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Waldorf School Comments

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  • dottie zold
    Hey Everyone, Dan just posted another Waldorf Watch, whew, informing others where the next school is applying for a charter. Below is from the website of the
    Message 1 of 16 , Nov 27, 2006
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      Hey Everyone,

      Dan just posted another Waldorf Watch, whew, informing
      others where the next school is applying for a
      charter. Below is from the website of the district. I
      thought it might find a nice home on the PLANS site
      over at the critics. Francios? :)

      Also I was thinking how nowadays when people go to the
      PLANS site and their critics list they are really seen
      for the propaganda and are not a list that is taken
      serious due to the lies and innuendoes that are taking
      place on a daily basis. While it looks like they may
      be hurting Waldorf what they really are doing is
      helping by being so extreme on all levels.

      d

      www.medford.k12.or.us.


      SOME COMMENTS ON WALDORF EDUCATION

      Kenneth Chenault, Chairman and CEO of American
      Express, former Waldorf student (Waldorf School of
      Garden City):

      "My parents were looking for a school that would
      nurture the whole person. They also felt that the
      Waldorf school would be a far more open environment
      for African Americans, and that was focused on
      educating students with values, as well as the
      academic tools necessary to be constructive and
      contributing human beings. ... I think the end result
      of Waldorf education is to raise our consciousness.
      There is a heightened consciousness of what our senses
      bring us from the world around us, about our feelings,
      about the way we relate to other people. It taught me
      how to think for myself, to be responsible for my
      decisions. Second, it made me a good listener,
      sensitive to the needs of others. And third, it helped
      establish meaningful beliefs. In all the Main Block
      lessons -- in history, science, philosophy -- we
      really probed the importance of values and beliefs. In
      dealing with a lot of complex issues and a lot of
      stress, if that isn't balanced by a core of meaningful
      beliefs, you really will just be consumed and fail."

      Julianna Margulies, Actress, former Waldorf student
      (High Mowing Waldorf School):
      "The first time I understood the benefit of a Waldorf
      education was my first week in college. Students
      around me were flipping out because they were afraid
      of writing papers. At High Mowing we had at least ten
      pages to write every night. It was such a big part of
      our education that I was very confident in my writing.
      We had to analyze each scene, then write the analysis.
      I still have my "Faust" main lesson book with me. When
      I wrote about it, I was able to expand my thinking and
      make it my own. That's what's so wonderful about
      Waldorf education. You're exposed to all these
      different ideas, but you're never given one view of
      it. You're encouraged to think as an individual."

      Russell Schweickart, Apollo 9 astronaut, NASA
      Astronaut Technical Advisor, California Energy
      Commission, former Waldorf parent:
      "My daughter's experience at the Waldorf school has
      been both exciting and mind opening. I hope that more
      people can make Waldorf education available to their
      children."

      Joseph Weizenbaum, Professor (now emeritus), MIT
      (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), author of
      Computer Power and Human Reason:
      "Being personally acquainted with a number of Waldorf
      students, I can say that they come closer to realizing
      their own potential than practically anyone I know."
      An interview with Prof. Weizenbaum.

      Ernest L Boyer (1928-1995), Former President, Carnegie
      Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching:
      "Those in the public school reform movement have some
      important things to learn from what Waldorf educators
      have been doing for many years. It is an enormously
      impressive effort toward quality education, and
      schools would be advised to familiarize themselves
      with the basic assumptions that under gird the Waldorf
      movement. Art as it helps to reveal the use of
      language, art as it can be revealed in numbers, and
      certainly in nature"

      Albert Watson, International fashion photographer,
      former Waldorf student at the Rudolf Steiner school in
      Edinburgh:
      "It was art-oriented, that's for sure. They were very
      interested in your inner creativity, but at the same
      time they were instilling a certain amount of
      discipline to maximise it. And I have, from my
      Scottish background, a very, very solid work ethic.
      I'm dedicated to the work, to doing good work and
      doing things the right way."

      Thomas Armstrong, Ph D, Author: "In Their Own Way.
      Discovering and Encouraging Your Child's Personal
      Learning Style":
      "Cultural literacy is the key concern throughout a
      Waldorf program, and here Waldorf educators are also
      in accord with other experts in their field.
      Apparently many parents are discovering that Waldorf
      fills a need for a creative, artistic approach to
      learning that is hard to find elsewhere."
      (Parenting Magazine, August 1988)

      Joseph Chilton Pearce, Author: "The Magical Child",
      "The Crack in the Cosmic Egg":
      "The beauty of the Waldorf school is that it is
      designed entirely to keep children intact until they
      are ready to move out into the world as whole
      individuals."

