Posted August 30, 2012
Three Cedars Waldorf School continues to evolve rapidly, with a new Executive Director at its helm since the spring of 2011, and a renewed team of faculty and staff members. The school is engaged in a joint accreditation process with the Pacific Northwest Association of Independent Schools (PNAIS) and the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America (AWSNA), attesting to its solid programs, faculty, and plans for future developments. Our school has moved beyond the challenges of its early years, and our team of trained and experienced teachers effectively meet the needs of today's children and families with enthusiasm!
Three Cedars Waldorf is one of the best schools in the area. A wonderful, beautiful environment for the children, with very close relationships with their teachers, and a great community for parents, with rich connections all around. My children have enjoyed their time there from day one: they love going to school and enjoy all the activities offered. We LOVE the high quality of academics and the high level of artistic subjects taught every day. Teachers deeply care about each child, and the administration is clear and very supportive. The school has become our 'village' since we enrolled. We feel our children are very well prepared for high school and beyond. We strongly recommend Three Cedars as a superb independent school.
At TCS, the students are valued and nurtured. Teachers focus not only on academic achievement, but on physical, emotional and moral development. TCS supports our vision for raising 'global citizens' who are not only academically accomplished but also well balanced, forward-thinking and compassionate. (Waldorf education demonstrates that academic development can be rigorous AND fun while not appearing to seem so hard . Some interpret this as being easy because they don t expect learning to feel so natural! But after seeing the way my daughter learns at TCS as compared to how her cousin (in the same grade in a traditional public school) learns, I can t imagine a more effective and synergistic way.) My husband and I had good experiences growing up in the public school system but now that we are witnessing Waldorf education, we wish every child could have the same experience. We feel fortunate to have TCS in our lives.
In a world where the quality of public school education is at serious risk due to a standardized approach to education (no child left behind) and an appalling prevalence of drugs, teen sex, and violence, it is nice to find a haven where students can still get individual attention and a community where parents are motivated to contribute to the education of their children. This school has group of incredibly dedicated and caring faculty, and a program that focuses on fostering creativity and imagination through a balanced curriculum. As with most Waldorf schools, TCS takes a different approach to education one which is difficult for some parents to be comfortable with in an age of academics and regimented education. For us, this is a place which has given us hope that our kids can still enjoy their childhood, and emerge as highly capable, independent, and self-confident human beings. Bravo!
This is a remarkable school. Our teachers honor and respect each child as a unique individual. As a Waldorf school there is an emphasis on integration of the arts and music in a way that bring the curriculum to life. Our students are being nurtured to keep their natural enthusiasm for learning, while developing strong capabilities, so they will become joyful lifelong learners. The school community is strong and vibrant with very involved and committed parents. You need to come see it to get a true sense of what a find this school is!
In it's early years this school was a great and flourishing with life. Bur recently it has taken a turn for the worse, making terrible decisions about faculty and poor academics. If you want a place for your child to mosey there way through school up until high school...this is the place for you.
This is a school that does not try to fill the children's minds with knowledge, but to allow the children to find in themselves the joy of learning without external pressure or competition. Looking at my own children's experience, it works. A few years ago, they were in a high pressure private Montessori school, they hated it. Because of the constant pressure, they were beginning to believe they were 'not good' at this and that (maths in particular). We decided to move them to Three Cedars. I could not have expected the profound impact this decision has created in our lives. Two years later, they still love their school and look forward to going to school almost everyday. We don't have to torture them with homework any more, they are already independent and manage it on their own.
Three Cedars school provides an integrated and arts-based education for kindergarten through grade 8. Located on a beautiful 5 acre campus in Bellevue, the classes are small and the children receive much individual attention. Arts and music are fully integrated into the rest of the curriculum, with children learning to play a recorder in 1st grade and progressing to a stringed instrument by 4th grade. The basics of reading, writing and math are given primacy in the curriculum, and are balanced out with many specialty subjects such as gardening, Spanish, Japanese, handwork, and P.E. Children are seen as wholistic learners, and much learning is kinesthetic and hands-on. The school celebrates festivals throughout the year and studies the world's cultures throughout the grades. Different learning styles are accomodated as much as possible.
Well meaning, but falls short academically and in safetey and disclipline. We were fairly shocked by the lack of emphasis on anything related to direct education. Discipline problems were evident among the more active kids.
My daughter has attended Three Cedars School for three years now and has flourished! The philosophy of the school is to call forth the greatness in each child and to nurture humanitarian action. I have noticed both subtle and flagrant circumstances where the nurturing environment have helped her learn how to think about others and gain confidence in her own abilities. She is learning to express herself in art, music, drama and movement at a level far ahead of her chronological age. The school truly is a community with parents/families volunteering to enhance the campus on a routine basis. There is a lot of support to families in crisis and in transition. I feel very comfortable having my child play at other TCS homes, knowing that my values around non-competitive games, healthful eating, and clear parental guidance are present. Our family has benefited from the school - it is extraordinary!
After two other schools (one private, one public) we were so frustrated trying to find a school that would actually teach while caring about our child. Our child loves to go to school, says the days are fun and so short (they are 45 minutes longer than their previous school!) and loves learning now. It is amazing what can be accomplished when teachers and staff actually care about the individual children. Our child loves their teacher, we love their teacher, and we have open and frequent communication- we never have to wonder how they are doing in class or what the school is doing in general. Public school could learn alot from Three Cedars School.
Comparatively speaking to other Waldorf schools in the area, this developing school has only 'back-slided' in the last several years. Due to lack of funding and an outrageous mortgage, they are not putting as much into their curriculum as they were previously, and have also made some pretty un-wise choices as far as faculty.
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The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.
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