Sunday, August 5, 2007

Old Testament Studies

A standard 3rd grade block in Waldorf, there is a ton of material for this out there. I eagerly took on a Sunday School class last year in order to spend some time getting to know the stories and how to teach them in a Waldorf way, to prep for my own kids. I wasn't sure if I'd be asked back... I was the only one at the church who wrote my own curriculum. We kept it pretty Waldorf-y so, needless to say, my teaching stood out from the crowd. I didn't know if it was different in a good way or different in a bad way and I was afraid to ask. :-) But I was approached by the Superindendent to come back so it looks like we are heading into Year Two! Next thing for me to do is to start buying school supplies.

First up is main lesson books. I still have a handful left over from last year but I don't know yet how many students I am likely to have (last year I had 12). Looking for high or wide bound books with onion skin between the papers.

Pricing comparisons (as of today) are:
Treasure Box Toys - $3.49

A Child's Dream Come True - offers the same as above for $2.85, also other sizes and types

Oak Meadow - three for $9.00, the shipping is very high and they don't specify what kind of MLBs you get

Between the three, I would go with A Child's Dream Come True.

I also need to buy some books. First up is 25 Plays by David Mitchell (see entry below). This book has a lot of Old Testament Plays in it and I can't wait to use it as a resource! We'll be doing "Daniel, Servant of the Lord" at the end of this school year. The general overall plan, begun last year, is that we have a Service Project each quarter as well as a Study component (made up of hearing stories, writing and illustrating them in a main lesson book, and handwork projects). Last year we went through the first part of the Bible from Creation to David and Goliath. First quarter service project is a fundraiser for a charity (this year I think it will be adopting a gorilla) plus a large display piece for the church of one legend -- last year was an ark with beeswax figures, this year it will be a wet felted sculpture of Jonah and the Whale. Second quarter we do a lot of handwork making animal ornaments for the church to sell supporting Heifer International and I teach the children to knit. We also assemble a nativity scene. Third quarter is our Class Play and we learn our lines for that, make costumes, etc.

This year I am beginning our storytelling with a review of some of the first part of the Bible, since the play does this and includes some songs for the children to sing. Then we will get into our main content for the school year, which is King Solomon through Daniel in the Lion's Den.

I will need to buy 25 Plays, get the list of songs that they sing and find copies of them, plus the other two of Jakob Streit's books for this block. I already own And There Was Light (From the Creation of the World to Noah's Ark) and need to buy Journey to the Promised Land (The Path of the People of Israel from Abraham's Calling to David's Dream) and We Will Build a Temple (The Path of Israel from King Solomon to John the Baptist). Last year I based my curriculum on Roy Wilkinson's books (which are excellent by the way): Old Testament Stories and Commentary on Old Testament Stories. I thought Jakob Streit's books were out of print. But I guess they just came back into print and I'm excited to use them this year and see how I like them. We traveled much too fast through the stories last year so we will basically be doing book 3 of Streit's series. My class is 3rd/4th/5th graders so I need three separate years of lessons in order to spread out the material so it does not repeat; I like the idea of using his set of three and doing one each year. I have considered next year doing New Testament Stories and the Saints (a chance to practice the saints block, yippee!) to get back on track. That is, of course, if they ask me back. :-) This will be a busy year for me personally. Barbara recommended that I wait to begin first grade with Natalie until after we relocate again, which is a good idea, so I have put off worrying about her milestones and am instead focusing on Kindergarten right now with her.

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