About our school

To provide an education based on the principles of Anthroposophy as given by Rudolf Steiner – inspired by knowledge of humankind and love of children.

To acknowledge and nurture the threefold nature of the human being as body, soul and spirit and to strive to achieve balance by developing the children’s thinking capacities, feeling life and will, out of which true academic achievement will arise.

Private school

Our highest endeavour
must be to develop free
human beings
who are able of
themselves to impart
purpose and
direction to their lives.


Rudolf Steiner

CO-WORKING:

Sponsors and partners:

VISION

The Samford Valley Steiner School offers an education that has a strong philosophical foundation out of the spiritual understanding of the human being. With this understanding children are educated through beauty, wisdom and truth, wherein they can reach their fullest inner potential.
Wisdom in learning, Freedom in spirit.

VALUES

The Samford Valley Steiner School values excellence in education based on honesty, tolerance, reverence and responsibility, encouraging efficiency and effectiveness and ownership of our actions. We can be proud of the school which is well run, fully resourced and nurtures a community characterised by a healthy environment and a caring positive atmosphere. Openness, patience, punctuality, flexibility and cooperation are welcomed as developing trust. The spiritual nature of each individual is supported in such an environment. In all we seek a balance between serious work and light-hearted fun.

INTRODUCTION

Steiner education first reached Australian shores in Sydney in 1957. The small school soon grew to grade 12 and over 40 such schools can be found in Australia. The comprehensive and creative curriculum balances academic, artistic and practical activities providing a healthy mix between head, heart and hand.

The Samford Valley Steiner School, several minutes from Samford Village on Brisbane’s north-west, has now been operating for 14 years offering Pre-school to Class 7. The initial students have now completed Year 12 in local high schools. The students are generally confident in themselves, view learning positively and have achieved academic and sporting excellence.

The Samford Valley Steiner School has recently developed a new curriculum which consolidates the Steiner curriculum within the context of modern educational theory and research. Being a small school of about 200 students allows policies to be implemented with speed and efficiency. It operates with all Education Department approvals.

Music is an outstanding part of the curriculum with all children contributing to orchestral, ensemble and or class presentations. The ensemble has recently performed at the Australian Independent Schools Queensland (AISQ) Biennial Conference in Brisbane. Artistic work is particularly strong at the school with painting, modelling and drawing part of the timetable. Eurythmy (a form of movement ) is another special attribute of Steiner schools and Samford is very lucky to have Jan Baker-Finch running a fantastic programme. In Jan is a cental presenter at the World Eurythmy Conference in Switzerland.

Languages are taught from Class 1 and seen as a vehicle to open children to another culture. Craft is also an integral part of the curriculum from weaving in the Pre- school to wood carving in class 7.

Many people are attracted to the school because of the community atmosphere. Parent involvement is high and culminates in the ever popular Medieval Fair in August. Often parents enrol their children because the school just feels right to them.

The best way to experience a Steiner school is to visit one. The school at Samford regularly conducts guided tours. You can also visit our website on study daddy.

Samford Valley Steiner School welcomes you…

Our school is situated on 20 acres of peaceful bush in the beautiful Samford Valley just 30 minutes from the heart of Brisbane.

We provide an environment that serves the freedom of the human spirit by emphasizing the balanced and disciplined development of the child as a whole human being.

Literacy and numeracy, science, geography and history are balanced with creative endeavours in music, art, craft, speech and movement which combine to nourish the whole child – head, heart and limbs.

We consider enrolments at any time during the year. Our school offers pre-school and primary classes one to seven.

You are most welcome to attend our open day in October and information evenings throughout the year. Our Medieval Spring Fair in August is a unique showcase of school activities.

You can also enjoy a school tour. These are conducted each school week and give you an introduction to Steiner education, a look around the classrooms and an opportunity to have your questions answered.

