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Waldorf Homeschoolers Thread - Page 12

post #221 of 397
speaking of yoga....does anyone get their kids to successfully do yoga with them? Has anyone tried the Angel Bear Yoga program?

I too have been trying to get my exercise time back. Waking up earlier then than them does not seem to work, and trying to get it in while younger one naps only works sometimes because older one just can't seem to give me my time when I want it. We had a gym membership before and that worked really really well, but it took up so much of our time driving there signing in etc. Since we have moved I have not looked into a gym here, because I would rather focus on getting some homeschooling under way.
But I miss and need my yoga...

Wouldn't it be great if they just pulled up a mat next to me and did it too!!!!
post #222 of 397
we have the yoga garden game, that is fun and we actually do quite a bit of yoga (30 minutes most times). i also got the kids yoga by Gaiam, which are fun. hth

h
post #223 of 397
I know there are other places that discuss this but what does everyone's learning space look like? We are in the middle of setting ours up and I need some inspiration.
post #224 of 397


h
post #225 of 397
I just wanted to pop in and say hi!

I stayed up waaaaaaayyy too late last night reading this entire thread. THANK YOU so very much for all of the great information, suggestions, etc. It has proved so valuable. I am mama to a 5 yo (just turned a few days ago), a 2 yo, and due in Jan with another lil one. According to the local school district, our 5 yo would start kindergarten next year. Well, we have definitely decided to homeschool, just trying to figure out how exactly we want to do this. I have been doing some reading on Waldorf and looking into some curriculums. Dh and I feel that we really need a curriculum that we can stick to or more or less follow so we can ensure our kids get the knowledge that they need for our current times. I am really feeling like Waldorf is ringing true to me so far. I will definitely be getting some of the books you ladies have suggested to learn more about Waldorf and will be reading up on the various curriculum materials.

I am in the process of reading about the laws and requirements for the state. I believe we have to do yearly testing. I saw the comments that some of the local school districts are less than happy of the pace of Waldorf. Should I be concerned that our daughter would not have the knowledge at the appropriate times that she needs it in order to take these tests? I am probably asking this too soon as I am not up to snuff on all the state requirements yet. I have all of it sitting in front of me waiting to read.

Also, I feel like I'm behind, that I should have been doing this last year so I could be prepared to be doing things with our kids now. Already getting off on a bad foot I fear. Which materials would you suggest for my kids? I saw recommendations for Donna Simmons, The Little Garden Flower, and maybe Oak Meadow? I am going to try to get Heaven on Earth and Understanding Waldorf Education by Jack Petrash soon. Any other starter books and/or materials you would recommend?

THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!
post #226 of 397
i would suggest paint, crayons, clay, modeling wax, and the time to be outside.
i love "Heaven on Earth" and if you feel you need to be doing something Little Acorn learning has stuff for pre-k and k kids. they are seasonal and gentle and have great circle time stuff.
honestly i wouldn't worry about her being "up to snuff" with the public school kids, all children are so different. but that is me and my sort of unschooling feel for learning. lol
WELCOME. it is never to late to start and you are not behind. the greatthing about homeschooling is you get to start when ever it works for YOU!

h
post #227 of 397
Hi fenix,

Just wanted to say it seems like we're in a similar boat! I have a (just turned) 5yo, a 2yo, and a 6mo. Our 5yo could have started school this year (they have until the end of December to turn 5), but we decided at the very last minute (like a week before the start of school!) not to send her, and to homeschool instead. I started researching like mad, and like you, I felt that Waldorf really spoke to me. However, I felt like I was waaaaaay behind the ball! Had we known we were going to homeschool I would have basically been researching this since birth! I always sort of had the thought in the back of my mind, but never really followed through. It occurred to me though, that although we could have sent her to school this year, legally we weren't obligated to send her until next year (when she turns six). So as excited as I was to get started, I decided to go easy on myself and allow myself this year to gently ease into things, to learn all that I can, to research curricula, and to officially start kindergarten next year. I also figured that by this time next year, the baby would have a much more regular routine/schedule, and I would have a little more time to commit to homeschooling. So for now we're just working on establishing our routines (rhythms, in Waldorf-speak?), and incorporating some Waldorf stuff into our lives. Just last week we started a nature table.

