The days before summer at Waldorf

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The following is a first-person account of Waldorf education from a Waldorf alumnus, Shane Alexander. To learn about the difference between Waldorf and Montessori schools, read our comparison guide. You can also read our guide to Waldorf preschools.

From the first day of school it's the day that everyone looks forward to. Kids, Teachers alike. Maybe the parents, not so much, but I know the kids did for sure. They took everyday in. Appreciated it. Went through the yearly motions of the tests, field trips, sick days, snow days, late nights studying for this one day of the year.


The last day of the year. The beginning of summer vacation.

At Waldorf, we had a few things to look forward to before the big day of Freedom. The prom where the whole high school was invited to. The grade 12 play. The class trip. It brought the class together knowing that most of us would be going our separate ways for the next few months and maybe not returning for the following year. We were a close bunch. The last days meant a lot to us.

In Grade 12 however, the last days were even more special. As part of the Grade 12 curriculum, we had something called the Self Main Lesson. It was focused on the ideals, philosophies and concepts of our fierce leader, Rudolf Steiner. Two weeks learning about Steiner, the reasons why Waldorf education works and of course, looking within to find some answers have have questioned over our high school career. The last week of the Main Lesson we do something called the Self Circle. It's when we reveal our thoughts and feelings about our classmates. This could be easy. Sometimes, it was. Sometimes it wasn't.

The first day my class went through the whole circle, our teacher supervising the whole experience put a couple of tissue boxes in the center of the circle. We never thought we would need them. Ha. We did. Two people in, the tears started to pour down. The simplicity of what could've been something so pleasant and heartwarming became something so hard and emotional. And it wasn't expected, at all. We heard the stories. How hard it was for others. But that was them. Their class. My class was tougher than that. Tighter than that. The Circle beat us, too.

After we got through the dreaded Circle, we had Grad and then the class trip. Every year around this time, I tend to think back to those days. Think that those were some of the best days of my life. That summer was a blast, too.

Congrats to the new graduates of the world. May you progress and move to the next level of your life with confidence and power, however, don't ever forget the people that helped you get you there...

—Shane Alexander
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  • Aurora, Ontario
    Wellington/Yonge
  • 1 to 12 Coed
  • $18,000 to $20,000

Flexible, techy environment. Freedom of choice. ALL ABILITIES welcome and no ideals taught outside the scope of academia. We are a COMMUNITY of incredible future leaders with innate creative genius!

  • Day
  • Progressive
  • Waldorf
Agora Prep 18000 Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Day Coed
  • Thornhill, Ontario
    Bathurst St/Rutherford Rd
  • NS to 12 Coed
  • $18,000 to $21,000

Toronto Waldorf School offers a curriculum that integrates academics, arts and movement while addressing the intellectual, physical, emotional and social aspects of child development from preschool to gr. 12.

  • Day
  • Waldorf
Toronto Waldorf School 18000 Preschool Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Coed
  • Calgary, Alberta
  • PS to 9 Coed
  • $4,410 to $14,850

Calgary Waldorf School’s rich and challenging curriculum carefully balances academic, artistic and practical activities to stimulate intelligence and encourage creativity.

  • Day
  • Waldorf
Calgary Waldorf School 4410 Preschool Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Coed
  • Toronto, Ontario
    Davenport Rd/Spadina Rd
  • PS to 8 Coed
  • $14,325 to $22,650

Small class sizes and our unique curriculum - infused with Arts, Movement, Outdoor Education - create deeper connections across subjects, at all child development stages. Parents describe us as “schooling with heart".

  • Day
  • Waldorf
Waldorf Academy 14325 Preschool Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools Day Coed
  • Burlington, Ontario
    Appleby Line/Upper Middle Road
  • PS to 12 Coed
  • $10,500 to $17,600

Halton Waldorf School offers an education that fosters confidence, independence and intelligence. Located on five forested acres, the school has been uniquely designed to support the goals of Waldorf education. Est 1984

  • Day
  • Waldorf
Halton Waldorf School 10500 Preschool Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Coed
  • Toronto, Ontario
    Bathurst St./Eglinton Ave. West
  • PS to 6 Coed
  • $15,500 to $17,500

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  • Day
  • Montessori
  • Waldorf
Alive Montessori & Private School 15500 Preschool Kindergarten Elementary Day Coed
  • Guelph, Ontario
    Victoria Rd N/Woodlawn Rd E
  • K to 8 Coed
  • $5,936 to $13,941

Trillium provides a comprehensive, vibrant and academically vigorous Waldorf education. Students are welcomed into a warm environment with teachers who care deeply for them, and support their holistic development.

  • Day
  • Waldorf
Trillium Waldorf School 5936 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools Day Coed
  • Kitchener, Ontario
  • JK to 8 Coed
  • $2,730 to $4,615

Carmel New Church School provides a loving, peaceful place with indoor and outdoor classrooms where students are taught to become productive and caring people, both in this life and the next.

  • Day
  • Liberal Arts
  • Waldorf
Carmel New Church School 2730 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools Day Coed

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