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Approaching Grade One: Inspiration and Guidance for Approaching Your Year

Sunday, June 25, 2023 - Friday, June 30, 2023

Professional development for Waldorf teachers and home school parents. Read Summer Series 2023 details here.

This course is now full. If you are interested, please add your name to our waiting list (as cancellations do occur!).

Taught remotely in real-time, this course offers you an invaluable opportunity to focus entirely on your upcoming first grade school year in five days brimming with presentations, discussions, and practical activities.

Under the guidance of an experienced class teacher, you’ll discover ways to enliven your teaching and learn how to approach the blocks so that they may meet the first grader in a lively and meaningful way. With the insights of anthroposophy, gleaned through a look at child development focusing on your class’s age group, you will get to know the first grader as they cross the bridge into elementary school.

Along with time and space to consider and hone your skills in such practical matters as main lesson books, block planning, projects and activities, and classroom management, your course will include such key topics for first graders—and their teachers—as:

  • Multicultural archetypes in fairy tales from around the world
  • Introducing the letters
  • Introducing the numbers and topics in math
  • First grade approaches to science and social studies
  • First grade morning circle
  • First grade assessment
  • Parent work and colleagueship

These subjects will be supported by explorations in art, music, and movement, giving you practical tools to take into your school year.

In addition to inspiration and guidance which will support your teaching throughout the year, you’ll gain many invaluable opportunities for building connections among a community of parallel colleagues from across the country, to carry with you into your teaching.

Grade-specific resource materials useful for your year, including poems, songs, stories, and main lesson book ideas, will be provided to you electronically.

NOTE: This course is taught with the expectation that you have a foundational background in Waldorf education.


Lead Instructor

Elizabeth Doshi is a faculty member at the Ashwood Waldorf School in Rockport, Maine, where she has taught grade one for the last five years, either as a stand alone class or a combined grades one and two class. Before coming to Ashwood, she was a grades three-six class teacher at Cape Ann Waldorf School (now The Waldorf School of Moraine Farm), taught grades two, three, and four at the Lexington Waldorf School, assisted in grade four at Pine Hill Waldorf School, and, at the Waldorf Steiner School in Singapore, taught parent-child classes, parent education workshops, and enrichment for grade one. She completed her training at Antioch New England Graduate School and has a daughter who attended Waldorf schools from kindergarten to eighth grade.

Summer Series 2022 Grade One participants had this to say about their experience with Elizabeth:

  • Elizabeth was thorough, diligent, and a wealth of knowledge. She is a wonderful teacher and person.
  • Her expertise is obvious and she provided exemplary examples of lessons and practices.
  • She engaged us in activities and used visual means to teach us as well as modelling by doing movements/dances, reaching us teachers who learn best visually or through movement and hands-on learning.
  • I especially appreciate her ability to decolonize the material and assumptions about Waldorf ed.
  • Her experience and the confidence that she has in teaching first grade inspired me.
  • I appreciated her transparency and generosity.
  • I have a much clearer picture of what my 1st grade should look like.

Your course also includes sessions in art with Kelly Beekman, music with Adam Petersen, and movement and games with Charlie Orphanides.



This course takes place June 25-30 in a synchronous online classroom.


Sunday evening: 6:15 pm-6:30 pm: Log in for technical check-in and attendance. First session starts promptly at 6:30 with “The Gesture of the First Grade,” and ends at 8:15. New teachers especially are encouraged to remain for a Q&A with your lead instructor from 8:30-9:00.

Monday-Thursday: Instruction takes place between 10 am and 5 pm (excluding breaks). We also encourage you to attend our elective music studio (5:15-6:15 Wednesday) and roundtable discussion with faculty (7:15-8:15 Thursday).

Friday: Instruction and wrap-up takes place from 10-2:30 (excluding breaks). We also encourage you to attend our elective art studio from 2:45-3:45.

Participants should be prepared to work on course-related assignments outside of their regularly scheduled instructional sessions (including some that may be assigned in advance).


$635 includes all resource materials, pre-recorded music and movement lessons, yearlong access to your Grade One Google Classroom and Kelly Beekman’s art portal, and a $60 non-refundable registration fee.

NOTE: Participants will be expected to procure some materials to use during their course. A materials list will be sent three weeks in advance of your course start date.

Available Discounts

  • Volume: $60 off each registration for schools sending 2 or more participants
  • Alumni/CAD: 25% off for Sunbridge teacher education program graduates OR for payments made in Canadian dollars
  • Current Students: 50% off for current Sunbridge teacher education students

Discounts may not be combined. Qualification for discounts will be verified by Sunbridge staff. 

Paid registrations must be received by Thursday, June 22.

This course is now full. If you are interested, please add your name to our waiting list (as cancellations do occur!).

Please contact Barbara Vitale, admissions and summer coordinator, at [email protected] or 845-425-0055 x20

Sunbridge reserves the right to make faculty substitutions when necessary. See registration form for refund policy.


Sunbridge Institute Remotely
285 Hungry Hollow Road
Chestnut Ridge, NY 10977 United States
+ Google Map


Sunbridge Institute Remotely
285 Hungry Hollow Road
Chestnut Ridge, NY 10977 United States
+ Google Map