Waldorf didn't kill creativity

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The following is a first-person account of Waldorf education from a Waldorf alumnus, Shane Alexander. To learn about the difference between Waldorf and Montessori schools, read our comparison guide. You can also read our guide to Waldorf preschools.

Creativity at Waldorf

"Imagination is more important than knowledge."

I'm going to be honest. I didn't really know what I was going to write this week. I surfed around the net looking for different types of inspirations thinking of what would I pen about this week. I thought of everything. I even thought of doing a little article about graduation. Too early. I thought about doing one about skipping class'. Nah. My ex- teachers read this stuff on Facebook. Detentions? I wasn't awake for them. Don't remember. The big blue bus? Nope. I'm saving that for the spring. Good memories, though. I then decided to zoom by this site that always seems to show me the flashbulb of ideas. TED. If you don't know, TED - Ideas worth Spreading is a non profit academic organization owned by The Sapling Foundation whose main goal is to spread great ideas. Yeah. That's it. The site has cool creative inspiring videos that I watch once in a while.

I came across this one video. It was by Ken Robinson and the lecture was about how school kills creativity. Wow. What a bold statement. I would agree, though. Actually I do agree - if you're talking about the everyday public school in the suburbs. However, creativity was alive at Waldorf. I've mentioned this many times before on the blog. I found my creativity thanks to Waldorf. It helped me feed it. Nurture it and encouraged me to use it for my life's work. Which I have. I'm grateful to Waldorf for it. I sometimes feel privileged to know that I was able to go to such a creative based school like TWS where they fueled my imagination through dance, art, singing, painting and even woodworking and knitting. I feel bad for the public school system who haven't yet realized the value and confidence it gives an individual in the long run with some type of arts in their repertoire. The arts build character - especially at such a young and innocent age where the soul is ready to take in new information and ready to learn about themselves and how these little ideas they have in their head will turn out if they actually try them out in real life. Waldorf fed me the information. I came up with the ideas. And then, they came alive. By the time I left Waldorf, my creativity was a white horse galloping around the open field looking for the next race. The next stack of hay. Waiting to get fed more and more.

Robinson talks about how they start you off by educating from the waist up and then they start to only concentrate on the head. And at most times, only one side of it. He also mentions that he believes that "We are educating people out of their creativity," It's an interesting lecture that's both intelligently spoken while being pretty funny.

If you have a chance, take some time to check it out. The video is around 20 minutes long. Here's the link.

—Shane Alexander
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List of Waldorf schools

  • Toronto, Ontario
    Davenport Rd/Spadina Rd
  • PS to 8 Coed
  • $14,325 to $22,650

Small class sizes and our unique curriculum - infused with Arts, Movement, Outdoor Education - create deeper connections across subjects, at all child development stages. Parents describe us as “schooling with heart".

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Waldorf Academy 14325 Preschool Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools Day Coed
  • Aurora, Ontario
  • 1 to 8 Coed
  • $500 to $18,500

First school of its kind in the world. We are unique in everything we do. It is time for thinking outside of the box and raising a new generation of leaders, innovaters, inventors and entrepreneurs.

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Agora Prep 500 Elementary MiddleSchools Day Coed
  • Toronto, Ontario
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  • PS to 6 Coed
  • $15,500 to $17,500

NOW WITH LICENSED DAYCARE! Bring your child for a free trial to let him or her experience the difference. Don't be surprised if he or she doesn't want to go home at the end of the day! SUMMER CAMP PROGRAMS AVAILABLE!

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Alive Montessori & Private School 15500 Preschool Kindergarten Elementary Day Coed
  • Guelph, Ontario
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Trillium provides a comprehensive, vibrant and academically vigorous Waldorf education. Students are welcomed into a warm environment with teachers who care deeply for them, and support their holistic development.

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Trillium Waldorf School 8594 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools Day Coed
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  • PS to 12 Coed
  • $10,500 to $17,600

Halton Waldorf School offers an education that fosters confidence, independence and intelligence. Located on five forested acres, the school has been uniquely designed to support the goals of Waldorf education. Est 1984

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Halton Waldorf School 10500 Preschool Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Coed
  • Vaughan, Ontario
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The only Kindergarten that will prepare your child with special needs to grade one,we are using the Miller Method and DIR/FloorTime.our ratio is 1:4 student.

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ACK-Autism Centre for kids 35000 Kindergarten Elementary Day Coed
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  • JK to 12 Coed
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At Polaris artistic expression, practical skills & movement are interwoven into academic subjects. Learning becomes an engaging journey of discovery of the world and of oneself through hands-on and experiential learning.

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Polaris School and Centre 6000 Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Coed
  • Calgary, Alberta
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Calgary Waldorf School’s rich and challenging curriculum carefully balances academic, artistic and practical activities to stimulate intelligence and encourage creativity.

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Calgary Waldorf School 4410 Preschool Kindergarten Elementary MiddleSchools HighSchools Day Coed

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