Diversity & Content Updates

We are making a number of updates to the curriculum based on how we have grown as people and as a company in the past 25 years.

When we originally started we had the same vision but different priorities in creating that vision. For example, we have always been committed to diversity and creating an inclusive and secular curriculum. However, 20-25 years ago our editors were also committed to keeping each story and verse 100% original. We have now decided to take more liberties with the editing even if it means changing the original work.

We won’t get all the edits done for you to use them this year. There are over 200 documents we are working on and we will be working our way through all the grades. We have started with first and second grade.

Please submit any suggestions you have for edits to: CustomerService@TheBEarthInstitute.com. Sometimes specific requests can be filled ahead of schedule. Make sure to include: Exact document name, page number, type of request/correction/update.

However, if you are interested in watching the process we invite you to follow along. We are inviting you to follow our journey because:

  1. We want you to know we are with you on this journey: Even though the Waldorf style of teaching requires each teacher to create their own version of each story (so you probably have already been making your own updates in your head anyway) we wanted you to share our vision so you know we are with you on this journey.
  2. We can learn from each other: Perhaps someone can gain insight into their own language by seeing these changes. By sharing what we are updating it may help others see things they missed in their own language. I didn’t realize how much my own thoughts had evolved over the years until I went in to edit the first grade curriculum that I last edited 15 years ago. I sat there and said to myself, “did I really think this (phrase) was okay 15 years ago? Wow! My own thoughts have changed so much I can’t even remember ever thinking some of these phrases (that we now changed) were okay”. This made me realize we all have room to learn. We can all learn from each other. 
  3. You can use the updated lessons: You may have missed using this planner or you may have skipped some lessons you didn’t understand or didn’t find appealing. This gives you a chance to go back and see these same lessons in a new light.
  4. Good teachers know that learning never stops: You have all impressed us so much in the Zoom calls and forum with how dedicated you are to giving your student the best education possible. We have this same dedication to you and your students and so we all know that the best teachers are always learning new things themselves!

Progress Reports Below

August 25, 2020

The updates we have made are both content and usability-based. Some of them include:

1. SECULAR EDITS: The content is now 100% secular. We are scanning all of our curriculum to make sure that it is 100% inclusive of all people. Our original editor missed some of these edits so we are now having editors do the edits by ‘key-word search’.

2. DIVERSITY: The content is now 100% diversity inclusive. Although our curriculum has always been based in diversity our original editors 20 years ago were primarily focused on also keeping the content of each story or verse true to the original source or author. We have now decided to take more editing liberties so the stories and verses align more with our original intent as well as the evolution of the way we currently use and view language.

3. USABILITY: Sometimes members will ask us questions about content or instructions they found confusing. We keep notes of all these questions. So all our curriculum is being updated with more usability when needed. For example, the first grade vowel movements have now been translated in to “step on, step two” type of instructions.

4. POSITIVE LANGUAGE: The content has been updated to reflect positive language. If you have read the book, The Temperaments and the Adult-Child Relationship you know how committed our curriculum editor is to positivity. Her book on the temperaments is one of the few (if not the only?) book on the market to describe all of the temperaments using either positive terms or neutral terms. She has brought this philosophy into the curriculum edits so terms that can be viewed as negative such as “skinny legs” or “stupid fish” have now been changed to things like “long legs” or “talkative fish” (more specific terms that more accurately fit with the story).

New ‘Updates Only’ Document will be available on Saturday, August 29, 2020 for those of you that already printed the First Grade Curriculum.


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