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Is Waldorf too "airy fairy" for some kids? - Page 6

post #101 of 114
No problem, I was just going to refer you back to the Sticky.
post #102 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by bean0322
Do you happen to know why they especially don't encourage soccer or martial arts classes in particular? How are these activities any more anti-Waldorf than other sports or activities?

It has to do with awakening the lower limbs. This year in 4th grade, the kids are playing kickball now and the boys and the girls are on soccer teams in the city league. Before 4th grade, there is more concentration on upper limbs with ball throwing and writing.

I am not sure I agree with it, but I don't find it harmful and my kids aren't interested anyway. 4th grade was soon enough and it didn't hurt my kids to wait until 4th grade to kick a ball.
post #103 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by RiverSky
What about children who may have different cultural histories, perhaps Asian children, Australian Aboriginals, children of Indian descent or from Africa? Do these children have the same 'germ's or 'seed's of cultural memory within them that stories of fairies, gnomes and witches are part of their folk consciousness?

I would love more information about this. Thank you in advance.

Yes, and children in other countries who go to Waldorf schools have their cultural myths incorporated into the curriculum. The European myths and culture are not the emphasis.

Our teachers have looked at the composition of the class and adjusted accordlingly. There is still a lot of European myths but as an example, many teachers in America during the 2nd grade saints and heros blocks, introduce American folk tale heros such as John Henry, Johnny Appleseed, etc. My child learned a great deal about Lewis and Clark in this section of class which has fostered a huge love for the Corp of Discovery and their journey.
post #104 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by BusyMommy
Which seems just fine to me but as someone said earlier, how horrible that you're teaching your kids to be deceitful by setting up a home/school dichotomy; ie. dinosaurs and occasional movies at home...shhhh at school. Dunno, I'm just hoping our local Waldorf is much less "pure" than some of the views represented here.

Purity, though, does have some incredibly negative connotations. Is that a MCD word applied to Waldorf or is that one of their own? Honestly, just curious. I'm still leaning over the fence Waldorf.

I guess I didn't see it that way. There were school toys and there were home toys. The kids could play dinosaur at school there just weren't any plastic dinosaurs like the ones we had at home. The same went with trucks and dolls. The kids played with school toys at school and home toys while at home.

There are practical reasons for this. It is easier to keep track of school toys and it is easier to share.

The kids were allowed to bring a lovey from home if they stayed for Napcare after Kindergarten but other than that, no toys from home.
post #105 of 114
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhonwyn
I guess I didn't see it that way. There were school toys and there were home toys. The kids could play dinosaur at school there just weren't any plastic dinosaurs like the ones we had at home. The same went with trucks and dolls. The kids played with school toys at school and home toys while at home.
This makes perfect sense to me. Not to mention the fact that we can't shell out $400 for a wooden kitchen, but were able to come up with $60 for a plastic one Same with the dolls, at over $100 a pop. How nice it would be to have a beautiful Waldorf environment for your kids at home, but it seems like you'd either have to be handy and make everything yourself or be rich.
post #106 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by momsgotmilk4two
This makes perfect sense to me. Not to mention the fact that we can't shell out $400 for a wooden kitchen, but were able to come up with $60 for a plastic one Same with the dolls, at over $100 a pop. How nice it would be to have a beautiful Waldorf environment for your kids at home, but it seems like you'd either have to be handy and make everything yourself or be rich.
We actually did both. I made wooden castles and playhouses. The kid's mom made dolls. And then we bought just about every wooden figure imaginable (at a cost of probably $500 or more). Then there were the Brio trains, wooden blocks etc.

Pete
post #107 of 114
Thread Starter 
Yeah, we do have the trains and train table. I got a little carried away with those last Christmas :LOL
post #108 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhonwyn
It has to do with awakening the lower limbs. This year in 4th grade, the kids are playing kickball now and the boys and the girls are on soccer teams in the city league. Before 4th grade, there is more concentration on upper limbs with ball throwing and writing.

I am not sure I agree with it, but I don't find it harmful and my kids aren't interested anyway. 4th grade was soon enough and it didn't hurt my kids to wait until 4th grade to kick a ball.
This is interesting to me. Seems backwards from child development as I know it. Gross motor THEN fine motor....wonder why the switch??

