Coming Fall 2016

40,000 Hours of Inspired Free Play

Someday is Today!

The brilliant news of our 25-year lease on Canyon Drive is a game-changer. The security of knowing WSOC will be here until at least the year 2039 equates to us finally having the opportunity to invest in making this space our own! Since the beginning, our teachers have transformed the classroom interiors into warm spaces reflective of Waldorf principles. What has lived in our dreams for as far back as anyone can remember, and was stated on the campus renovation plan as "coming someday" has finally arrived. Someday is today!

"The scientific community agrees that free play is an integral part of human development. Decades of research confirm what we intuitively know. Unstructured free play develops part of the brain that students require in reading, math, and the ability to focus. Try it yourself, run and play for half an hour a day and see if your day isn’t a little brighter and more productive.

Our current playground is not ideal for free play. The old neighborhood, after school play has mostly disappeared. Our ability to provide that atmosphere is a gift to these children that cannot be overstated. This playground design is a huge step in the right direction. Please join the effort to offer these students, and those yet to come, an opportunity to develop their full human capacities."

Brad Holm,
Waldorf School of Orange County - Games Teacher

The time has come to re-imagine the largest exterior space on the Waldorf School of Orange County campus: THE PLAYGROUND AND CENTRAL YARD. We invite you to be part of the transformation to an environment that physically represents Waldorf curriculum in innovation, warmth, reverence, and a strong connection to nature.

Enjoy the slide-show of design concepts above and then close your eyes to imagine the pure joy and inspired play this metamorphosis will bring. Are you smiling yet?

Did you know? The Playground and Central Yard is the single most heavily-utilized common space on campus, serving the needs of nearly 250 students on a daily basis? The time our Grades 1 - 12 students spend during two recesses per day and after school, quickly adds to 1,200 essential play and movement hours per week. That's well over 40,000 hours of inspired free play per school year! We often talk about "free" play and the intrinsic benefits of being afforded this opportunity. Much thought and planning is needed to create a space that provides the inspiration for this freedom in a way that invites independent new ideas, rather than directing children how and what to play. This new playground will provide this subtle invitation!

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Timber Tangle

The heart of the new playground.

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Boardwalks and Bench

This walkway creates an important connection from upper grades to lower grades to high school.

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Mound Valley

Varied terrain and ground surfaces greatly increase play value.

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Timber Swings

An all-time favorite for children of all ages.

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Ga Ga Pit

Ga-ga (literally translated as "touch-touch") is a form of dodgeball.

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Buoy Garden

Giant fishing buoys re-purposed for safe, bouncy fun!

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Loose Parts and Construction

Designated for the ever-important unprescribed creative natural area.

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Tree Canopy and Native Habitat

A harmonious atmosphere in nature can be a pre-requisite for deep play.

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"As our school matures and grows, we - the community - are afforded the opportunity of creating a home which reflects the same intentional choices taking place every day within the classrooms. It is a tremendous gift to witness the commitment and generosity of our community!"
Brooke Trudeau - 4th Grade Teacher

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