History/Philosophy

HISTORY

flower girlsAlabama Waldorf School began as The Redmont School in the Waldorf Tradition, and was initiated by a small group of Birmingham-area parents who desired a more well-rounded and creative educational experience for their young children than what was readily available in 1987. These individuals traveled throughout the United States visiting schools with various educational philosophies until they discovered the Waldorf teaching philosophy and fell in love with it.  

The school first opened as a multi-age preschool in 1987 and was located in the home of one of the parents. The school expanded and began its grades program in 2000, adding one grade per year until the full complement of 8 grades was offered in addition to preschool. The Grades program at Alabama Waldorf School has now graduated 8 eighth-grade classes. Our graduates thrive in competitive public and private high school programs and then beyond in their chosen universities. From its inception, the school has developed and has expanded because of the knowledge, dedication and hard-work of the school’s founders, supporters, parents and educators. The school was awarded the privilege of using “Waldorf” in its name in 2008 by the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America (AWSNA) as part of the path to accreditation. Accreditation was awarded in November, 2015 by the Southeastern Association of Independent Schools (SAIS) and in March 2016 by AWSNA.

PHILOSOPHY

Alabama Waldorf School established its curriculum utilizing the traditional Waldorf philosophy as defined by world-renowned scientist, philosopher and artist Rudolf Steiner (1861-1925). Waldorf education evolved from Steiner’s thorough understanding of human development and addresses the needs of children as they move through development on every level: physical, mental, emotional.

In the preschool, children enjoy a rhythmic day alternating between focused activity (Circle, Story, Snack) and unhindered play both indoors and out of doors. Our low-media policy ensures that play is filled with the child’s own imagination.

In the Grades, educational material is presented in themed blocks so that students understand how disparate subjects — math, language arts, science, music, history, etc. — work together. This creates a deeper and broader understanding of the world, allowing knowledge to be absorbed easily and effortlessly applied to real-world situations.

Through a curriculum that includes 4,000 years of history, annual dramatic plays, and a phenomenological approach to Physics and Geometry, Waldorf middle school students gain high levels of critical thinking ability, and they possess the self-awareness and confidence needed to foster success and a lifetime love of learning. Worldwide, 94% of Waldorf graduates choose to attend college, and 91% consider themselves active in lifelong education. 

For more about Waldorf philosophy, visit Why Waldorf Works, a page managed by the Association of Waldorf School's of North America (AWSNA).