We Choose D: All of The Above. A Series on Alternative Educational Theory. This week: Waldorf Practice.
I recently reviewed Heaven on Earth, a book written by a Waldorf educator, which I really liked and it was the jumping off point for me to keep reading more about it. I highly recommend it, and you can read my review HERE.
Read more on Rudolph Steiner on the wikipedia page about Waldorf Education.
For ideas about how to incorporate some Waldorf practices and/or items into your home, visit one of the many Flickr sites devoted to just that to get your creative burst!
A Waldorf inspired blog, Uncommon Grace.
A magazine I have wanted to & now recently subscribe to, Living Crafts magazine, has a Waldorf-slant.
- Waldorf teachers are cited as being very committed to their pupils!
- This educational theory believes in cooperation over competition, which, in this over-sported country, I view as a very good thing.
- Waldorf education is also known for creating effective adult/parenting learning communities
- Slow-paced & love nature. Need I say more?
- too much emphasis on New-Age themes for me, including the spiritual philosophy of Anthroposophy, karma, reincarnation, and magic. This is the BIG deterrent from me being sold on the Waldorf idea.
- they are also very expensive
Although I love using natural materials when playing, follow the daily household rhythms to include children to be productive, and am very encouraged that an educational theory involves creativity so much, I am mostly very turned off by the Waldorf "magical" slant. Since I am a Christian, I believe it is important to educate children on all things, and sift our Christian themes through them. For example, I don't have any problem with telling my kids a fairy tale, as long as there is an explanation, (fact or fiction?) and how it relates to Christ being centered in our life. There is nothing wrong with celebrating the seasons, as long as we realize it was our Creator who made them, and they have a specific purpose for His glory.
However, I will admit, the fact that they discourage media until a proper age (pre/teen) even down to their clothing (should be free-flowing, without commercial representation on them because it becomes a distraction, and comfortable for the child) is very appealing to me. I believe we, as Americans, are so busy, the stress of constant combined noise/visuals only bothers our senses more and so to cut that out is a welcome breath of fresh air. Like I have said before, we glean what we can and we move on. See our family playing the Waldorf way here and here!
What do you think?
As always, I am a firm believer in "Mamma knows best", just to say whatever works for your family is the best option for you and your children. This post is only to show what I've come across, am interested & passionate about, and what we thinking of maybe, 'planning' to do.... doing what we feel is right for each individual child in the child's season of life.