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Waldorf HS Support Thread January - Page 7

post #121 of 230
I am really trying to embrace the Waldorf approach to math but I am finding it hard to let go of Math U See.

(It's my first time posting here and "quoting", so I hope I'm doing this right)
Just wanted to chime in and add my 2 cents. I use the Waldorf approach with both of my children, who are 9 and 7 years old. I also happen to be a big fan of Math-U-See. We are still playing catch-up with my 9-year old, who is a bit behind in math. I finally decided that we would just continue with Math-U-See, and use the Waldorf approach at the same time. I've heard from several homeschoolers in my area that some like to use more than one math programm anyway. Plus, it's really working well for us to do it this way. Math is one of our strongest subjects right now, and the kids actually like doing it. They like the worksheets, and they also like to play the math games and draw pictures and read stories about gnomes to learn the concepts.
Hope this helps.
post #122 of 230
Well I had fun last night and bought "Sing a Song of Seaons," "This is the Way We Wash-a-Day," and "Cante, Cante, Elefante." I am excited to get them! I am also ordering a couple Signing Time dvd's, as I plan on introducing/teaching both Spanish and ASL to us all. My goal is to add Spanish and ASL songs to our circle time and introduce the languages that way. We already know some basic signs as we have signed with both boys when they were little and have started introducing ds#3 to basic signs as well. I'm thinking we'll sit down together and though it's not very Waldorf-y or Enki-y, watch one of the ASL dvd's together and practice our signing. I'm very excited about the song books and CD's ...
post #123 of 230
Originally Posted by paganmum View Post
I'm kind of feeling like a faulure this week.
Oh, dear Paganmom,

Hugs to you!

Please know that there's just one of you, and you can only do your best...and be proud of your best - no matter how all of this comes out...what you do at any one point is just part of a progression. Maybe this step will bring you clarity on where to go next.

Your children are so lucky to have such a deeply thoughtful and caring mom. Maybe this is a good time to build up you - and your confidence in this whole situation. Don't feel guilty about that either - taking care of yourself is also taking care of the kids because whenyou are nurtured, you can better nurture them

Love to you in this hard time,


P.S. Annettemarie, I just wanted to say that when we have a main lesson, the child is involved in planning - a little in first grade and then more and more as they get older. I really first think of my child and how they might relate to the material, design it mostly around them, and try to bring in as many of the twelve senses as I can. I don't know if it will help, but here's a place where I wrote out our approach: Step by Step You obviously already have the rhythm part down!
post #124 of 230
Just a quick note. I received an email this morning from Melisa saying that the book had shipped AND a thank you for ordering from her.
post #125 of 230
Hi ya'all! We were out of town for a week, so it seems I have some reading to do!

I need your help! I need honest feedback here. I have a 3 yr old and 19 month old and we just found out we are pregnant w/dc#3! We are so excited. However, I just don't know how I will home school. I am discouraged again. You see, my poor dh...I'm talking him into having at least 4-5 children, if not more. I just don't see how I can homeschool w/that many children. I think I might go crazy. Already w/the 2 I think I'm going crazy when it comes to entertaining them, nap time and bed time! (they won't go to sleep on their own anymore and that's ok except they need sleep!) I give all I have to these children that I wonder what's left. I don't mean this in a bad way, I'm just wondering if I need to find some kind of a balance. Do they need to start being a little more independant in some ways, like playing alone w/o me or having a quiet time in their room? How can I even think of homeschooling 4 or 5 or more children? I don't know if I am cut out for this and dh is questioning it too. I'm sorry to go on and on, I am just very discouraged about homeschooling right now! I don't have anyone to help out, so I never get a break (except dh and he's got his plate full right now, though he is wonderful). But when I think about sending them to school, I don't feel good!

Please help,
post #126 of 230
dd is almost four, showing interest in the early stages of learning how to read, pure interest on her part... what are some good early readers?
this is why i like waldorf at home - not pushing academics like other schools and not holding a child back like a waldorf school would do with a 4 year old, being able to meet my child's needs and development as an independent being!
any ideas appreciated...
post #127 of 230
Lucie, thank you for your kind words. They brought a tear to my eye.