How Steiner Education works to benefit your child

How Steiner Education works to benefit your child

Rudolf Steiner had a deep spiritual insight into human nature out of which he offered a method of education which aims “to develop free human beings who are able, in themselves, to impart purpose and direction to their lives.” This clearly calls for more than purely intellectual schooling.

Rudolf Steiner schools endeavour to equally educate head, heart and hand. Scholastic discipline is balanced by artistic experience and practical skills. The teachers work to generate a genuine inner enthusiasm for learning, transcending the need for competitive testing and grades. Students respond with lively interest when material is presented in a living way and develop clarity of thought, sensitivity of feeling and confidence in their action.

We encourage the children to reflect and focus on the beauty of nature. By celebrating seasonal festivals, we foster awareness, reverence and gratitude for life on earth and help children explore their relationship to the world.

Steiner (also known as Waldorf) education is the fastest growing independent school initiative in the world with some 700 educational establishments found throughout Asia, Europe, North America and Australia. Graduates from Steiner schools are able to impart purpose and direction to their own lives and many hold prominent positions in industry, the arts and the professions.

The pre-school years

Play is the work of young children. Our teachers recognize that children learn from playful explorations of the world and through imitation of the gestures, speech and attitudes of those around them. We take great care to provide an environment worth imitating. Classrooms, arranged with natural materials and simple toys, encourage active fantasy play.

pre-school

We foster the growth of physical dexterity and articulate language. We use rhymes, games, finger plays, dances, songs and dramatic play to bring movement and speech together. Story-telling and puppetry widen the children’s views of life, stir their imaginations and lay foundations for future literary activity.

To promote growth in aesthetic taste and artistic expression the programme includes water colour painting, beeswax modelling, crayon drawing and handcrafts. The children share in the preparation of wholesome snacks and doing such homely tasks as setting the table, cooking and feeding pets. The children live into these essentially human activities with joyful seriousness, deepening their trust and confidence in their world.

The primary school

Rudolf Steiner presents a picture of the child growing in consciousness over time. Our primary school curriculum reflects this basic understanding. We challenge children’s minds through the study of the academic subjects, nurture inner harmony through exploration of the arts and develop willingness to address life’s challenges through involvement in practical tasks.

primary school

The child’s guide on this journey is the class teacher, who ideally remains with the class for a number of years. The child’s needs for security and continuity are well met in this way. Other specialist teachers work with the children on a regular basis, eg in foreign languages, craft, movement and music.

Because the primary school child thinks in images, our teachers create artistic presentations that include chalkboard drawing, storytelling, movement and drama. Through the primary years, our students become skilled at observing the world, interpreting what they see and communicating their ideas to others.

Our school community

A feature of our school is the close association and interaction among the teachers pupils, parents and friends who make up our school community.

In addition to the College of Teachers, Management committee and Parent Council which directly support school operations, there are numerous groups affiliated with our school which provide you as parents with opportunities for learning and fellowship, including: biodynamic gardening, bookshop, parent library, craft group, study groups, songwriters groups and festivals.

To realise its vision of a complete and holistic educational environment, Samford Valley Steiner School has an active building program which is supported by the Commonwealth and Queensland governments. Tax deductible donations to the school building fund contribute to making this vision a reality.

school community

Open entry

Samford Valley Steiner School is non-denominational and coeducational. We invite students of any race, ethnic or religious background. Our underlying system of values is Christian-centred.

School tours and talks

School Tours are conducted each Thursday of the school term but bookings are essential. The school has a regular program of introductory talks in addition to other seminars with invited guest speakers.

How to apply for enrolment

If you are interested in enrolling your child, you should plan to attend a tour of our school and an introductory talk (see above).

If you continue to be interested in enrolling your child, please complete the waiting list registration application on the back page of this booklet and forward it, together with a non-refundable fee of $58, to the school office.

Your application for enrolment will then proceed to the interview stage, subject to places being available.

