More About The Artistic Pillars Of Waldorf Education: A Virtual Tea

Lisa over at Celebrate the Rhythm of Life  wrote an incredibly important post about Waldorf School and Waldorf Homeschool, relaxed Waldorf Homeschooling, and the pillars of Waldorf Education whether in the home or school environment.  It is an important read, and I suggest you don’t miss it.  Here is the link:

She talks about including the other major pillars of Waldorf Education:  speech, singing and musical instruments, drama, movement (oh yes!  my major place of push on this blog!) and handwork.

Yes, yes, yes!

And what I realized is that I have addressed all of these components on this blog, with perhaps the exception of drama, but in a rather scattered manner  – perhaps mentioned in with summary posts of what we did in a certain grade, or in conjunction with a book review or something else.  I think parents are attracted to Waldorf homeschooling by all of these pieces, but then become at a bit of a loss as to how to integrate it all into their busy homeschooling lives.  I hope in the future to have more organized posts on each of these pillars, and how to make this accessible for homeschoolers.

I think a major thrust of where I am headed personally is this education being about the future health of our children through using and engaging the twelve senses throughout the curriculum.  I recently heard Douglas Gerwin speak, many of you probably have as well, but his drawing of the twelve senses as a  lemniscate and where these senses fit into the curriculum across the grades set my wheels turning.  How we use these eight pillars, as Lisa and other Waldorf trained teachers have described them, within the context of the twelve senses, is a major place of discovery for the child and the foundation of health, and a  major piece of where I think I am headed in my life’s work.  It is a slow unfolding for me.

The other counterpart to this within the home environment, I feel is PRACTICAL WORK.  Steiner lectured and wrote about practical tasks for the students quite a bit.    We have such an opportunity for this in the home environment, even more than in the school setting  perhaps.

And underpinning all this, I think where the pillars rest in balance with practical work is with the personal development of the parent, the establishment of the family’s culture, and the family’s religious and spiritual life.  That is  lying underneath it all.

I have a visual representation in my mind of all of this and perhaps someday I will share it all with you.  But I think I am on to something here.

Thank you Lisa for spurring more thoughts.  And now, dear Waldorf homeschoolers, I would like to hear from you.  If you have worked recently with one of these artistic pillars and have blogged about it, please leave a link in the comment section for others to find.

Many blessings,


9 thoughts on “More About The Artistic Pillars Of Waldorf Education: A Virtual Tea

  1. Carrie, I am loving this virtual tea. Our Tea Time Talks. Yes to the senses as so important and yes! to finding clarity in your life’s work You inspire and help so many parents. I am brewing up some lemon verbena tea this wacky warm weather is keeping green leaves on my plant that I brought in to overwinter. I am working on the conversation, I so feel the synergy happening. Makes me think of the quote, “when two or more are gathered in my name..I am there.” Ah the blessings of the spiritual world and each other. Thank you.

  2. We’ve had a couple of good experiences lately with beeswax modelling and drama. We crafted a scene from Rebekah at the Well with my third-grader recently, as suggested in Donna Simmons’ Old Testament book. It had been one of those truly awful homeschooling days, and my son normally struggles with modelling (gets frustrated when things don’t come easily or turn out the way he likes), so I almost was going to bag modelling this scene on this particular day. But I didn’t, and it was wonderful! He had a great time, TOTALLY got into the activity, then spontaneously acted out the story with the figures we had created. It completely turned our day around. I was happily surprised at the power that this activity had to transform our day, and also what a wonderful vehicle it was in helping my son recall the story.
    Also, recently, we performed a solstice play from Marsha Johnson’s Stories of Light lesson block. I was skeptical about doing the play because 1) I have only one school-aged child and one kindy child, and I wasn’t sure how to make a play with at least three parts happen, and 2) I
    thought my ds would balk at it or think it was dumb. But I did it anyway, and he LOVED it. Absolutely loved it! We will definitely be doing more drama-oriented things in the future! I couldn’t believe how he transformed the part of King Sun into something very personal for him. He made himself director and choreographer of our little production, which we performed for Dad last night on the winter solstice.

    • Lisa G – I am so happy to hear your experiences, these things ARE Waldorf Education..The main lesson book entries, are to me, a tiny and small part of the real education that goes on. What you are doing is the heart of the whole thing.

      Many blessings

  3. Lisa G ~ Your schooling sounds so lovely, we’re doing third grade too and I have wanted to do that play and felt like we were not enough, now I am inspired by your experience to try it. It is so heartening to hear of other’s struggles and redemptions. Thank you for sharing that.

  4. Pingback: More Virtual Tea: The Twelve Senses In Homeschooling | The Parenting Passageway

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