Kids live in their hearts. Adults live in their minds. In order to reach our children, we must fully understand their hearts AND their minds, as well as their bodies! We must also understand that they are not fully developed, but they are develop-ING
Rudolf Steiner divided human development into EPOCHS of seven years. The first seven years, kids are said to be living in the "hands" realm, focusing heavily on movement and doing. Then, they move into the "heart" realm and the emphasis is on feelings, emotions, intuition, socialization, relationships. The final stage of child development, according to Steiner is the "head" realm where they can handle more abstract concepts, use logic, ration, and more mature thinking processes of problem solving.
It is not up to the child to meet our expectations, but instead we must adjust our expectations to meet their needs by understanding where they are in their development and aim to have a deep understanding of WHO they are in the various stages.
Join me in reading and discussing Magical Child, by Joseph Chilton Pierce. In person book club will meet at Epoch, Bozeman, MT Wednesday evenings 4-6 pm beginning April 6th. Don't start reading just yet! Let's unfold this together...I'll email attendees a plan of attack and discussion to engage!
I'll be sharing our joys, discoveries, and realizations on the blog under "members only" and on the podcast if you can't attend, you can still engage and follow along.
Be well, Chelsea
Imagine a place where kids are free to play and explore without adult intervention or judgement. Near the meadow a group of children are playing tag while the others are pulling soil samples from the pond and examining them under a microscope. There are a few children pulling weeds in the garden bed fussing at their peers for eating all the tomatoes and carrots they've pulled for the soup the teacher is cooking inside. A few children have grabbed books from a basket and are taking turns reading stories under the trees and acting them out with puppets on the outdoor stage. A parent volunteer has collected a small group of kids to practice finger knitting while they discuss the odd weather patterns they've been experiencing this month and there's a small boy laying on the grass looking up at the clouds wondering about the cosmos.
Sound too good to be true? This is the vision for Epoch: A Waldorf Inspired Nature School in Bozeman Montana that sits of 5.5 acres of mountain west acreage featuring trees, trails, boulders, and creeks. Epoch is exactly what the Waldorf community of Bozeman has wanted for years! A Waldorf school for the grades that follows Steiner's work, allows for parental freedom, doesn't require pesky masks or harmful vaccinations, and welcomes the children each day to wonder and explore as they learn to think rather than learn to memorize and regurgitate information on a standardized test written by politicians and policy makers.
Epoch will feature a first/second grade class of students with a certified teacher who knows and studies anthroposophy and deeply respects the work of Rudolf Steiner and his vision for education and protecting childhood. The site will also be opened after school hours for homeschool students and other members of the community for enrichment and...gasp...play!
In time, we will offer parenting worskhops, wellness, new mom support groups, sacred journeys for indivudals and couples, a Waldorf toy store, festivals, camps, and toddler playgroups. If you would like to stay current on the progress of Bozeman's new Waldorf school for the grades- sign up for the newsletter.
Should you wish to make a donation, we are set up as a nonprofit entity. Click "donate" on Epoch main page. Thank you for your support. We look forward to seeing you soon.
Founder, Epoch Bozeman
Waldorf Inspired Nature Realm
This is one of those, "You wouldn't believe me if I told you" stories...
Several years ago, my father mentioned a small college town in the mountain west that was expected to be the next "boom town" He'd told me to check it out as it may be a nice place to raise a family. Every summer we'd try to schedule a family trip to Bozeman, but my sisters and I were growing our families and it never seemed to be the right time.
Then, I randomly ran into my middle school crush on a solo trip to San Diego. Our paths crossed unexpectedly and we hadn't seen each other in twenty-five years! He was in town for work, but was from...Bozeman. We stayed in touch and did the long distance thing for about a year before he joined me and my twin boys in Austin, Texas. The boys were at the Austin Waldorf School at the time, a place where I thought they'd be K-12th grades as I was so passionate about Waldorf education and becoming more and more involved in the Waldorf community.
For personal reasons, we needed to leave Austin and fast! We decided if Bozeman and Austin had a baby- it would be Bend, Oregon. We loved Bend and we're here now, but Oregon (although filled with natural beauty and enchanting sites) has horrible politics. Trying to escape the leftists nightmare? Avoid the west coast! Friends and family wondered why we didn't go straight to Bozeman and the answer was simple- there is no Waldorf school.
I cried to Justin almost daily about knowing Bend wasn't a fit, him wanting to return to Bozeman and me feeling intense mom guilt about not being able to provide a Waldorf education for them. What to do, what to do...
Then, as if by magic, the universe started dropping tiny little pebbles in front of me that led me to Bozeman and started yelling at me "start a Waldorf school". I remembered a message I received once from a total stranger telling me that he channels the energy of Rudolf Steiner when he meditates and that Steiner told him to let me know I was doing good work in the Waldorf community and not to stop. "Should I start a school?", I wondered.
I began searching for properties in Bozeman out of curiosity and the first property I clicked on was a 19030s log cabin on 5.5 acres with a creek. It had a separate house on the property with a workshop as well. I wondered if that could be a classroom...
The Waldorf early childhood program reached out and connected me with their board members with whom I met in Bozeman the same day I toured that property. They told me they'd been manifesting new energy to Bozeman to help make a Waldorf school for the grades a possibility and they'd been hoping for an east Bozeman location. Hmm...this I couldn't ignore. We put an offer in on the house the next day.
Since then, I've had COUNTLESS members of Waldorf community, homeschool moms, Bozeman families, and teachers from all over offer encouragement, resources, and support to bring this long-awaited vision into fruition.
Fall 2022, Bozeman Montana will have a Waldorf inspired school for the grades beginning with 1st/2nd grade. Also, on the property, I'll be hosting toddler playgroups, homeschool student meetups. a parenting workshops, new mom support groups, and eventually a Waldorf toy store!
Please click on EPOCH link above and express interest by filling out the RSVP form to the right. Subscribe to the newsletter and follow the journey on my podcast and youtube!
We're looking forward to welcoming you all at Epoch Bozeman soon! -Chelsea
Parenting expert, blogger, inventor, single mom to twins, barefoot nomad, adventure seeker, boho spirit, advocate of play