Developed more than 100 years ago in Austria, this time-tested approach has become very popular. The aim is to create a safe and nurturing environment that supports students to become strong, independent thinkers. The method includes a broad, well-rounded curriculum that includes academics, but emphasizes art and music, physical activity, and social and emotional development. The Waldorf approach does not test or use grades; it encourages children to pursue learning for the sake of learning.
In choosing this learning approach, it’s important to keep in mind that academic education is de-emphasized. In fact, students typically do not use textbooks until nearly middle school years. Reading isn’t introduced until second grade; instead, teachers use oral storytelling and provide tools, including the alphabet and art supplies, to let students explore their reason to communicate. This approach would be a good fit for families who value creativity and individuality and competing with other’s progress.