Wednesday, February 26, 2014

First the hands, then the heart, then the brain

Today a friend from New York sent us this article by Ian Johnson in The New Yorker about the spread of Waldorf education in China. 

We're Waldorf-inspired (what education isn't!) – even more so when it comes to getting our hands dirty; drawing on myths from around the world; and the somewhat lighter-than-usual emphasis on symbol manipulation and screens.

This quote sums it up nicely:
The movement was founded by the Austrian mystic Rudolf Steiner, who “believed that children should be guided slowly out of what he termed ‘the etheric world,’ where they existed prior to birth, and that education should engage first the hands, then the heart, then the brain,” Johnson explains. “Waldorf-educated children play a lot when they’re young, and often don’t learn to read until second or third grade.” The Waldorf curriculum “reflects Steiner’s belief that an individual’s development mirrors a civilization’s, so the early years include lots of creation myths and fables.”

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