Stories of Household Items
updated August 31, 2021
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 methods. Because this is an ongoing site documenting my curriculum planning 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 third grade year. Enjoy!
I'm tutoring via Zoom because of COVID right now, doing some
Waldorf main lesson blocks online with families, and one little girl asked
for the story of how household items came to be and who invented materials or was the first to use them... things like
pottery and wood and stone and metal.
What a cool idea for an MLB! I'm really excited about it.
And it goes so well
with other Third Grade practical wonderings... the story of measurement, the story of money, the story of clocks & calendars,
the story of clothing, the story of shelter building, and the story of food & farming.
In fact, if you don't have enough time this school year to give all of those their own main lesson block, you could just put many
topics under the umbrella theme of "Stories of Household Items" and explore a little bit of a lot of things!!!
Here are my planning notes as I put this block together.
I strongly recommend a book that I've also suggested for the
Fibers & Clothing block. It is the now out-of-print but absolutely wonderfulIt's Fun to Know Why: Experiments
with Things around Us by Julius Schwartz (1952).
This book about the science of everyday materials -- wool, paper, glass, bread, iron, salt, rubber, and more -- has great information plus lots of hands on experiments.
This is what I would suggest for the rhythm:
Week One (Early Humans) - stone tools, fire, cave paintings
Week Two (Time / Money) - calendars, clocks, money, salt
Week Three (Foods / Farming) - bread, milk & ice cream
we would have done more foods but we took a few days off for sickness
Week Four (Clothing) - cotton, wool, rubber, plastic
Week Five (Misc.) - soap, books, paper, iron, coal
Week Six (Housebuilding) - nails, cement, glass, lumber
I am planning 22 lessons in all, but of course you could do more or fewer. She's really into this!
Planning & Teaching Notes:
STONE TOOLS - Tue, Jan 19
briefly review the idea of the Tree of Life,
find scientific names of bacteria on a yogurt container, explain that scientific names help us see
the relationships between living things (Canis lupus, Canis lupus familiaris)
how long ago do you think early humans lived?
compare Ape Skull to Homo habilis Skull in Early Humans by Michelle Breyer (pp. 111, 122)
look at illustrations of cave paintings; make a piece of cave painting art for the MLB with yellow, orange, red, brown, and black
on crumbled brown butcher paper (charcoal and chalk pastels are best for this)
read When Cave Men Painted by Norman Bate (worth tracking down, this historical fiction picture book
imagines the story behind a specific illustration on the cave walls at Lascaux)
get out your button box and look through all of the many kinds of buttons
look at vintage Bakelite poker chips
do Sculpted Science: Turn Milk Into Plastic
experiment from Scientific American
I do recommend laying a cloth napkin or pillowcase over a large basin and holding it in place while you pour the curdled liquid through. You get
all of the curds that way!
WOOL - Mon, Feb 15 and Tue, Feb 16
feel wool roving from a variety of sheep breeds (Corriedale, English Leicester, Romney)
another really fun project for Housebuilding is the "Brick-Making Challenge" on page 172 of Early Humans
by Michelle Breyer (Ancient Mesopotamia)
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