Physical Education and Movement in Waldorf Schools
The Waldorf school curriculum was developed to nurture the healthy development of the child, not only in mind but in body and spirit as well. Physical education and movement form an integral part of this holistic approach, encouraging children to be active not just for the sake of activity, but in order to experience themselves through meaningful movement and to form a stronger connection with the world around them.
This indispensable book for teachers—the most comprehensive of its kind available in English—provides a wealth of practical insights on teaching physical education and movement in Waldorf Schools. It includes:
- Practical suggestions for games and exercises to teach a range of activities such as athletics, archery, climbing, gymnastics, dance, swimming and sailing. More than thirty sample lessons providing inspiration and quick, easy reference for activities for Classes 1–12.
- Exercises designed to suit different developmental stages: from simple, storytelling games for young children to more complex, demanding exercises for older pupils.
- Essays from teachers with decades of experience, exploring the value of physical education in Waldorf schools and how its emphasis on individual progress and co-operation over competition helps build pupils’ confidence and self-belief.
- Suggestions of which Bothmer Movement exercises are best suited for different classes, based on an awareness of the laws of movement that underpin each age group.
- Practical advice on how teachers can adapt content covered in other subjects to create a more unified learning experience for pupils—for example, organizing their own Olympic Games to complement teaching about ancient Greece in history lessons.
- 250 inspiring color photographs illustrating a variety of activities.
This is an invaluable resource that provides both a wealth of practical ideas and a thoughtful consideration of physical education and movement that will give Steiner-Waldorf teachers confidence in preparing and delivering lessons.
About the Author
Gerlinde Idler has been a teacher of physical education in Waldorf schools for over twenty years, including at the Vienna Mauer Waldorf school where she founded a school circus. She is a lecturer in Waldorf education at the Kassel Teacher Training College in Germany, where she helps people from other professions train to become physical education teachers, and a guest lecturer at Waldorf teacher training courses around the world. She holds a Master’s degree in sociology, educational and political science as well as in Bothmer Movement and spatial dynamics.
Lutz Gerding began his teaching career at the Waldorf school in Bremen. After further training in adult education he became a tutor at Kassel Teacher Training College in Germany helping people from other professions train to become physical education teachers. He is currently a lecturer and coordinator for teacher training in China.