un-committal schooling
waldorf homeschool
Thank you blog-society. I suddenly feel the urge to make a decision–you all are responsible. Well, not entirely, but we’ve been pushed off the fence we’ve been dancing on for years.
The school issue has been one we’ve swayed on–only with the option of a local Spanish Immersion school that seems like an opportunity worth taking advantage of, however, the teaching methods are still the same, just in a foreign tongue. If there’s one thing I know about Naomi it is she does NOT learn, or even listen for that matter, sitting still. She is an up-n-at-em girl & no matter how amazingly awesome it would be for her to learn Español now, we just can’t cramp her style like that. (also, if we do find some rural place to call home soon, driving 30 minutes every morning seems silly if there’s a classroom right outside our door).
SO. What do we do? How do we effectively make sure she’s fed a nutritional education diet? Research. Fortunately, in recent months I have been following & delving more & more into this online blog community of moms–some homeschoolers–that have led me to Rudolf Steiner & the Waldorf style education based on hands-on & natural experiences–SO our style. It’s more about setting a tone of learning–of taking advantage of experience as a means of ‘getting-it’. EVERYONE wants to learn.
What is our plan? While we’re also fans of an “un-schooling” style we found a MOST delightful curriculum that reassures us: pressuring our child to know such ‘n such by such ‘n such time doesn’t always lead to success. It is based on some of the “Steiner” ideas & they ask each parent to closely look at approach & emphasize the rhythm of the home as the crux of learning & open-heartedness. The pattern & repetition helps us all be successful with our time & states of mind…Even if you’re not interested in homeschooling, reading this book is so enlightening.
Back to the blog-influence. I believe now we feel supported. Through blogs like this, this up & coming online magazine, & this blog which really couldn’t be more of what we envision for our future, we are now relieved & excited to have an idea to roll with–to have some guidelines in our minds-eye.
waldorf school
Anyway, this decision is not one made lightly, by any parent, and this alternative is the right fit for us. It is something we are in a place to do, and so…we do. 😉 Is this something you’ve considered? how did you find what was right for your family?
pics are from today’s lesson about the number 4. we talked about the 4 elements, the 4 seasons, squares & patterns–as much as Naomi wanted to do today. The #4 remains the constant through the week & our “curriculum” holds more crafting, activities, songs, & even exercises we can incorporate if we so choose. The verse is our own addition. Oakmeadow has a simple verse that they suggest for pre-learning warm up, but we find that prayer & scripture is more suitable for our family.


  • Melissa Posted January 6, 2010 7:38 pm

    I really admire those who make such a conscious movement towards homeschool. I have to admit that as a Montessorian, of course I think it's the best way:)– but I also know that the structure of a Montessori home isn't suitable for the more organic(not eating-organic, but living organically in the sense of following natural pathways and interests with an emphasis on "home and hearth") lifestyle of a Waldorf-leaning family (because they really are SO different, no matter what people might say!) I've already seen the way you've incorporated things like your garden, your chickens, and your passion for re-using old things into your life in ways that seem so perfect– while I really struggle to see things like the garden, animals, etc. as something other than a burden. I am sure that you will be wonderful homeschoolers– and I'm happy to lend any of my leftover works from my classroom that might be helpful for teaching reading, math and science, if you'd like!

  • naqahdahnellie Posted January 6, 2010 7:45 pm

    We are very seriously considering home schooling our children when the time comes. I must do much more research, but I know the schooling system failed my husband and I both in totally different ways. I would hate for my son to be dealt an injustice in his learning simply because I wanted to have the convenience of public schooling. I'm not sure we'd be able to afford a private school when the time comes, and like you said, that isn't an immediate answer either. We will be doing more research as the years approach, but I applaud you in taking the best step for your daughter's education!

  • torahmama Posted January 6, 2010 8:19 pm

    Oh, sigh….do I think about this???? ALL THE TIME.
    It has been so hard for me to find something that works for everyone and isn't too formal. My boys aren't exactly school age yet, so I don't want to do too much.
    BUT, I have to do something….
    Right now, we have been playing Wii at grandma's house. :), reading books, and hitting museums occasionally…this transition hasn't made having a schedule very easy.
    But then, I am not sure a schedule always works.
    I look forward to the day when I can really "sign on" to a specific method of educating my children.
    Right now, I just mostly dream about it.
    Thanks for sharing your success. I can't wait to check out the links!

  • Joy Posted January 7, 2010 1:27 am

    I'm constantly evaluating and re-evaluating what works for us. Each kid is different and the family dynamic changes so it's important to take stock from time to time. I'm so glad you've found something you connect with. I'd never heard of Oak Meadow, but it looks delightful. Have you seen A Little Garden Flower? They have a Waldorf-y hs curriculum as well. You might find some supplemental stuff there. They have a good blog too. 😉 Thanks for the mention, even though we don't hs. Are you digging the new Rhythm of the Home e-zine as much as I am? I can't wait for the next issue. Heather, the co-editor, has a great blog too, called Shivaya Naturals. Keep us posted on how it's coming!

  • school house oils Posted January 7, 2010 4:20 am

    thanks ladies! keep your thoughts coming…& resources! i agree with many of the montessori ideas too. & I'll totally be looking into the "A Little Garden Flower" thing Joy (& LOVE the ROTH)! & madeline, you've already picked up things for the boys–you're obviously attune to their needs.

  • Kallie Posted January 8, 2010 4:35 am

    I really like that farm mama blog…I think she is you long lost BFF:) Ha. I am so glad that you are so in tune with who Naomi is and isn't homeschooling wonderful just because you can tailor her education to "fit" her. Finding your own path and forming your own philosophy is so critical to homeschooling.

  • farmama Posted January 20, 2010 12:12 am

    I really enjoyed reading this…thank you for the link! I love talking with other homeschooling Mamas with similar lifestyles. Thank you very much for your compliments!

  • Carrie Posted January 24, 2010 4:48 am

    I just found your blog and I wanted to say that Heart of Learning was also very inspirational to me. I finally have it back, after having it loaned out for 6 months. I'm rereading it now.

    Peace and blessings in your homeschooling journey,

  • mommychick Posted February 3, 2010 3:42 pm

    Congratulations on your decision! I just found your blog and will be back often. I have 3 boys and we're Waldorf-inspired unschoolers:-) I was also a Waldorf teacher and my older boys went to a W. school for a couple of years, but they prefer being at home w/ their brothers and a slower pace.

    I have a whole bunch of lesson books that we did when my oldest was 7, I should post some…


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