Not only is this year’s presenter, Christof Wiechert, a former leader of the Pedagogical Section of the School of Spiritual Science, but he has quite literally written the book* on our theme this year — the art of the child study. In addition to the keynote presentations at the November conference, two local Waldorf teachers will be conducting child studies of actual children under Christof’s guidance. So it won’t be just theory. We’ll get to see how the rubber hits the road. Here’s a brief excerpt from the introduction of Christof’s book, to give you a taste of how he approaches the subject:
|In devoting this book entirely to the art of studying and observing children, Christof Wiechert at the same time enquires into the heart organ of the Waldorf school itself, and brings it into focus as a place of confluence and encounter. It becomes apparent that the inner, latent capacity of mind or psyche of all involved can come to full fruition here. Likewise there is no tangible external occurrence in the daily life of a school which cannot be perceived and evaluated in a down-to-earth yet loving awareness of the child. But how exactly can a ‘perceiving community’ of school colleagues form and develop as a shared organ of better, more sensitive perception of child development, with a view to better understanding and supporting it?It is indicative of the qualities of this book that such questions, here founded on a wealth of actual accounts and descriptions, are taken up and addressed from many angles and at many levels. After engaging with the origins and development of the child study, for instance, the author goes on to illumine current questions about this theme arising within school faculties. Problems in handling the child study are discussed in such a frank and detailed way that the author’s train of thought invariably leads us on to new ideas, approaches and practical possibilities. His many years of experience a class-teacher and director of the Pedagogical Section of the School of Spiritual Science enable him to home in on sensitive aspect of the child study: How does the teaching faculty need to prepare for this work? What qualities of thinking are required to discern important strands amidst a multiplicity of phenomena? How must the ground be prepared in order for pedagogical insights and intuitions to take root?”“The perspectives presented here on the art of the child study become symphonic in scope: alongside the depth, detail and precision of proposed measures, and their imaginative but always eminently practical variations, this book elicits above all our own active engagement and further endeavour. Thus real joy of discovery raises in us: the impulse to gain insight into a child’s intrinsic being thought our combined perception, as colleagues, of all aspects of his nature.” — Claus-Peter Roch|
|Click here for the website page with registration links.|
|* See the lead image for a picture of the front cover of Christof’s book on child study in Waldorf schools.|
This is a followup reminder to the announcement of this conference in late August. Even though it seems like the school year has just gotten started, it’s now less than a month until this annual conference for Waldorf teachers. This year’s conference will be a hybrid presentation with an option to choose either in-person or online participation.