(photos from my Kindergarten classroom where I used to teach at my local Waldorf school)
But what can you do?
~ You can create a healthy rhythm to each day your children live within your home.
~ You can keep the television and radio off while you are living, loving and creating together.
~ You can choose a select few open-ended toys, a special doll and playthings made from natural materials… keeping electronic, battery operated toys and video games to a minimum – if at all.
~ You can sing and make up stories together.
~ You can do your schoolwork outside on the deck and incorporate artistic methods for practicing and learning.
~ You can focus on all you CAN provide and remember how very lucky you and your children already are.
~ You can remember that the study of Anthroposophy was never meant to be only for the rich… that anyone who longs and strives to know more about the layers of the Self and the Universe around them is welcome to seek and find their own truth REGARDLESS of the educational model they choose for their children. It is not a club. It is for all to enter…Welcome.
~ You can cherish your role as caregiver, homemaker and Your Child’s Very First Teacher as a spiritual task and sacred work to be done and set a beautiful example for your children as you do so.
~ You can choose to live within this world on YOUR terms, protecting what you hold to be sacred and true for your family. It is OK to say NO to what seems the rest of the world is doing but feels wrong for you… in doing so, you set the stage for others to follow – and will soon see that there are many more parents like you than you originally thought and you will find your clan wherever you are.
~ You can take care of your own health, interests, desires and creative energies first and be whole and complete to be the amazing parent you long to be for your children.
~ You can accept the fact that we cannot create a perfect world or scenario for ourselves or our children as much as we try. This world is imperfect and so are we. BUT we can work with what we have to create a BEAUTIFUL and FULL existence while we are here. There is beauty in diversity, embrace the world for what it is.
~ You can celebrate the Festivals and Holidays with song, crafting, recipes and community… creating memories and traditions that your children will carry with them forever.
~ You can choose natural fibers when dressing your children and always remember the importance of warmth.
~ You can be an advocate for all children in your community, your school and home and speak up to help create the change you hope to see in our world.
~ You can slow down… pass on a few after school classes, keep your weekends open and pull out a bunch of board games or go on a hike instead.
~ You can teach your children to appreciate creativity… to use their hands even when not using them may be easier… to knit.. to sew… to cook from scratch.
~ You can keep a seasonal table in your home and encourage your children to add to it with the changing seasons and festivals.
~ You can approach learning, homework or study more holistically – practicing multiplication by using rhythm sticks or sharing fairy tales that incorporate spelling words.
~ You can encourage and inspire your children’s teachers and board of education with articles, suggestions, example and ideas.
~ You can volunteer to teach your children’s class how to knit.
~ You can host advent spirals, lantern walks and other celebrations for your community or school.
~ You can light a candle and say a sweet blessing at mealtimes.
~ You can have special afternoon for beeswax play, another for watercolor painting, another for baking and so on…
~ You can spend a good amount of your time outdoors with your children.
~ You can remember that the World is ultimately GOOD and seek to find the goodness in all you do and wherever you are. Look for the beauty. It is there.
~ You can be proud to be a Waldorf Afterschooler or Waldorf Homeschooler.
~ Oh! And a shameless little plug… you CAN use our Afterschooling Enrichment Program or other Little Acorn Learning guides to supplement your child’s education AND you can joint our Waldorf Afterschoolers Facebook Group for support!
Good luck on your journey – whatever it may be.
I’d love to add to this list – please feel free to do so in the comments section below…
Eileen is a former Waldorf Early Childhood teacher, work at home mother and the owner and publisher of Little Acorn Learning. The Little Acorn Learning guides have captured the hearts of caregivers and children all over the world. Based on seasonal themes and festivals, Little Acorn Learning inspires a love of nature and the home arts while supporting the caregiver’s soul. Be sure to join the mailing list to receive special offers, FREE lessons, verses, songs, recipes and much more each month right in your inbox. And please follow Little Acorn Learning on Facebook and Instagram to continue to be inspired in your work with children.