Our Philosophy of Parenting
Our philosophy of parenting has developed over many years. It is grounded in our experiences in our own families, in our work in Waldorf education, and in the unique wisdom and insight we have gained from the founder of Waldorf education, Rudolf Steiner.* It is also informed by our experiences and studies in the field of psychology and the findings of neuroscience. Like many modern parenting educators, we support parenting practices that are positive rather than negative, practices that put a premium on the quality and security of the relationship between parent and child, practices that help children grow a healthy and resilient sense of self.
What is most unique in our work is our understanding that childhood consists of three distinct periods of growth, each with a special purpose for human development. In each phase of childhood, children develop an important set of human capacities that they will have for the rest of their lives! Childhood gives us a chance to create three important dimensions of our humanness—and it makes a difference if we get it right then or not!
Our work as parents is so vital! It is up to us to help our children develop soundness in their habits of behavior in the early years, wholesome attitudes and values in the middle years, and beliefs and habits of thinking that are creative, flexible and wise in adolescence. Of course we are assisted in this work by other adults who influence our children, but we are the most important and enduring influence on their development!
As children are growing and changing through the three phases of childhood, parents and other adults can also evolve in our ways of relating to children. Changing how we relate to children helps them to develop the unique gifts that belong to each phase of childhood. If we match our way of relating to children's stages of development, we will more likely help our children construct a self that is full of the resources for a rich and rewarding journey through adulthood.
Parents from many school communities have gathered in our workshops and support circles because the Waldorf-inspired approach we have developed is so practical. Many parents have found that our approach to relating with children really works, helping them feel more confident and effective and bringing more harmony and positivity into their family life.
To learn more about our philosophy, download a pdf, where we share about:
- The Soul-Spiritual Nature of Human Life
- Children’s Need for Loving Authority
- Parenting and Moral Development
- The Five Most Common Pitfalls in Parenting
- Taking the Long View
- Opportunities on the Path of Parenting