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#331 of 397 Old 12-02-2009, 01:24 AM
 
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I've been thinking about our Christmas differently this year. Things I plan to do/am working on:

1. Making some tree decorations: popcorn/cranberry garland, salt dough ornaments, sugar sparkled cranapples, twig stars. Some of these will go outside after Christmas to feed the animals, which seems like a nice way to undecorate as it were. Our current tree is all shiny and breakable, so I'm looking forward to adding more earthly elements like these.

2. Decorating with fresh pine boughs, pinecones and holly. We are blessed to have all these things in our yard, so I plan to gather and adorn with the real thing this year.

3. Help my 5 year old make some gifts for her friends. We're going to make star and heart-shaped glycerin soaps (really easy) for her to string on a rope for a few friends. This is her first gift from her for others at Christmas. We don't give her "money" to buy her brother or mom/dad gifts. That never seems genuine to me.

4. Purchased The Advent Storybook from Amazon. It is an advent story told about a little bear that's supposed to be good for little ones. It should arrive Thursday. I'm a little late

5. I'm knitting and sewing some gifts this year, which I suppose serves as an example to my kids. Also, we're only doing 2-3 small gifts for each child, plus DH is building them a sandbox day after Christmas.

6. Starting a new tradition of doing holiday baking with my mom (grandma) on Christmas Eve.

Looking forward to hearing other ideas!

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#332 of 397 Old 12-04-2009, 05:16 PM
 
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Christmas/Advent will be a bit simpler this year just because of the new baby - who at the moment apparently enjoys being inside much more so than I'd like. About the only thing we've added in to the mix is our new Advent Spiral. My uncle made it for us - I'm still amazed by it as we could have never been able to buy one online and while we liked the candles/centerpiece we had before we love this so much better. Both ds and dd have gotten a kick out of it.

Otherwise in addition to that we'll celebrate St. Nick's Day, go see a holiday lights display in an outdoor garden, make some cookies, and watch "Polar Express" - I know that last one isn't very waldorf-y per se, but we really enjoy doing it anyway.
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#333 of 397 Old 12-05-2009, 01:34 AM
 
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This is our first year really focusing on Advent, which is nice. We have our wreath that we light each night before bed and we have an Advent devotional that we do then. My dd (nearly 4) looks forward to our Christmas decorations all through the year (I am amazed at how she remembers them all) so we actually go ahead and put up our tree and full nativities and such the day after Thanksgiving. But, with that said, we talk a lot about Christmas being Jesus' birthday. We have lots of great nativity books that we read through this season, as well as just more general Christmasy books. We pick our own holly and use that for decorating. We have a felt tree by our entry way that we redecorate for each season, so we made snow, a holly bush, and a nativity for that. I'm hoping soon to have time for snowflakes. We sing lots of Christmas carols ourselves, and since dd loves to sing she makes up her own ones as well. We are planning on making gingerbread ornaments soon for our tree (we'll eat them on Christmas). We're also going to be making homemade egg nog next week. We make most of our own Christmas presents, so for family this year we're doing soups/casseroles/and cookie mixes in jars, which we make up each Friday night. We look at Christmas lights and soon we'll be going to see a huge light display nearby. We also want to go ice skating at a rink that has a huge Christmas tree at the center. I want to make some peppermint bark candy and some Christmas cookies, but I may actually wait until we're in "Christmastime" because I'm kind of overloading myself at the moment. It's a wonderful time, though. I love how we focus on experiences instead of stuff. It's so much more magical that way!

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#334 of 397 Old 12-14-2009, 03:53 PM
 
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Can someone compare Little Acorn Grade 2 to Oak Meadow Grade 2?

I use a virtual school and I know they will buy Oak Meadow. But, Little Acorn is a great price and I can just purchase that myself.

