Predominantly, we understand that as teachers and adults we must start with the things children like most and do best, and out of these activities we develop skills and aptitudes. Since Waldorf Education is all about age appropriate education we introduce each subject at the right time in the child’s life, and in the right way so that it interests and stimulates the student of that age-level. And then learning happens most naturally.
Grade Structure: Since it is an educational impulse that bases its education on age appropriateness, children can enter a Waldorf first grade at age six; exceptions are rare, made only on the basis of demonstrated emotional as well as intellectual maturity. A Waldorf grade school progresses through the eighth grade and IX and X grade the focus shifts towards the CBSE.
Rhythm of the day in a Waldorf School:
A unique feature of the Waldorf approach is the arrangement of the school day. Academic work in the grades is concentrated during the morning hours when the children are most alert and receptive; ideally, subjects involving handwork and physical activity comprise the afternoon periods when energy is higher and concentration spans deplete.
The class assembles for a hand shake with the teacher, a morning verse is said, followed by a singing. This activity provide a calming influence and a transition from the hustle bustle of the outdoors and allows a smooth integration into the “main lesson” which occupies the first two hours of the day. Furthermore, “main lesson” is presented by the “block method” – a particular subject will be pursued for a period of 3 to 4 weeks.
The remainder of the day, typically, is divided into shorter periods of perhaps 45 minutes each, some of which will be conducted by the child’s class teacher, some by other class teachers, some by subject specialists. The mid-morning periods may be devoted to additional academic subjects, especially those requiring continual review, the second languages, arithmetic and English. Games, gymnastics, handwork, craft, singing, music, painting, drama provide the focus of the afternoon periods.