I just received in the mail (today!) Donna Simmons' Kindergarten with your Three to Six Year Old (that I can't WAIT to start reading), and last week I got Heaven on Earth, and have been reading about a chapter a day (lots and lots of great info to absorb, so I've been reading slowly and taking notes!).

I downloaded the sample Preschool and Kindergarten curricula from Oak Meadow, and they gave me a really good feel for what Oak Meadow is like.

None of this is really advice - just wanted to tell you that I hear you! And if your little one doesn't have to start kindergarten till next year, then that gives you a whole year to ease yourself into it. Also, from what I understand, it's not uncommon for Waldorf kindergarten to last two years.

I love this thread too, I've gotten SO much great information!

Alissa
post #228 of 397
Quote:
Originally Posted by fenix View Post
I am mama to a 5 yo (just turned a few days ago), a 2 yo, and due in Jan with another lil one. According to the local school district, our 5 yo would start kindergarten next year. Well, we have definitely decided to homeschool, just trying to figure out how exactly we want to do this. I have been doing some reading on Waldorf and looking into some curriculums. Dh and I feel that we really need a curriculum that we can stick to or more or less follow so we can ensure our kids get the knowledge that they need for our current times. I am really feeling like Waldorf is ringing true to me so far. I will definitely be getting some of the books you ladies have suggested to learn more about Waldorf and will be reading up on the various curriculum materials.

I am in the process of reading about the laws and requirements for the state. I believe we have to do yearly testing. I saw the comments that some of the local school districts are less than happy of the pace of Waldorf. Should I be concerned that our daughter would not have the knowledge at the appropriate times that she needs it in order to take these tests? I am probably asking this too soon as I am not up to snuff on all the state requirements yet. I have all of it sitting in front of me waiting to read.
I don't know that I would go just by what your local school district says. I know that even our state's Department of Public Instruction gives out misleading information. Assuming your location is correct from what I can remember of when we lived in MN and at this site Minnesota's compulsory attendance laws are only from age 7-16. Which means that while you are completely free to start homeschooling your children before the age of 7 you should *not* fill out any paperwork or report it to your local school district. It is always a good idea to stick with the law and only provide what the law requires. Doing more sets a precedent which can lead to further regulation in the future.

I think in addition to your specific Waldorf related reading you should also consider joining a local/state homeschooling organization. They are a fantastic resource as far as the laws for your state and the forms that need to be complete. I believe Minnesota has two which includes the Minnestoa Homeschooler's Alliance. tbh I'd join sooner rather than later - it's nice to know what's going on in your state and there are typically conferences/meetings/etc that are held that might help you connect with other local Waldorf or Waldorf-inspired families.
post #229 of 397
HI! Thanks for the responses so far!

pampered_mom - Yep, we do live in MN. We joined MHA a couple weeks back, that is the booklet of info I have here on all the laws, etc. It looks like a wonderful resource. There are support groups through there too. You are correct that kids here aren't legally required to attend school here until 7-16 yo. I appreciate the link and ideas!

Alissa - Our situations do sound very similar! Maybe I shouldn't feel so behind! We have know that we wanted to homeschool for a while, but I have unfortunately only spent snippets of time here and there researching. Life has been full (and will get much fuller soon!) I will go and download the sample curricula from Oak Meadow as well to see what it's like. I think your plan is a good one, ease in slowly over the year and research like mad! My 5 yo keeps asking me when we are starting homeshool. She is so excited to start! I've been trying to explain to her that she is learning things everyday already! Thanks for letting me know I'm not alone and best of luck to you!

mamaofthree - I will definitely be getting some of the art supplies, I have my list started! I want them to be learning at their own pace and more along the Waldorf guidelines, I just worry about those tests they will have to take each year. I don't want the school system banging down my door telling me we aren't teaching them "properly". I know irrational fears creeping in. I do understand that we don't have to report the scores though which is helpful.