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#335 of 397 Old 12-15-2009, 05:36 PM
 
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Hi,I'm Jemilla from the Virgin Islands.I have 3 sons, Adrian 5,Naya3,and Tristun1 1/2 who are wonderful! Adrian went to school at 5 for three months and hated it.I took him out,and now that his cousins always brag about school,he wants to go back. I know my son,and after 3 weeks or so,he'll be begging to stay at home again!
I started OM 1st with him in September,and he's doing well;after all,he did do this level work last September as well.He doesn't complain about being at home,but when we are with his cousins or someone mentions school,he says he wants to go back.We have fun fishing,swimming,hiking,crafting,and once a week we go to his homeschooled friend's house(the only other homeschooler on the island).He loves doing all of this,and so it throws me off when he asks to go back to school.
Here's my question,should school be a choice your child should have a say in,or is it like eating too much candy,something to be regulated and a decision the parent should make for the child? I'm stuck in the middle on this one because half of me thinks that if he wants to go to school,just let him!However,the other half thinks he'll be unhappy if he goes and I'll end up having to take hime somewhere he hates for 3 months(school rules) until the semester is up.Also,they do things in that school I don't believe in,and the kids are exposed to behaviour I don't approve of.So much competition, fighting for the teacher's attention and so forth. I would love to hear your opinions!
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#336 of 397 Old 12-15-2009, 07:27 PM
 
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hmmm. my dd is in school because she wanted too, but she is 15. she wanted to try school back in middle school and stayed all of 3 or 4 weeks. my 5 year old has asked but i think it is because we are not seeing other people enough.
why can't he try it out for a few weeks? can the school actually force your child to stay, that doesn't seem right. is he looking for more challenge or more interaction with people? is there away to do that? is there away to talk up homeschooling to him so he feels good about it? maybe do it in front of the cousins? (ok maybe lame i don't know. lol my kids cousins always seem to want to be homeschooled like my kids. lol)

h

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#337 of 397 Old 12-15-2009, 09:43 PM
 
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I could take him out,but living on a 4sq mile island,I don't like to step on any toes.Last september he went to school and by October he wanted out,and when I asked the principal,she told me it's difficult to pull him out now with all the paperwork and easier tojust let him finish the term.I still attend a few events at the school,and it's good to be on the principal's good side,especially when you don't want authorities checking up on your kids and ,making sure they're where they SHOULD be
I don't think it's a social thing for him cause we go to his homeschooling buddy's house once aweek,he hangs out with his cousins twice a week,and they all go to Tap class on Saturdays.
His cousins just play it up like it's soooo much fun,and he's forgotten what a drag it actually is! I think I may have to go off island for a bit so they can have some time away from the cousins.
I'd be fine with him going to school when he's older,but now I know he just wants things for a while and then gets over it.We'll see.
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#338 of 397 Old 12-15-2009, 10:39 PM
 
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Subbing. I'll check back here tomorrow.

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#339 of 397 Old 12-16-2009, 12:04 AM
 
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Hi to the new mom from Virgin Islands - my in laws live in St Croix, small world!
To the mom asking about Little acorn - it is only a preschool program and while many, many homeschooling families use it, it is really geared for natural daycare providers to use.

Hope that helps, welcome everyone to this thread!

Warmly,
Carrie
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#340 of 397 Old 12-16-2009, 10:46 AM
 
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hmm. is there any way to do a class with him thru the hs group so maybe he can be reminded that he doesn't enjoy it as much as he thinks? or then again he might really enjoy it in that mode, you know not as intense and all day. idea anyway.

h

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#341 of 397 Old 12-16-2009, 08:19 PM
 
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St.Corix huh,I've only been there once,but I'd like to go back to visit.

I think I'll ask the principal to let him go to school for a week without being registered. I've been thinking aboutit,and i think my working part time for 3 days has something to do with it as well.thanks for the input though.

So,what do you guys do to celebrate birthdays?
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#342 of 397 Old 12-23-2009, 12:40 AM
 
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So, mamas, what do you have planned for January?

Flowers, fairies, gardens, and rainbows-- Seasons of Joy: 10 weeks of crafts, handwork, painting, coloring, circle time, fairy tales, and more!
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#343 of 397 Old 12-23-2009, 01:44 AM
 
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St.Corix huh,I've only been there once,but I'd like to go back to visit.

I think I'll ask the principal to let him go to school for a week without being registered. I've been thinking aboutit,and i think my working part time for 3 days has something to do with it as well.thanks for the input though.

So,what do you guys do to celebrate birthdays?
Well, my dd just turned 4 today, so our b-day celebrations are still evolving. We have special birthday decorations that we put up the night before and tie balloons onto her chair at the table. We also set out her birthday ring (we have a story that we add to each year about all the things she did the previous year). She wears her crown while we read her story. After that she opens the presents from dh and I. We spend the rest of the day playing and making her cake and decorating it. My parents come over and we make punch and eat cake. We decorate a dining room chair like a throne and she opens her gifts. We read birthday books that we have, we play birthday games (today we played a form of chase where she ran and we tried to pin tails onto her), we make a big to-do out of decorating her cake. She was born in the evening, so at the minute where she was born we sing a song or do something special. Really, for us the focus is on her birthday story/ring and on making her cake and less on the gifts.

