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#1 of 14 Old 07-25-2005, 09:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Just received the June 2005 issue of the Research Bulletin, published by the Research Institute for Waldorf Education.

Their web site: http://www.waldorfresearchinstitute.org/

The table of contents (partial, I'm typing it in)

The Current Debate about Temperament by Walter Riethmuller

Waldorf Education: Transformation Toward Wholeness by Vladislav Rozentuller and Steve Talbott

The Art and Science of Classroom Management by Trevor Mepham

Research on Waldorf Graduates in North America: Phase I by Faith Baldwin, Douglas Gerwin, and David Mitchell

See the web-site for back issues and a few articles from earlier issues in pdf format.

I believe the Rudolf Steiner Library can also supply back issues: http://rslibrary.elib.com/

My back is still hurting, but not as much. Sorry to have dropped out of the ongoing discussions on waldorf education. I'll be back eventually.

Deborah
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#2 of 14 Old 07-25-2005, 10:22 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Deborah
Just received the June 2005 issue of the Research Bulletin, published by the Research Institute for Waldorf Education.

Their web site: http://www.waldorfresearchinstitute.org/

The table of contents (partial, I'm typing it in)

The Current Debate about Temperament by Walter Riethmuller

Waldorf Education: Transformation Toward Wholeness by Vladislav Rozentuller and Steve Talbott

The Art and Science of Classroom Management by Trevor Mepham

Research on Waldorf Graduates in North America: Phase I by Faith Baldwin, Douglas Gerwin, and David Mitchell

See the web-site for back issues and a few articles from earlier issues in pdf format.

I believe the Rudolf Steiner Library can also supply back issues: http://rslibrary.elib.com/

My back is still hurting, but not as much. Sorry to have dropped out of the ongoing discussions on waldorf education. I'll be back eventually.

Deborah
It's amazing to me that stuff like the - from the page you cited, can actually pass for science to some people. Sorry Nana, but I think you would be hard-pressed to find real scientific support for these conclusions and the methods used to produce them.

http://www.waldorfresearchinstitute....nFormation.pdf

"4000 test subjects had participated in a series of
bio-psychological tests stretching over a period of many years. After the conclusion of the experiments, it
was discovered that the tested people were no longer able to use their senses of smell and taste as well
they could at the beginning of the project."

Duh... Nothing of mine works as well today as it did many years ago (I'm sorry to admit)

Anthroposophical publications like this one are hardly the place to find unbiased information about child development and Waldorf education.

One of my favorite non-Waldorf studies is a study by Green and Bavelier who claim that kids who play video games process visual information 1500 times faster than kids who don't. Maybe there's hope for the air-traffic control industry.

Anyway, parents would do well to take this stuff with a grain of salt...

Hope you're feeling better soon, BTW.

Pete
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#3 of 14 Old 07-28-2005, 10:22 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I cheerfully suggest that anyone who wants to judge the quality of the work of the Institute read a few articles for themselves.

Nana

PS Pete, I suggest you edit your posts to remove the remarks that offended you...quoting them just doubles the problem...I'm sure you'll be glad to oblige!
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#4 of 14 Old 07-28-2005, 12:44 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Deborah
Ah, and Pete you are a source of unbiased info on waldorf?
If personal experience represents a source for bias, then no, I'm not unbiased. I have my opinions based on my experience.
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I cheerfully suggest that anyone who wants to judge the quality of the work of the Institute read a few articles for themselves and not just follow Pete's judgement.
I couldn't agree more! Please, I encourage everyone to read this stuff thoroughly and carefully and draw sensible conclusions. Pretend you're Penn and Teller.
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He is a sweet man, and genuinely concerned for his children, but I think some of his thinking has gotten just a teeny bit bent out of shape over the years...
Nana
Do I have to beg people here not to make this personal? : I'm praying Lauren will step in at some point. Nana, why not discuss the topics and not the people bringing the discussion?

Pete
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#5 of 14 Old 07-28-2005, 05:09 PM
 
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At the risk of sounding ignorant, I cannot make heads or tails out of most of what is in those articles. I've tried to understand what they're talking about and where they're coming fom.

Here is an example, from the article about changes in kindergarten children:
"In the 90s, the inability of children to imitiate had become an epidemic around the world."
What does this mean? Are they talking about how children imititate what they see, via play? Or are they talking about children following a teacher's directions? How do they know it's a world-wide epidemic?; that's pretty strong language.

I was also surprised at the author talking about children becoming thinner and more elongated-looking sooner, as it seems children, statistically, are becoming larger and plumper in the West.

