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. Continue Reading
Click on the video link above to learn more about Filana Crayons, how they are different from the Stockmar Wax Crayons that we also carry, and see a comparison of the color quality.
Stockmar is a German company, that originally produced beeswax candles. More than 50 years ago, they began producing crayons containing beeswax for use in Waldorf schools. Stockmar crayons have been used widely in Waldorf schools around the world since then, and have become known for their rich pigments and quality of color, and for the warmth and scent that the beeswax lends.
What I and many other Waldorf educators were not aware of until recently, is that Stockmar crayons are made from a base of paraffin and contain only 10% beeswax.
Did you know that there are now more than 1,000 Waldorf schoolsaround the world? The international movement for Waldorf education is growing exponentially as parents in vastly varied cultures are seeking a more holistic form of education that honors the whole child —head, heart, and hands.
“Sunday With Sarah” will be on hiatus until June 29.Click on this week’s video to learn why! I hope to have lots of stories to share and some incredible videos for you when I return.
In the meantime, my wonderful and capable assistant, Sarah McLean-Anderson, will be holding down the fort at Bella Luna Toys during my absence to ensure the same level of personal customer service that our customers have come to expect.
What adventures do you have planned this summer? If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would it be, and why? I’d love to hear your dreams!