Our highest endeavour

must be to develop

free human beings

who are able of themselves

to impart purpose

and direction to their lives


Rudolf Steiner

Pre-School Information

The Pre-school provides for the fundamental needs of young children aged 4-6: the opportunity for imaginative play, time without being hurried, a beautiful environment, healthy food and age appropriate experiences.

In the pre-school, teachers strive to create a gentle, caring, home-like environment. Rhythm and routine are closely followed. Each day progresses with a sequence of indoor free play, tidy-up, morning circle (singing, movement, recitation), morning tea, outside play and finishes inside with a story. Domestic activities such as those experienced in the home are a significant aspect of pre-school life: preparing the meals, setting the table, washing up and caring for materials used in daily activities. For those children who stay until 2:30pm, lunch and rest-time are also included. Weekly activities are experienced at regular intervals and include eurythmy, painting, modelling and various craft projects.

The main activities of each day (as described above) occur between 8:30am 12:30pm. The older children, who remain until 2:30pm, have lunch and a substantial rest. This ensures that all children, full and part-time, experience the full benefit of the activities offered on that day.

There are two pre-school groups at the Samford Valley Steiner School. Both are mixed-age groups catering for children from 4-6 years old. The preschool teachers work closely together and operate in similar fashion. Each group is lead by a registered teacher with an Early Childhood degree and with experience in Steiner Education. An experienced, full-time assistant works in each room and supports all aspects of pre-school life. The children remain with the same pre-school teacher for both years.

AGE ELEGIBILITY

Children must turn 4 years old no later than the 1st of December, the year before beginning pre-school. Children whose birthday falls in December will be considered on an individual basis as to pre-school readiness. All children attend pre-school for 2 years (i.e. they must turn 6 years old) before beginning grade 1.

HOURS OF ATTENDANCE

a) First Year Pre-School

In the first pre-school year children attend 3 days per week from 8:30am – 12:30pm.

In consultation with the parents, the teacher determines which 3 days of the week each child attends.

b) Second Year Pre-School

In the second year of pre-school, children attend 4 days per week from 8:30am 2:30pm (Monday to Thursday) and 8:30am – 12:30pm (Friday). Parents have the option of picking children up at 12:30pm each day.

a) Students with Siblings

Parents of prospective students still need to lodge an application form for enrolment per child with payment of $58.00 (includes GST).

The enrolment process will begin towards end of term 3 of the previous year. Teachers will begin interviews with prospective students and their parent(s) and/or teachers of the school with siblings.

b) New Pre-School Students

  1. An application for enrolment for enrolment has to be lodged to the school office with payment of $58.00 (includes GST). All applications are placed on a waiting list so it is advised that lodgement should be made as soon as possible, or at the latest, one year before the year the child is enrolled.
  2. Review of applications for enrolment for the following year begins towards end of term 3 of the previous year. A letter will be sent out to parents of applicants, inviting them and their child to come for an interview. A response to this invite is required as part of the enrolment review process.
  3. Interviews for new pre-schoolers are held in October-November. The parent(s) and child/children meet with the pre-school teachers to become acquainted, discuss the child’s history and ascertain the parent’s support for a Steiner education for their child before being accepted into the school.
  4. Results and offers are then sent out in December.

c) Continuing Pre-School Students

Unless prior notice of withdrawal is given to the teacher, it will be assumed that all children continue -into the second pre-school year and into primary school.

If you are interested in enrolling your child or children for pre-school, please send the enrolment form and accompanying fee to the school office. Depending on when your child is due to begin, you will be contacted to arrange an interview appointment.

Frequently asked Questions

What is Steiner/Waldorf education?

This education is a unique and distinctive approach to educating children that is practiced in Steiner schools worldwide. Steiner schools collectively form the largest, and quite possibly the fastest growing group of independent private schools in the world.

What is unique about Steiner/Waldorf education? How is it different from other alternatives (public schooling, Montessori, home-schooling etc)?

The best overall statement on what is unique about Steiner education is to be found in the stated goals of the schooling: “to produce individuals who are able, in and of themselves, to impart meaning to their lives”.