I just have to keep telling myself that it's day by day with Dd1. Dh is and isn't on the same page when it comes to her issues since he's gone all day. So he only gets to see those little peeks into the way life is with her. He thinks that if you keep offering something that she doesn't like that she will come around, or if she sees Ds doing it that she'll want to. Unfortunately I'm finding that that isn't the case so I just leave her be about it. Ds has just developmentally hit the point where by waldorf standards he's concidered ready to start first grade stuff. No biggie. I'm thinking that I'm going to make big deal about it for him and make it special and then when it is Dd1's turn I'll do the same. But until she is ready I just need to leave her be and let her tell me what she is interested in.
I have to follow her cues and my gut not NT timelines.

In the mean time, I just need to set things up for her to find as she is ready and try to set up the house so that she can get her sensory needs met until we find out what all is going on.

Thank you Lucie.
post #128 of 230
Lots to say, and I stink at multiquoting.

I like The Children's Year and All Year Round, but neither would be my first choice to start a Waldorf Library. My first choices would be the Wynstone books, A Child's Seasonal Treasury, Let Us Form a Ring, and Journey through Time in Verse and Rhyme.

, I'm a Christian (married to a pastor) and we've been doing Waldorf (albeit imperfectly lately!) for almost 8 years. I have a couple links to my newsletters and blogs in my signature that give you a picture of our lives.

paganmum. You're not a failure!

fluttermama, I don't know if we're talking about the same person or not. Thanks for the rec on Melissa. I just feel like I need someone to bounce a few ideas off of while we make this transition back into Waldorf-inspired living. I'm definitely not looking for a guru.

Snugglebugsmom, I linked earlier to a free math curriculum I found online that seems very Waldorf-compatible. Maybe you could take a look and try to incorporate a few ideas?
Another thing we tried to make the transition from workbooks to main lesson blocks was to basically follow the worksheet page, but do it in the main lesson book. Does that make sense?

MyLittleWonders, I really enjoy the Naturally You Can Sing books. They're another resource I think is well worth the money.

wonderactivist, thanks for the link! It looks like just what I needed to read. I'm going crazy because I used to know this stuff. It's amazing how much you lose taking a year off.

We had another pleasant day. More in our Big Woods lesson block--we're doing a page a day with "Wash on Monday," "Iron on Tuesday," etc where Katie Grace copies the phrase and draws a picture. She's really been incorporating it into her play as well. We also learned a bit about panthers and she drew a great picture of the big black panther up in the tree. I think she frightened herself a little . We're just taking a little time off math, although I'm trying to work some "math talk" into our day. We made some yummy honey banana muffins. Michael, who is in school, is really digging the new ready availability of baked goods when he gets home from school. We've gone from phonics overkill with worksheets to just reading together for fun, which she seems to be enjoying more.

Katie Grace had ballet today, and while we were driving I asked her how she thought things were going. She said, "I'm really glad you're not on the computer so much because you play with me more and I can help you around the house, and I love to help. And you're not so grumpy and you keep you're promises better." This made me smile and want to cry at the same time.
post #129 of 230
Dear Paganmum and Everyone,

I am the one who is so grateful just to have this thread. Over the years I have received so many kind words of support when my "warrior" child was off on one behavioral "trend" or another...but now the old Waldorf list is so inactive most of the time...I've missed the conversation. We're all our best when we're bouncing ideas and support off of each other.

I have always enjoyed Mothering so much, but kinda felt fringe-y sometimes... Until now, I always felt sort of an outsider here. I think there was always a strong Waldorf undercurrent, but most of us are not purists and sometimes don't quite fit in on the Waldorf lists...but don't want to offend more unschooley families either. It can be hard to fit in when you don't fit a mold.

Thanks for sharing and giving me a place to check in, learn from, and maybe share with each day! An e-place to maybe belong in.


actually prepping for school on unschool Wednesday, since we had a holiday and are iced over - the boys want to have a half day
post #130 of 230
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Quaniliaz View Post
Thank you for sharing your circle time! What are these songs??

And, can someone tell me a good resourse that explains in breath and out breath to me?? It confuses me!!!
These songs are from the Naturally You Can Sing series previously mentioned. Excellent resource!

