“Human growth and development do not occur in a linear fashion, nor can they be measured. What lives, grows, and has its being in human life can only be grasped with that same human faculty that can grasp the invisible metamorphic laws of living nature.”
- Colin Price, from "Five Frequently Asked Questions" by Colin Price; originally printed in Renewal Magazine, Spring/Summer 2003
Waldorf Schools take a developmental approach to education, and the curriculum is designed to meet students at the specific stage they are in at each age. Waldorf students experience continuity in the relationship with their core teacher over many years, as each Class Teacher stays with one class for up to eight years. This long-term relationship supports a rich social dynamic in the class, and gives the teacher deeper understanding of each student’s strengths, challenges and developmental milestones. Multiple special subject teachers provide an additional array of perspectives and expertise.
The Westside Waldorf School offers a rich and comprehensive academic program which includes English based on world literature, myths, and legends, history that is chronological and inclusive of the world's great civilizations, science that surveys geography, astronomy, meteorology, physical and life sciences, and mathematics that develops competence in arithmetic, algebra, and geometry. Additional subjects include two foreign languages, physical education and gardening, a wide selection of arts, eurythmy, handwork and woodworking.
"In a Waldorf school, practical and artistic subjects play as important a role as the full spectrum of traditional academic subjects that the school offers. The practical and artistic are understood as essential in achieving a preparation for life in the 'real' world."
- Colin Price
Each day begins with a two-hour Main Lesson block covering academic subjects such as Language Arts, Math, Science, Literature and History. Art, poetry, music, movement and drama are integrated into the curriculum at every point of study to enhance the students' understanding of the subject matter. Students create their own "textbooks" for each block, filled with writing and illustrations that archive and interpret their studies. This work fosters academic skills in organizing, absorbing and reflecting on content, building knowledge, and facilitates an active method of inquiry. Students learn to think independently, as well as to work harmoniously and respectfully with others.