Waldorf Education Featured on The Simpsons Season Finale

The Simpsons gave a comic shout out to Waldorf Education during their Season 26 finale for 2015 — “Mathlete’s Feat”, which aired May 17, 2015. The Association of Waldorf Schools of North America (AWSNA) was pleased with the level of in-depth knowledge The Simpsons writers clearly possessed about pedagogy and stereotypes associated with Waldorf Education, which made this fun caricature both lighthearted and flattering. So how did Waldorf Education end up in an episode of The Simpsons? After Springfield Elementary School is bested in a mathlete competition, a well intentioned group donates servers, laptops and smart boards to the school so that students can better compete. Shortly after this tech revolution, there’s a massive server crash and teaching is at a standstill. This is when Lisa comes up with an idea that will save the school — “Learning while Doing.” Springfield Elementary becomes a Waldorf School! From there the students learn by doing — in Simpson-esque, tongue-in-cheek fashion, of course. By the end of the episode, their new Waldorf Education helps them win a mathlete rematch.   AWSNA was honored to have been featured in such a positive light in The Simpsons Season Finale and several Waldorf schools are responding with tributes to The Simpsons. A collective of handmade hats is being created to send to The Simpsons writers. The Waldorf School of Philadelphia is having students create beeswax figures of The Simpsons characters to share online and with The Simpsons execs....

Five Reasons Why Parents Choose a Waldorf Education for Their Child

(reposted, from our northern neighbors at  Waldorf Canada, www.waldorf.ca) As a parent you can be sure that choosing a Waldorf education for your child is a safe and smart choice.  Your homework has already been done by millions of parents who’ve sent their own children to Waldorf schools across the globe. Here are 5 reasons why, over the past century, parents have made Waldorf one of the world’s largest independent schools systems: 1) Waldorf parents can be sure their child will be prepared and successful Research shows that 94% of North American Waldorf graduates attend university and an incredible 50% attain a Masters or PhD. University professors speak very highly of the assertive and engaged Waldorf graduates in their classes. Yet, leaders and employers are not looking for people who can simply pass tests and follow orders. Waldorf graduates are successful because they are confident, creative thinking individuals with the courage to change the world. Our alumni go on to rewarding careers and continue to value learning, work, relationships and an ethical approach to their chosen path. 2) Waldorf teachers are personable, insightful and committed Waldorf teachers are well trained professionals whom are experts at understanding what makes children tick. We know how to orchestrate a class of diverse learning styles and temperaments, using multiple methods of teaching to ensure that each child is warmed in their heart, skilled with their hands and sees clearly with their mind before advancing to the next thing. In the classroom Waldorf teachers interact with others with thoughtfulness and compassion, are capable and interested in many things and they make good decisions. They are...

Waldorf School at Moraine Farm & Tuition Adjustment in the National News

Jenny Helmick was interviewed by U.S. News & World Report last week for a story on the affordability of a private school education. Throughout the interview, Jenny was able to talk about the new Tuition Adjustment Program. It is wonderful to see this school’s forward-thinking approach to tuition highlighted nationally. It is also wonderful to be reminded about the fundamental ways in which this new program is so firmly rooted in the values and ideals of this school. As U.S. News & World Report notes, “the approach has allowed a more economically diverse student body to attend the school, which the staff sees as a major plus.” Tuition adjustment is a means to help the school fulfill its educational and social mission. Vibrant, inclusive classrooms, where people from different backgrounds work and learn together, benefit every student and the whole school community. We extend our thanks to Jenny for all her work on the Tuition Review Task Force and for generously spending her time working with the reporter at U.S. News & World Report. To read the U.S. News & World Report article, please click here. For more information about the Tuition Adjustment Program, please visit...

See For Yourself Why Waldorf Education Works

  See For Yourself Why Waldorf Education Works On Saturday, October 19, from 10 a.m. to noon, families of students entering Pre-K through Grade Eight are invited to Cape Ann Waldorf School to learn more about Waldorf education.  Parents and children can speak with teachers, parents and students, and experience for themselves some of the activities that enliven a Waldorf classroom. Kelly Hiselman, the school’s admissions director, is organizing the open house. “At Cape Ann Waldorf School, and Waldorf schools all around the world, our goal is to ignite each child’s passion for learning,” Hiselman explained.  “We do this by focusing on how and when children develop, and tailoring the curriculum to the needs of the children in each grade level.  We also make sure the lessons are multi-sensory, and filled with opportunities for students to experience the material first hand.  In other schools children may read a story and write about it, and that’s it.  Our students may read and write about the same story, but they may also turn it into a play.  At many schools, music class is focused on listening to and appreciating music.  At our school, every student plays an instrument, so each of them can create their own music.  Through drama, movement, handwork and storytelling, we give our students continuous opportunities to directly experience what they are learning about.  This approach makes learning more fun, and more effective.  When you talk with our eighth graders, the results are impossible to miss—they love learning, they are self-aware and self-confident, they are creative, and they are completely engaged with the world around them.” Parents at the school agree. ...

Huffington Post Story on Waldorf Education

A great piece on one family’s journey to Waldorf education.  Originally published here. Knitting Is More Important Than Homework By MARA MENACHEM Two years ago on the front page of the New York Times Sunday Business section, an article ran entitled, “A Silicon Valley School That Doesn’t Compute” about the Waldorf School in Silicon Valley. I had already made the decision to enter my oldest son in a Waldorf school before the article came out, but I pathetically admit that this piece in the New York Times validated my intuition regarding a Waldorf education. Years ago when I was looking at preschools, I checked out a Waldorf School. At the time, despite my hippie pre-disposition, the environment seemed too “out there.” However, I trusted my intuition enough to send my kids to another somewhat alternative, small, liberal pre-school focusing on socialization, not academics. The kids were happy, as were we. My kids were little Huck Finns and I was comfortable as their pied piper as they explored their world, not competed in it. But when it came time for elementary school, going “alternative” seemed a little too “alternative.” Traditional private school didn’t do it for me as a kid. I went to private school and felt stifled. I wanted something different for my kids. In my mind, I saw my kids being raised with limitless imagination and access to never-ending creativity, even after pre-school. My perspective always seemed to be different from the majority. My intellectual buddies (although many sans kids) served as the great validators of my gut feelings regarding how I handled certain situations. Over time, I...