OVERVIEW


     At the Panyotai Waldorf School we present a different approach to other forms of education:

  • Our aim is not to produce human resources to cater to the labor market. Our approach is not influenced by economic or political factors. We aim to build a foundation of humanness for our children, which is important and crucial to them regardless of what study or career they later choose; that is to help them achieve clear and creative thinking, be individually, and socially motivated and globally responsible.
  • The wonders of childhood are preserved, instead of a childhood damaged by various factors. We do not rush them into adulthood but encourage learning appropriate at each stage of development.
  • We try to prevent children from trends of materialism, consumerism and commercialism. At the school we value and practice sustainability.
  • We live together in a kind and supportive environment. Teachers guide children to appreciate each other and facilitate harmonious interaction both in verbal and physical context. We discourage competitiveness, ridicule and mockery.  Dispute is not commonplace here.

  • We do not believe that information is the essence of education. On the other hand, applying information to suit the needs of child development is essential. Developing a child's academic intellect is achievable. However, it's more important to cultivate them to be morally responsible, to have a desire to act and participate in the making of a better world.
  • We do not condone children using electronic media before high school, especially television and the computer, because of its tremendous harming effects on them. It destroys imagination and creativeness, deters brain and speech development, prematurely stimulate their sexual awareness and plants materialism in them. Besides, children should be learning through direct experience before getting it through media, which is a medium controlled by the interests and intentions of various sorts.
  • The intellectual mind is not a normal aspect of the young child, therefore reading, writing and maths are not introduced until after kindergarten. In kindergarten level kids learn through playing, participating in activities and imitating their teachers. Play stuffs are simple natural materials, handmade by teachers and not commercial or mechanical toys. This allows children to fully develop their imagination and creativity.
  • Textbooks are absent in the lower school. Children learn from teachers who have studied and researched the particular subjects. Topics are passed on through teachers' own experiences combining with the understanding of children's nature. It is a lively learning process rather than an information-storing one. Students create and illustrate their own lesson books for each subject. For high school level, textbooks which are relevant to student's subjects and development are provided for their study and research.

  • From grade one to grade eight the class teacher remains with the students to oversee their continuous development. Teachers not only pay attention to their academic progress but behavior, attitudes as well as social integration.
  • Each day of the lower and high school level, the first 2-hour is dedicated to one particular subject for a continuous period of 3-6 weeks after which the next subject will be introduced. After this 2-hour main lesson, regular subjects such as English, Chinese, music, woodcraft and handicraft are taught at the same time every week.
  • Children do not only learn through listening, copying, and lectures. They also learn through movement, practical activities, discussion and artistic work.
  • Tests are not the measurement method. A small number of students and a close relationship between the teacher and students enable individual observation and evaluation without the need for formal examination. Teachers discuss with parents and write an evaluation report for each student. Moreover, students are not directed toward the passing of examinations. Our education is not to prepare them to compete for a place in any institution but to prepare them for life.

 

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