From a Parent-Toddler class through the grades, children in a Waldorf school are immersed in stories.
Starting with simple nature stories in the early childhood, children will hear many stories through the years: fairy tales, folk tales, fables, myths, legends, biographies, and stories from history, spoken aloud by the teacher and transmitted heart-to-heart.
In addition, academic subjects throughout the grades−from math to science to history to art to handwork—are all introduced through storytelling.
For example, in a past video blog post on Waldorf watercolor painting, I demonstrated how a kindergarten teacher might introduce painting with a story about “Tippy Brush,” who dips his toes into the water for a foot bath before inviting the other colors to come and play with him.
A first-grade teacher who is introducing the four processes of basic arithmetic may tell an imaginative story about Princess Plus, Duke Division, or Emperor Equal.
Teaching math through storytelling. Used with permission of the Bright Water School.
Introducing subjects through stories engages children’s imaginations and strengthens their inner picturing capabilities–their ability to create a picture in their “mind’s eye,” an essential skill for creative thinking later in life.
The email below landed in my inbox today and totally made my day! Nothing makes me happier than hearing from viewers who have found some inspiration in my videos to try something new with their children. It is the most gratifying part of my work.
Here are my children, Alfredo (age 5) and Marialena (age 3), singing their chopping song as we made Stone Soup this morning in our home in Milan, Italy.
Our family watched your blog video about Stone Soup last week, and they have been excited to try it ever since. I made Stone Soup in nursery school over thirty years ago, and remembered it fondly as we watched you and your helpers do the same.
This morning, the children and I chose vegetables at our neighborhood grocery shop, and bought “pane integrale” (whole-grain bread) to accompany it fresh from our corner baker. The soup smells delicious, and we can’t wait to let Daddy taste it at supper tonight!
Warm wishes to you for a happy holiday, full of love and joyful noise!
I send my heartfelt thanks to you for your support of Bella Luna Toys during 2012, and for all your wonderful feedback and comments on my new video series – both here and on our Facebook page. It’s been a remarkable year — satisfying for me, both personally and professionally.
After an incredibly busy holiday season, I will be taking a little time off during the Holy Nights (The 12 Days of Christmas) to rest, reflect, and renew.
I invite you to do the same! You may wish to sign up for Lynn Jericho’s “Inner Christmas” emails for inspiration, and join me in reflecting upon her meditations for the season.
I will return on Sunday, January 13 with a new video on one of the suggested topics for the next “Sunday with Sarah.”
May the New Year bring you and your families health, abundance, and many blessings!