      Michael Ende, Author: "The Neverending Story", former
      Waldorf student:
      "I am deeply grateful for Waldorf education, which
      woke me up and helped me rediscover my imagination."
      Jennifer Aniston, Actress, former Waldorf student:
      "I was always fascinated by acting, but my experience
      at Rudolf Steiner [school] encouraged me to pursue it
      as a career." "Steiner was a free-spirited school that
      encouraged creativity and individualism."

      Eric Utne, founder of, publisher, and former
      editor-in-chief of Utne Reader, (described by The New
      York Times as "one of the most distinctive voices in
      magazine journalism") now a Waldorf teacher:
      "My son Leif attended a Waldorf school from nursery
      through eighth grade. Even more gratifying than his
      specific achievements are his ongoing infatuation with
      learning and absence of incapacitating cynicism. ...
      Waldorf schools generally turn out young people who
      get into the colleges of their choice, but more
      importantly are well prepared for life. I hope this
      form of education becomes the basis for public school
      curriculum throughout the United States. And I hope it
      happens soon."

      Selma Lagerlöf (1859-1940), 1909 Nobel Literature
      Laureate:
      "[Rudolf Steiner] taught a number of things in which I
      have long believed, among them that it is no longer
      possible in our time to offer a religion full of
      unsubstantiated miracles, but rather that religion
      must be a science which can be proven. It is no longer
      a question of belief, but of knowing. Further, we
      acquire knowledge of the spiritual world through
      steady, conscious, systematic thinking ... In years to
      come, his teachings will be proclaimed from the
      pulpits"

      Saul Bellow (1915-2005), 1976 Nobel Literature
      Laureate:
      "If I had a child of school age, I would send him to
      one of the Waldorf Schools."

      Marjorie Spock, Author: "Teaching as a lively art",
      teacher (sister of Dr. Benjamin Spock and inspirer of
      Rachel Carson's "Silent Spring", that led to Earth
      Day):
      "Waldorf education enables young people to be in love
      with the world as the world should be loved."

      Albert Schweitzer (1875-1965), 1952 Nobel Peace
      Laureate:
      "My meeting with Rudolf Steiner led me to occupy
      myself with him from that time forth and to remain
      always aware of his significance. We both felt the
      same obligation to lead man once again to true inner
      culture. I have rejoiced at the achievements his great
      personality and his profound humanity have brought
      about in the world."

      Gilbert M. Grosvenor (1875-1966), President &
      Chairman, National Geographic Society, former Waldorf
      parent:
      "It is a pleasure for me to write an endorsement for
      Waldorf Education ...[which] has been extraordinarily
      successful for my son. In three years, the remarkable,
      dedicated faculty has directed his attitude and
      energies toward academic achievement and civic
      responsibility... The school draws out the best of
      qualities in young people. While this is not an
      instant process, the values they learn by constant
      contact with the faculty will provide a lifetime
      platform from which to grow... - In summary this
      system works!"

      Stefan Zweig (1881-1942), Author, on Rudolf Steiner,
      after having met him during his Berlin time:
      "... meeting a man of such a magnetic personality at
      so early a stage, when he yielded himself to the
      younger people around him in friendship and without
      dogmatizing, was an incalculable gain for me. In his
      fantastic and at the same time profound knowledge I
      realized that true universality, which we, with the
      overweening pride of high school boys, thought we had
      already mastered, was not to be gained by flighty
      reading and discussion, but only by years of burning
      endeavor."

      Andrei Tarkovsky (1932-1986), Russian film director
      (Solaris, Stalker, Nostalghia, The Sacrifice):
      "Steiner offers us a world view that gives a
      reasonable place to the development of man in the
      spiritual area. And if you earlier in a serious way
      could take a materialistic position and explain the
      meaning of life and society on a physical-material
      basis, that is
      not any more possible today. Today, we need other
      views, we must develop our spiritual essence and
      finally ask the question about the meaning of life."

      Ken Wilber, Author (among many works: "Integral
      Psychology"):
      "Steiner (1861-1925) was an extraordinary pioneer ...
      and one of the most comprehensive psychological and
      philosophical visionaries of his time ... his overall
      vision is as moving as one could imagine."