Thanks Mamas! I'm open to any other thoughts as well!
post #230 of 397
Thread Starter 
Sorry for not posting much...though I am trying to read everything. Dh just started a week away working his company's annual convention. Just not alot of online time this week.

fenix --
post #231 of 397
i have often wondered about this myself, in reguards to what power and what DO the states do when they feel that your child isn't learning. in AZ we had to only fill out a letter of intent and that was it, you could test if you wanted too but you didn't have to. here in ME you send in a letter of intent and then have a yearly eval that is either a test or a portfolio, the portfolio must be looked at by a teacher (who you pay) and they say that yes or no learning took place. no grade is given. i have wondered how anyone can honestly say NO. of course learning always takes place, and if you choose to test and they do poorly by state standards, then what? i can't see how they can legally take your kids and force them to go to school because you child is reading at a 1st grade level and is in 3rd grade. each child learns at a different pace anyway. they sure don't fire tecahers who are not getting every single child up to grade level on every single subject. my 7 year old isn't reading anything more then very very basic stuff yet, but he loves math and his mind is always working, asking questions etc. he know lots about lots of different stuff, but probably not things they would test on. it is frusterating, because he would be told he is behind, but really he is right where he should be for him. we chose the portfolios because honestly if i have to prove something to people who could honest not give a hoot anyway, i want them to see what it is they are doing and not what they feel they should be learing at that moment. this is why i hs to begin with, i want my childen to follow their own passions. life is just too short to spend your whole childhood doing and learning what the "man" says is important to do and learn. there is too much in life that you miss out on when you are forced into schools, to much cookie cutter education that doesn't meet the needs of most children, and then places lables on them and places them in this group or that group and then drugs the rest that don't fit. i honestly feel schools take the love of learning right out of kids. dd chose to go to high school this year. she is finding that 9 times out of ten the kids just have no interest in learning, they piss and moan and are miserable, she is so excited to be going and so interested in all of her classes, it is really upsetting to her. i told her the difference is she gets the choice to be there, if she wants to come home again she is more then welcome. the school thing was her idea so she is loving it (or at least trying to); most ,if not all, kids HAVE to go so it isn't as important to them.
ok done with that. lol i guess what i was trying to say is... do what feels best, what works for your family, listen to your kids, and i promise they will get what they need and they will eventually be "up to grade level" and they will go out into the world and do wonderfully.

h
post #232 of 397
Subbing I have a 2 yr and 4 yr old girls I am trying to find the right fit for my homeschool. I was home schooled hubby was not he is ok with homeschooling but he wants to home school so his kids excel. I want to do it because I love helping my kids learn and I know I can make the learning experience much more memorial and fun. I had looked into Waldorf just a little in the past in the spring semester I did a home school coop with some other families one of them was a mom who is doing Waldorf style so I have been looking more into it and I LOVE what I see.
I have not read the whole thread but what I have read has been great thank you all for sharing and I hope to learn much much more.

Amanda
post #233 of 397
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamaofthree View Post
i have often wondered about this myself, in reguards to what power and what DO the states do when they feel that your child isn't learning. in AZ we had to only fill out a letter of intent and that was it, you could test if you wanted too but you didn't have to. here in ME you send in a letter of intent and then have a yearly eval that is either a test or a portfolio, the portfolio must be looked at by a teacher (who you pay) and they say that yes or no learning took place. no grade is given. i have wondered how anyone can honestly say NO. of course learning always takes place, and if you choose to test and they do poorly by state standards, then what? i can't see how they can legally take your kids and force them to go to school because you child is reading at a 1st grade level and is in 3rd grade. each child learns at a different pace anyway. they sure don't fire tecahers who are not getting every single child up to grade level on every single subject.
I often wonder the basis for this as well since the laws on the books is for compulsory attendance, not compulsory education. HUGE difference between the two. You absolutely cannot *make* someone learn, hence the attendance bit, and why teachers aren't sued for malpractice.

Of course, the kicker is always going to be in states that require things like testing and portfolio eval. It always makes me thankful for the state I live in!
post #234 of 397
Just wanted to say I'm at about the same place fenix is. We have an almost 5 year old and 2 year old. My older dd is in Waldorf preschool and really wants to homeschool (I'm not really feeling like waldorf preschool is "school"). I keep leaning toward following a curriculum, even though I know that's not exactly the waldorf way. My husband and I will be sharing the hsing and we feel this way it will be eaiser for us (and keeps him on board). I would love to hear more about the curriuculums. I have looked at many online and at Calvert ( super pricey and mainstream though).

I need something that will work well for two of us working/hsing parents. Any suggestions??

