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  • Julie Heynssens
    I d like to introduce myself (sorry if this gets long, there is a bit of self-discovery in this process)… My name is Julie. I have been interested in
    Message 1 of 16 , Nov 8, 2002
      I'd like to introduce myself (sorry if this gets long,
      there is a bit of self-discovery in this process)�

      My name is Julie. I have been interested in Waldorf
      Education for about 6 months. I was looking for ways
      to help my two mildly learning disabled and talented
      children. At the time, I was working with both of
      them on rhythmic memory, spelling, and math drills.
      These drills seemed to awaken a part of their brain
      that had been dulled by too much information and not
      enough time to discover what it all means.

      About that time I found a mention of Waldorf Education
      on a website, and I started to investigate on my own.
      I found a lot of wonderful articles about how Waldorf
      Education guides children by letting them develop
      their potential. They use knitting, baking,
      woodcarving, and many other hands-on skills to develop
      perseverance and a sense of accomplishment in young
      children. I felt very peaceful and less rushed when I
      was studying the Waldorf curriculum. I began to
      wonder if this approach to education would be the best
      for my artistically gifted, melancholic,
      compassionate, but mathematically and spelling
      challenged daughter.

      Next, I discovered Dan Dugan and PLANS. At first, I
      was put off by some of his criticisms, but slowly
      began to realize the shallowness of his arguments. He
      was upset by any mention of God in any school. There
      were others that were upset by any mention of the
      "wrong" God in any school. They used obscure passages
      that were written by Steiner to "prove" that Waldorf
      Schools were racist or that they only taught medieval
      knowledge. I was persuaded to investigate Waldorf
      further when a read a speech give by Eugene Schwartz
      at Sunbridge College that addressed many of the
      criticisms of Dugan.

      Since that time, I have read a couple of books. The
      first was a collection of essays called "Waldorf
      Schools, Upper Grades and High School". I am normally
      a fast reader, but it took me several months to read
      this book. I would read an essay (or half and essay)
      and would have to stop to think about what I had just
      read, to absorb its meaning. Sometimes it took days
      for the full meaning to sink in before I was ready for

      Now I am reading a book on the Temperaments that I
      picked up at the local Anthroposophical bookstore. I
      was extremely impatient with this book at first. I
      knew what I wanted to know from this book, but I just
      couldn't skim it and find what I was looking for. So
      I actually sat down and read it. Then I got to a
      passage about a painting of Christ that had Matthew,
      Mark, Luke, and John surrounding him and how the four
      temperaments was reflected in these four Apostles. I
      was completely amazed. I would never have been able
      to comprehend all the subtleties of meaning in that
      passage unless I had spent the time to actually read
      the book. So much that of the information that we are
      expected to ingest for life in this modern world is
      "junk food" for the brain that deserves to be skimmed.
      The Anthroposophical works that I have come across
      deserve to be read.

      I am also reading a book by Georg Unger on
      "Forming Concepts in Physics". That book I haven't
      been able to pick up for a month because I am still
      wrestling with the philosophical implications of
      Quantum Mechanics. I should be able to get back to
      that one soon.

      I've been hanging out around Highland Hall and the
      local bookstore for a few months now and have been
      enjoying the conversation immensely. We are planning
      on enrolling Gwen in the 9th grade at Highland Hall
      next fall and I am rounding up the resources and time
      that I need to start their teacher training in

      Have Fun,


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