Grade School: Elementary School for Grades 1 to 8

Age guidelines 

A child must be 6 years old by June 1 prior to the beginning of the school year to be considered for admission to First Grade.

Dates and times 

Mon, Tue, Wed, Fri 8:20am to 3:20pm, and Thu 8:20am to 2:20pm.

Program details 

The Waldorf Elementary School curriculum is designed to both stimulate and support the developing child. The subject studies during the Main Lesson in the morning are often woven into artistic activities later in the day. The challenges of handwork, music, and the fine arts are not separated from the academic subjects, but are presented as vital parts of a complete education. Grade school children benefit from the same class teacher for many years.


The Grades Curriculum Chart lists specific subjects introduced in each grade.

Tuition and fees specific to this program 

Tuition: $9,000
Annual Supply Fee for Grades: $400
Instrument Fee for First Grade / New Student Flute (including reusable mouthpiece): $80
Instrument Fee for Third Grade Recorder body (to be used with first grade mouthpiece): $50
Middle School Enrichment Fee (Grades 5-8): $500

For forms and info about all school application fees see our admissions process page.

Faculty and staff for Grade School: Elementary School for Grades 1 to 8

Sarah Clark

1st Grade Teacher

Sarah Clark hails from the West Coast, growing up in Nevada and California. After college in the Los Angeles area, Sarah made her way east. She traveled internationally and lived in New York City before finding New Orleans in 2003. It was in NYC that Sarah began formally teaching. Around the time of Hurricane Katrina, Sarah and the Waldorf School of New Orleans met. In 2005, Sarah became the First Grade Assistant to the class teacher and took on a Second/Third Grade class in the fall of 2006. She completed her Waldorf teacher training through the Rudolf Steiner College and the Alkion Center. Sarah has been a Waldorf class teacher at both WSNO and the Hawthorne Valley Waldorf school in upstate New York. She most recently worked at the Louisiana Children’s Museum as a program director. There she directed and facilitated a children’s literacy program held throughout the school year. Sarah also trained and managed the teaching staff  for the various educational programs provided by the museum. Sarah is thrilled to be back in the classroom and teaching full time again. First Grade is one of her favorites, and she is so happy to be welcomed back by the (growing) WSNO community and surrounded by such sweet and imaginative first graders each morning. Some of Sarah’s favorite things include painting, drawing, sewing, cooking, crafting, reading, and dogs! 

Jill Contento

2nd and 3rd Grade Teacher
Faculty Representative

Jill has been an educator since 1995. Her degree is in art education, and she has always been an active artist. Dunnellon Elementary School in Dunnellon, Florida, was her home from 1997 to 2009, where she enjoyed the action-packed life of a public school art teacher.

Jill moved to New Orleans because she loves music and art, and she finds New Orleans the most interesting place she has ever lived. Jill joined the Waldorf School of New Orleans in 2010 as the seventh-grade art teacher, the assistant in the nursery, and the summer-camp director. She appreciates the feeling of reverence for education that is apparent in Waldorf education.

In 2011, Jill became the first-grade teacher for a tiny class of students, and she taught a combined first/second grade class in 2012. Her Waldorf teacher education at the Sunbridge Institute has been amazing and instrumental in her first years as a Waldorf teacher, helping her to reach as a teacher, artist, and human. Being a Waldorf teacher has allowed Jill to teach music, art, poetry, literature, mathematics, science, games, in a beautiful, creative way. She feels that the true joy in teaching and learning has returned to her soul. Jill continues to pursue her own education, particularly in anthroposophy, to further her effectiveness as a Waldorf teacher.

Rebecca Nelson

4th and 5th Grade Teacher and 6th Grade Main Lesson Teacher

Rebecca was born and raised in Virginia. After graduating from the College of William and Mary with a true passion for archaeology, Rebecca was accepted into the graduate program in Mayan Studies at Tulane University. She went to Mexico to work with the Projecto Archaeológico de Chichén Itzá, then spent six months in Belize running a field crew for the Xunantunich Archaeological Project, later backpacking in the rainforest of southern Belize, where she excavated a series of Mayan tombs.

