The First Grade marks a new stage of development, wherein children can begin to shift their focus from developing their physical bodies and becoming part of a group to the new challenge of academic learning.
First grade at the Charlottesville Waldorf School launches an eight-year journey. Leaving Kindergarten, children add thoughtful work to imaginary play. Friendships begin and broaden. New group skills invite wholeness, each child playing their role. The teacher, familiar with each child even before the year begins, forms lessons around daily rhythms; these structure and comfort the children in this new beginning.
When children enter the First Grade, they know that it is a Big Deal, and we do our best to show them that we understand that. We ask them to stand up straight and tall, so we can almost see those crowns on their heads. We ask them to sit at desks for part of the day, rather than sitting on the floor. And we continue to give them meaningful work–although the work has changed, to meet their Grade School selves.