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Children at Play: Using Waldorf Principles to Foster Childhood Development

Overview

Imaginative play is more vital for a child's future than many parents and educators realize. The more they are allowed to be absorbed in their play, the more fully and effectively they will later take their place in the community of adults.

Drawing on her experiences as a mother and as a proponent of Rudolf Steiner's Waldorf system of education, author Heidi Britz-Crecelius emphasizes the different qualities of play that may extend through more than one phase of childhood. She ...

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Overview

Imaginative play is more vital for a child's future than many parents and educators realize. The more they are allowed to be absorbed in their play, the more fully and effectively they will later take their place in the community of adults.

Drawing on her experiences as a mother and as a proponent of Rudolf Steiner's Waldorf system of education, author Heidi Britz-Crecelius emphasizes the different qualities of play that may extend through more than one phase of childhood. She focuses on natural materials and recommends specific games, toys, and art supplies that further the mobility of the mind and the powers of expression without the burden that premature schooling can place on children.

In Children at Play, the author also reminds us that the human being, though bound by laws of space and time and tied to the earth, stems from eternity and belongs to a much larger community; the child's innermost being is directly related to the all-embracing world of spirit.

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Editorial Reviews

Susan Howard
"An insightful exploration into the world of children's play and its tremendous significance for the shaping of each child's humanity. This book is a great support for parents, playgroup leaders, teachers, and caregivers."
Waldorf Institute Susan Howard
"An insightful exploration into the world of children's play and its tremendous significance for the shaping of each child's humanity. This book is a great support for parents, playgroup leaders, teachers, and caregivers."
From the Publisher
"An insightful exploration into the world of children's play and its tremendous significance for the shaping of each child's humanity. This book is a great support for parents, playgroup leaders, teachers, and caregivers."
Susan Howard
An insightful exploration into the world of children's play. This book is a great support for parents, playgroup leaders, teachers, and caregivers...
Children's Literature - Paula McMillen
Originally published in German and then translated into somewhat stilted and idiomatic British English, this small personal diatribe will feel dated and quaint to the contemporary reader. While one may wholeheartedly agree with the predominant assertion that contemporary society has nearly destroyed children's opportunities for self-directed and imaginative play and thereby short-circuited the optimal learning scaffold to normal well-adjusted adulthood, the lack of anything but anecdotal evidence relegates this to an opinion piece. There does not appear to be a single research study cited in the notes and, although there is a list of "Resources" and "Suggested Readings," they are markedly lacking reference dates (e.g., publication dates) making it difficult to determine how current the information is. Although the author frequently alludes to the work of Rudolf Steiner, the named creator of the Waldorf method of schooling, this will not serve well as a clear exposition of the philosophy or educational approach. Reviewer: Paula McMillen, Ph.D.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780892816293
  • Publisher: Inner Traditions/Bear & Company
  • Publication date: 3/28/1996
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 144
  • Product dimensions: 5.38 (w) x 8.25 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

German-born Heidi Britz-Crecelius worked on the city council of Völklingen for more than fifteen years, concerning herself primarily with facilities for children. A strong supporter of Steiner's principles, she has three sons who have attended Waldorf schools.

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Table of Contents

Foreword by Joan Almon

Preface

Space and Time

The Cosmos

The Four Elements

Plants and Animals

The Human World

Dolls and the Self

Primal Memories

Children at Play—Everywhere and at all Times

And Now?

Notes

Resources for the Kindergarten and Home

Suggested Reading

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