaginations in stories and songs. In some circles, Nicole introduces tongue twisters, bean bag tossing, and partner games.
Families can listen to this circle at home and make up their own movements as the children greet the little chickens and farmers.
At Marin Waldorf School, we celebrate spring in many ways, and it’s something we can all do at home. Here are some of the pictures we’ve received from families recently, showing their creative days at home, often made using household ingredients.
The spectacular spring basket pictured here was made by a Kindergarten family and is filled with quail and chicken eggs dyed with beet, blueberry and onion skin on a living chia garden nest. If you want to create a beautiful spring basket of your own, here is primer from Waldorf Today on creating homemade natural dyes and egg decorating. (Photo by Maggie Dawson.)
What have you and your family been making at home? Please share! Families, send pictures and descriptions to Julie at email@example.com.