Anyway, maybe I'm missing some background knowledge that would help me understand what they're proposing. I promise that I'm an intelligent person and I want to understand what they're saying, but I can't understand even the basic gist of most of it. Perhaps someone here can provide more insight.
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#6 of 14 Old 07-29-2005, 10:25 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by LeftField
At the risk of sounding ignorant, I cannot make heads or tails out of most of what is in those articles. I've tried to understand what they're talking about and where they're coming fom.

Here is an example, from the article about changes in kindergarten children:
"In the 90s, the inability of children to imitiate had become an epidemic around the world."
What does this mean? Are they talking about how children imititate what they see, via play? Or are they talking about children following a teacher's directions? How do they know it's a world-wide epidemic?; that's pretty strong language.
Children imitate really strongly in the first three years. For example, yesterday, every time I kissed my 2 year old grandson, he wiped off his face with the back of his hand. I was dismayed. Did I have grandma cooties?

I described his behavior to my daughter, who grinned. It seems that he has been giving her (as 2 year olds will) big, sloppy, wet kisses. She automatically wipes off her face afterwards. He is imitating the gesture, more or less exactly, with no knowledge of the meaning he might be conveying at all.

This is the type of imitation the article is referring to. Since my grandkids are not exposed to TV or videos, don't play with electronic toys and generally lead an old-fashioned life, they are probably not influenced by some of the stuff the article may be referencing. I haven't read that particular article, so I'm just guessing. Anyway, my grandson's ability to imitate is thriving.


Quote:
I was also surprised at the author talking about children becoming thinner and more elongated-looking sooner, as it seems children, statistically, are becoming larger and plumper in the West.

Anyway, maybe I'm missing some background knowledge that would help me understand what they're proposing. I promise that I'm an intelligent person and I want to understand what they're saying, but I can't understand even the basic gist of most of it. Perhaps someone here can provide more insight.
Yes, I think you probably do need some background info to make sense of the article. Renewal might be a better source of information for parents new to waldorf.

http://www.awsna.org/renewalarticlesnew.html

Sorry!

Nana
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#7 of 14 Old 07-29-2005, 10:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by Pete
If personal experience represents a source for bias, then no, I'm not unbiased. I have my opinions based on my experience.
And I have opinions based on my experience. I've been a waldorf student (2 years), waldorf sibling (several years), waldorf parent (13 years), waldorf staff member (3 years) and now a waldorf grandmother (2 years). My daughter has served on two waldorf boards. I've never been a waldorf teacher, but I've known at least a hundred plus fairly well.

Perfect? No. Problems? Yes. A total waste of time? Hardly. My considered judgement, based on my many years of involvement: Waldorf is, overall, an effective, transformative, going against today's popular educational fads approach to raising and educating children.

The best decision of my life as a parent? Putting my daughter into a waldorf school. Next best decision? Letting her go (her own choice) to a waldorf high school after a short stint in public school and a longer stint of home schooling. [This was also one of the most painful decisions. Leaving my 15 year old behind, facing several months of separation, was incredibly painful. It was, however, the right decision for her, and parents have to suffer sometimes, sigh.]

Does my experience count? Does my daughter's? Does the experience of my many friends who are happy with their children's waldorf experience? Does the experience of the many waldorf graduates I've met who value their education? How do you weigh experience...?

People do have bad experiences and they certainly have a right to discuss and share them. Expecting people who've had opposing experiences to change their minds is a long shot, so I guess we are totally stuck...

Nana
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#8 of 14 Old 07-29-2005, 11:24 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Deborah
Expecting people who've had opposing experiences to change their minds is a long shot, so I guess we are totally stuck...
That’s the one dynamic that never seems to evolve in these ongoing critical debates. And you’re correct: there really is nowhere to go at that point. I’ve also found the more I’ve conceded over the years when discussing these things with those critical of Waldorf, the more issues they bring up, and the harsher the criticisms become. I’ve learned and am learning to simply accept that there’s no need to continue the dia-logue, given it’s no longer one anyway.
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#9 of 14 Old 07-29-2005, 11:59 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Deborah
And I have opinions based on my experience. I've been a waldorf student (2 years), waldorf sibling (several years), waldorf parent (13 years), waldorf staff member (3 years) and now a waldorf grandmother (2 years). My daughter has served on two waldorf boards. I've never been a waldorf teacher, but I've known at least a hundred plus fairly well.

Perfect? No. Problems? Yes. A total waste of time? Hardly. My considered judgement, based on my many years of involvement: Waldorf is, overall, an effective, transformative, going against today's popular educational fads approach to raising and educating children.