As much as she loved the fieldwork and teaching, the realities of academic life were not what she had envisioned for herself. In 2003, Rebecca began work in the kindergarten of the Waldorf School of New Orleans. Eventually, she was employed as a classroom assistant for the combined fourth, fifth, and sixth grade class. Rebecca loved every minute of her time there, feeling that she had finally found what she was meant to do with her life.

In 2007, Rebecca received her Master's in Waldorf  Elementary Education from the Sunbridge Institute in New York. She spent three happy years as a class teacher at Green Meadow Waldorf School in Spring Valley, New York. Rebecca and her husband Nick felt tied to New Orleans, however. In 2010, not only did she get a chance to once again rejoin the Waldorf School of New Orleans, she found herself the class teacher of some of the very same children who she had first met in Miss Heidi’s kindergarten. Rebecca began teaching her new combined sixth and seventh grade class that August, and she and her husband joyfully welcomed their daughter Victoria Grace into their lives the following October. Rebecca feels truly blessed to be on this incredible journey of discovery. 

Lesley Rubenstein

6th Grade Teacher, Librarian and Library Teacher

Jennifer Jackson

4th to 6th Grade Math Teacher

Ms. Jennifer Jackson is a native of New Orleans. For the past 10 years, she has worked with students below grade level along with students taking the high stakes test LEAP 21, the End-of-Course or Graduate Exit Exam, and ACT Prep. She taught remedial math courses as an adjunct instructor at Nunez Community College, and also taught seventh- and eighth-grade Algebra I and Geometry at McDonough No. 35 in a long-term substitute position. In 2011, she was the math teacher for the incoming seventh and eighth graders' Summer Enrichment Program at McDonough No. 35. In 2004, she started Math Simplicity Tutoring Service (for third- through twelfth-grade students, dyslexic students, and students with Asperger's syndrome) because of the many students who struggled in mathematics. Ms. Jackson has also worked as a programmer analyst and holds a degree in computer science and a Master’s Degree in information technology.  

In 2012-2013, Ms. Jackson taught Algebra I for the Waldorf School of New Orleans eighth-grade class. Currently, she is the sixth-grade math teacher at the Waldorf School of New Orleans.

Jan Zeiger

Music teacher (voice and all instruments)

Jan is a flutist, singer, and music educator. She earned a Bachelor of Music Education at the Ohio State University, and a Master of Arts in woodwind performance through Antioch University. She has taught instrumental, vocal, and general music at all levels in Ohio, Florida, and greater New Orleans. "Ms. Z." loves musical theatre, playing all sorts of musical instruments, and working with the Waldorf School of New Orleans students. 

Lena Kolb

Handwork Teacher
Contact info:

Lena Kolb has been the handwork teacher at the Waldorf School of New Orleans since 2010. She hails from Philadelphia, where she received her Bachelor of Arts in elementary and special education from Temple University. Lena has held a lifelong interest in handwork. She is skillful in knitting, sewing, quilting, embroidery, and other handwork activities.

Myra Rogers

Resource Teacher

Ms. Rogers earned a B.A. in psychology from Louisiana State University  and an M.Ed. in Special Education from the Pennsylvania State University. She also has thirty hours of postgraduate work, earning her additional certifications.

Ms. Rogers' career in the classroom focused on work with elementary students with special needs who were classified as Learning Disabled or Autistic. As an Educational Diagnostician, she was a member of a team of professionals who determined whether a child/student required special services in the school setting. This diagnostic work spanned students from preschool to high school. Having worked in Pennsylvania and Texas, as well as Louisiana, Ms. Rogers was selected Teacher of the Year for Jefferson Parish and Region One in 1996. With twenty years experience in the classroom and ten years experience as an Educational Diagnostician, Ms. Rogers retired from the public school system in 2012.  

Through her work with special needs students, Ms. Rogers developed a particular interest in learning the root causes of, and studying related treatments for, students' learning difficulties. This lead to her certification as an Auditory Training Practitioner in 1993 and the beginning of her private practice called the Sound of Hope. This practice focuses on correcting the auditory factors that contribute to learning differences such as Dyslexia, Auditory Processing Disorder, and ADHD.

Soon after retiring, Ms. Rogers began working at the Waldorf School of New Orleans in the fall of 2012 as a Resource Teacher, providing support to teachers and students.