The aim of Steiner schooling is to educate the whole child, “head, heart and hands”. The curriculum is as broad as time will allow, and balances academic subjects with artistic and practical activities. Steiner teachers are dedicated to creating a genuine love of learning within each child. By freely using arts and activities in the service of teaching academics, an internal motivation to learn is developed in the students, minimising the need for competitive testing and grading.

Some distinctive features of Steiner education include the following:

  • The curriculum provides a balance between academic, social, imaginative and practical aspects of education.
  • During the primary school years (years 1 – 7) the students have a class teacher who ideally stays with the same class for the entire seven years.
  • Certain activities which are often considered “frills” at mainstream schools are central at Steiner schools: art, music, gardening and foreign languages (sometimes two in primary years) to name a few. In the younger grades, all subjects are introduced through artistic mediums.
  • All children have “main lesson books”, which are their own workbooks which they create during the course of the year. They essentially produce their own “textbooks” which record their experiences and what they’ve learned. Upper grades may use textbooks to supplement their lesson work.
  • Learning in Steiner schools tends to be a non-competitive activity. Parents are informed of their child’s progress via reports and interviews. The teacher writes a detailed evaluation of the child at the end of each school year.
  • The use of electronic media, particularly television, by young children is strongly discouraged in Steiner schools.

What is the curriculum at a Steiner school like?

The Steiner curriculum is designed to be responsive to the various phases of a child’s development. The relationship between student and teacher is, likewise, recognized to be both crucial and changing throughout the course of childhood and early adolescence.

The main subjects such as history, language, arts, science and mathematics are, taught in main lesson blocks lasting from three to five weeks. The total Steiner curriculum has been likened to an ascending spiral: subjects are revisited several times, but each new exposure affords greater depth and new insights into the subject at hand. A typical Lower School curriculum would look something like the following:

Primary Grades 1-3

  • Pictorial introduction to the alphabet, writing, reading, spelling, poetry and drama.
  • Numeration and mathematical process.
  • Folk and fairy tales, fables, legends, Old Testament stories.
  • Nature stories, house building and gardening.

Middle Grades 4-6

  • Writing, reading, spelling, grammar, poetry and drama.
  • Norse myths, history and stories of ancient civilizations.
  • Review of the four mathematical processes, fractions, percentages and geometry.
  • Local and world geography, comparative zoology, botany and elementary physics.

Upper Grade 7

  • Creative writing, reading, spelling, grammar, poetry and drama.
  • Medieval history, Renaissance, world exploration, Australian history and biography.
  • Geography, physics, basic chemistry, astronomy, geology and physiology.

Special subjects

  • Music: singing, recorder, string instruments, wind, brass and percussion instruments
  • Handwork: knitting, crochet, and sewing, cross-stitch, basic weaving, toy making and woodworking.
  • Art: wet-on-wet water colour painting, form drawing, beeswax, clay modelling and perspective drawing.

Eurythmy is an art of movement that seeks to express the sounds of speech and music, awakening artistic sensitivity and good coordination.

Jan Baker-Finch is the Eurythmy Teacher. In Jan is a cental presenter at the World Eurythmy Conference in Switzerland.

202 School Fee Information

Enrolment Application Fee – $58 per child including GST
Payment of this fee and submission of a completed application form for each child is the first step in enrolling your child.

The fees for a part time Pre-school student are $1,470 per year and $2,450 for a full time student in the Primary School. A discount applies for having 2 or more students in the school. These fees may change in future years. In addition to this fee is a Material fees levy of $180 per child. Complete details are available from the office on request.

Friends of the School

Our school community offers parents and friends a wide range of creative activities and groups to become involved in.

For enquiries regarding enrolments, please phone the office or write to us.

School Tours

Introductory tours of our school are conducted most Thursdays during school terms and commence at 11:30am. Prior bookings are essential and can be made by phoning (07) 3289 1132.