Waldorf education

educational system based on the writings of the occultist Rudolf Steiner

Waldorf education is a world-wide system of education founded by Rudolf Steiner in 1919. There are now nearly 1,000 Waldorf schools as well as numerous independent Waldorf pre-school programs.

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  • Waldorf education places the development of the individual child in the focal point, convinced that the healthy individual is a prerequisite for a healthy society.
The International Conference on Education of UNESCO[1]
  • The advent of the Waldorf Schools was in my opinion the greatest contribution to world peace and understanding of the century.
Willy Brandt, former Chancellor West Germany, 1971 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate[2]
  • Those in the public school reform movement have some important things to learn from what Waldorf educators have been doing for many years. It is an enormously impressive effort toward quality education, and schools would be advised to familiarize themselves with the basic assumptions that under gird the Waldorf movement. Art as it helps to reveal the use of language, art as it can be revealed in numbers, and certainly in nature
Ernest L Boyer (1928-1995), Former President, Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching[2]
  • My own experience with Waldorf-educated children is overwhelmingly positive. Although a public school teacher myself for 30 years, I've been fortunate enough as a public speaker on school reform to have been invited to lecture at Waldorf schools all over the country. What I've seen on these trips has been a revelation to me of what might be possible.
John Taylor Gatto, former New York State Teacher of the Year[3]
  • "My past three decades (of teaching) have been marked by change. From time to time a unique stabilizing influence would appear in my classes: a Waldorf graduate. They were different from the others. Without exception they were, at the same time, caring people, creative students, individuals with indefinable values, and students who when they spoke made a difference."
    • Dr. Warren B. Eickelberg, Professor of Biology and Director of Premedical Curriculum, Adelphi University[4]
  • There is no task of greater importance than to give our children the very best preparation for the demands of an ominous future, a preparation that aims at the methodical cultivation of their spiritual and their moral gifts. As long as the exemplary work of the Waldorf School Movement continues to spread its influence as it has done over the past decades, we can all look forward with hope. I am sure that Rudolf Steiner's work for children must be considered a central contribution to the twentieth century and I feel it deserves the support of all freedom-loving thinking people
Bruno Walter (1876-1962), composer and conductor[2]
  • I first heard of Waldorf education about five years ago, after having carried out extensive study of the neurological aspects of cognition, movement, and maturation. I was delighted to discover such a neurologically sound curriculum. I heartily support efforts to spread the awareness of Waldorf education and hope that it will spawn not only an increase in Waldorf schools, but an infusion of at least some of the ideas into the mainstream where they are so sorely needed. In Colorado, I am working with several districts to incorporate various Waldorf strategies into the teaching of reading and mathematics. The ideas are very well received and very much needed.
Dee Joy Coulter, Ed.D., founding member of Addressing Children's Traumas[2]
  • I used to think Waldorf education the most undamaging education, but then the more I looked into it, I found it the most beneficial system we have. People ask, "What will happen to my child in the world if he doesn't learn to read and write very early?" . . . The issue is that the child's greatest strength for survival in a world of madness is to be whole, sane and in touch with the heart. The beauty of the Waldorf School is that it keeps children intact until they are ready to move out into the world as whole individuals. [5]
Joseph Chilton Pearce, Author: "The Magical Child", "The Crack in the Cosmic Egg"
  • I am deeply grateful for Waldorf education, which woke me up and helped me rediscover my imagination.
Michael Ende, Author: "The Neverending Story", former Waldorf student[2]
  • Waldorf education has been an important model of holistic education for almost a century. It is one of the very few forms of education that acknowledges the soul-life of children and nurtures that life. It is truly an education for the whole child and will continue to be an important model of education as we move into the 21st century.
Jack Miller, Professor, Coordinator of Holistic and Aesthetic Education in the Department of Curriculum, Teaching and Learning at the University of Toronto[2]
  • Steiner was a free-spirited school that encouraged creativity and individualism.
Jennifer Aniston, actress and former Waldorf pupil[2]
  • Waldorf schools generally turn out young people who get into the colleges of their choice, but more importantly are well prepared for life. I hope this form of education becomes the basis for public school curriculum throughout the United States. And I hope it happens soon.
Eric Utne, founder of, publisher, and editor-in-chief of Utne Reader[2]
  • Waldorf education enables young people to be in love with the world as the world should be loved.
Marjorie Spock, Author: "Teaching as a lively art", teacher, sister of Dr. Benjamin Spock and inspirer of Rachel Carson's "Silent Spring"[2]

See also further quotes here

References edit

  1. quoted in Jack Petrash, Understanding Waldorf Education, ISBN 0-87659-246-9, p. 11
  2. a b c d e f g h i [1]
  3. John Taylor Gatto, preface to Jack Petrash, Understanding Waldorf Education, ISBN 0-87659-246-9, p. 8
  4. Waldorf Early Childhood Association
  5. Joseph Chilton Pearce, A Humanist Talks About Waldorf Education , in Pamela Johnson Femmer, et. al., Waldorf Education, A Family Guide 82 (1992)

External links edit

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