“When what we introduce into the children’s world of ideas and feelings is in line with the direction of the developmental forces of a given stage of life, we strengthen the entire developing person in a way that remains a source of strength throughout that person’s life.”

—Rudolf Steiner

In 2003, a group of parents and their toddlers joined a Waldorf-based Parent/Child program at the home of our, now, Dean of Education. It was this group that planted the seeds of the growing Waldorf school we have today. Since then we have expanded our Parent/Child programs to include Me & My Baby and four Parent/Child classes including an Outdoor Class and a Bridge Class which transitions naturally into our Parent Participation Preschool Program.

Me & My Baby Class

Our Me & My Baby class is designed to help support parents/caregivers at this incredible time in their baby’s life by better understanding…

…child development so they can respond to their baby in a way that meets them where they are. We draw on inspiration from RIE and Waldorf to offer parents tools with which to be in a relationship with their child that allows the child the freedom to develop independently with wonderful, loving support. Here, we will provide a place where parents can become a part of a community, ask questions, and feel supported in their journey as parents.

This class is for babies 6 – 16 months old and their parent or caregiver.

Parent/Child Class

Our Parent/Child class is a 2-hour class, 1 day a week, offered in Fall, Winter, or Spring sessions where parents/caregivers and toddlers…

…come together in a home-like environment to play and learn together. With outdoor and indoor play spaces, parents and children can explore and experience a soothing heart-felt rhythm that supports play, imagination and imitation. Our educators offer support and guidance in child development and education for each family and child through creative play, songs and movement, storytelling and handwork. Here, we will provide a place where parents can become a part of a community, ask questions, and feel supported in their journey as parents.

Child must be at least 17 months old as of start date.

Parent/Child Outdoor Explorers

Our outdoor class follows the same rhythm as our indoor class, but is held entirely outdoors in a local park. We will meet rain or shine, so with…

…appropriate dress, you and your child can explore nature in all its seasons. 

Child must be at least 17 months old as of start date.

Parent/Child Bridge Class

This class will have the same rhythm our Parent/Child class, but will transition to a Bridge program in the Spring, when children will slowly have time…

in the classroom without their parents, who will attend parent education with our Dean of Education. 

Children must be born on or before September 2018 to enroll in this class.

Class Teachers:

Francesca Preponis
Lead Teacher

Francesca feels blessed to serve as the lead teacher of Maple Village’s parent/child programs (Parent/Child and Me & My Baby classes) as well as the middle school chorus teacher.

Her journey with Waldorf education began when her first child began attending MVWS’ parent/child class, fully immersing herself in the years since in learning all she can about Waldorf. She holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in music and owned and operated a Waldorf-inspired early childhood music enrichment program as well as working as a freelance vocalist and chorus teacher. This is Francesca’s third year as the lead teacher of the Parent/Child programs and fifth year as MVWS’ chorus teacher. When she isn’t teaching Francesca enjoys hiking and camping with her family, traveling, making music, making things with her hands and growing food.

Marisa Togiaso
Assistant Teacher

Marisa was born and raised in San Diego, California. She has been working with children for over 10 years, offering creative sensory spaces for younger children to explore the world.

After her first child was born, Marisa opened her home to lactating parents, offering a comfortable safe place for them to chat about the difficulties that can arise in the breastfeeding relationship, along the spectrum of growth from newborns to full term nurslings. Marisa loved holding space for parents, and even more so enjoyed watching the children who attended these inclusive gatherings, playing and exploring organically. Evolving from a Lactation Educator, she then felt called to join her mentors as an All Birth Doula, or Birth Assistant. She completed an advanced course on Ancient Postpartum healing, and dedicated time focusing her efforts on healing the birth mother and lifting up the whole family, while ensuring all siblings are adjusting well to their new family dynamic. Marisa held baby-sign read-alongs, and taught baby sign language to local parenting groups. Gently guiding her own children during the vital early childhood years, these experiences have prepared Marisa in many ways to fall into the role of Parent/Child assistant teacher. As a full-time Mum, and Parent at Maple Village, Marisa is inspired by the magic and wonder of Waldorf Early Childhood Education. Creating rhythm and simplistic beauty in her home, she has witnessed how this way of life can truly transform families for the better. Marisa believes that growth is infinite and children are the best teachers. She looks forward to further growth and deeper learning in the years to come.

Emilio Tello
Parent Toddler Guitarist

Emilio was born and raised in Southern California. He completed his Bachelor of Arts in Music from CSULB with a primary emphasis on voice and a secondary emphasis on cultural anthropology.

Emilio has been playing in and leading bands for the past 12 years as a guitarist and vocalist in styles ranging from jazz to classical, and pop to blues. Outside of Los Altos UMC, his work includes recording, performing, and teaching locally. When not working, he most enjoys outdoor activities like camping and hiking.