The best decision of my life as a parent? Putting my daughter into a waldorf school. Next best decision? Letting her go (her own choice) to a waldorf high school after a short stint in public school and a longer stint of home schooling. [This was also one of the most painful decisions. Leaving my 15 year old behind, facing several months of separation, was incredibly painful. It was, however, the right decision for her, and parents have to suffer sometimes, sigh.]

Does my experience count? Does my daughter's? Does the experience of my many friends who are happy with their children's waldorf experience? Does the experience of the many waldorf graduates I've met who value their education? How do you weigh experience...?

People do have bad experiences and they certainly have a right to discuss and share them. Expecting people who've had opposing experiences to change their minds is a long shot, so I guess we are totally stuck...

Nana
Exactly my point - we are biased in different directions

Pete
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#10 of 14 Old 07-30-2005, 12:27 AM
 
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Originally Posted by alanoe
That’s the one dynamic that never seems to evolve in these ongoing critical debates. And you’re correct: there really is nowhere to go at that point. I’ve also found the more I’ve conceded over the years when discussing these things with those critical of Waldorf, the more issues they bring up, and the harsher the criticisms become. I’ve learned and am learning to simply accept that there’s no need to continue the dia-logue, given it’s no longer one anyway.
Well... yes and no. There may be nowhere for you to go at this point, because your mind is made up. But there are many other people reading/lurking in this forum, and we appreciate hearing both sides of the debate. Seriously. It's very interesting.
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#11 of 14 Old 07-30-2005, 08:34 AM
 
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I am finding the discussions very interesting. If only because it has highlighted for me that there is no perfect solution.

Kathy-Mom to Blake & Mikaela
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#12 of 14 Old 07-30-2005, 11:58 AM
 
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That’s the one dynamic that never seems to evolve in these ongoing critical debates. And you’re correct: there really is nowhere to go at that point.
Having once been a supporter of Waldorf, I know this to be incorrect. And if you are truly a supporter of Waldorf, but also truly see the problems in Waldorf, then addressing the problems from the inside would be a good place to start. I can't imagine having a good product and not addressing the problems. If I were an automobile manufacturer, and produced a perfect product except for a problem with, say, the windshield wipers, I'd be working on making the windshield wipers perfect. I wouldn't be trying to convince the public that there isn't really any problem with the windshield wipers when it is obvious to me that there is. So, if you feel there is nowhere to go in the debates, I suggest you might perhaps look to what the people who are critical of Waldorf have been suggesting and see what things in Waldorf YOU can change. Not supporting "Research" bulletins that have more to do with playing on people's sympathies and fears than actual research is one place to start.
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I’ve also found the more I’ve conceded over the years when discussing these things with those critical of Waldorf, the more issues they bring up, and the harsher the criticisms become.
I won't try to deny your experience. It's natural for people to want to "gain ground" in a debate. I know I've got literally a TON of stuff I could bring up and believe it or not, I've been very reserved in my choices of personal experiences I have related here - and even in the Steiner quotes I've posted. I don't want to see criticisms get harsh any more than you do. I would suggest to you that the constant denial of Waldorf schools that the experiences of critics are real and are widespread is what leads to this public exposure. Waldorf schools need to really do something to address these issues. Many, many people see the need for reform in Waldorf - and it doesn't need to be the removal of Anthroposophy from the schools - but it needs to be real reform and not lip-service. And sooner would be better than later.
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I’ve learned and am learning to simply accept that there’s no need to continue the dia-logue, given it’s no longer one anyway.
I disagree. I think very meaningful dialog is taking place here and the more effort we put into it, the better the chances there will emerge some areas we can call common ground. I'd suggest we look for the areas we agree and start there.

Pete
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#13 of 14 Old 08-02-2005, 01:49 PM
 
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Originally Posted by kewb
I am finding the discussions very interesting. If only because it has highlighted for me that there is no perfect solution.
So true, so true.
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#14 of 14 Old 08-06-2005, 09:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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New research on where waldorf students are accepted in college

http://www.waldorflibrary.org/Journa...teresearch.pdf

This is the research behind one of the articles I cited in my first post in this thread. There are now 37 waldorf high schools in North America (when my daughter went to HS in the 1980s I think there were 6 or 8). There are 167 waldorf schools in North America (affiliated with the Association of Waldorf Schools of North America, AWSNA). When I started at a waldorf school in 1964 there were 8.

Students from 27 high schools were included in the results of this survey. Some high schools are too young to have graduating classes.


Quote:
Over the course of this survey, Waldorf graduates
were accepted by 717 accredited colleges and universities, spanning 18 of the 20 types of institutions
in the Carnegie Classifi cation system. The two categories in which Waldorf graduates registered no
acceptances were Specialized Institutions—Schools of law and Tribal colleges and universities.
Anyhow, it is an interesting body of information.

Nana
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