For a long time I’ve felt that the world was missing a really good Waldorf Language Arts resource.
I was so glad to discover, then, this free Waldorf Language Arts compendium compiled by Roberto Trostli. Trostli has taken Steiner’s work and sifted through it and compiled anything he had to say about language arts. Though the copyright date is 2004, I’m guessing that it is somewhat newly-available online, which is why I’m coming across it now.
This book is part of the Foundations of Waldorf Education series that AWSNA has put together to collect Steiner’s work on education in a set of more centralized resources. They’ve done the work of sifting through various lectures and writings to find all of the relevant information.
Though the book is comprised of excerpts from Steiner lectures (so they have that characteristic warm, conversational quality) Trostli himself does a great job of putting the excerpts together so they give a picture of the child’s connection to language throughout the developmental stages, and this is how the book begins. I found this section fascinating and it completely rang true with my understanding of child development. I’m looking forward to referring to it to shed some light on my Waldorf language arts plan for sixth grade.
After going through the developmental stages in the beginning, Steiner’s thoughts on various language topics is presented next.
Here’s a rundown of the rest of the contents:
- Writing, Composition, Handwriting and Left-Handedness
- Speech and Recitation
- Grammar and Spelling
Though this resource is not a practical how-to guide, it is very accessible and gives a fantastic background on which to build your own program.
I’m still hopeful that someone will write the ultimate Waldorf language arts practical guide, but for now we teachers are called upon to use our creativity and enthusiasm to craft the Waldorf language arts curriculum that will speak best to our students.