Davis Waldorf School

3100 Sycamore Lane
Davis, CA 95616-0956
Tel: (530)753-1651
Grades: PK-8 | 205 students
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In Waldorf education there is a saying 'there is no education without relation.' A low teacher-to-student ratio allows teachers to spend time with each student, and even more importantly to create a lasting bond. Because our teachers 'loop' they stay with the class for an extended period of time, usually 4-5 years and occasionally longer.
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In Waldorf education there is a saying 'there is no education without relation.' A low teacher-to-student ratio allows teachers to spend time with each student, and even more importantly to create a lasting bond. Because our teachers 'loop' they stay with the class for an extended period of time, usually 4-5 years and occasionally longer.
All of our students learn to play and read music. Although music begins in preschool and kindergarten with simple songs, formal music instruction begins in first grade with a pentatonic flute  and in third grade with a diatonic flute. Stringed music instruction begins in 4th grade, with the option to choose a wind or band instrument in 6th grade.
Academics are presented in an engaging manner, with the goal of creating lifelong learners who are curious, disciplined , and creative thinkers.
Although as a private school we are not held to state standards nor required to do standardized testing, we do administer the McGraw-Hill TerraNova Basic Battery, a nationally norm-referenced standardized test, to our students in 8th grade.  Our classical education and arts-integrated curriculum enable our students to test, on average, 3-4 grades above their grade level.
Our large natural campus with plenty of room enables our teachers to get creative and integrate the multiple intelligences in their teaching while maximizing creative collaboration and teamwork.
Eighth grade students show off their dance skills at our our annual Winter Concert.  The grace and composure of even the shyest grades student is benefited by ample opportunities to demonstrate what they learn-- from dance to theater to 8th Grade Reports where each student writes and presents a lengthy report on a topic of their own choosing.
In addition to our rigorous academic program, we have a robust 'subject' program that seeks to fulfill our mission of educating the whole child. Here second grade students learn to knit in a handwork class. Additionally, our students have Spanish, games and movement, gardening, art, woodworking, music, and more.
Here our woodworking teacher helps an eighth grade student in the building of a stool. Waldorf education aims to help children develop their IQ, EQ (emotional intelligence) and PQ (physical intelligence)-- integrating their intellectual and social-emotional capacities while giving them the practical experience of making things happen. Woodworking helps students exercise their ability to bring projects to fruition.
Waldorf preschool and kindergartens utilize the child's natural propensity to learn through play. Play benefits cognitive, social, emotional, and physical development. When play is fun and child-directed, children are motivated to engage in opportunities to learn.
Our children get outside in all weather. We value time in nature and are able to maximize it with beautiful gardens for our preschool and kindergarten children, a 5-acre, grass-based campus and close proximity to the Davis Greenbelt for hikes and walks. Older students also participate in long recesses, bi-weekly games and movement classes and extracurricular sports.
The Davis Waldorf School was founded in 1986 and serves 205 children from preschool to 8th grade.
Set on a beautiful 5-acre campus in North Davis, the Davis Waldorf School program balances artistic, academic and practical work, educating the whole child - hand and heart as well as mind.
Its innovative methodology and developmentally-oriented curriculum, permeated with the arts, address the child's changing consciousness as it unfolds, stage by stage.
Imagination and creativity are cultivated as well as cognitive growth and a sense of responsibility for the earth and its inhabitants.
Under the warm and active instruction of their teachers, children are provided with a creative and nurturing environment in which to develop, grow and learn.

School Overview

School Membership(s)School Assoc. Association of Waldorf Schools of North America
Religious Affiliation Non-sectarian
Grades Offered Grades Prekindergarten-8
Year Founded 1986

Student Body

Total Students 205 students
Student Body Type Co-ed
% Students of Color
18%
State avg.: 44%
Students by Grade Davis Waldorf School Student By Grade

Academics and Faculty

Total Classroom Teachers 19 teachers
Student : Teacher Ratio 11:1
National avg.: 13:1
% Faculty w/Advanced Degree
10%
Average Class Size 17 students
List of Courses Offered Link to List of Courses
Classroom Dress Code Casual
(Simple, logo-free clothing.)

