During term-time, we offer daily Kindergarten sessions suitable for children from 3 years to 6 years.
In our Kindergartens children grow in a secure and caring environment, surrounded by quality natural toys and materials and regular outdoor play in all weathers that allow the children to develop physical and social skills along with creative and imaginative play that together form a wonderful foundation for life.
We have two Kindergarten groups, of up to 16 children each day, with one teacher and at least one assistant each. The groups are mixed age, with children from 3 to 6 years old. The Kindergarten session runs from 8.45am to 1.45pm Monday to Friday. We also provide wrap around care with Breakfast Club in the mornings from 8.00am and Afternoon Care till 5.00pm Monday to Thursday.
We are fully registered with Ofsted as well as being a registered Steiner Early Years Centre with the Steiner Waldorf Schools Fellowship. In the kindergarten, we use the Early Years Steiner Waldorf Curriculum, and the Early Years Foundation Stage ( EYFS) The latter is a statutory framework setting standards for the learning, development and care of children from birth to 5 years old. You can learn about the Steiner Waldorf Early Years curriculum and its exemptions from Statutory Early Years Foundation Stage via our Curriculum page.
The rhythm of Kindergarten
Led by the teacher, the adults present in the Kindergarten are there to help the children to feel safe within the rhythm, to inspire self-motivated learning and to be role models worthy of imitation.
One of the main principles behind the Steiner-Waldorf approach is that young children begin their learning through imitation, rather than instruction. Thus great care is put into the adults’ gestures, speech and movement in the Kindergarten. The staff team at Beechtree are all committed to providing high quality child-centred Steiner Education with an emphasis on kindness and care.
As per the Steiner Waldorf Early Years Curriculum, the Kindergarten day is structured with a rhythm-based on “breathing in” and “breathing out”: of concentrated activity and free play. Maintaining this daily rhythm alongside a weekly and yearly rhythm of seasonal activities, festivals and songs gives children a deep-seated security.
How to apply
Children are admitted to the Kindergarten once they have turned 3 years old, if both parents and teachers are satisfied that the child is ready. Readiness for Kindergarten includes showing increasing independence e.g. in potty training, dressing themselves, eating and play. It also includes the beginnings of the ability to socialise with other children, as well as an increasing level of concentration for stories and songs. We also have a Special Educational Needs (SEN) policy that recognises all children are special and have individual needs.
We receive Kindergarten applications up to a year in advance of your child starting Kindergarten.
We hold regular open evenings at the Kindergarten for you to find out more about Beechtree, our community and look around the Kindergarten.
If you are interested in Kindergarten, please contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org for an information pack and application form or download one below:
Please be aware that our office is staffed part time, but we will respond to all inquiries as quickly as possible.
Our Kindergarten classes run on a termly basis and we ask for each term’s fees to be paid at the start of the term. The fees are £27 per session. We also offer wraparound care with a Breakfast Club from 8:00am to 8:45am and Afternoon Care (1:45pm up to 5:00pm.) You can learn more about our fees, the Free Early Education Entitlement (FEEE) and see a cost breakdown for wraparound care on our Fees page.
For parents interested in joining Beechtree Steiner’s School for age 6+, our Kindergarten classes act as an excellent introduction to formal education, allowing the children to make friends and learn the gentle rhythms of Steiner education. Learn more about our School.