From the dawn of time, families have huddled quietly around flickering fires and learned about their place in the world, their history, and their future. Elders wove wise tales with colourful imagery to instil these vital truths in the hearts and minds of their household.
Indeed, storytelling is a powerful art with the ability to teach. Children and adults alike learn from stories, taking away clear lessons, facts, and values.
It is for this reason that Waldorf teaching methods make use of storytelling in the classroom. What better way to teach valuable lessons and sound down important truths into young minds?
The power of stories is used to bring each subject area to life.
Each year, an age-appropriate theme is chosen which winds throughout the year and weaves into various areas of the children’s school day. These stories illustrate life lessons across a 3-day cycle of listening, recalling, and recording. The stories become familiar to the children as they are allowed to explore the tale and gain a deeper understanding of the lesson behind it.
Stories are linked to hands-on activities which further deepen a child’s understanding of concepts and ideas. If appropriate, a maths lesson may include some time in the garden calculating how many seeds can be planted in a field, and what the yield might be. Artistic expression of the lessons of the story allows children to express their understanding of the concepts being taught and allows for a unique and creative interpretation.
Further, when connected with physical or rhythmic activities, children can use more of their senses to help them to learn. For example, jumping rope to a times table is a fun and effective way to embed facts and ideas into little minds.
Exploring ideas by using a story, and then further expanding the concept to really embed it into a child’s mind, makes for an enjoyable, and highly effective teaching method – especially for younger children.
This is just one of the many ways that the teaching methods at Roseway Waldorf differ from traditional schools. If you have any questions regarding this post, we’d love to answer them for you.