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Articles

Articles in the Online Waldorf Library come from many sources. Quite a number are from the archives of journals and publications published over the past 50+ years. When possible we have noted the specific source although this is not always possible.

Included in the "article" search database are all articles in currently in print journals: Gateways, the Research Bulletin and the Waldorf Journal Project.

The Online Waldorf Library includes:
Education as an Art
, the first widely circulated journal about Waldorf education in the United States. It began in 1940 as the Bulletin of the Rudolf Steiner School Association. The purpose of the journal was to inform Americans about Rudolf Steiner's pedagogy. In 1969 the journal became known as Education as an Art: A Journal for the Waldorf Schools of North America.

To search for articles specifically from Education as an Art, please enter the journal name into the search box "with the exact phrase".

Lectures from the 2002 AWSNA National Teacher's Conference, to search for the 8 lectures presented, please enter AWSNA lecture in the search box and click "exact phrase"

What Forms an Animal?

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Published in In Context (Fall, 2001, pp. 12-14)

What forms an animal? A likely answer these days is "genes." Or perhaps: "genes and environment." Such high-level abstractions reveal how little we actually know and tend to discourage further inquiry. When I hear "genes and environment" I yearn for something more concrete, something I can mentally take hold of. And the only way I know to develop such saturated concepts is to get back to the things themselves—to look carefully at what nature presents and inch my way toward a more full-toned understanding.

To read further download the article above.

Keywords:observation, science, teaching,

What is a Waldorf Doll?

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by Philipp Reubke

This article was published in the IASWECE Newsletter, 12/2016

If someone is looking for a Waldorf doll, they can buy one in many larger Waldorf schools, in some toy stores, and of course on the internet. There are even manufacturers that have applied for “Waldorf doll” as a brand name. But are these commercially available dolls the real, original Waldorf doll? 

The educational lectures of Rudolf Steiner often speak about the special qualities and needs of the young child, as well as the inner attitude and soul qualities that the adult needs to acquire to support the development of the child. However, if one is looking for a detailed description of how a Waldorf kindergarten looks and the concrete activities that should take place there, these are not to be found in the works of Rudolf Steiner. No program and no recipes!

There are however a few exceptions, a few details that Steiner describes quite concretely. And the doll is one of these. One can simply look up what the original Waldorf doll was to look like.

Read more: What is a Waldorf Doll?   

What is Gravity?

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Published in New View, Spring 1997 (UK)

Gravity is most interesting, for it cannot be perceived directly but its effects are very obvious. We incarnate into the realm of gravity and grow up with it, so that by the time we begin to think for ourselves it is so natural that it took the genius of Sir Isaac Newton to recognize it, name it, and describe it in a scientific way in the 17th century. But that is all he did, for he did not know how it ‘works*. This worried him for he was deeply suspicious of force 'acting at a distance’ without any obvious intermediate ‘links’ or other means through which it acts. The concept of touch had become so important for science that it seemed all forces and influences should act through direct contact, such as when one ball hits another. This we can badly visualise, and think about materialistically. The loss,'even the spuming of spiritual causes arose perhaps particularly through Newton, although he was deeply religious. Kepler before him, who discovered the laws of planetary motion, still thought that angels pushed the planets round their orbits. Such an approach was anathema to Newton, who sought clearly visualisable influences of a material kind. It was he who proposed that even light should be made up of tiny particles flying through space. To be the discoverer of a force that acted without any clear material intermediary worried him to the end of his life.

Read more: What is Gravity?

What Is It that Makes Waldorf Education Come Alive?

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Waldorf education is not a collection of recipes, rather it is a constant creative process. First, Waldorf teachers must be well-grounded and balanced and possess a quest for self-renewal. Second, the preparation of the inner-self accomplished outside of the classroom allows the teacher to trust in imaginative creativity in the moment.

Every school and every teacher researches the foundation upon which Waldorf education is based. Fundamentally, Steiner was interested in the evolution of the human being. He brought to western civilization a pathway to train human thinking. He recognized the human being as a spiritual being as well as a physical being, and he saw that the power of the spirit permeated the world. His published works on spiritual science provide exercises and active tasks that an individual can practice, out of freedom, to gain higher perception. This higher consciousness and its resultant loss of egoism allow them to serve others. Behind and within every subject in a Waldorf school is the image of the evolving human being. This makes every subject relevant to the unique character of each child as he/she passes through his/her developmental stages.

In 1924 Steiner founded the Anthroposophical Society in Dornach, Switzerland. It is a karmic event when one takes on the study of spiritual science (or anthroposophy, as Steiner also called it) and when one makes the decision to become a member of the Anthroposophical Society. The word anthroposophy can be loosely translated from its Greek roots to mean the wisdom within the human being.

To continue download the full article, link above.