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At it's core, Waldorf education is developmentally appropriate, experiential, and academically rigorous. The arts in all academic disciplines from preschool through the grades is offered, which enhances and enriches learning. Waldorf education aims to inspire a love for learning in students, and to enable them to fully develop their unique capacities. Waldorf education is inspired learning at it's best.


Founded in the early 20th century, Waldorf education is based on the insights, teachings and principles of education outlined by the world renowned artist, and scientist, Rudolf Steiner. The principles of Waldorf education evolve from an understanding of human development that address the needs of the growing child. 

Music, dance and theater, writing, literature, legends and myths are not simply subjects to be read about and tested. They are experienced. Through these experiences, Waldorf students cultivate their intellectual, emotional, physical and spiritual capacities to be individuals certain of their paths and to be of service to the world. 

Professors who have taught Waldorf students across many academic disciplines and across a wide range of campuses—from State Universities to Ivy League—note that Waldorf graduates have the ability to integrate thinking; to assimilate information as opposed to memorizing isolated facts; to be flexible, creative and willing to take intellectual risks; and are leaders with high ethical and moral standards who take initiative and are passionate to reach their goals. Waldorf graduates are highly sought after in higher education.

Teachers in Waldorf schools are dedicated to generating an inner enthusiasm for learning within every child. This eliminates the need for competitive testing, academic placement, and rewards to motivate learning and allows motivation to arise from within. It helps engender the capacity for joyful life-long learning.

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AWSNA Principles for Waldorf Schools

Founded in the early 20th century, Waldorf education is based on the insights and teachings of world-renowned artist and scientist, Rudolf Steiner. Guided by these insights, AWSNA members have adopted the following seven AWSNA Principles for Waldorf Schools. These principles articulate the most important values that inform the policies and practices of Waldorf schools in North America and are held as a central tenet of our schools’ accreditation process. 

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