Finances and Admission

Admission Deadline Mar. 31 / Aug. 15 / rolling
Tuition Notes Tuition is available on our
% on Financial Aid
25%
Acceptance Rate
85%
National avg.: 85%
Admissions Director Bessie Oakley

Sports

Total Sports Offered 3 sports
Sports Basketball, Flag Football, VolleyballBasketballFlag Football,
Volleyball

Extracurriculars

Total ExtracurricularsTotal Extra-curric. 5 extracurriculars
ExtracurricularsExtra-curric. Acrylic Painting, Algebra Club, Conversational Spanish, Fiddling Group, Games Club Algebra Club, Fiddling Group, Games Club, Acrylic Painting,
Conversational Spanish,

School Notes

  • Waldorf education balances artistic, academic and practical work educating the whole child - hand and heart as well as mind. Its innovative methodology and developmentally-oriented curriculum, permeated with the arts, address the child's changing consciousness as it unfolds, stage by stage. Imagination and creativity are cultivated as well as cognitive growth and a sense of responsibility for the earth and its inhabitants. Under the warm and active instruction of their teachers, children are provided with a creative and nurturing environment in which to develop, grow and learn. Developed by Rudolf Steiner in 1919, Waldorf education is based on a developmental approach that addresses the needs of the growing child and maturing adolescent. Waldorf teachers strive to transform education into an art that educates the whole child.

Profile last updated: 03/29/2016

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School Reviews

Our oldest daughter began at Davis Waldorf School in second grade. At the time she was furious with us for transferring her from her old school without her input. However, within weeks, the child who resisted learning, reading, and routines, grew engaged and even enthusiastic in her schooling. We stopped hearing "I don't want to go to school." That was six years ago, and my husband and I have never regretted the financial or time investment. We now have three children at DWS (7th, 4th, and 1st grade as of the 2011-12 school year), and the school has fitted each of them in very different ways. While some of the traditions or requests (such as limited to no media) often feel strange and even restrictive at first, we''ve found that there always seems to be valid reasoning behind them. The school functions like a large and welcoming family, and while (as with any family or community) there may be occasional frictions, we''ve never felt anything other than accepted and embraced. We''ve found the teachers and administration to be open to communication and remarkably understanding of the unique personalities and quirks of our children. The curriculum is challenging enough to keep our intellectually gifted and skeptical teenager motivated while being paced perfectly for our perfectionist middle-schooler and social butterfly youngest. Waldorf education may not be for everybody, but at Davis Waldorf School, I have found most of the children to be confident, at ease with adults, able to focus on problem solving, and remarkably tolerant of the quirks and individuality of their peers. In a cookie-cutter world, these kids are taught academics and life skills through the unique beauty of art, music, and movement.
- Posted by Parent, 05/17/16
I highly recommend this school to anyone with kids or grandkids going into preschool to 8th grade in Davis. I homeschooled my kids for the first 10 years of their lives and then, needing something different for the kids, we placed them in Davis Waldorf School which happened to be our neighborhood, though not public, school. The shift from homeschooling to private school, though difficult because my kids had never attended a formal school before, was made so much gentler and easier for our family due to the family like atmosphere of the Waldorf school. I love so many things about this school, it is difficult to pick just a few things to talk about. There is the community and staff who are loving and supportive of the kids and their families, it is the classmates who become like siblings as they transition from grade to grade together, the special ceremonies for the transitions to new seasons, new grades, new developmental levels, and more. It is the way the school keeps the kids well versed in the arts and music and it is the continuation of those relationships developed at the school after graduation. It is the very special teachers who get to know their students so well having taught them for multiple years and treat the kids with respect, individuality, and developmentally appropriate tasks. Our family would choose Davis Waldorf School again in a heartbeat!
- Posted by Parent, 05/21/12
We have had nothing but a positive experience for our two children who are now 11 and 13. My children have been through the grades here and are testing very well compared to their public school friends. They are confident, well rounded and compassionate. The Davis Waldorf school has exceeded our families expectations!
- Posted by Parent, 05/01/12
Our family loves the Davis Waldorf School. Our kindergarten-aged daughter is in her third year here, and has had consistently loving care in a structured play-based program. What we love about the Davis Waldorf School is that we feel we have real partners in raising our child. Our daughter has had structured time doing developmentally appropriate projects and crafts -- finger knitting, woodworking, cider-pressing, sewing, drawing and embroidery in kindergarten. As she has gotten older, the projects increase with her skill. She has also learned a lot of practical skills, folding laundry, putting things away, baking, sweeping, setting tables. Built into the day are ways for her to learn self-control, from things at circle time to the 3-minute "quiet sand" at the beginning of meals and snacktime. There is a lot of open-ended playtime in a beautiful garden and gentle classrooms. I feel totally safe leaving my child in the hands of such loving teachers and a loving program. One last thing, the early childhood classrooms are mixed-age as is the aftercare. I love that my daughter has learned to play with older and younger children over the years.
- Posted by Parent, 01/28/12

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Did You Know?
The average private school tuition in California is $10,113 for elementary schools and $17,537 for high schools (read more about average private school tuition across the country).
The average acceptance rate in California is 84% (read more about average acceptance rates across the country).