Discovering Waldorf – ‘Planning for Next Year’

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Discovering Waldorf is a weekly series of articles written by ‘everyday’ Waldorf families. The contributors to this series share their ‘real-life’ insights and inspirations on all kinds of Waldorf topics. This series is not meant to be Waldorf philosophy in its purest form, but rather a snapshot of how we can all incorporate Waldorf ideas into our lives to help nurture and encourage the magic that is in our children. If you have a topic you wish to learn more about (or want to share) on Discovering Waldorf, send me an email at vined(at)ymail(dot)com.

Planning for Next Year: Tips on Getting Started by Donna Ashton
The Waldorf Connection
I was working with a client last week on homeschool planning. She was feeling overwhelmed and her
big question was “Where do I start?!”
This is quite common, as it can seem so overwhelming. If you have checked out some online resources, and blogs of waldorf homeschoolers, you can feel very intimidated with what is expected. Or if you are ready to jump into the grades, that too can seem demanding as far as the learning curve for you, the teacher.
“Where do I start?” I suggest starting from where you are right now.
1) Determine what you need.
It’s hard not to get distracted by all the bright, shiny objects available to you. But, often that can lead to overwhelm, feelings of inadequacy, and a lot of wasted time and energy. Look at your current situation and see what is realistic to you. Are you a busy mom that works part-time or has many children?
A more structured curriculum might be a good choice for you. Or you could use several resources and design your own lesson plans following Steiner’s grade recommendations.
2) Review and get familiar with the material.
This is of the utmost importance as you will be bringing this information and stories to your child in a living way. It should resonate with you in some way. Practice drawing with block crayons. Paint with water colors on wet paper. Read the fairy tales and fables. Draw forms in a notebook. This will be your basis for the year. It will increase your confidence and help you in so many ways!
3) Make a list of supplies
Nothing is more frustrating than checking your planner on Sunday night and realizing you forgot to get the materials for next’s weeks project! Once your blocks are planned out start listing what you will need for the year. Check you old supply and see what needs to be replaced. Items may include: main lesson books, crayons, Lyra pencils, paint & painting paper, books, math jewels, and specific grade items. Make a master list and order all together to save on shipping. Or order as you need for a budget friendly option. If you don’t need to knit until January, you can wait to order the yarn and needles.
Best advice I can give? Take it slow and easy and follow your instincts and intuition. You can do it!
Donna Ashton is the creator & founder of The Waldorf Connection. She spends her days with her husband and twin girls in Coastal Carolina homeschooling, & creating programs to support homeschoolers. When she can squeeze out time she loves organic gardening, meditating, baking, bike rides and walks on the beach. You can follow her quirky homeschool blog at School for all Seasons.
Giveaway: Global Waldorf Expo
June 11-12 Come to the event of year! Featuring 15+ speakers
helping you with Waldorf homeschooling and family rhythms.
I will give one lucky winner a Silver Ticket to the Expo!
Register at www.thewaldorfconnection for all the info and
to listen to the free preview call on May 26.

* * *

Thank you so much for this valuable help, Donna. Sometimes we get so overwhelmed with the daunting task of trying to plan EVERYTHING that we quite forget to start at the beginning. I’ve been trying to teach Kitty that when we start at the beginning and calmly work through the steps logically, everything falls magically into place.

I envy the lucky reader who will win the Silver Ticket to the Expo! Please have a look at the Expo info here and scroll down to where you can see all of the totally amazing presenters… it’s a Waldorf FEAST!!! To enter, simply leave a comment at the end of this post…
You may enter a multitude of times by blogging, tweeting or Facebooking about the Expo… leave an extra comment for each time you have shared this FAB info.

Here are the other inspiring posts in the Discovering Waldorf series.

Enter our Sparkle Stories Giveaway here.

Blessings and magic to you!


This Giveaway is now closed!… the winner is Luxii… congrats, Darling!


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13 Responses

  1. Heh. *My* Mom, when she was planning our new school year, got out all the books we’d use and divide it up and write down on index cards what we’d have to do for each day FOR THAT ENTIRE YEAR. 0.o (Yes, she’s more than a bit obsessive compulsive and yes, she still writes lists of things she means to accomplish every day.)

    So usually we’d get one lesson in math, six pages of English homework, a literature story, a Bible lesson, a spelling quiz–25 words per day (we did in fact work our way through several dictionaries), and usually a chapter/half chapter of our science textbook each week. Ah, middle school and high school.

    She wanted to use the entirety of the books EVERY year, reasoning that if she had paid for them we might as well get the full use of them. Most of the time we managed to do this.

    The good thing about the system was that it allowed us to work ahead as much as we wanted, so we could take entire days off if we’d already done the work. Usually our school days weren’t that long, either, if we buckled down to it.

  2. Planning is so keen in my mind at present since we are anticipating the arrival of our third child. I love coming here for inspiration and information that make my homeschooling journey all that much more enjoyable

  3. What an amazing giveaway that will enrich a family for years to come. As a mother of two young sons there are so many sessions we could benifit from, especially “It’s All Relative” & “Mothers and Sons.” Thanks for bringing the expo to our attention.

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