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Chicago Waldorf School Reviews

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The highlight of my high school career is the foreign exchange program. By the time a student reaches the intermediate level of either Spanish or German, one is able to participate in the program. We are partnered with a student that attends a Waldorf school in a different country. For three months, he or she will stay with you and your family and attend your classes with you. Afterwards, you are able to do the same in your exchange partner's country and enhance your capabilities of speaking your desired language.
Chicago Waldorf School follows the principles of Rudolf Steiner closely. From early education children are being taught skills without being forced to learn. They learn through play and stories. As the children grow older, they learn in a more school setting but learn different subjects that you don't normally see in a public school like Norse Mythology in the 4th grade. In the high school, students experience more hands on work through trips and more detailed classes that focus on a specific subject. They range from studying the literature of the Greeks and Romans to learning Euclidean geometry. Overall, the education given is a well-rounded one.
I went here my entire life though 8th grade and don't recommend it. Waldorf teaches you to live in a bubble from the outside world and act like it's still the 1800's. Secondly, they give students no freedom to grow as individuals because you are taught to conform to Waldorf's uniform expectations; do your art in the exact same way, have the same weird anti-technology beliefs (we weren't allowed to talk about movies in elementary school!!), LEARN in the same way. Connecting to the whole "learn the same way" aspect, I have learning differences and Waldorf in no way supported that. I got little academic help and only one or two teachers had an understanding of what I was going through. I spent my entire childhood thinking that something was wrong with me because almost no one cared to address and figure out what was up with my academic struggles. It is simply a very sheltered, every-one-has-to-be-the same environment and I am a million times more happy at my current, more modern school.
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I loved the sense of community and the care that was given to us by all the teachers. I feel that Waldorf has allowed me to be the best version of myself that could possibly have existed.
I was skeptical when I initially heard that the kids here love going to school so much, but now that I'm experiencing it first hand, I'm all in. As vacations wrap up, my kids start counting the days down until they get to go back to see their teachers and friends. We're only in the first couple years of having our kids in the school, and I wouldn't change anything in terms of where they are developmentally.
Chicago Waldorf School has been wonderful for my children. We have been a CWS family for 6 years, since my oldest child started preschool. Now we have two kids in school there, and they are thriving. I think they absolutely have the right approach to educating children. The teachers are excellent, nurturing children's love of learning without all the early academic pressure has been wonderful for us. My kids are very bright, creative and they love school. Since I began researching schools, I have been fascinated with the school system in Finland, considered the best in the world. I love the focus they have on free play, time outdoors and in nature, and delayed formal academics until 7 years old, and yet the kids outperform just about every other country int he world. Waldorf's approach to education reminds me of Finland's, and I am so happy my kids attend the Chicago Waldorf School.
I attended this school from grade school through high school. Now, over a decade after graduation, I continue to carry so much gratitude for the school and Waldorf education I received. The rigorous and varied education - from science lab to art class to annual service work trips to build homes or learn farm work - was one of the greatest gifts I could have received. I was not "taught to" - I was developed as a full human, to have the confidence and thinking skills to learn or teach myself anything I desire. I continued to a great liberal arts college and went on to grad school after that. I had a successful academic career and am now quickly growing in my professional work, where I find meaning and solve new problems regularly.
I have been a part of the Chicago Waldorf School community for the last 10 years. My children have attended since they were both in pre-school. It was one of the best decisions that I could have made. Not only am I confident in my children's academic abilities, I am also happy with the well rounded human beings they have become. My children have developed confidence in themselves as thinkers and doers because they had an education that asked them to create, to design, to collaborate, and to think for themselves.
I went to this school fro 13 years and loved it! I made some of my closest friends here and I loved my classmates. The teachers are available to help if you need it and the homework is both thought provoking and manageable. I had a great experience playing on the volleyball team as well!
It was an interesting learning experience, which taught me ways of meeting friends and learning of mistakes and relationships are always changing. Waldorf taught me how to have a more hands on learning experience, and to take a grain of salt with whatever or whomever I speak with.
Chicago Waldorf High School has been the best choice I could have ever made. They Do not “teach to the test”. The students are met with age appropriate challenges that allow them to develop their own critical thinking skills. The friends I have made will be with me for life. I went on exchange to Colombia for 3 months and hosted the student I lived with here for 3 months. There is a constant stream of exchange students from all over the world coming in for a semester that you get to know. When you have experienced being an exchange student yourself, you know what it’s like to be that kid coming in with all of your insecurities about speaking another language and being so far away from your home and your family, so you are likely to lend a hand, be friendly and get to know the exchange students. The small class size allows for service learning experiences that you would not get anywhere else. My college application process went smoothly and I got accepted to my first choice!
Great If you are interested in art, but severely lacking in math and science. The school atmosphere is amazing and most teachers are attentive but, Waldorf has a stigma when it comes to technology.
Although I 100% agree with the philosophy behind the Waldorf idea of education, I believe that the particular small class sizes within the Chicago Waldorf school leads to cliques and all around bad relationships between students.
I loved it here. Not only was I prepared for college but I have a life long community. I went on exchange to Colombia for three months and learned more than I would have anywhere else. I also got to go on many school trips that built our class dynamic greatly. One of my favorite memories was going to Maine to study for a week with other Waldorf Schools.
I have enjoyed my many years at Chicago Waldorf School. The teachers are great and the community is amazing. The exchange program I did through the school was the best experience of my life thus far.
While it is true that we stumbled upon Chicago Waldorf School by accident, it is also true that we cannot be more thankful for such a lucky, happy, life-enriching accident. Now nine years into the education, our two sons are flourishing. The caring and impressive faculty really know our sons and how to inspire them. Each specialty subject teacher adds to this knowledge and keeps that spark of curiosity alive, fueling a love of learning.

And now, our sons are getting a chance to participate in athletics (soccer, basketball, and volleyball) as well as getting deeper into math with math club and music, through private lessons after school. Such a well-rounded experience!

Looking forward to seeing how far, how deep, how high these kids will go with this very special education at this incredibly unique school!
The Chicago Waldorf School has given me wonderful community service experiences as well as unique foreign exchange opportunities. The arts program here is incredibly diverse. However, I feel that this school should have prepared me better for college and there are a few classes which we are required to take that seem useless to me. They are considering changes in the school regarding college readiness, however I will have graduated by then.
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We do not have a school nurse. Our school is so small that it it not necessary to have one. Instead we try to prevent serious injuries from occuring and letting students take care of their minor injuries with the provided first aid supplies.
We have music incorporated into the curriculum so that is a requirement to take it every year. Other things like journalism and student leadership are optional with some only being available to juniors and seniors and other being open to all of the high school.
Waldorf schools have their own education style and follow a certain curriculum. It mixes hands on learning with art. There are Waldorf schools all around the world that follow the same traditions and have students learning the same thing as with slight differences.
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