Play-Based Kindergarten
updated February 29, 2016

Waldorf Method

The Education of the Child in the Light of Anthroposophy by Rudolf Steiner
The spiritual reasoning behind the Waldorf education method

What is Waldorf Early Childhood Education?
International Association for Steiner/Waldorf Early Childhood Education

What Are the Needs of Five Year Olds?
article by Joan Almon

Developing Child: The First Seven Years
edited by Susan Howard, published by the Waldorf Early Childhood Association

An Overview of the Waldorf Kindergarten
edited by Joan Almon, published by the Waldorf Early Childhood Association

Waldorf is so beautiful!!! So many people are initially drawn to it simply for this reason:

The Autumn Corner
blog post - A Small Tribe

Signs of First Grade Readiness: Physical Development & Skill Development
blog post - Switzerite

What does the Waldorf curriculum for the grades look like? Pine Hill Waldorf School has a nice overview of the highlights of each year:

Waldorf Today - sign up for the free weekly newsletter to see what's happening in Waldorf education around the world.

Browse through my collection of Pinterest Boards with samples of chalkboard drawings and main lesson book pages for many blocks. I also have an Early Childhood & Waldorf Toys page.

Homeschool Documentation

Look up your state's laws regarding homeschooling. For documentation I suggest:

starting a FREE online blog for journaling and saving useful curriculum ideas, helpful links, book titles, craft patterns, Waldorf toy wishlists, etc. (I use, and would recommend, Blogger)

using a digital camera or your cell phone to take a picture or two each day

saving artifacts from homeschool activities

creating a portfolio. At the end of each month choose one or two photos/artifacts which you have saved. Say "What do you remember about this?" and write down her words verbatim on an index card. Attach the card to the photo or artifact and keep in chronological order.

keeping a teacher plan book. I think it is simplest to think of school with eight "subjects" which I have listed to the left. A school week of Tuesday - Saturday allows your spouse to be along for field trips too or be part of lessons and activities. Rest on Sunday, clean the house on Monday!

AT-A-GLANCE Undated Teacher's Planner
This is the one I used for Preschool and Kindergarten.

I know you had questions about Circle Time. I didn't make an official planbook row for Circle Time -- I broke it out into Music & Movement (a song or fingerplay, for example), Nature (add something to the nature table, learn a nature poem), Art (then do a wet on wet watercolor painting based on the poem), etc. because thinking in activity categories was what worked best for me.

If we were doing an activity from one of my Waldorf early childhood books, in the square I would write the name of the book and the page number, so I knew what to refer to as we went through our day.

I like having a blank row at the bottom for Notes -- observations of the children (Natalie needs more fine motor activities), field trip ideas (we should go to the zoo), things I need to buy for school (get modeling beeswax), what supplies are needed for that day's activities (Homemade Sidewalk Chalk), whatever. By the way, the two games on the blog post with the sidewalk chalk recipe -- "Poor Kitty" and "Jellyroll" -- are both fun ones!

Two or three activities a day in your planbook is plenty at this age, plus a picture book or story at bedtime.

When I first got started with Waldorf I kept my notes about how we transitioned in. I was still very much thinking unit studies at that time, and it was hard for me to relax and embrace the Waldorf way. Here are all of my notes from when I was beginning, in case you are interested.

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