Tell me everything you know about Steiner schools/philosophy

(95 Posts)
Pruni Sun 15-Oct-06 09:45:24

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Pruni Sun 15-Oct-06 09:46:01

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Blandmum Sun 15-Oct-06 09:49:31

Some aspects seem rather odd, they can't use the colour black as this is seen as 'negative'. Some of the 'science' behind it is doubtfull to say the least. there are people who rate it very highly. Whatever floats your boat I think.

It isn't related to montasori, but has its own philosphy, but they are both 'alternative' for want of a better word

Chandra Sun 15-Oct-06 09:50:37

I think Montessori and Steiner may look similar in terms of them being alternative methods of teaching. However, I attended a Montessori school, my child is going to one and although I tried to learn more about the Steiner Method (local Steiner school is 10 miles nearer than our nearest montessori school)... I couldn't get it. But a big part of not getting it was also due to the extremely green views of some mothers I met who were very much into the Steiner thing. I suppose that many of the aspects of their own philosophy are far removed from what Steiner intended but it put me off anyway.

sunnydelight Sun 15-Oct-06 13:40:43

I looked around our local Steiner school a few years back when looking for something alternative for DS1 (then year 5). It would not have worked for us because I felt that you had to live the values as a family at home, otherwise it would be difficult for your child and I just found the whole thing a bit much. My personal feeling was that, although there was a lot about it that I liked, the particular school I looked at was sticking too rigidly to Rudolph Steiner's original philosophy and hadn't adapted anything to modern life. For example, not only did the school not use computers, the children were not allowed to talk about anything computer-related in the playground which seemed a bit draconian to me. I eventually found a school that was part of the Human Scale Education movement which I was a lot more comfortable with. Quite a few of the children, especially the boys, had moved from Steiner as there was a lot of bullying there which the school wouldn't acknowledge. From what I gather there is a lot of differences between individual Steiner schools so probably the only thing to do is look around your local one and see if you think it would suit you and your child(ren).

maverick Sun 15-Oct-06 14:50:08

Warning: Steiner schools have strange ideas about the teaching of reading.

www.openwaldorf.com/academics.html ''Waldorf schools strongly discourage children from reading before the age of 7. In fact, some experts in the Waldorf community consider this type of early development "a tragedy...Steiner says early reading will hinder the later spiritual development of children''

franca70 Sun 15-Oct-06 15:05:25

well, that's more or less in line with what most of other countries do, kids are taught to read at 6, although not because it'd be a tragedy...

We had a big Steiner thread a little while ago. It got ... heated (imagine! On MN!), and is here .

The consensus, if there was one, was that they vary a lot.

xena Sun 15-Oct-06 15:17:47

The problem with our local steiner is that there is no where similar for the children to go to secondary school and they find a 'normal school' hard to intergrate into

fartmeistergeneral Sun 15-Oct-06 15:19:20

ah yes nqc, that was when we all discussed knitting uniforms and whether or not they believed in gnomes!!!!! Enjoyed that thread!

maverick Sun 15-Oct-06 16:14:49

franca, I'm well aware that in most of Europe children are taught read at the age of 6/7. This is possible because the alphabet codes of most European countries are transparent and in addition many of those countries use synthetic phonics. As a result, children learn to read and spell with great accuracy 12 weeks after starting formal school. Before they start school the tradition is that children are given NO alphabetic knowledge or reading books. This means that the children are 'clean slates' when they start school and don't have alphabet letter names and memorising strategies in place to muddle them when they do start learning to read.

franca70 Sun 15-Oct-06 18:24:26

I know Maverick, it's just that I'm really worried I won't be able to help ds learning to read and write in english. It doesn't help that at 4, regardless of his passion for books etc, he isn't interested in reading at all. therefore I also worry that starting at 4 and a half is too early for him. not tragic, though.

Pruni Sun 15-Oct-06 18:26:54

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Chandra Sun 15-Oct-06 19:47:29

I don't know Pruni (I have not read the other thread) but these other mothers I mentioned in my last post.... well, one picks upher children from school in a horse drawn cart and the other told me off for using a pushchair as "no other being in the animal kingdom carries it's offsping in an artifact"

Pruni Sun 15-Oct-06 19:53:51

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Blandmum Sun 15-Oct-06 19:56:58

Pruni, and how would you cook it artifact free?

You'll get burned fingers

Isn't fire an artifact?

Blandmum Sun 15-Oct-06 20:05:01

They could hunt round for natural fires that occur due to lightning strikes, i suppose......

Pruni Sun 15-Oct-06 20:06:30

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fartmeistergeneral Sun 15-Oct-06 20:06:32

this thread is going much the same way as the last one.

Why can't any of us talk about Steiner without slagging it off???

the gnomes are still my favourite bit of Steiner folklore.

Blandmum Sun 15-Oct-06 20:16:43

I don't think that we are mocking steiner schools per se, so much as the woman who told Chandra off for carrying her children in an artifact!

I'm still laughing at that , if I am honest.

Pruni Sun 15-Oct-06 20:30:57

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fridascruffs Sun 15-Oct-06 20:37:47

If my kid had a prehensile tail I'd ditch the buggy. As it is...

fridascruffs Sun 15-Oct-06 20:41:17

I bought 'You are your child's first teacher' by Rahima Baldwin (Amazon, second hand, a few quid) to find out more about Steiner, as I was also interested in it. I've given up on sending my children to a Steiner (too expensive and they do have some odd ideas) (Steiner not my children, although they may well, too) but I liked this book, as a lot of it you can use yourself. Their main thing seems to be an emphasis on developing the imagination, rather than on learning memory and academic tasks, up to age 7 (hence the reading thing).

franca70 Sun 15-Oct-06 21:02:41

I've never really considered sending my kids to steiner school, but I do think that the emphasis should be on imagination rather than academic skills at least until they are six. thanks frida, I'll look for the book.

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