As for in breath and out breath: This is the concept of contraction and expansion. When we breathe, we breathe in and then out. One is not more important than the other. They are both necessary to complete a full breathe. The day also has night. We have for seasons, etc. In Waldorf one tries to create a rhythm of going back and forth between activities that contract or breathe in like handwork, and then expand or breathe out like going on a nature walk.

There are too many resources that talk about this! Pretty much any good Waldorf kindergarten book should talk about how to accomplish this.
post #131 of 230
Thread Starter 
My Little Wonders~ Did you get your books yet? I'm so excited for you!

wonderactivist~ I agree with everything that you said. I could have signed my name to the bottom.

Paganmum~ Step I truly believe things will calm down once you move and get back into your typical rhythm. For the time being just take it easy.

Mamas here~ You have no idea how inspiring you have been to me! I love all the great suggestions and support. I love to here about what everyone is doing.

January~ As I have only two children this advice does not come from personal experience, only what other big families have told me. They tell me once you get to three children all the others just fall into place. It is not a big transition. I think having 5 children is one of those things that you just have to experience to understand. I think your concerns and thoughts are normal, but I have a feeling once you get to five children it will not be overwhelming to you at all. I suggest on starting a thread in the hs'ng forum here titled "Mamas with big families" and post your concerns there. I'm sure you will get a lot of supportive encouragement.
post #132 of 230
Kass ~ I got shipping notice on my books yesterday; they went out priority, so I'm crossing my fingers they'll be here tomorrow!

PaganMum ~ to you.

January ~ As a mom with a new third child here (well, he's now 7 months), it does get a little dicey in the beginning with a baby. But, once they are out of that immediate newborn-have-to-be-held-and-nursed-constantly stage, things start to fall into place really nicely. If you start now with a good base rhythm to your days, you can establish that ebb and flow, and when a new baby joins, then you modify as you need and work your way back to that underlying ebb and flow. Though we don't plan on having more than our 3, I do think that any other children on top of the 3 we have would be easy compared to the jump from two to three. Plus, remember, they grow up and they do so quickly. My oldest is 5 1/2 and I am amazed each day at what he knows, what he is learning, and how much he can already do for himself or help me with his younger brothers. The crazy times only last for a small while. The wonder of having them home together, teaching them together (and them teaching each other) is such an amazing treasure and gift to give them. It is possible, and even when the way seems totally unclear, the fog does lift and somehow it all works.
post #133 of 230
So let's say you could buy ONE Waldorf-inspired CD . . . which would you buy? I've looked at 7 Times the Sun and This is the Way We Wash the Day, and would appreciate any additional ideas. I just want to buy one right now and want to nab a great bit of singing fun! Thanks for your replies & help. I am so digging this thread!
post #134 of 230
Originally Posted by OakdaleMama View Post
So let's say you could buy ONE Waldorf-inspired CD . . . which would you buy? I've looked at 7 Times the Sun and This is the Way We Wash the Day, and would appreciate any additional ideas. I just want to buy one right now and want to nab a great bit of singing fun! Thanks for your replies & help. I am so digging this thread!
I would buy This Is the Way We Wash--it has many wonderful little songs to carry you through your day.

Another one we have and love is the Sing Through the Day book and CD from the Bruderhoff, but I don't know if they even make it anymore.
post #135 of 230
Originally Posted by OakdaleMama View Post
So let's say you could buy ONE Waldorf-inspired CD . . . which would you buy? I've looked at 7 Times the Sun and This is the Way We Wash the Day, and would appreciate any additional ideas. I just want to buy one right now and want to nab a great bit of singing fun! Thanks for your replies & help. I am so digging this thread!
For circle planning I would get Sing a Song of Seasons; that's the NYCS book we've used the most. Well, that and Lavender's Blue Dilly Dilly, which is great because we can pop it in when we're in the car and I don't have to worry about the songs being seasonally incorrect.
post #136 of 230
So, what would an average day look for boys ages 10,7, and 4?
post #137 of 230

Look out for strong opinion of period-mom

Dear Konamama,

It's not a lot of things that I have such a strong opinion on, so just know this is given in the spirit of sharing ideas, not to be bossy.

When mine showed interest early on, we would answer when they asked "What letter/word is this?" We enjoyed rich, rhyming alphabet books and we taught them the ABC song. We didn't push or teach and they both completely taught themselves before starting first grade. I would pick out some truly great books and just read together a couple of times daily. If they want to "read" it, don't correct them when they're making up the words.

