Every year just before Easter Waldorf teachers from around the country gather together for the National Waldorf Teacher’s Conference. These conferences are always nourishing and enlightening and we teachers come away from them feeling a renewed sense of purpose and direction in our teaching and our lives. The theme of our conference this year was ‘Preparing for Change.’ Goethe’s fairytale ‘The Green Snake and the Beautiful Lily’ was the story around which the entire conference revolved. The Constantia Waldorf teachers performed this play on the first night of the conference and from this all inspirations for artistic work, reflections and lectures were drawn. The design of the conference ensured that all faculties of body, mind and soul were engaged and strengthened.
In a similar way the daily routine and activities at all Waldorf schools are designed to engage and strengthen the children in all these faculties of body, mind and soul, from their tiny little fingertips and out as far as their imaginations can travel. To bring a small measure of what teachers experience at the National Teachers Conference and what all Waldorf children experience at school was the thought process which enabled our first Parent Enrichment Day to manifest last year. To awaken the thinking, to touch the feelings and engage the will.
Our second Parent Enrichment Day will be happening on Saturday 12th November. The lecture is The Post Atlantean Epochs and the Development of Human Consciousness. This lecture, which gives a deeper insight into the way our thinking, being and feeling life have developed over thousands of years will be delivered by Beulah Reeler, a past Waldorf teacher and current lecturer at The Centre for Creative Education. The development of our human consciousness over epochs perfectly mirrors the developing human being from birth and this understanding is what supports and underpins the Waldorf curriculum.
I encourage you to attend this enrichment day as it could help to exercise some faculties and abilities that perhaps have lain dormant for too long. Faculties like concentrating your attention on the many nerve endings in your fingertips and using them to find the right note on the recorder, using your hands to weave and create interesting forms, experiencing the effect that form drawing can have on your life force or gaining knowledge that allows you to perceive the world in new ways. The most enriching result of all is that your brain will start to fire new synaptic connections and grow and change in exciting ways.
I’ll end with a quote from a lecture given by Jonathan Stodel at this year’s conference entitled The Transforming Challenge of Waldorf Education:
“What the intellect has to say with regard to any matter should only be said when all the other faculties of soul have spoken”
Class two teacher