Rhythm and Stages in Waldorf Education

Waldorf is a form of education that works with the rhythms of the child, the day, the week, the month and the year. It works with the spiritual, emotional and physical rhythms of the body. It works with the rhythm of the earth – natural foods, toys and other materials are used in Waldorf education. When I think of Waldorf I think of a flowing river.

The rhythm of the child is the first thing we consider. What are they ready for and when are they ready for it? Imagine if you are playing in an orchestra and you have a drum that is playing out of beat. Will it help the orchestra? Will it be effective? The same happens with a child. A child is a complex being that has many systems working in synchronicity. To be able to be effective and in harmony with that child you need to synchronize the beat of your drum (their lessons) with the appropriate age.

I have included an index below and some space on each page for you to record and write your own insights into your child’s needs, insights shared with you by others, or favorite quotes that inspire you.

Being able to meet a child’s needs according to their natural rhythm will:

1. Foster connection, interdependence, compassion, respect, teamwork and community awareness.

2. Will create natural opportunities for conflict resolution as there will be fewer conflicts.

3. Will help the child connect with their natural rhythms in nature and spirit.

4. Will free their minds to be more creative and will encourage creativity when they most need to be encouraged.’

5. Will help you create a rhythm for your family that is “just right” – not too busy and not too slow. It will help you connect with the rhythms of nature, the day, the week, the months and the year.

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