One thing that we especially enjoyed was "reading" a familiar poem or picture book together. With my eldest it was The Night Before Christmas, so I read most of it and he read "house," "mouse," and the rest of the last words. Then he memorized the poem and would "read" it to me. From there it became almost every picture book - here's the story.

Just skip over this if you don't want to hear a strong opinion. Almost every kid I know who was taught early on with limited vocabulary readers hated to read by age 8. IMHO limited vocabulary readers can truly harm their confidence...those are the kids who later don't like to read and are afraid of "big words." The reason IMHO is that they take away all of the magical, imaginative part of reading. Most lack a true storyline or character development.

You can see I'm not a fan, but if you do want one, Little Bear is probably the best series. We were also given a few Biscuit books which are semi-ok. We read both of those together as picture books. When things have already "clicked" for them, I'll pull one off the shelf for a confidence boost...just one...to be that book they read without any help (and remember, we had read it before).

( Off the soapbox now. - We need a nicer soapbox smiley!)

One comparison - a friend's child and my youngest showed interest at the same age. She borrowed the Biscuit books, checked out every reader from the library and started lessons early. I waited because I had been through this already with my eldest. Now hers is 8 and mine 7 1/2. Hers hates to read and doesn't want school at all, mine is currently asking me to get off the computer so he can read a Hank, the Cowdog chapter to me.

Warm wishes on whatever choice you make,

Today we'll try our daily walk on the greenbelt - it is solid ice out there and we haven't walked for days!
post #138 of 230
Thread Starter 
I don't have a lot of time to type this morning, but wanted to respond to the suggestion for music CDs.

I would recommend anything in the Naturally You Can Sing series. You did not mention the ages of your dc. It would be easier for me to give a recommendation if I knew the ages and exactly what you are looking for. So, I'll just say....

under three- Sing a Song with Baby Not just for under threes though. I still use a TON of the songs and games throughout the day and in circle time with my 4 and 10 yr. old. A good second book if your dc are all over three.

Over three- Lavender's Blue Dilly Dilly- if you are looking for more nursery rhymes and circle time games.

Or, This is the way we Wash our Day if you are looking for more practical songs to sing all through your day.

The CD Sing a Song of Seasons is great, but I would recommend that as a book that you get later as it will be very limiting as a first song book. It will fit in your library well as you build it up though.

Also, a great website was suggested to me to get a bread recipe from. On further scanning I saw a hs curriculum page and I found a BUNCH of books to download for free that will work very well in a Waldorf inspired home. Fairy tales, fables, nursery rhymes, myths, and legends galore. Check it out!

post #139 of 230
Dear Konamama,

Oops, I apologize if I came on so strongly earlier - it's that monthly female power thing!

What I was trying to say is that we encouraged curiosity, but without starting formal lessons, and, well, ...hmm...I think I was overly clear on the part about limited vocabulary readers. Sorry.

The nice part about homeschooling is that you CAN encourage that curiosity, without squelching it because she isn't "suppposed" to be reading. Just let her continue to lead the process and to own her little achievements along the way.

Warm wishes,

who hopes she didn't come off too offensive
post #140 of 230
Originally Posted by wonderactivist View Post
The nice part about homeschooling is that you CAN encourage that curiosity, without squelching it because she isn't "suppposed" to be reading. Just let her continue to lead the process and to own her little achievements along the way.

I completely agree with this and your previous post, especially for a 4 year old. And, I agree with what you are saying about most readers. But, it sounds like your dc taught themselves or learned to read on their own at a relatively early age (I think you said before first grade). I am trying very hard not to turn to a phonics program, but I must say it was much easier to just wait and let things happen when dd was 4. Now that she is 6 I am wrestling almost every day with the "when will she start reading" worry. I know that I shouldn't worry, she has lots of prereading skills, but I must say this is one area where I just don't have confidence. She is my oldest and she absolutely loves books and being read to and listening to story tapes and she has an amazing vocaculary for a six year old, but the reading is just not clicking naturally for her yet.

Maybe six months from now I'll be back here saying all this worry was for nothing....
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