What is the curriculum?

In keeping with the LifeWays/Waldorf early childhood model, at Lilac Sea, life is the curriculum. In early childhood, children learn primarily through imitation. By observing the tasks related to taking care of the home, the garden (environment), ourselves and one another, children develop the skills they need to prepare for formal education and lead fulfilling lives. By sweeping, raking, building, digging, swinging, and climbing children strengthen their gross motor movements and develop a stronger connection to their bodies, which then enables them to be still and focused when they move on to a classroom setting. By painting, cooking, and folding, fine motor skills are practiced in order to eventually be able to write, cut with scissors, and tie one’s shoes. The child’s creativity is fostered through watercolor painting, unstructured play with natural materials, and the observation of handwork activities including knitting and sewing. Intellectual development is stimulated through the imitation of rich language delivered through stories and songs. Setting the table, using measuring cups, sorting laundry, observing the changing seasons, and gardening are just some of the regular activities that support a child’s growing intellect. Social skills are fostered in mixed-age care when older children are required to practice patience and gentleness with younger children. The ability to share, take turns talking, work through conflicts, and relate to others are capabilities that young children develop during free play, at meal times, and while helping with daily tasks. Therefore, in a day spent mixing paint colors, climbing trees, tying knots in rope, sharing a meal, playing make believe, and listening to a story, preschool aged children have used their senses, imitation, and their own natural capacities to lay the strong foundation they need to move forward confidently and learn more about the world.

Is Lilac Sea Nursery School open year round?

Lilac Sea follows a modified school calendar and is open from August through June with the exception of all major holidays including winter and spring breaks. Please see the Information Brochure on the Home page for exact dates.

What is the tuition schedule?

Tuition is billed monthly and is due on the 15th of the current month for the next calendar month. There is not a discount for absences, vacations, or school holidays. Tuition rates reflect the high quality of individualized care provided at Lilac Sea. The following aspects are taking into account when determining the rates: a 1 to 6 teacher to child ratio, the caregiver’s education and training, the cost of natural materials and play things, the high priority placed on organic, locally sourced food and home cooked meals, as well as the tuition rates of similar schools and childcares in the area.

Does Lilac Sea offer any tuition discounts?

Yes, there is a 10% sibling discount as well as personalized discounts available to families in need. Lilac Sea believes that all pre-school aged children (and beyond!) should have the opportunity to enjoy a truly natural, outdoor experience with nutritious food and the freedom to explore in an unrushed, loving environment. Therefore, for those families dedicated to this type of care, but who cannot afford the full tuition, adjustments can be made.

Are there any fees?

Yes, there is a pro-rated yearly materials fee of $240 due on June 15th of each year a child is enrolled. If a child enrolls later in the year, the fee will correspond with the month of enrollment. There is also a late pick-up fee of $1/minute after a 5 minute grace period. However, this policy may be revised for families who frequently pick up late.

Does Lilac Sea have a policy on media?

Due to the effect media (including television, movies, video games, and smart phones) has on a child’s creative play, families at Lilac Sea are encouraged to limit children’s media exposure to the weekend only. In addition, we ask that shoes and clothing are free of media images. Lacking the filters that adults have, even the sight of a media character can change children’s play, making them less free in their imaginations.

How are behavioral issues dealt with?

There is no time-out at Lilac Sea. We use positive discipline and redirection to reinforce favorable behavior. When having trouble listening or getting along with others, a child may be led to a quieting activity or the child may be asked to assist the caregiver with a helpful task. After spending a few moments quietly engaged or assisting, the child is ready to return to the previous activity in a more cooperative manner.

Does Lilac Sea accept children with food allergies?

Lilac Sea is able to accommodate most food allergies, however due to the small size of the program and the importance of home cooked meals, we are not a suitable childcare for children who are vegan, vegetarian, or who have restrictions to meat, fish, or eggs.

Does Lilac Sea accept children under 2 years old?

Yes, children under 2 years old are occasionally able to enroll. Younger siblings of enrolled children are often considered, as they are usually able to adapt easier to being away from home with an older sibling present. Some of the other aspects taken into consideration when enrolling a younger child are: if the child has started potty training, if the child has had any other childcare/nanny/babysitter experiences, if the child has outgrown their morning nap, how capable the child is at climbing up/down stairs, if the child is able to drink from a cup, and if the child is able to sit in a chair at the table. These are not requirements that must be met in order to enroll, as all children develop at different rates. If your child is under 2 and you are interested in Lilac Sea, please feel free to contact us.