The Curriculum of the Steiner School - Class 1

Notes and Lesson Plans

An Ocean Alphabet
updated August 19, 2023

Recorded here is my own personal collection of articles, resources, favorite links, teaching ideas, and lesson plans. It encompasses many years, from the very beginning of my experience studying and learning about Waldorf to the present time. People from all around the world visit my site and recommend it to others. Welcome!

This site records my journey. I hope my honesty is encouraging and helps break down some barriers that may prevent people from trying Waldorf ideas. Because this is an ongoing site documenting my curriculum experiences and ideas, some materials are more Waldorf-y than others. Please feel free to take what you like and leave the rest.

This page has helpful links and LOADS of free resources to help you plan your first grade year. Enjoy!

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Capital Letters
for Class 1

Waldorf Main Lesson Block Planning: Capital Letters

Join a community of fellow homeschoolers planning this exact same main lesson block for plenty of help and support. This course is aimed at homeschoolers who are already familiar with the Waldorf method, but would appreciate extra feedback and encouragement in planning this block.

Make friends and ask specfic questions of an experienced Waldorf homeschool teacher and consultant as you work through this inspiring, do-able, step by step course. Lifetime access. Just $30.00!

How Waldorf Teaches Capital Letters
important new blog post

includes rationale plus Week One & Week Two lesson notes (2019)

Capital Letters: Week Three

Capital Letters: Week Four & Week Five

SWI Investigation of < sloth >

A Peek into the Classroom... Part I

A Peek into the Classroom... Part II

Shopping List for Capital Letters Block

Books Written in ALL CAPS

Games & Activities in ALL CAPS!


There is a LOT of information about the Capital Letters block in general on my Capital Letters page. This page is devoted to one specific project, the development of An Ocean Alphabet.

I'm working right now with a homeschool family and a 7 year old who is somewhat curious -- but overall very reluctant -- about school. The family has asked me to support them by teaching her this main lesson block over Zoom. I have had ideas for an Ocean Alphabet fluttering around in my mind for a while now, but I'd like to collect them all in one place. I feel like this would be a good "hook" for her.

Some of these ideas are for a more romantic idea of the sea (mermaids, pirates) and some are for a more non-fiction oriented child (glass squid, squat lobster, viperfish).

This page will record my brainstorming, as well as my actual teaching notes as we go along. If you have any contributions to share, please feel completely free to email me!


Notes from Teaching This Block in March 2023

Day One - P is for Pom-pom Crab

    read pom-pom crab information in Cute as an Axolotl by Jess Keating, draw pom-pom crab and label it P, use yarn and fork to make Puffy Pom Poms (How to Make Fork Pom Poms video)

    Puffy, Pom Poms

    the end of the crab's claw is the straight line of the P and the puffy anemone is the curve

Day Two - Y is for Yeti Crab

    read yeti crab information on page 14 of Weird Sea Creatures by Erich Hoyt, look at picture and read facts from, make yeti crab illustration by drawing the body and then embellishing with finger knitted fuzzy claws (I suggest finger knitting a very long piece of eyelash yarn and then finger knitting the finger knitted piece to create even more volume)

    if you had a really big flat button, you could also have that be the crab's body and create a 3-D collage with the button and fuzzy claws (we are doing ours in a shadow box painted charcoal)

    Yellow, Yarn, Yeti

    the body of the crab is the straight line of the Y and the two claws are the diagonal lines

Day Three - C is for White Phantom Crab

    read white phantom crab information on page 230 and look at picture on page 40 of Spineless: Portraits of Marine Invertebrates, the Backbone of Life by Susan Middleton, draw white phantom crab with glue on dark paper and label it C for Curvy Crab

    squeezing liquid glue with your hands is nice because it allows you to feel those curvy swoops of the carapace and the claws; the little girl I was working with remotely used a glue gun with gold glue and it was very striking! the Elmer's glue will dry clear giving a "phantom" effect

    Carapace, Claw, Curvy, Crab

    the curvy crab claw is the C

Day Four - G is for Deep-sea Glass Squid

    read deep-sea glass squid information on page 15 of Scary Creatures of the Deep by Jim Pipe, draw capital G on tracing paper and cut it out to look like a bubble-shaped glass squid with a tentacle curving down, attach to dark paper, add googly eyes for a Googly-eyed Glass Squid

    glue shows through tracing paper and can ruin the effect, so I attached my squid to the dark paper with just two dots of glue placed behind the googly eyes

    Googly-eyed, Glass

    the body of the squid is the large curved line of the G and the tentacle is the small line

Day Five - B is for Hummingbird Bobtail Squid

    read hummingbird bobtail squid information in Cute as an Axolotl by Jess Keating, draw beautifully colored hummingbird bobtail squid, draw two squid eyeballs bulging above the line of the sand (making a sideways B) in one corner of the illustration to demonstrate how it hides

    Beautiful, Bulging, Bobtail

    the sandy ocean floor is the straight line of the B and the two bulging eyeballs are the curves

Day Six - D is for Dumbo Octopus

Day Seven - O is for Benthic Octopus

    read benthic octopus information on page 54 of Weird Sea Creatures by Erich Hoyt, find Os in the illustration, draw benthic octopus and label it O

    I think it would be fun to do a close-up drawing of a tentacle and embellish it with hole reinforcement stickers (they come in white or clear)

Day Eight - N is for Net

    look at N is for Net illustration from LMNOP laminated wall cards, make aluminum foil fish (scissors, aluminum foil, sharpies, onion or potato mesh bag), cut the mesh bag to form an N (or drape it to form an N) and lay it over the top of the fish

    the net forms the three straight lines of the N

Day Nine - T is for Turtle

Day Ten - T is for Turtle, cont.

Day Eleven - K is for Kelp

Day Twelve - K is for Kelp, cont.

Day Thirteen - K is for Kelp, cont.

    draw large swirly kelp-y K on the page with the potato print otter faces, so that it looks like they are floating in a kelp bed, and color it brown or green

    write KELP

Day Fourteen - W is for Wave

Day Fifteen - W is for Wave, cont.

    do construction paper collage of large black wild waves from the story (using W illustration in LMNOP cards as a guide as well)

    for this, I would use liquid glue or a glue stick to adhere the construction paper waves to the background, instead of tape, so that your child feels the swooping and the points in his/her hand (like in Form Drawing)

    write WAVE


    P is for Pom-pom Crab

    Y is for Yeti Crab

    C is for White Phantom Crab

    G is for Deep-sea Glass Squid

    B is for Hummingbird Bobtail Squid

    D is for Dumbo Octopus

    O is for Benthic Octopus

    N is for Net

    T is for Turtle

    K is for Kelp

    W is for Wave

Interestingly, by the time we got to W, she asked me for some fairy tales. So, even if your child thinks he/she would be more interested in facts, there is something universally appealing about fairy tales!!! We switched over to fairy tales and abandoned this topic. Still, I hope my notes are helpful.

If you have questions or comments, or are looking for a phone or Zoom consultation as you plan lessons for your child, please don't hesitate to contact me!

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