Edinburgh Steiner School

Art of Imitation

Respect for the environment is woven into the Steiner curriculum at every level. In the Kindergarten the children learn to tend their gardens, lovingly nurturing their plants and supporting the local wildlife. They learn to look after their toys by sanding down the wooden blocks or cleaning the wax crayons that are used for drawing.

If something breaks it is either mended carefully or sent away to be mended by someone in the school community - and then welcomed back when it is repaired. Children learn to care through tidying up after creative play; they learn with enthusiasm how to fold up the drapes they use as props in their games.

Each child has a daily job, such as sweeping, washing the plates for snack or taking the scraps to the compost. When children of this age see adults looking after their environment in a respectful way, they naturally imitate these qualities and take on their responsibilities with joy and enthusiasm.

Their tasks become part of the daily rhythm, and caring becomes embedded in their personalities. Self-esteem grows as they feel a sense of pride in the part they are playing within their community.