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Early Childhood

Nursery school

Due to these unique times our Nursery program is not currently being offered.

Our Nursery classes offer care for children 2 to 3 years old in a warm and loving environment.  The Nursery is a 'home away from home', where experiences like the smell of baking bread and the sound of a song being sung gently helps a child make the bridge of spending time away from home.  Our experienced Waldorf early childhood teachers hold a strong but flexible rhythm of the day which allows for plenty of time to play, to eat, to go to the restroom, to rest, to hear stories, songs, and rhymes, and to be out in the fresh air.  The classrooms and play yard are filled with open-ended, natural toys and materials for imaginative play. Click here for more info.

Pre-Kindergarten

Our Pre-K class serves as an introduction into school life.  Children are guided in activities which the whole class are experiencing together, and begin to learn that there are times for free play, and times for working together.  Each day our experienced Waldorf Pre-K teachers guide the children in artistic activities and crafts, an imaginative circle time with songs, poetry, and movement, an engaging story presented in the oral tradition along with dramatic reenactment and puppetry, as well as extended time in free play both inside and outside. 

KINDERGARTEN

At Waldorf School of Bend we offer a unique Kindergarten program. The children are guided through play and nature based learning. This helps to cultivate pre-academic experiential foundations and sensory integration. 

Children learn all kinds of imperative skills through play. Self-directed play promotes neural pathway development, hones social skills and peer navigation, advances large and small motor skills and strengthens motor planning and coordination. All the while our Kindergarten teachers are nurturing the children's developing skills.

Each day the children hold a rhythm in which they participate in free play, activities and crafts. They have an engaging circle time with songs, stories, and movement. We also have extended outdoor free play sessions.

 

Nursery, Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten Programs

Our youngest children are nurtured in a warm, beautiful, and loving environment in our nursery, pre-kindergarten and kindergarten classes by early childhood teachers who are specifically trained to meet the needs of our youngest students.

Our early childhood teachers help your little one to feel secure, protected, and confident—grounded in the consistency of our daily, weekly, and seasonal rhythms and activities. Through daily outdoor free play and creative exploration, we aspire to cultivate a love of—and respect for—our natural world.

Young children learn through imitation and play. Our teachers model respect and reverence in their interactions with your child. Our play-based curriculum is substantiated by research from the American Academy of Pediatrics that states play is integral for a healthy childhood, and necessary for social and intellectual development when formal academics begin in the grade school.

Children attending the Early Childhood program at the Waldorf School of Bend are prepared for future academic challenges as they engage their will through meaningful, practical activities and develop language through story, song, and verse. By the time he or she enters first grade, your child is ready and eager to experience the intellectual rigors of the grades curriculum.

Early Childhood hours are from 8:30 AM to 1:30 PM.

Due to these unique circumstances we find ourselves in with COVID our Nursery Program is not currently being offered.

Click here to read the Early Childhood handbook.

Meet the Faculty

Stephanie Perez

Stephanie Perez

Pre-K and Kindergarten Lead Teacher

Hannah Haerr

Hannah Haerr

Early Childhood Assistant

The first time I entered an early childhood classroom in a Waldorf school, I knew I had found our family’s home away from home. I could not imagine a more nourishing environment for my daughter’s first experience at school. To be in an early childhood classroom at the Waldorf School of Bend, is an experience immersed in creativity, imagination and love solidly held in a structured and intentional rhythm. Here, the healthy development of the whole child is nourished, while children play, create and allow their natural curiosity to guide, they are learning foundational skills in movement, critical thinking, and social awareness that will serve them when the more challenging work of the grades comes. Because a child’s natural curiosity is encouraged holistically through the use of all their senses and supported through work and lessons that feel like play but are actually educationally foundational, children who emerge from a Waldorf early childhood classroom do so with a natural motivation and interest to learn.

Now, seven years later, my daughters have each graduated out of kindergarten and into the grades. The enthusiasm and curiosity they have for school and the pride they have in the work they do is a testament to Waldorf education and the respect and validation I believe they received in those early, formative years when their first impressions of school and learning were so lovingly and gently nourished.

Hilary McCormick

daughters in 1st and 5th grades

Programs

The Waldorf School of Bend offers a range of programs to support parents and their children. These include:

  • Nursery School serving 2 to 3 year olds in a home-like environment with a  2, 3 and 5 day option
  • Pre-Kindergarten serving children from 3 to 4 years old with a 2, 3 or 5 day option
  • 5 day Kindergarten for children ages 4 through 6 with an emphasis on first-grade readiness particularly for our older Kindergarten students
  • Extended Care is usually offered until 5 P.M. but is currently not offered due to COVID-19. 
  • Summer and break, day camps 
  • After school music lessons

Outdoor Kindergarten

One day each week in fall and spring our mixed-age Kindergartens experience a whole day outside in nature. Outdoor Kindergarten days offer an opportunity to build important physical, social, cognitive and life skills that pave the way for academic learning later on.

Summer Break Camps

Cultivate a deep connection of nature through exciting, unique and challenging adventures each week. Our staff of energetic, creative and loving teachers are excited to provide fun experiences where children are encouraged to learn, grow and develop skills for school and life.

IMPORTANT UPDATE: Waldorf School Of Bend Status

In accordance with Executive Order 20-12, and in cooperation with the Oregon Department of Education – Early Learning Division, Waldorf School of Bend has been designated as an Emergency Child Care Facility (ECCF). While non-ECCFs have been ordered to close, Waldorf School of Bend will remain open. 

Please contact our Interim Director, Nate Brocious for more information. WSB's being open and in-person is only applicable to certain programs so please reach out to find out what this could mean for your child. Please go to our Operational Blueprint page for more information on WSB's response to the pandemic.

Nate Brocious: nbrocious@bendwaldorf.com

Admissions

Thank you for your interest in the Waldorf School of Bend! Choosing the best educational environment for your child is one of the most important decisions you will make as a parent - and we are here to be of service.  The best way to get to know us is to come for a visit. We offer many opportunities through scheduled tours, open house events, and parent enrichment events.

We are truly grateful for the opportunity to provide Waldorf education in Central Oregon, and to witness our students transforming into powerful citizens. We look forward to welcoming new families to our growing school!

WSB does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin, gender, income, marital status or sexual orientation in the administration of our educational policies, admissions or Board membership policies, financial programs and other school-administrated programs.

A note on special learning needs: the curriculum offered at WSB embraces many learning modalities and styles. However, it is not tailored to accommodate children who have special learning needs. While the creative and nurturing atmosphere of our classrooms may provide positive experiences for some children with special needs, WSB currently has neither the services, nor trained personnel required to serve a child with special learning needs. As with all of our enrollments at WSB, we look at each student application and family on a case by case and are happy to discuss any items you may have concerns about.

Applying to Waldorf School of Bend

Enrollment at Waldorf School of Bend is ongoing throughout the year for grades where space is still available. If you would like more information on our programs, please fill out our online inquiry form or contact our Admissions Director, Rachel Caldwell. rcaldwell@bendwaldorf.com or 541-330-8841.

Click here to download the Admissions process.

Download applications, teacher recommendation forms and transcript release forms:

Parents and Guardians are strongly encouraged to attend a tour or open house and review our PARENT HANDBOOK prior to submitting an application. If you would like us to mail you a full enrollment package or if you have any questions, please call 541-330-8841 or email us at rcaldwell@bendwaldorf.com.