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“Bread is Life” in Waldorf Education

The preparation and shaping of bread is a central part of the early childhood program in Waldorf education. This tradition is often continued into the upper grades as well. This tradition develops hand-eye coordination as well as community connections within the classroom. It also teaches students life skills and provides them with a snack for the morning. But did you know the act of making or eating bread could have an even greater impact on your students?  Listen to this interview with Kristie Burns by Sherry Borzo of Storied Gifts to hear about the many ways in which...
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Preparing Food Ahead for College Student, Single Person or Family

Note: I’ve included our video illustrations below as 2-minute mini videos so you don’t have to watch one long video. You can just watch the little video clips you want to. However, if you do want to see the full 30-minute video you can view the complete video HERE. As a single mom with three kids who all had different dietary needs (one vegan, one a weight lifter, one with specific tastes, and me with food allergies) I had to develop a method of cooking that would allow me to meet the dietary & health needs of my...
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Make Any Recipe Gluten Free

I started going gluten-free twenty years ago. At that time it was out of a desire to add more variety to my family’s diet rather than a necessity. So I didn’t mind that finding gluten-free ingredients was difficult. I started out experimenting with different flours. One Waldorf teacher I knew used to simply substitute spelt (not gluten free but often used in place of wheat for people who desire variety or have a wheat allergy) for wheat flour and all the recipes she made turned out pretty well. I started to branch out and quickly realized that every...
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Free Waldorf Fifth Grade Math Lesson: Geometry

Illustrations are from Sofi’s Student Main Lesson Book To do this lesson: Supplies Needed Colored Pencils Protractor Ruler Pencil Plain Paper or Main Lesson Book 1. Draw two parallel lines and then one line cutting across them as in the pictures above. Have your child copy you. You can make your drawing on paper (as I did) or on a chalk board. 2.Teach your child the vocabulary words “adjacent”, “congruent”, and “supplemental”.They need to know what these words mean in “regular” life before they can easily make the leap to learning them in “geometry world” so we talked...
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Journey Through Wonderland Q & A Session Transcript

Chat from October 14th: Live Online Exhibit of Woodland Wonderland If you didn’t make it to the live exhibit you can still visit the exhibit online HERE. KRISTIE: I will be online on Saturday, October 14th at 7pm for a live chat and Q & A about the exhibit “Journey Through Wonderland” found here: I can’t wait to meet you all – I hope you can make it! If not, please post questions here before 7pm Saturday October 14th so I can answer them during chat time. KRISTIE: Welcome! Type any questions you have here. Be sure to...
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Kristie Burns’ Close Encounters with Bears

I recently spent five days with a select group of people in Minnesota with Lynn Rodgers and The North American Bear Center. During this time our group experienced many close encounters with bears. My photos from the experience were later used in an article with Narratively Magazine. You can read the full article HERE or view the excerpts below. Jill L. Ferguson, who wrote the article, did a brilliant job of capturing the experience!  ...
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Earthschooling Teaches About Meals in the Middle East

A wonderful friend helped me find some old articles about Earthschooling in the local newspaper. In this one I was featured teaching the kids in this school the lesson “Meal in the Middle East” which is part of the Fifth Grade Ancient Cultures Lesson Block (but can be used for younger kids too. It is also one of my favorite lessons to do with multiple aged kids). See the article below…...
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Teaching Multiple Ages: What Can I Combine?

Are you teaching multiple grades or ages? In my classes, in general I find that there are certain subjects in any curriculum that are easily integrated. Here are some quick ideas: Storytelling is easily integrated with the two ages. Fairytales are appropriate for both of these ages – so are saint stories. Although they both have other stories that are ideal for their lessons they do have some common ground and can listen to a work on some of the same stories – just in different ways. They can also do some of the “acting out” of the...
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Teaching Multiple Ages: With a Toddler

A very popular question I get is, “What do I do with my toddler(s) when we are homeschooling?” I have have three children and was very happy with the method I learned from our first Waldorf parent-child teacher years ago. She taught me that toddlers want to do what we are doing. Since then I have experienced that in so many different ways. It was an adjustment for me at first. I have always been an independent person and even traveled to Europe by myself when I was 16. So to invite another person to participate in what...
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Teaching Multiple Grades Together: G4 & G6

