I am starting a Waldorf Parent-Toddler Group that will be meeting weekly.
I know that Christian hardly qualifies as a toddler, but I see it as a part of my own Waldorf education – and the building of a network of like-minded families for us. And a weekly playgroup of gentle singing and imaginative play will nurture Christian, even as an observer (at first), and the information is also helping to direct my many choices as a parent. There was interest in my attachment parenting group and I am using that interest as an impetus to rediscover Waldorf philosophies.
In my efforts to get informed, I have been meeting with early education Waldorf teacher Devana Came, who will be teaching a pre-school and hosting a parent-toddler group from her home in Corona starting in the fall of 2009. (If you are interested in that, you can contact her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org) She has been a wonderfully generous support. In fact, we’ve only met twice, but I feel as though I’ve been through some kind of intensive Waldorf training!
The playgroup will follow the format that she uses (as closely as we can manage) and I posted those notes here.
And while her classroom is still under construction (the walls will be painted in washes of watercolor and the floor will be bamboo – everything is green in this room), she let me take a few pictures. You’ll get the idea of what a sweet, imaginative place space this will be with all its wooden, open-ended toys.
If I had the means, I would create a room identical to this for Christian. In fact, I am going to start making and collecting as many of the things pictured as possible (as Devana has).
Unfortunately, my camera ran out of battery while I was shooting these pics, but I want to mention a toy that made an impression on me. It was a heavy wooden block in the shape of a house or a building, with just the barest dark smudges for windows and doors. There were no straight lines or right angles (in the anthroposophical way), and the wood itself had a lovely heft and fit perfectly in the hand. It was a lovely object, handmade and completely unique. It made me want to hunker down and surround it with a little play forest – it was incredibe how much I could feel my imagination being ignited. And that house had belonged to Devana’s mother as a child!
P.S. Here is a glimpse of the beautiful finished classroom.