(Miss K's bedroom)
As you have probably gathered from my previous posts, we are not a homeschooling family. That doesn't mean that learning doesn't happen in our home. After all, children are learning all the time. I like to think that we are Waldorf afterschooler's. Even though both of my children are in traditional school settings (Little L is currently in pre-school two and a half days a week) the magic of Waldorf Education can still supplement their everyday schooling. When they are not in school there is time for being outdoors, celebrating the seasons, colouring and drawing with their beeswax crayons, reading and listening to stories, paper crafting... all things that they might not get 'enough' of in their everyday school environment. I have experienced a typical day in a primary school as an adult, after my degree I did a Postgraduate Certificate in Eduacation-Primary, specialising in Early Years. I know there simply isn't enough time in the school day to do everything.
While we were hanging out in the girl's bedrooms this morning, going about our usual 'getting ready for school' rhythm (teeth brushing, wriggling on school uniform, braiding hair, if you don't homeschool you know the score) I took a few minutes for some true child-led learning. Little L is due to start her Reception Year (Kindergarten) in September 2012, so even though it is against true Waldorf tradition, she is learning her letter sounds to prepare her for reading. She saw condensation on her bedroom window and started to draw on it with her little finger and before she knew it she had written a 't' and then a 'o' and then a 'c', all the while, telling me the letter sounds she had written in the 'frost'. Little L and Miss K have always loved to draw in the 'frost' on the window, ever since reading about it in the My First Little House Books, Winter Days In The Big Woods. Laura and Mary make pretty patterns in the frost with Ma's thimble.
I knew I had a big sink full of dishes waiting for me downstairs to get washed, lunches still needed to be packed, coats and shoes thrown on in the scramble to get out of the door but I made a concious choice to be present in that moment while she was taking her first steps into letter formation. I didn't hurry her, I waited until she stepped away from the window so I knew she had finished. I wanted to be there for her in her learning, cheering her on from the sidelines.
Everything else can wait.