The Steiner Curriculum
November 15, 2012
Dr Rudolf Steiner was born in Austria in 1861 and worked in the fields of science, philosophy, agriculture, social economics, the arts, medicine and education. He was approached by the owner of the Waldorf Astoria Cigarette factory in Stuttgart and asked to start a school for the children of the workers. After a detailed study of the development of the child, Steiner formulated curriculum indications and a methodology for its delivery.
Early Childhood Centre
The first seven years in a child’s life are vital for laying the foundation for the future growth of the whole child’s physical, intellectual, social and emotional development.
The Early Childhood programme encourages children to enter the world at a natural pace, in an unhurried way. All Early Childhood Staff work to create and maintain a sanctuary for childhood, where children’s play is central to the healthy physical and psychological development of each child.
In the Waldorf/Steiner Early Childhood curriculum teachers prepare children informally with numeracy and pre-literacy skills. Through the daily experience of self-initiated play, verse recitation, singing, music-making, dancing, watercolour painting, drawing, modelling, cooking, gardening and caring for animals, these skills are imparted in a rich and artistic way.
The domestic arts fill the day with purposeful activity, creating a dependable routine. This in turn creates a feeling of security in an environment which is warm, aesthetically pleasing and safe.
Stories and fairy tales are told and acted out. The children live vividly in these pictures and the teacher ensures that the stories are age appropriate and have integrity, both in their moral and intellectual content. They also help to foster a sense of wonder and delight, bringing the child into a positive and caring relationship with the natural world and each other.
Children experience nature and the changing seasons with all their senses during outside play-time in the beautiful kinder garden and on regular, invigorating walks in the neighbouring bush reserve and rural setting.
The Early Childhood Centre offers:
Parents and their children (up to four years old) gather weekly at Tarremah for Playgroup. The children enjoy baking bread, playing indoors in a nurturing and beautiful environment, then come together for morning tea, venture out for a nature walk and end the session with singing songs and listening to a told story.
The two hour session gives children the opportunity to meet one another socially. Parents can share experiences and gain an insight into this unique form of education.
Playgroup meets for three sessions a week during term time.
Silvereye – Little Kindergarten
Children who turn four during the course of the year are invited to enrol for one or two sessions a week. This is a step towards the mixed-age Kindergarten. Here younger children can feel comfortable away from their parents and begin to socialise through play. Painting, baking or simple craft is offered each week for those wishing to participate. A healthy snack is shared at the table for morning tea. Singing and circle games help to structure the day. Simple stories connect the child, in an age appropriate manner, to nature and social interactions. Silvereye Kindergarten operates for a minimum of two days per week.
Pipit and Fantail – Mixed Age Kindergarten
Children who turn five and six come together as one group to further develop and consolidate healthy social and emotional behaviour through self-initiated play. Foundations of literacy and numeracy are laid through the rich language of story- telling, verse recitation, song and movement. The children are given time to wholeheartedly engage in the daily work of the Kindergarten. This strengthens their ability to concentrate, raises self-esteem and develops healthy bodies. Five year olds attend for a minimum of 2 days a week, six year olds attend five days a week from 9am to 3pm.