Allison:  a little bit Waldorf, a little bit Medievalish, and always"MOMMMMYYYY!" to sweet Cecily since 12.22.05
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#344 of 397 Old 12-23-2009, 02:48 PM
 
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Every January we go to the snow with our homeschooling friends (one family that we also do playgroup with). Since it doesn't snow here, we make an annual trip to do some sledding. The kids look forward to it and so do I! It's nice to have something special for January.

Other than that, we'll be finishing the prep work on our first backyard garden (putting up a fence, tilling and putting down hay). Our stories are about hibernation, Old Man Winter and Stone Soup (from the Enki Kindergarten library).

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#345 of 397 Old 12-25-2009, 07:16 PM
 
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I messed up my previous question. Can anyone compare Oak Meadow and Little Garden Flower Grade 2? I want something more planned out for my little man next year. I use a VA and they do pay for Oak Meadow. I just haven't seen a sample of Little Acorn to see what it looks like. I know Oak Meadow is just Waldorf Inspired.

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#346 of 397 Old 12-29-2009, 06:39 PM
 
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With the new baby and such I'm finding that this Fall/Winter things have been a bit of a wash. Ds is still fairly young so I don't really feel all that badly about it as he wouldn't technically be doing much at this point other than spending time at home with me and helping out along the way. This we do along with reading stories, singing songs and trying to work in the seasons.

However, give that this Spring/Summer will likely go very much the same way as we adjust to it being the five of us I'd like to start some planning for next Fall...that probably sounds a bit crazy. So I'm wondering what some of you do. Is it mostly just a pre-purchased curriculum like Christopherus or ALGF? Or have you done your own or took bits and pieces of others and put them together? If it's the later, what do you use to make your plan (template, book, online, etc)?
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#347 of 397 Old 12-29-2009, 09:40 PM
 
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I sampled Christopherus, but decided I like Enki much better. It is more open to individual application, in my opinion, than most Waldorf material. To be fair, Enki says it is NOT Waldorf. I've heard Waldorf teachers describe it as modern-day Waldorf, and I agree.

My daughter is 5, but doesn't officially do K until next year, according to our school district. So, we're doing two years of K. I planned the year with a calendar that allowed me to designate a story for each week. I added in monthly focuses for gardening/holidays/field trips (like apple picking and our snow trip). After I had the year in a glimpse, I refined a weekly schedule that brought together the elements I want to do every week in a way that works for my part-time working schedule.

Each month, before the month starts, I make a plan for the coming month. I already have the stories picked, so I just fill in with a nature verse, a Bible verse, some morality focuses (we're a Christian family. Right now we're talking about tattling vs. encouraging words), ideas for modeling and seasonal crafts. Once I have my month planned, each week I just do very minor prep work like writing our memory nature verse or Bible verse on the chalkboard when appropriate, etc.

For me, our first year of homeschool has gone very smoothly. I've made some changes since starting, but in general we're going to keep doing what we're doing. Most of the changes were a result of realizing that less is more in so many ways. I'm also adjusting things to fit my daughter's interests. Hope that helps!

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#348 of 397 Old 12-31-2009, 01:52 PM
 
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I should probably clarify a tiny bit...it's mostly a mechanical type query as in what do you use to make your plan? Online curriculum scheduler (like some of the Classical types use)? Simple word document/pencil and paper kind of thing? Cheap-o teachers book? I'm not sure if the general hs type methods that are talked about will work or are well suited for Waldorf. I know ALGF has a planner EBook, but it's $20 and I'm wondering if that's even worth it.
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#349 of 397 Old 12-31-2009, 11:44 PM
 
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A few questions about Waldorf curricula, if anyone can answer:

Live Ed!--Has anyone used it? Can you buy bits and pieces or must you purchase a whole package?

Enki--Are these materials downloaded only or can you purchase bound copies? What is the difference between Enki and more traditional Waldorf?

