Blog: The Light of Aurora
AWS: A School for the Whole Family11:50 AM - March 27, 2023
Waldorf education is often described as an education not only for the students but for the entire family. As a parent of two AWS alums and a current Middle Schooler, I have been part of the AWS community for nearly 20 years. For myself and others who participate in the opportunities provided by the school, AWS offers a whole family experience.
Class parent meetings throughout the years have taught me so much about child development, often right as my child was experiencing that developmental stage. A lens into why my child was acting the way they were, and helpful ways to respond was so valuable over the years! Also, reassurance from trusted professionals that the behavior was normal and the reminder that “this too shall pass” eased some of my parenting nerves.
Festival celebrations bring together the entire AWS community and have helped to instill in my children and me a deeper connection to the changing seasons and the rhythm of the year. In addition, these festivals marked the passage of time and made for lasting memories! Each time one of my children entered their eighth-grade year, the festivals took on a new importance; memorable opportunities to celebrate with the other parents and students and mark the journey we had taken together over the years. These people were like our extended family members, and it was a gift to recognize the “village” we had formed to help raise our children.
Events such as the Olympiad (traditionally held in Fifth Grade) and the middle school Basketball Tournament bring together students, teachers, and parents from multiple Waldorf Schools for friendly competition. In addition, these events offered opportunities for my children and me to meet other Waldorf families, people with similar values and experiences yet different perspectives. Each new friendship has been so enriching!
As a parent, I have also found myself intrigued by the subject matter my children are learning. I never learned to knit in school, but my child was happy to teach me and proud of themselves for having mastered a skill before their mother had. During a recent block study on Astronomy, I was excited to go out and observe the night sky right along with my child. So much of the curriculum differs from what I experienced as a young student. From Norse mythology to creation stories from around the world, to hand carving a spoon from a chunk of wood to studying botany in the forest to lessons in cyber civics. I have often wished I had gone to a Waldorf School as a child!
I have also felt deep gratitude to experience this education on the periphery as I learn from and with my children, and I am grateful for the family experiences. Thank you, Aurora Waldorf School, for offering such an enriching education for all!