The Future of Education

Edition 12

Accepted Abstracts

Learning that Grows with the Learner: Following Waldorf Education in Kindergarten "Under the sun"

Vida Drasute, Public Institution Kaunas Waldorf Kindergarten Under the Sun (Lithuania)

Ruta Umbrasaite, Public Institution Kaunas Waldorf Kindergarten Under the Sun (Lithuania)

Abstract

Waldorf education, which is based on human development that addresses the needs of the growing child, has its roots in the spiritual-scientific research of the Austrian scientist and thinker Rudolf Steiner. Waldorf educators seek to transform education into teaching/learning from natural experience which educates the whole child: spirit, soul and body. When children relate what they learn to their own experience, they are alive and interested much more in many things, and what they learn belongs to them. Everything what surrounds the child is important: environment, atmosphere, people, the things they do, the games they play and how they play.

There are many Waldorf kindergartens, but non two of them are identical, starting from outside and seeing to inside. Waldorf educators develop ideas and generate them with inner enthusiasm for learning within every child; they could achieve this in a variety of ways, looking to children internal characteristics, behavior, features, as well using their creativity, feeling, point of view to life from different perspectives. The Waldorf curriculum is broad and comprehensive, structured to respond to the three developmental phases of childhood: from birth to approximately 6 or 7 years, from 7 to 14 years and from 14 to 18 years. Rudolf Steiner emphasized to educators that the best way to provide meaningful support for the child is to comprehend these phases fully and to bring "age appropriate" content to the children that nourishes healthy growth.

This article deals with the experience and positive impact in quite newly opened private Waldorf kindergarten “Under the sun” (orig. “Po saule”) in Kaunas, Lithuania, created by parents and which is developed following Waldorf education and managed in accordance with social trinomial model. Article presents child education in self-experience based environment, games influence of child’s growth, learning that grows with the learner and its importance in future education and self development.

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