- Dec 9, 2005Hello all,
Thanks for your emails. My children are 7, 5, & 2. I am very
familiar with Waldorf schooling. I believe it is the most child-
centered approach available. Teachers have to undergo one year of
spiritual training as apart of their curriculum. Montessori and
Waldorf differ in that Montessori prefers to keep children in the
concrete (i.e. using mini real world objects as toys) Waldorf also
uses such toys, however they prefer to keep the child in their
natural dream-like state until after 6 or 7. They feel it's a left-
brain vs. right brain thing. Both educational approaches do agree
that there is a developmental shift at 7. They are both much better
than public schools.
I personally like Waldorf better based primarily on their notion of
keeping a child in the dreamy state. They do not push hardcore
academics until that 7-year shift. They believe that not pushing
too early is helpful in fostering a love of learning. I had a
Montessori teacher ask me over the phone once if my 3 year old had
Montessori experience? She sort of snubbed us when I replied no.
On another occasion a Montessori teacher asked me if my 6 yr old
could read. She wasn't sure they could take him if he couldn't.
Those two experiences made me wonder if Montessori wasn't too
academic too early.
Another interesting education is the Sudbury model. They are
democratic schools. Children can work on what they like and
intermingle on a campus-like setting with adults. Some children may
decide to join in on cooking, while others decide to work on a
garden project. These schools are also somewhat hard to find.
I'll attach the link below.
I wish I could find a nature-based school. Lets say, an old
Victorian home with lots of property to roam. Add a bit of
Montessori, Waldorf and Sudbury and viola, a rich learning
environment (mostly outdoors) with the child-centered approach. How
does that sound? Well, we can dream can't we? Have a good weekend
http://www.sudburynetwork.org/h a link.
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