The First Waldorf School in North America
Lower School   15 East 79th Street  212 535.2130
Upper School   15 East 78th Street  212 879.1101

Early Childhood Programs

The Rudolf Steiner School's Early Childhood Programs provide a nurturing foundation for the growing child. By nourishing the mind and the senses through a healthy, beauty-filled environment, our program fosters the development of the whole child. Through imaginative play, artistic activities, simple crafts, verses, songs, puppetry, and fairy tales, the child's emotional, intellectual, and spiritual life are strengthened. While our Early Childhood programs are non-academic in nature, we believe that through our daily activities a strong foundation is laid for future academic success. Songs and nursery rhymes cultivate intimacy with language and the world of words. Listening to stories, watching marionette shows, and participating in dramatic play strengthen the power of memory and imagination. Counting games and rhythmic activities build a solid foundation for arithmetic and number skills. Artistic activities and crafts help the children develop small motor skills, coordination, and the ability to concentrate. Ample time for free creative play, both in the classroom and in nearby Central Park, enables the children to strengthen their bodies, forge healthy, long-lasting social relationships and engenders interest in the world around them.

We strongly believe that parents and teachers working together can provide the child with the best possible support. To facilitate this cooperative relationship we offer parent education workshops and talks throughout the year. Led by experienced teachers and professionals from both within and outside our school community, these talks strive to deepen our understanding of child development and to offer practice insights into how best to support each child. These talks and workshops also aim to give an overview of Waldorf Education and how the curriculum supports and carries the children through the developmental phases of childhood. We encourage open communication between parents and teachers with regularly scheduled class meetings, parent-teacher conferences and the opportunity to participate in community events during the year.

Our Early Childhood Programs strive to meet the needs of children and their families. We offer two nursery classes, two kindergarten classes and a Parent-Child program for two year olds and their parents, as well as an optional afternoon program for kindergarteners.