A Little Garden Flower--Is this any good? Compared to Christopherus it is much more reasonably priced. Do you have to do a lot of "leg work" by finding other resources, etc., or is it pretty complete as is?

Christopherus--Thoughts? Fun, boring, too rigid, just right? I see Christopherus recommended quite a bit so it seems to be the favorite.

Anyone else use bits and pieces of many different curricula? I'm kind of thinking of going this route and am wondering how feasible that would be.

Thanks!

Allison:  a little bit Waldorf, a little bit Medievalish, and always"MOMMMMYYYY!" to sweet Cecily since 12.22.05
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#350 of 397 Old 01-01-2010, 02:51 AM
 
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I should probably clarify a tiny bit...it's mostly a mechanical type query as in what do you use to make your plan? Online curriculum scheduler (like some of the Classical types use)? Simple word document/pencil and paper kind of thing? Cheap-o teachers book? I'm not sure if the general hs type methods that are talked about will work or are well suited for Waldorf. I know ALGF has a planner EBook, but it's $20 and I'm wondering if that's even worth it.
I'd be interested in any thoughts/experiences with this also!!

Also, my introduction:

I have been following this thread for a bit but we are just now starting out on our hs journey. We are also doing Enki this year although DS1 is only 4 so we are taking it very slow and relaxed. I feel like I am mostly getting myself in a groove right now.

I hope it is ok to join this thread even though we are doing Enki - there are SO many similarities with Waldorf that I still feel like I belong.

~~Mama to DS1 6/05 and DS2 12/07~~
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#351 of 397 Old 01-01-2010, 03:05 AM
 
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A few questions about Waldorf curricula, if anyone can answer:
Enki--Are these materials downloaded only or can you purchase bound copies? What is the difference between Enki and more traditional Waldorf?
I can answer the Enki part - FYI I have the Kindy package.

It is all bound material and also comes with DVDs with the material on it so you can do a computer search for specific topics. There are also DVDs/CDs with music, movement examples, and some other how-to stuff. The stories, movements, and crafts are in 3 ring binders so you could move them around to a smaller binder with just the stuff you are using for that month or whatever. The teaching guides are spiral bound. You do get membership in the Enki Yahoo groups and there are sometimes stories and crafts distributed from there which could be downloaded.

As far as the differences with Waldorf you should probably check out the Enki Experience yahoo group. There is a huge file section there and there are several files IIRC on differences/similarities with Waldorf. I am sure it is much more eloquent and complete than anything I could say. That being said, personally, I feel there are few differences - they seem very similar to me. I definitely identify with Waldorf homeschoolers more than any other group.

~~Mama to DS1 6/05 and DS2 12/07~~
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#352 of 397 Old 01-01-2010, 04:56 AM
 
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Hi Mamas, I am just subbing and wanted to say hello.
I was a Waldorf student myself and am wanting to homeshcool.
Just trying to gather as much information as I can!
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#353 of 397 Old 01-01-2010, 08:07 PM
 
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Hi all- subbing too. I am in the process of withdrawing my newly 6 yo from kindergarten and am pretty much decided to order the Enki materials. Nice to meet everyone!
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#354 of 397 Old 01-01-2010, 08:39 PM
 
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I'm really liking Enki myself and then after 2nd grade switching to Live Ed. I was looking at Enki pricing this morning, and it's actually better than I thought. In the packages there is the option of NOT getting the child development books, which cuts down a great deal on the cost. The kindy package is then only $325, and 1st grade, $500, which really isn't horrible, not for as much info as is included. So, yay! Live Ed looks really neat, too. I've never been all that excited about Christopherus for some reason.

Allison:  a little bit Waldorf, a little bit Medievalish, and always"MOMMMMYYYY!" to sweet Cecily since 12.22.05
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#355 of 397 Old 01-01-2010, 11:46 PM
 
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I know there is a review of Live Ed! over at www.waldorfreviews.com and I think Melisa Nielsen (A Little Garden Flower) addressed the question regarding whether or not her curriculum is complete over at her blog...
What grade are we talking about?

Warmly,
Carrie
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#356 of 397 Old 01-02-2010, 10:10 AM
 
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I'm looking forward to a new month (and year). I want to incorporate more creativity into our daily lives.

