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Anyone know about Steiner/Waldorf schools?

(12 Posts)
gchasbeeninmyhouse Sat 04-Feb-17 20:14:46

Just that really - I have a son who is perhaps non conformist... square peg... hates school gets in trouble for low level disruption but ultimately a likeable and bright child who doesn't 'mean' to be naughty but is totally uninspired by the rigid school system. Have been looking at alternatives but don't know much about any of them, would love to hear your opinions thanks!

meditrina Sun 05-Feb-17 20:05:29

Steiner schools have a strictly specified and undifferentiated curriculum.

Are you already familiar with the concepts of anthroposophy?

everythingis Sun 05-Feb-17 22:15:10

Threads on Steiner get deleted quite quickly. Haven't seen one for a few years but be informed there is a Steiner Waldorf 'survivor' community

ParadiseCity Sun 05-Feb-17 22:16:26

No personal experience but I wouldn't touch one with a bargepole.

DorkusDelonghi Sun 05-Feb-17 22:17:53

Hmmm. I didn't know that about survivors. How sad.

SavoyCabbage Sun 05-Feb-17 22:28:13

I went to look at a Steiner school when I couldn't get a school place for my dd. I really didn't like it, especially the fact that the dc have the same teacher for the whole time, who moves up the school with them. So if you don't get on you are doomed. I found it oppressive and the dc that we encountered were very.....insular I suppose. You would expect a bit on interaction when you are looking at a school. There was a sign on the playground wall saying that balls weren't allowed in the school.

Later I read that Steiner was a big old racist and my dc aren't white so that was the end of that!

Keeptrudging Sun 05-Feb-17 22:51:53

Please read up about it. Children like your son will be classified as needing to wear red/sit in a particular part of the classroom (if i remember correctly it's near a wall), you'll need to sign up with their (homeopathic/alternative) dr. TV/electronic games are very frowned on, as is normal medication. It looks all arty/hippy/free thinking, but in reality it's very regimented. Art is done in an instantly recognisable Steiner style, it all looks the same. Read everything you can find about it, I was soooo close to putting my son there until I read Steiner's own writings/philosophy, very cultish, never mind the writings of Steiner survivors.

whathehellhappened Sun 05-Feb-17 23:11:04

Don't do it.

Girlwhowearsglasses Sun 05-Feb-17 23:26:11

keeptrudging tells a familiar story.

One of my DC went to one for six months. Pros: if you're lucky you get a great teacher and your DC has a lovely class of friends and they are secure all the way up school without pressure. I met some really nice people.

Cons: it's not free and easy and arty. At all. It is incredibly prescribed - certain stories at certain times in the curriculum, the craft bit (that attracts so many) is very defined and ring fenced - knitting at a certain time because of fine motor skills, carving at another, like this, like that. Art is even more defined. Every class is a microcosm - so you're stuck with the teacher and the pupils all the way through.

It's not a reactive or evidence-based pedagogy by any means but in its day (80 years + ago) it was progressive in many ways. At the end of the day something that by definition does not like to use evidence-based research to improve teaching is backward in my book- and this was too much for me ultimately.

When I say I met lovely people it's true- but many were running 'away' rather than 'to'. Every Steiner school is run differently and some very much better than others. I can't emphasise this enough

Also I would say that most parents do use mainstream healthcare and their kids do watch TV; maybe not so central to their lives. I was always clear my children were immunised and i was never challenged.

meditrina Mon 06-Feb-17 06:48:03

I think people confuse "later start to reading, lots of arts/crafts" with a child-centric, responsive curriculum, whereas it is quite the opposite.

If you have a DC who you think would benefit from that level of strictness, it could be an ideal setting.

gchasbeeninmyhouse Mon 06-Feb-17 18:53:18

Thanks for your replies - since posting I have done some research and yes agree it is not what I thought it was.

hippyhippyshake Mon 06-Feb-17 19:20:30

According to a Steiner teacher the reason they teach reading later is so it coincides with the appearance of adult teeth. shock

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