Relaxed Waldorf Homeschooling

I wanted to thank all of you who participated and left comments in regards to the post Donna Simmons of Christopherus Homeschool Resources on Catherine’s blog.  You can see the original post here (and do be sure to read the comments, because that is where the discussion really is, including an interesting side thread on forming the space between two siblings who are very close in age): Continue reading

First Grade Fairy Tales For Teaching



I am gathering my list of fairy tales for first grade – you can see the tales I choose the first time through first grade here:   (and here were a few more thoughts for those of you who are wondering what Dr. Steiner himself said about introducing the alphabet:


This year, I am planning the following: (# in the Pantheon Edition Grimm’s Fairy Tales) Continue reading

Guest Post On First Grade Readiness: A Comprehensive Look Through High School


(7/16/2011 – Comments on this post are now closed!  Thank you for all your comments and questions!)

Our guest post today comes from Donna Simmons of Christopherus Homeschool Resources (  This is a very comprehensive look at the topic of first grade readiness.  This article includes her perspective as a Waldorf educator, but also as a parent and homeschooler, and includes a deep understanding of the foundation of Waldorf Education, but also includes more mainstream resources for those of you seeking those.

This article is long, but I encourage you to read all of it.   Donna will be answering your questions left in the comment box in regards to this post, and we both look forward to hearing your thoughts. 

Here is Donna….. Continue reading

Working With “Brambly Hedge” for First Grade Form Drawing


I have gotten a few emails asking me about how “form drawing with Brambly Hedge” is going.  I first wrote about this idea here:


When we start school, it will still be very summertime weather here in the Deep South.  So, my first thought was to incorporate the summer and autumn Brambly Hedge books into this two-week form drawing block.  I picked a two-week block as opposed to a three or four week block because I think this particular child will be fatigued by a longer block of form drawing at this point in time.


My fourth grader will be doing local geography and as such will be creating a map of her room, our home, the yard in the first part of this block, so I thought it might be fun for my first grader to have something “map-ish” as well…. So: Continue reading

Deconstructing First Grade

So, I am busy planning a second go round with first grade (along with fourth).  First grade is really fun, simple to plan (I know it probably doesn’t feel that way when you are going through it for the first time, though!), and can be simply magical.

I think there are several things to consider when planning First Grade. Continue reading

Two Ideas for First/Second Grade Blocks

I love the book “Where the Mountain Meets the Moon” by Grace Lin.  It would make a great read-aloud for Waldorf homeschoolers in the second grade.  You could also make a language arts block out of it.  My friend Jen over at Ancient Hearth did just that, and you can see the spectacular results here:  I am so pleased looking at Jen’s pictures; her block turned out so beautifully!

I also wanted to share a little idea I am working on for my First Grader’s form drawing blocks for fall.  I want to use the little mice of Brambly Hedge to do our form drawing and I may also move the idea of mice into our math blocks for the four processes. 

For those of you not familiar with the  Brambly Hedge books, they are small pocket- sized books with intricate watercolor illustrations about  families of mice who make their homes in the roots and trunks of Brambly Hedge, “a dense and tangled hedgerow that borders the field on the other side of the stream.”  The main first four books go through each season with the assorted activities of gathering food, storing it for winter, and all the feasts and festivities that go with each season.

These were first published in Great Britain in 1980.  You can see the first four books here:

My thought is to make a giant wall mural of the hedge and the assorted  places of the hedge and then to use the stories as a springboard for the imagery of form drawing lines and curves.  There is  also a Brambly Hedge Pattern Book to sew fabric versions of the mice characters here:

Many blessings today,