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Wisdom of Waldorf – The Value of Play

In the last few decades there’s been a greater emphasis on academics starting in preschool. This has resulted in more and more testing and teaching geared toward those tests. The intentions of this approach were good ones. However, in Western Australia teachers recognized that this way of teaching was leading to increased anxiety and behavior problems in their students. The teacher’s union has made a bold move to eliminate testing before the age of 8 and to create a play-based curriculum. They’re basing this change on research that demonstrates that play-based learning was better for children in terms of wellbeing, academic outcomes, problem-solving and social skills.

Rather than following the latest trends in education, Waldorf schools have stayed true to the pedagogical principles that are its foundation. One of those is the value of play. Another is to introduce homework and testing gradually and with intention and purpose. Sandra Easter, PhD

Read this week’s Wisdom of Waldorf article here!

– Sandra Easter, PhD

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