Question: I am teaching my 4th and 6th grader this year. What tips do you have for me using the Earthschooling curriculum that will help me be more efficient? – NF Answer: Learning tricks to combining the lessons and how to sync them together can save time for you and make the day smoother. These are some ideas we have used in the past. They may not fit everyone’s style and needs but even if you don’t use all the ideas some are sure to be helpful… Tip #1: Use the Fourth Grade as a Base The fourth grade...
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Invitation to Embrace Your Journey & Follow Mine

I invite you to join me on this new and exciting journey! After 31 years in business I have realized that the two most frequent transformational tips I have shared with clients over the years are not my favorite diets, herbs or alternative therapies, but instead two powerful tools – Embrace the journey each step of the way and Find your personal path of transformation based on your own temperament. This recently became a very personal message for myself and has resulted in a re-awakening of the Herb’n Home newsletter as well as our mission statement. Using Instagram...
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Siwa Village Girl: A Photography Story

This story is part of my “photo story” series. See the end of this post for where you can find more photo stories. Even back in 1990 it was hard to find a place on earth that has been untouched by MacDonald’s or Nike and was not swarming with tourists. I was always travelling to some remote area in the Middle East but it always seemed that even the most remote places on earth had been tapped as some sort of tourist trap. Siwa was one of those “almost untouched” places I found in 1992. Well, I didn’t...
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Questions About the Lifetime Family Curriculum Package

We are frequently asked the following questions about the Lifetime Family Package. If you have questions that are not listed below please e-mail us at: CustomerService@TheBEarthInstitute.com. What Does “Lifetime” Mean? We offer the Family Curriculum Package to our customers as a way for them to save money when they want to purchase curriculum for more than one student. By purchasing all the curriculum together instead of individually they save over 50%. Since Earthschooling does not hold curriculum sales this is helpful to many parents/schools/teachers. People purchase the package and then immediately receive all their materials. At this point the...
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The Stargate: A Photography Story

    Want to hear more photography stories and learn how to take great photos? Join our photography class HERE – it runs all year. The class includes a personal evaluation of all of your assignments and a student forum where you can see work and news from other students. Whenever I see this picture I don’t immediately see the gorgeous sunrise or the vibrant colors. First, I remember the photos that I no longer have. They were from the same roll of film but they are no longer with me because they were purchased by a studio...
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Art Therapy in Waldorf Education

  Thank you to our guest blogger this week, Katelyn Green, for this wonderful article on art therapy. I am so happy she has shared this with us because art is an everyday part of the Waldorf/Earthschooling curriculum. When you read about all the benefits you and your students are gaining just by using the Waldorf/Earthschooling method of learning you will be amazed! If you want to see some of the beautiful graphics that are included with the article below you can click HERE to see the original article. We have included a couple graphics below but there...
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Transforming Free Public Worksheets into Waldorf Inspired Lessons

How to Plan an Earthschooling Educational Excursion: Part Two All photos copyright Kristie Burns On our recent educational excursion (see part one here) we visited many wildlife preserves. One of the preserves, the Lee County Manatee Park, had a great website with a lot of “downloadable” educational documents. These documents were your typical “coloring sheet”, “scientific data with a quiz” and “chart of the animals you will see”. At an initial glance none of the “free lessons” they provided were compatible with Waldorf education. Or were they? One advantage of having an organized curriculum to work from like...
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How to Plan an Earthschooling Educational Excursion

Part One: Choosing a Location All Photos Copyright Kristie Burns When we first started Earthschooling we chose the name “Earthschooling” because we wanted to emphasize that education does not just happen at home. In fact, one of our favorite ways to learn has always been to be outdoors or to take what I call “Earthschooling Excursions”. Earthschooling excursions can be as simple as a one-day visit to a farm or they can be as complex as planning a trip to another location. But will all your planning result in a successful earth-inspired educational experience? Over the years we...
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Connecting with Children Through Literature

Seeing Lois Lowry speak last night with my two daughters was an experience I will never forget. But it wasn’t simply because she is a famous author and writes award-winning books. The experience was special to me because Lois Lowry was my first introduction to modern teenage fiction and represents a special bond I continue to have with my children. I remember the first time my eldest daughter gave me a book. It was a bit of a surprise since until then I had seen myself as holding the only title of “teacher” in the house. But with...
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