From the Administrator
Let the Treasure, Buried Deep, Emerge
Recently we were fortunate to host Lisa Devine. Lisa has been a great support to our school for many years as a chaplain of the Christian Community and as an authority in anthroposophy and the depth of wisdom that was offered by Rudolf Steiner. It was her first visit, from NSW, in a few years.
Lisa met with students, staff and parents. Everyone will have benefited from her insight, experience and authenticity.
One salient point she discussed with the College of Teachers links closely to the approach we take in Steiner Education to allow the individual to unfold and find their purpose for being. She said, “we must find ways for buried treasures to emerge” in each person we encounter.
For our teachers, this may mean striving to know deeply the child before them and to allow what lies inside them to emerge. It is the antithesis of putting “another brick in the wall”.
The curriculum, starting in Early Childhood where we surround children in a natural setting, allows them time and space to engage in healthy play and social activities. It develops their reverence for and care in whatever they are doing. Ideally it allows what lives within the child to emerge and they approach primary school with developed, healthy bodies and positive social skills. A Class 1 teacher receives these children as treasures and tasks them on their next journey.
In Primary School, the teachers work tirelessly to ensure the imagination and feeling life of the children are strengthened through a curriculum full and rich, with activities and narratives that meet the development stage they are in. For Class 4 children this may be the Norse Myths while for Class 6 it is Ancient Rome. The treasures of the children are able to emerge when we allow them to deeply engage in their school life and to experience an authentic education that strives to defend their childhood.
In High School, the subjects are brought to the students by specialist teachers that are experts in their field. They may have a love of literature or chemistry or art or maths. They help the students develop their thinking through dialogue and experiences of phenomena. They allow the students to find within themselves the authority to be masters of their thinking.
We find that as the High School student journeys through these highly changeable years of development, what may have been laying dormant in the child in kindergarten and primary school emerges. What emerges is imbued with the richness of their Kindy and primary experiences. This includes creativity, imagination, reverence and a strength of will which informs their thinking and allows them to manage concepts and engage with complex issues. From the events of the First World War; Existential questioning of “WHO AM I?” to Projective Geometry, the High School students are able to allow buried treasures to emerge.
The High Students are not dulled by the effects of an assessment driven curriculum and inauthentic schoolwork. Rather than experiencing the curriculum as a form of power and control, they begin to take power and control of their lives. They have the opportunity to become free individuals in adulthood.