This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Posted April 17, 2014
- a parent
I LOVE Camellia. It is the most magical place a child could ever attend school and the memories created there will last a lifetime. They will take this experience into adulthood as much more aware, sold adults with a developed sense of self. I am so grateful and blessed to be a part of this wonderful community and wouldn't trade it for anything in the world. The curriculum has a way of healing children and providing them with opportunities you just cannot find anywhere else. I wish I would have had the opportunity to attend a Waldorf school; however, now I get to live vicariously through my child and all her lovely experiences. Thank you Camellia for making this an experience of a lifetime.
I wanted to talk about Camellia because I have a son in the 8th grade this year. This is his 10th year at the school and there were times when he didn't want to be here. But today on his high school application he said that he "cherished" his Waldorf experience. Many people think Waldorf is for younger kids. But I will say the real gold in this type of education comes in middle school, when children grown into amazing teenagers who are kind, reflective, and can talk to adults. I feel my son is fully prepared for high school and he is excited because he enjoys learning and school and I credit Camellia Waldorf school with this. I can without hesitation recommend this school, but stay to 8th grade or you are really missing out!
If you're looking for a school with teachers that are dedicated to their profession and are always looking for ways to help your child excel (socially, academically, and physically) and a warm and inviting community of teachers, parents, and staff, then you've found your school. We've been here since our son entered kindergarten and he's now a third grader; it's been a great experience for our whole family. Frankly, I wish I'd gone to Camellia as a kid!
We came to Camellia last year as we were not happy with my children's current private school which was way to income driven. At first glance Camellia may come off as too organic or too warm and fuzzy. The facilities are a little run down, but fully functioning, and to be honest, kids don't care. What we have found is that this is a top notch school. The teachers and staff are extremely dedicated. The creative way education is taught is wonderful. My children absolutely love this school. They miss it on the weekends. This is a non-profit school, and all tuition goes towards paying the teacher's salaries and to the school. There is absolutely no monies being paid to a private "owner/operator" of the school. The method of teaching (e.g., reading a year later than public school) has proved to be beneficial to my child. Basically, once they learn to read they take off and are caught up with those in public schools. We have also found the kids in the older grades at Camellia seem to be friendlier and more social than the average teenager. I think this has to do the the community of the school. I can't say enough good things about this school. We are so happy there.
We ve known for years that Camellia is a wonderful school for young children and their families, but as our child has grown older, we have come to realize what a gift this school is for families with students in the middle grades, 5th through 8th. Some aspects of the middle school education at Camellia that we appreciate most are as follows: arts and academics deftly interwoven in a way that deepens the learning experience, the opportunity for personal reflection and expression in every lesson, and the sense of community leadership that is cultivated in the middle school students. Moreover, with Camellia s emphasis on mental and physical health and acuity, and with materialism and commercialism deemphasized, students ease into adolescence at Camellia with more grace and fluidity, and less turbulence, than is typical in other schools.
Camellia is a remarkable place for children and their families. There is a strong emphasis on integrated learning that incorporates imagination, understanding, creativity, rigor, attention to detail, and a sound moral base. The curriculum is challenging but at a deliberate, appropriate pace that leaves children with an eagerness to learn more. The school incorporates a regular ritual of festivals and other opportunities for public speaking and appearances that build confidence in children and community more widely. Both the faculty and the parents are committed to creating an atmosphere that reduces a lot of the materialism, shallowness, and stilted social skills that come with an over reliance on TV, video games, and the Internet. My family has only been there two years, but I sense that this place is building leaders and well rounded citizens that our world sorely needs.
Our family couldn t be more thrilled with Camellia Waldorf. The teachers are so committed and professional. The curriculum throughout the grades is really amazing. Children have the opportunity to learn such a broad range of things, from the traditional academics, to art, music and movement. Instead of a lot of the busy work and rote learning that happens at some schools, the Waldorf approach really encourages a deep understanding of each subject matter. As a math major myself, I have been especially impressed with their approach to math, beginning as early as first grade. And it has been taught in a way that has gotten my daughter really excited about it. I have a first grader and preschooler. All our daughters teachers have been so warm, kind, caring, thoughtful and intelligent. From my older daughter s very first week at Camellia in Kindergarden, she asked repeatedly if she could go to Camellia through eighth grade. In addition to the school, we love the community of families that are part of the school and have made a number of treasured friendships. Camellia really is a special place, and we feel so fortunate to have found this school.
Camellia offers a wonderful, loving environment in which children are not only challenged to be creative and intelligent but still allowed to be kids. They grow at a pace that is right for them and are not forced to be young adults too early by outside cultural and media influences. My wife and I have always had strong mathematic and analytical backgrounds and Camellia has fulfilled our hopes in that regard. But Camellia also offers them an artistic education that we could never provide. Whether my children ever become artists or not, such an education will continue to enrich their lives for many, many years to come. I am proud to be able to offer my children the educational experience that Camellia provides.
The first time I came onto the campus I knew I was in a very special place. The quality of teachers, the nurturing environment, the focus on developing both a child's creative and intellectual capacities, as well as cultivating in them a sense of reverence for the natural world makes this the only place in Sacramento that I would send my children. While gardening, music, arts and movement programs are something that are considered 'extra' (or are non-existent) in most schools, at Camellia they are integral to their mission of educating the WHOLE child, not just the child's brain. The school's committed to making this education as available as possible through a progressive tuition assistance program is beautifully reflected in the diversity of the student body. Highly recommended for anyone who is interested in a giving their child an opportunity to reach his or her true life potential.