Kindergarten at The Juniper School looks much like the Early Childhood in many ways. The children enjoy a daily rhythm with free, unstructured indoor and outdoor play, singing and dancing circles, rich stories, purposeful work, and the small group work of cooking, baking, painting, drawing, beeswax, etc. The teacher is looked to as a model and relates to the children with kindness, gentleness and firmness in safe boundaries.
Yet Kindergarten is another step in the development of the young child; the child that is stronger, longer and more engaged and aware of his/her immediate surroundings. The biggest difference is that this time in child’s a life is time of organized group imaginative play also called dramatic play. Children accept and assign roles, and then act them out. It is a time when they break through the walls of reality and pretend to be someone or something different from themselves, and dramatize situations and actions to go along with the roles they have chosen to play. This provides healthy ground for important conflict resolutions and decision making. Rich curriculum of seasonal songs, poetry and stories offer robust food for imagination.
The natural environment supports children in more risky play and building endeavors. The purposeful work and artwork is more intricate and involved. The circles engage more vigorous and complex language, poetry, games and dances. The Kindergarten environment and teachers serve to meet the growing, capable children in front of them.
For more information and reading, please find: “What is a Waldorf kindergarten?” by Sharifa Oppenheimer
Once per year each family will be given a special basket and list to purchase and deliver to school the weekly groceries.