      Konrad Oberhuber, world leading expert on Raphael,
      former Director of the Museum of Art Albertina in
      Vienna, former Professor of Fine Arts, Harvard
      University, now at International Christian University,
      Mitaka, Tokyo:
      "No other educational system in the world gives such a
      central role to the arts as the Waldorf school
      movement. Even mathematics is presented in an artistic
      fashion and related via dance, movement or drawing, to
      the child as a whole. Anything that can be done to
      further these revolutionary educational ideas will be
      of the greatest importance."

      Douglas Sloan, Ph D, Professor of Education, Teachers
      College, Columbia University:
      "Based on a comprehensive, integrated understanding of
      the human being, a detailed account of child
      development, and with a curriculum and teaching
      practice that seeks unity of intellectual, emotional
      and ethical development at every point, Waldorf
      education deserves the attention of all concerned with
      education and the human future."

      Jack Miller, Professor, Coordinator of Holistic and
      Aesthetic Education in the Department of Curriculum,
      Teaching and Learning at the University of Toronto:
      "Waldorf education has been an important model of
      holistic education for almost a century. It is one of
      the very few forms of education that acknowledges the
      soul-life of children and nurtures that life. It is
      truly an education for the whole child and will
      continue to be an important model of education as we
      move into the 21st century."
      (Personal statement 14 July, 2002)

      Paul Bayers, (earlier) Professor at Teachers College,
      Columbia University:
      "The importance of storytelling, of the natural
      rhythms of daily life, of the evolutionary changes in
      the child, of art as the necessary underpinning of
      learning, and of the aesthetic environment as a whole
      - all basic to Waldorf education for the past 70 years
      - are being "discovered" and verified by researchers
      unconnected to the Waldorf movement."

      Bruno Walter (1876-1962), composer and conductor:
      "There is no task of greater importance than to give
      our children the very best preparation for the demands
      of an ominous future, a preparation that aims at the
      methodical cultivation of their spiritual and their
      moral gifts. As long as the exemplary work of the
      Waldorf School Movement continues to spread its
      influence as it has done over the past decades, we can
      all look forward with hope. I am sure that Rudolf
      Steiner's work for children must be considered a
      central contribution to the twentieth century and I
      feel it deserves the support of all freedom-loving
      thinking people."

      Dee Joy Coulter, Ed.D., founding member of Addressing
      Children's Traumas, Waldorf parent, keynote speaker at
      Waldorf conferences:
      I first heard of Waldorf education about five years
      ago, after having carried out extensive study of the
      neurological aspects of cognition, movement, and
      maturation. I was delighted to discover such a
      neurologically sound curriculum. I heartily support
      efforts to spread the awareness of Waldorf education
      and hope that it will spawn not only an increase in
      Waldorf schools, but an infusion of at least some of
      the ideas into the mainstream where they are so sorely
      needed. In Colorado, I am working with several
      districts to incorporate various Waldorf strategies
      into the teaching of reading and mathematics. The
      ideas are very well received and very much needed.
      (Personal statement, 1984)

      Jane W. Hipolito, Ph D, Professor of English and
      Adjunct Professor of Liberal Studies, California State
      University, Fullerton:
      "For the past ten years my teaching responsibilities
      have compelled me to inform myself not just about what
      would-be teachers need to learn. All of my
      instructionally related research into childhood has
      pointed toward the superiority of Waldorf education
      over all other current educational methods."

      Sidney M. Baker, M.D., former Executive Director of
      Gesell Institute of Human Development:
      "From careful observations of the child, Waldorf
      education arrived at the same conclusion (Gesell
      Institute) and applies the same principles to
      development of curricula for children's education:
      pushing skills before children are biologically ready
      sets them up to fail."

      James Shipman, History Department, Marin Academy, San
      Rafael, California:
      "What I like about the Waldorf school is, quite
      simply, its graduates. As a high school teacher at
      Marin Academy, I have seen a number of the students
      who come from Marin Waldorf, and I can say that in all
      cases they have been remarkable, bright, energetic and
      involved."

      Christian Morgenstern (1871-1914), German author and
      poet:
      "When it falls to the lot of his first biographer to
      recount the life of this great man, then, and only
      then, will the full extent of Rudolf Steiner's
      achievements and their, in the highest human sense,
      creative nature be revealed. Then men will view with
      profound amazement ... what irreplaceable strength and
      support [humanity] has received from this man's mind
      while this age hurtles onwards into the terrifying
      wasteland of materialism."



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