Explore our extraordinary approach

What is the school day like?  

In Preschool and Kindergarten, each day is balanced between structured activity and open-ended exploration, rest and motion, indoor time and time in nature. Early Childhood Waldorf education and teachers provide a nurturing structure with child development and the natural seasons at its foundation, one that allows a child's capacities to develop naturally within. Students enjoy seasonal songs, movement, storytelling, puppetry, crafts, painting, soup making, bread baking, beeswax modeling, and creative play.

In Grades 1 - 12, each day begins with Main Lesson, a two-hour period of intensive intellectual exploration. It’s a deep dive into a specific subject like Botany, Calculus, or Poetics. Next are classes on a more traditional track that continue all year: Mathematics, World Languages, Music, and Humanities. The afternoon is dedicated to the Arts, Movement, Physical Education, or other academic exploration.

What is the difference? 

At SF Waldorf School, everyone practices the arts, plays music, and experiences the natural world through field studies and outdoor exploration. Visit a classroom and you’ll see students strive for more than just the right answer—students who create beautiful, impeccable work and try their hands at everything. Our extraordinary teachers, experts in their fields, are dedicated not only to knowing each student and creating meaningful relationships in an environment where children can flourish but also to personally growing and improving while modeling thoughtful attention and care. 

The heart of the Waldorf method is education as an art. It must speak to the child's experience. To educate the whole child, his heart and his will must be reached, as well as the mind. 

Rudolf Steiner

A student's physics project on display.

Students discover the art of scientific phenomena, the beauty of mathematics, and the great ideas of humankind. How do they achieve such stunning results?

The approach cultivates concentration, imagination, persistence, and flexibility in thinking. It’s not about becoming a talented artist. It’s about tapping into the power of human creativity. See the work and you see how students connect ideas and learn about the world. 

A middle school student dances on stage with fellow students during the Dia de los Muertos Assembly.

What captures the imagination at seven and seventeen? How is creative, critical thinking developed to its fullest potential? 

Here it begins with an understanding of human development and how a person learns about the world. From the wonder of childhood to the dynamic intellect of adolescence, lessons are always fascinating. And teachers understand the power of experience—so students build, create, and test their ideas. 

Humanities faculty Kelly Lacy and two high school students talk about their project in the hallway.

In subtle yet powerful ways, Waldorf students stand out: they look you in the eye, lend a hand, ask a thoughtful question. That’s what we hear from people in the community.

Building a connection is key and it starts early, with a handshake each morning. Over years, a grade school teacher stays with a class, forming a partnership with families. High school is intentionally small so every student is seen and every student contributes.   

A kindergarten student recites a verse in a circle with other children.

Every person has a unique spark, something inside that inspires a love for learning and the world. It is an inner light, what a parent sees, and the foundation from which our education begins.

Our teachers are trained to consider a student’s intellectual, emotional, physical, and spiritual inclinations and questions. They look for a student’s gifts, beauty, and challenges. Each day there is time to connect, reflect, and recite a verse—moments that strengthen the foundation for growth.