Suggested Reading

Articles on Waldorf Education

On this page you will find articles written by Donna Simmons of Christopherus Homeschool Resources, plus articles by other authors that we feel are important and wish to share with all who have an interest in the sanctity of childhood and a holistic approach to education.

Books on Waldorf Education

We recommend that every homeschooler wishing to work with Waldorf buy Eric Fairman’s inexpensive and invaluable series of books that cover Grades One through Eight.

  • Millennial Child: Transforming Education in the Twenty-first Century, Eugene Schwartz
    How the healing pedagogy of Waldorf education speaks to the needs of modern children. See also (where there is also an especially helpful section on form drawing).
  • Waldorf Schools, Vols. I and II: Ruth Pusch (ed.)
    Thorough discussions of the curriculum. Volume I covers kindergarten and the early grades. Volume II covers upper grades and high school.
  • Kingdom of Childhood and Practical Advice to Teachers, Rudolf Steiner
    Two straightforward and easily readable books by the founder of Waldorf education.
  • The Recovery of Man in Childhood, A.C. Harwood
    An excellent and in-depth discussion of the anthroposophical foundations of Waldorf education. The book is fifty years old and sometimes reads like it, but it is really very good.
  • Waldorf Education: Rudolf Steiner’s Ideas in Practice, Christopher Clouder and Martyn Rawson
    Probably the best short and thoroughly modern book on Waldorf education in the English language.
  • Creativity in Education, Rene Querido
    A beautifully written, thoughtful and profound book by one of the master teachers of Waldorf education.
  • Take Time: Movement Exercises for Parents, Teachers and Therapists of  Children  with Difficulties in Speaking, Reading, Writing and Spelling, Mary Nash-Wortham
    An invaluable resource full of practical exercises – not just theory!


The Waldorf Home

  • Simplicity Parenting: Using the Extraordinary Power of Less to Raise Calmer, Happier, and More Secure Kids. Provides an antidote for children who are overscheduled and overwhelmed by too much information and a fast-paced consumer culture that threatens the pace and playful essence of childhood. Highly recommended.
  • Lifeways: Working with Family Questions, Gudrun Davy and Bons Voors
    A wonderful book about creating a strong family life set within the rhythms of the Christian festivals.
  • Beyond the Rainbow Bridge: Nurturing our Children from Birth to Seven, Barbara Patterson
    A useful and practical guide to parenting the young child – including sections on discipline and nurturing the senses.
  • The Plug-in Drug: Television, Children and the Family, Marie Winn
    Just in case you or a family member needs persuading that television is not good for children.
  • Set Free Childhood: Parents Survival Guide for Coping with Computers and TV, Martin Large
    If the above wasn’t enough…
  • The Spiritual Tasks of the Homemaker, Manfred Schmidt Brabant
    A deeply moving and profound look at the task of the homemaker in the light of modern spirituality.
  • Homemaking as a Social Art, Veronica van Duin
    Working with the spiritual and therapeutic basis of homemaking. We’d recommend some basic familiarity with anthroposophy before tackling this book.
  • Between Form and Freedom: A Practical Guide to the Teenage Years, Betty Staley
    An empowering guide to understanding and working with teenagers.
  • Navigating the Terrain of Childhood, Jack Petrash
    I haven’t actually read this one yet but when I asked Rahima Baldwin if it was the book for parenting middle years children, she emphatically said “Yes”!


Waldorf Early Years

  • You Are Your Child’s First Teacher, Rahima Baldwin
    A must-have for anyone with children under seven.
  • Seven Times the Sun, Shea Darian
    A practical book full of ideas for parents wishing to create meaningful and helpful rhythms and rituals in their family life. A companion CD is also available.
  • Nurturing Children and Families: One Model of a Waldorf Parent-Child Program, Sarah Baldwin
    This is the book to get if you are wishing to work with others to create any kind of Waldorf-inspired playgroup or co-op for young children. Warm, enabling and very, very practical, this book is a gem. This is Sarah of Bella Luna Toys. Find out more about her work here.
  • Free to Learn: Introducing Steiner Waldorf Early Childhood Education, Lynne Oldfield
    Written for parents intending to send their children to Waldorf kindergartens, this book will  be of great interest to anybody wishing to understand what is done in a Waldorf kindergarten and why.
  • Anything by Mary Thiennes-Schunemann
    Various CDs and books to help you learn songs, lullabies and rhymes to sing with your young children.
  • A Child’s Seasonal Treasury, Betty Jones
    This book is a real treat – a beautiful collection of verses, craft ideas, songs and stories for kindergarten-aged children. It even includes a few seasonal ideas for our friends Down Under!

Craft and Festival Books

  • Crafts through the Year, Thomas and Petra Berger
    A compilation of their three previous titles, the Christmas, Easter and Harvest Crafts books.
  • The Nature Corner, M. van Leeuwen and J. Moeskops
    Lovely – just don’t get discouraged if your nature corner doesn’t look like these!
  • All Year Round, Druitt, Rowling and Fynes-Clinton
    A lovely guide to an anthroposophical understanding of the Christian festivals. Crafts, recipes, songs, and activities. One of my favorites.
  • The Islamic Year: Surahs, Stories and Celebrations, Noorah Al-Gailani and Chris Smith. A welcome addition to a broadening of the Waldorf experience. The Five Pillars of Islam are taken as the focal points for a wealth of stories, recipes, and crafts.
  • Festivals, Families and Food, Diana Carey and Judy Large
    My copy of this book is almost worn out! A treasure trove of songs, recipes, and stories written from a British perspective.
  • Stories for the Festivals of the Year, Irene Johanson
    A lovely collection of stories from events in the life of Christ retold for children. A very special book for families to deepen their experience of the Christian festivals.
  • Festivals Together: A Guide to Multi-Cultural Celebration, Fitzjohn, Weston and Large.  Stories, recipes, songs, and activities for Buddhist, Jewish, Muslim, Christian, and Hindu celebrations from around the world.
  • Muslim Child: Understanding Islam through Stories and Poems, Rukshana Khan. Not a Waldorf book but very nicely done.
  • Earthways: Simple Environmental Activities for Young Children, Carol Petrash.  Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful! A must-have.
  • Lights Along the Path: Jewish Folklore Through the Grades, Rebecca Shacht
    A collection of stories compiled by a Waldorf teacher.
  • The Family Treasury of Jewish Holidays, Malka Drucker
    Not a Waldorf book but a very nice collection of stories, recipes and crafts.
  • Waldorf Handwork for Homeschoolers: Grades K-4, Barbara Dewey
    A slim but very clear and useful book. Order directly from Barbara’s website:

Books by and about Rudolf Steiner


Parent Self-Education

  • Tapestries, Betty Staley
    The 7-year periods that characterize Waldorf education continue throughout adult life – here’s a book explaining how to understand and work with these life periods.
  • Phases: The Spiritual Rhythms in Adult Life, Bernard Lievegoed
    Another wonderful anthroposophical  book focused on working with adult biography.
  • Awakening the Will: Principles and Processes in Adult Learning, Coenraad van Houten.  The basis for adult learning from an anthroposophical perspective. His follow-up book on working consciously with destiny/karma, Practising Destiny, is also recommended.

© 2021 Donna Simmons

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