XOXOXO
Beth
post #109 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by BethSLP
This is interesting to me. Seems backwards from child development as I know it. Gross motor THEN fine motor....wonder why the switch??
It has more to do with the lower half of the body has the sex organs (like the base chakra). No reason to stimulate those areas too much in children, so better if kids don't kick a ball.

(I'm not joking about this)

Pete
post #110 of 114
Seriously? I've always believed the young children learn primarily through gross motor play and from their environment. You're saying you think fine motor comes first? I'd be interested to hear your thoughts on this.

I taught Kinder for many years and always found fine motor skills developed & were refined later for most kids.

Re: the ball issue. No way...I just can't force my brain to believe that.
post #111 of 114
BusyMommy,
Are you asking me or Rhonwyn? I agree which is why I posted gross THEN fine, not the other way around. Just checking who the "you" was.

XOXO
Beth

Quote:
Originally Posted by BusyMommy
Seriously? I've always believed the young children learn primarily through gross motor play and from their environment. You're saying you think fine motor comes first? I'd be interested to hear your thoughts on this.

I taught Kinder for many years and always found fine motor skills developed & were refined later for most kids.

Re: the ball issue. No way...I just can't force my brain to believe that.
post #112 of 114
Ahhhh, okay, that surprised me. I'll pick up my jaw. I guess when I read the other post, I just didn't understand the whole concept waking up the lower legs. That wouldn't be a definition of gross motor would it? Or, is it just the sexual organs idea? I have to admit, I'm still very confused about that. I can see, though, not wanting them to "look down" and run on a field as young children. I don't agree but I understand how people would feel that way. Personally, my kids climb up and up and up so not an issue for us.
post #113 of 114
I'm fascinated by all this odd stuff about lower limbs and upper limbs and on and on.

My experience in waldorf is that what is avoided is competitive sports, period. Children are encouraged to run, jump, fall down, climb, swing, jump rope, play with balls, dig holes and move, move, move. This is a nice contrast to some public schools that have eliminated recess due to lack of time. My granddaughter's school has the children outside everyday running, hiking and playing (kindergarten). I've never come across any stuff about avoiding use of the lower limbs. I've heard several explanations of the don't kick the ball stuff.

Speaking as a fairly experienced grandmother (almost 6 years, wow) I think gross and fine skills develop side by side and most children alternate learning a bit of this and then a bit of that from babyhood on. For example, learning how to hold an object strikes me as being on the fine motor skill side, and rolling over is gross motor. Stacking objects is fine, crawling is gross. Carrying objects is more on the fine side, learning how to step-up is gross. My grandkids go back and forth and have since birth. The older girl is almost 6 and is still refining her abilities in both directions, ditto the younger child at 2 1/4. It is a mixed process.

Or is everybody talking about something else and I'm missing the point?

Anyway, the kids in waldorf schools get plenty of mixed physical activity involving both upper and lower body activities, plus a variety of fine motor skills activities, including handcrafts, drawing, writing, circle activities like hand-clapping in rhythm.

Nana

PS I failed skipping in kindergarten 50 years ago, sigh
post #114 of 114
Quote:
Originally Posted by BusyMommy
Ahhhh, okay, that surprised me. I'll pick up my jaw. I guess when I read the other post, I just didn't understand the whole concept waking up the lower legs. That wouldn't be a definition of gross motor would it? Or, is it just the sexual organs idea? I have to admit, I'm still very confused about that. I can see, though, not wanting them to "look down" and run on a field as young children. I don't agree but I understand how people would feel that way. Personally, my kids climb up and up and up so not an issue for us.
I can't understand why people would feel that way. Why can't kids just look anywhere they want to (I know you aren't suggesting they shouldn't - but Waldorf seems to prefer they look up). Just let kids be kids - without restrictions that don't make any sense. Who has raised a kid and not noticed that kids find lots of neat stuff when they are looking down? Kicking a ball? What kid doesn't want to kick a ball? They start doing it naturally before they're 2 years old. Why prevent it? Where's the logic? Because it's stimulating the sex organs? Where's the evidence of this? Forget the kids. Maybe us old folks can use it - kickball could be the new Viagara.

Pete
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