I don’t want to finish the post title as it might sound contrite, but I trust after reading this you will agree it is the only appropriate description.
When Luke started school, one thing happened immediately, he came home talking about playing baseball at recess. Now, for many schools, this would not seem at all out of place, but you must remember that Luke’s (and Lily’s) school is not one made from heavy team action, no Friday night lights here. There regular team sports are Frisbee golf and cross country running.
So, when Luke came home so excited about playing baseball, I was truly curious. Then I found out that he was playing with just one other boy, a stick and a rock. I was impressed and aside from the rock, it all sounded like a great plan.
A few days later it was:
A stick, a wood chip and four players.
A stick, a wood chip and a full infield.
Full teams, including the teachers, REAL bases and a REAL bat.
About a month goes by and all I know is that the entire class plays baseball pretty much every day, even the teachers. They have umpires and some sort of a “review” system in the event of a close call.
Luke just loves it all, its the first thing I hear about when I pick him up after school (hit a grand slam today Dad!)
I was invited into Luke’s class today to help the kids with blowing eggs for easter. A few things emerged.
The fact that they blow eggs at all is remarkable.
The teacher calmly reminded me that it is OK if the kids struggle a bit to finish blowing there egg. Some kids were done in a minute and some in twenty minutes, no judgement, no difference, just support and calm encouragement.
I don’t know a lot about Waldorf Education, but the more I learn the more I appreciate it. It fits well with our past play friendly, confidence developing classes and books that speak to us.
Like many alternative: schooling techniques it is met with a certain amount of head scratching, the comment that sticks out in my head is “Oh, there is no structure in those types of schooling”
Perhaps nothing could be further from the truth.
In Luke’s Kindergarten class it is quiet and calm all day long . Twenty seven 5-7 year olds and they play focused and are at ease. The teacher is not commanding any of this, it just seems to be a natural by product of the Waldorf belief system.
I so enjoyed this quote from Rudolf Steiner, (an Austrian philosopher, author, social reformer, architect and esotericist) and man responsible for Waldorf schooling, I put a copy on our refrigerator.
May there reign here spirit-strength in love; May there work here spirit-light in goodness; Born from certainty of heart, And from steadfastness of soul, So that we may bring to young human beings Bodily strength for work, inwardness of soul, and clarity of spirit.
On the same day Luke falls off a jungle gym and shakes it off Lily says to me as we are driving:
“Me eyes hot”
She had the sun in her eyes. I told her I would pull the shade up on the window when I had a chance and she said ok. At that time this tune was playing on my kids playlist:
You Were Meant To Be Here
I burst into tears in my 2015 Toyota Sienna minivan because it all became clear, I was meant to be here right now with these kids. I was meant to hear the voice mail from Luke’s school and then play it cool when I picked him up, letting him tell me about what happened. I was meant to acknowledge Lily using a full sentence for the second time in her life to ask for help.
They say it all goes by so fast and I know it is true and I only wish I have a moment to cherish each day as I have had today.
I was just called by Luke’s school. He had fallen off the monkey bars on to his back and had the wind knocked out of him. They iced him and had him relax in the office. When the office person asked if he wanted her to call mom and dad to let them know he was all right, he said,
“No, you don’t need to do that, I’m all right. Can I go back to class now?”
I feel that defines a very self confident moment and I love you Luke.