Education is a wide field with several specializations. Common to all these different views and approaches is the aim to give children and young people a good, progressive education. But what is characteristic for the Waldorf pedagogy?
Waldorf education offers:
- A solid and well thought out curriculum that covers all stages from 0 to 19 years. All teachers from kindergarten to high school should be conscious of the school’s overall view in their teaching.
- Focus on individual needs where the pupil is at the center. High proficiency in combination with personal care will create a fertile ground for learning.
- Width and competence. Through a concept of knowledge that opens up for the integration of theory, art and crafts, an understanding of a holistic approach that contributes to a sustainable society is created.
- A well-conceived external environment characterized by beautiful architecture and carefully selected materials.The school environment should contribute to the wellbeing and quality awareness.
In Waldorf schools high ideals meet everyday skills grounded in a long and successful practice in an international school movement. It all started in Stuttgart, Germany, where Rudolf Steiner was asked to develop a pedagogy that would meet people’s needs for the future. Inspiration was taken from anthroposophy and other cultural and philosophical currents. The school was intended primarily for children of workers in the cigarette factory, the Waldorf-Astoria. The school started in September 1919. The pedagogy proved to be fruitful and it is called either Waldorf, after the name of the cigarette factory, or Steiner pedagogy. In Sweden, Kristofferskolan is one of the earliest schools, which started in 1949. Now there are about 40 schools and 70 kindergartens with Waldorf education in Sweden. Worldwide, there are about 1.000 schools.