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#357 of 397 Old 01-02-2010, 01:43 PM
 
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I know there is a review of Live Ed! over at www.waldorfreviews.com and I think Melisa Nielsen (A Little Garden Flower) addressed the question regarding whether or not her curriculum is complete over at her blog...
What grade are we talking about?
I checked out the site. Thank you! It had lots of good info on there, which was nice.

I'm really looking for prep for grade 1, which isn't nearby or anything, I'm just obsessive. It's nice having so much time. I'm really liking Enki, starting with kindy age (since I like the stories they have included) or at least by 1st grade, and then add my own things on top. After grade 2, I think I may look into Live Ed!, and again, adding my own things on top. I've never really been thrilled by what I've seen of Christopherus or A Little Garden Flower. They are both "okay" but not exactly what I'm looking for. I was really thrilled with the examples from Live Ed!. For instance, I like that in 3rd grade, you not only study the Old Testament but really delve into that culture and learn to read and write in Hebrew. I just haven't seen that depth with Christopherus or ALGF.

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#358 of 397 Old 01-02-2010, 04:31 PM
 
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I checked out the site. Thank you! It had lots of good info on there, which was nice.

I'm really looking for prep for grade 1, which isn't nearby or anything, I'm just obsessive. It's nice having so much time. I'm really liking Enki, starting with kindy age (since I like the stories they have included) or at least by 1st grade, and then add my own things on top. After grade 2, I think I may look into Live Ed!, and again, adding my own things on top. I've never really been thrilled by what I've seen of Christopherus or A Little Garden Flower. They are both "okay" but not exactly what I'm looking for. I was really thrilled with the examples from Live Ed!. For instance, I like that in 3rd grade, you not only study the Old Testament but really delve into that culture and learn to read and write in Hebrew. I just haven't seen that depth with Christopherus or ALGF.
Just a thought, but if you are already adding in your own things, you may want to consider creating your own curriculum. There are TONS of blogs out there that show what others are doing with their waldorf homeschools. You can also join the waldorf home educator yahoo group and check out the files section. Mrs. M broke down the grades and there is LOTS of info in there for FREE! As a parent/teacher, you can take the material as deeply as you need to (which is always encouraged on some level, it just may not be spelled out for you...this leaves room for YOU to feel the material and be able to present it to your child in the way he/she needs it). I just think it is really easy to get caught up in "what is the perfect curriculum" when the reality is, there is no such thing. Anyways, I hope this makes sense!

Tanya, wife to my best friend momma to Blake 2/02, Jacob 5/04, Parker 12/05 and MaKenna : 6/09
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#359 of 397 Old 01-02-2010, 04:36 PM
 
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January proves to be another busy month for us with finishing up our King Of Ireland LA block (which got delayed due to illness and holiday celebrations), lots of crafting in the form of knitting up two more scarves (as requested by my two older boys), making my own and very first waldorf doll as well as the clothes for said doll, back to schedule with our waldorf co-op, winter crafting, and finishing up the month with a short winter nature block. There are also several birthdays mixed in that homemade goodies will be crafted for! Whew!

Tanya, wife to my best friend momma to Blake 2/02, Jacob 5/04, Parker 12/05 and MaKenna : 6/09
blumom2boyz is offline  
#360 of 397 Old 01-02-2010, 04:50 PM
 
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Originally Posted by blumom2boyz View Post
Just a thought, but if you are already adding in your own things, you may want to consider creating your own curriculum. There are TONS of blogs out there that show what others are doing with their waldorf homeschools. You can also join the waldorf home educator yahoo group and check out the files section. Mrs. M broke down the grades and there is LOTS of info in there for FREE! As a parent/teacher, you can take the material as deeply as you need to (which is always encouraged on some level, it just may not be spelled out for you...this leaves room for YOU to feel the material and be able to present it to your child in the way he/she needs it). I just think it is really easy to get caught up in "what is the perfect curriculum" when the reality is, there is no such thing. Anyways, I hope this makes sense!
Funny you should mention that--I imagine that I will end up creating my own curriculum in the end. I think in the beginning I'd like some sort of a crutch to use as a structure and then build off of that. I think if I had enough time, I could even do without that, but time is pretty short now and I'm not sure it will be much better then.

I hate to reveal what a complete technophobe I am, but how does one "join" a yahoo group? I don't even know where to begin. It sounds like a great resource, though!

Allison:  a little bit Waldorf, a little bit Medievalish, and always"MOMMMMYYYY!" to sweet Cecily since 12.22.05
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