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48047Re: [anthroposophy_tomorrow] Who's ready for kindergarten torture?

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  • JoAnn Schwartz
    Jun 14, 2011
      Hi Frank,

      It IS bad.  And getting worse.  I am not sure how much public / charter waldorf schools can help, though.  Friends of ours sent their children to a public "waldorf-inspired" school here in Detroit -- and their kids spent the first six weeks of the year preparing for the MEAP tests.  Public / charter schools are not generally exempt from the high-stakes testing mandated by No Child Left Behind.

      About 5 years ago, a colleague from work went to the "Kindergarten Round-up" for their local (highly regarded) public schools.  Up to this point, their daughter had been home with Dad (who worked from home) and Mom (who had a reduced (32 hr/wk) work schedule), so did not attend pre-school.  Parents were floored to discover the child was not only expected to know the alphabet, but to print upper- and lower-case letters in the approved style and to know the rudiments of addition and subtraction.  When Mom protested, the kindy folks scolded her, saying if the daughter had been in a decent pre-school, she would already *know* how to do these things.

      Mom and Dad decided to homeschool the kid, as they lived about an hour from the closest waldorf school.

      Sadly, many parents are on-board with this cramming down of learning. They prefer 'academic kindergarten' to 'developmental kindergarten' -- thinking that it gives the kids a leg up. Then they wonder why their 4th grader is burnt out.

      ¡Ay, caramba!

      "The vote you cast when you buy something is as important
      as the vote you cast in the ballot box."
      --- John Perkins

      --- On Mon, 6/13/11, Frank Thomas Smith wrote:

      > I don't have any experience with
      > what's going on in the U.S. except what I read in the
      > papers. But it looks bad. According to this article the
      > people making such decisions as to *when* children should
      > start learning abstract stuff in school (ever earlier) don't
      > have a clue as to what kids really need. It's a big reason
      > why Waldorf charter schools could be so important - to save
      > all those little kids from early torture.
      > Frank
      > http://www.nytimes.com/roomfordebate/2011/06/12/whos-ready-for-kindergarten
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