Are you wondering what is Waldorf education? What makes it different from other teaching philosophies? Many people talk about this type of education but there are many others who don’t know exactly what it is. That’s okay – we’ll dive into what it is below!
Waldorf education was founded by Rudolph Steiner in 1919 in Germany, it is also known as Steiner education. Steiner looked at child development in 3 stages. Early childhood included children up to age 7 who learn through hands on activities and imitation. The middle childhood or elementary years is from 7-14 focuses on creative learning. While secondary students age 14 and up focus on academics particularly abstract concepts.
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What is a Waldorf education?
Waldorf education encourages the child to think for themselves and develop themselves as a whole person with respect for those around them and to be socially responsible as well.
There is an emphasis on:
- Lots of outdoor time to observe nature and natural surroundings
- Arts – visual, music, and drama
- No TV or computers
- No textbooks – they read books they love and make their own books on what they’ve learned
- Toys with made with natural materials ie. waldorf dolls – Waldorf Doll Leaf Elf
Essentially, the final goal of Waldorf education is to round out the student in mind, soul, and spirituality. It is important for the child to think for themselves using their own judgement. There are many schools that follow the Waldorf education philosophy but if you are interested in implementing the a Waldorf education at home there is curriculum available as well.
You’ll find that a lot of homes that use this type of learning are quite happy with it and this is the biggest reason that they move foward with it.
Talk to your kids about what they envision when it comes to their learning at home
I think that this is HUGE when it comes to finding something that is going to work and stick in your home for learning. Kids can easily tell you what they like and what they don’t like if you stop and just ask them.
As parents, this can be a great way to really dig deeper into what they’re hoping to learn and use that in a way to motivate them as well. The more that they are engaged and bought into it, the better.
And truth be told, kids really have a great handle on what motivates them to learn. Some kids love to use hands-on learning while others prefer more of a visual style and approach. Regardless of the type of learning that they like, ask them and see what they say.
Because the truth is that once a child is ready and excited about any type of program, it can be a great way to find great success for the entire year.
What I also love about the Waldorf education is that it embraces so many types of thoughts and learning. No matter the age of your child, they’ll be able to use this learning experience as an great way to embrace and prepare for life lessons.
Why does Waldorf education work?
Waldorf education works for a variety of different reasons. It works because it’s great for creative minds. It’s also great for hands-on learning as well.
When it comes to choosing if this type of education is right for you, it is really important to understand the type of learning environment that your kid loves best. Some kids do really well with a creative type of learning environment and this is why it’s great to have options for your child.
What is Waldorf education philosophy?
The overall goal for those who are wanting to use Waldorf education is to understand how to educate the heart, the hands, and the head.
Favorite Waldorf books
You can always find out more information about the Waldorf education by research and reading books. Some of the books below can answer questions that you might have about whether or not this type of homeschooling education is right for you and your home.
It’s always smart to do your own research and having great books to read can help. While there are many resources out there, here are some of my favorites that you might enjoy as well.
- Understanding Waldorf Education: Teaching from the Inside Out
- Creative Play for Your Toddler: Steiner Waldorf Expertise and Toy Projects for 2 – 4s
- Waldorf Education: A Family Guide
Favorite Waldorf blogs
If you’re a fan of blogs and reading, below are some great blogs that you can gather some more great information on. All will give you a bit of insight about the Waldorf education and it can be fun to read this from different viewpoints of people who use it.
This post is a part of my 31 day series – Ultimate List of Homeschooling Questions.
When trying to decide if Waldorf Education is right for you, it's important to understand what you're hoping to get out of it.
The great thing about the Waldorf Education is that it can truly be a way of life and one that embraces the teaching methods to help children grow and gain confidence.
If you're considering Waldorf as your main point of learning in your homeschooling, it just might be the perfect learning method for you and your kids.
Take the time to research and understand if this approach is the best learning method for your children.
More Homeschooling Resources
When it comes to dialing in and figuring out what type of homeschooling you want to do with your kids, there really are great options to think about. Make certain that you have fun with the process because you're introducing them to a way of life that can really be quite wonderful and great.