Now, there are a myriad of reasons why I love Waldorf education, but one that always touches my heart is how they infuse reverence and/or respect for earth into everything. From their stories to the blessings that they share before mealtimes to their lessons. Case in point, the below is a song that the children learned and it supported the learning of their vowels:
On the Earth I love to stand
Strength from stones I've taken
Striding boldly o'er the land
Fearless and unshaken..A A AAAA A AAAA (long A)
And in water, silvery waves
Gladly do I revel
from the fishes I can learn up and down
to travel...E E EEEE E EEEE (long E)
Upwards to the light I look
where the sun shines brightly
And with rainbow colors clear
paint the flowers lightly...I I IIII I IIII (Long I)
In the air I love to jump
oh that I were flying
like a bird with outspread wings
o'er the hilltops flying...O O OOOO O OOOO (long O)
Gratefully your gifts I hold
In my heart's deep shrine
Earth and water air and light
Brothers, sisters mine...U U UUUU U UUUU (long U)
That is just beautiful. The melody of the song is also very beautiful. Wish I could share it with you. Maybe I will figure out how to add a music file to this post.
But do you see how this is a wonderful way to help support young children in learning their vowels? A beautiful song which each stanza ends with the repetition of the vowel.
This fully supports their learning at this age because children can easily memorize songs. It's truly incredible the amount of songs that they learn every year!
And they have sweet sayings to remember when two letters sit together and one is silent. Like, "kn" When K and N go walking, K lets N do all the talking.
And I was just listening to a lecture that Stephen Spitalny gave and learned that the frontal lobe which carries out higher mental processes like thinking, decision making and planning, doesn't develop until about age 11 or 12. And doesn't fully mature until in our 20's! So...in my opinion, force feeding our children at too young an age just can't be good for them. Plus, there's that whole problem of burnout. But that is a whole other subject altogether.