In this episode I’m speaking with experienced Waldorf teacher Michael Gannon all about “Second Grade and the Second Grader”.
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Michael has been working at the Spring Garden Waldorf School, near Akron, Ohio, for the past 17 years. Though he didn’t know anything about Waldorf education or anthroposophy when he first interviewed for his position, the deep consciousness about why things were done quickly drew him in. The thoughtful study of the development of the human being, and a living interest in helping students to grow toward freedom, has been a welcome source of challenge to Michael every day. Michael has been grateful to have the experience of working with three classes of students, each of whom has provided him new lessons and opportunities for growth. In recent years he’s also begun to work with other schools as a consultant, evaluating and mentoring teachers who share this path of inquiry. For the past two summers he’s also served as an instructor in the Center for Anthroposophy’s Renewal course, spending a week each summer looking in greater depth at the way our understanding can form a curriculum to meet the seven- and eight- year old.
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Here are some books Micheal recommends about the second grader's development and how to meet it:
"The Child’s Changing Consciousness", by Rudolf Steiner.
"Phases of Childhood", by Bernard Lievegood.
"The Soul of Discipline", by Kim John Payne.
Michael also shared these links, videos for his Renewal Courses, touching on how he's worked with these subjects.