Thanks!
post #235 of 397
I just got Christopherus and I really love it. It's all laid out for you but not like OM that seems scheduled. It's maken it all sooooo much easier around here. That's the #1 Waldorf curriculum I have used that I would recommend.
post #236 of 397
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Izzysmom View Post
I need something that will work well for two of us working/hsing parents. Any suggestions??

Thanks!
Personally speaking, I'd start with making sure that the two of you have the same (or at least similar) expectations and ideas of how this would proceed. Your children are young enought that you have plenty of time to work on this without feeling too rushed, I think.

The process of becoming waldorfians involves a good bit of 'inner work' to make sure that you are ready. Honestly THAT is the biggest difference (IMHO) between Waldorf and other educational paths. It's not the gnomes and play silks, it's the intention that is within the teachers and parents (or parent teachers )

Before deciding upon any specific curriculum or path, I'd highly recommend you read Carrie's blog The Parenting Passageway.

There is always great 'food for thought' there and it will give you and your dear one a chance to think about and talk about things that might be important and might be differences of opinion. It will help each of you come to an understanding of what this path might look like and where it might differ for each. Along the way, I daresay, you might solidify ideas of what you are looking for as well as strengthen your abilities to share the task.

Also remember that waldorf curricula does not engage in anything 'academic' until the 7 year change...or roughly 1st grade. So in the next 2 years you'll be looking at doing 'waldorf home kindergarten' and again, Carrie's blog can be of great use. I especially like her post 'The Mother's Job in the Waldorf Kindergarten.'

Her lists there of the types of daily life-stuff that parents can be doing with or at least in the presence of, their children is inspiring.

I hope this helps some. It is just one person's opinion...but it is how I believe I would proceed if my situation were what you've indicated.
post #237 of 397
ooooh. thanks for the links. i am going to read thru that. i think it will be really helpful for my dh and me.

h
post #238 of 397

several subjects and questions

I am loving Little Acorn's October Guide! I went ahead and started week one this week. I'm loving the Daily Guide as well. It is so helpful to keep me on a rhythm.

Bedtime is still a struggle for us. Neither of my girls are easy to get to sleep. Even with a routine. I have to rock DD2 for 10-45 minutes. She's the easier one. DD1 will stay awake for forever, get out of bed several times, and she sleep walks, and talks. She usually comes to our bed still at some point in the early morning. I'm trying to be patient with it.

What do weekends look like for you those with little wee ones? Do you try to stick to the same rhythm? We go visiting alot for overnights on weekends with family.

Also, DD1 has dance class that she absolutely loves. It is at 5pm (on Wed.) which is usually the roughest time of the day for both girls. I'm not sure how to handle this. DD2 cries the entire time we are waiting for DD1. There isn't anywhere convenient to take her for 45 minutes in such a rural area. It is also a struggle to get DD1 ready and out the door, but once there she is happy. She insists she doesn't want to miss dance. Any ideas?

Artwork? What do you do with it? Most of the crafts from Little Acorn have a use throughout the week. However, afterward... Also, any paintings or drawings. I've read in Waldorf info that the artwork should even be destroyed in front of the children, so they would focus more on the process then the end result. Thoughts?

Anyone know where I can get more info on color/grain of the day and the whys of it? I've Googled but not gotten much. Anyone do this? We don't do alot of grains here as we are TFers. I am interested in color though.
post #239 of 397
We are struggling with bedtime, too. We try to keep it the same on weekends, and that helps.

I don't destroy artwork. I get rid of some when they are in bed otherwise I'd have three rooms full of dead trees. I hang art on string on the wall so that we can all look at it for awhile, and then pack it away to sort through later.

We started Christopherus 2nd and 3rd grade and we are supposed to be reviewing the math processes which we never really did last year. So I have about a paragraph in the 2nd grade book about the squirrel math, but no story and such (only in the 1st grade syllabus?). Does anyone know where I can find the story or would be willing to email/pm me it? I'm totally stuck without it! I don't know if I should email Donna or if they would even give it to me and I can't dish out $190 for one story!
post #240 of 397
Oh my goodness, I can't imagine destroying a child's artwork in front of them. I've never read that in any Steiner resource. Do you remember where you saw it?
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