A Journey Through the Alphabet at Lorien Novalis School in Dural

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HOLISTIC LEARNING AT LORIEN NOVALIS SCHOOL is the foundation to imagination, creativity and academia, and is based on the developmental stages of the child. Hands-on and making it ‘real’ are the fundamentals of Steiner education for the early learner.

Literacy, encompassing all its components – listening, speaking, writing and reading – is a keynote. In the early years, following a Kindergarten year of play-based learning, the alphabet is introduced through story-telling and artistic imagery – building the groundwork of literacy. A typical unit of English to start the Class 1 year includes a continuing story which introduces a letter or two each lesson. Within these lessons will be expressive rich language of storytelling and recall, alliterative verses, singing, movement, brilliant colourful drawing and writing. Other activities include sculpting and shaping letters out of soft beeswax and bread dough, using wool and rope and bodily form to shape the letters, and bush walking to find the letter shapes in nature. The experiences of multi-learning opportunities, while allowing the child’s natural imagination to remain active, creates a strong connection to each learning activity, and hence the seed for a love of learning is sown.

As with all lessons in Steiner education, inspiring elements bring interest and enthusiasm to the learner. With their varied activities that embed content and knowledge through the three interrelated faculties of intellect, artistry and practical application, students make connections to learning in ways that address varied learning styles, and create deep learning opportunities.

This year, to highlight what the children learned in class, they went on an outing to Newport Beach where they frolicked and played and looked for the Watery Waves (W) they had drawn in their books. With hands and feet, they wrote large letters in the sand. They also found many Clickety Claw Crabs (C). A day in such nature brought a wonderful conclusion for Class 1 students to the introductory theme of the alphabet, in readiness for a life of writing and reading.

If you would like to find out more about the integrated and rich curriculum of Lorien Novalis School for Steiner Education, please see our website www. lorien.nsw.edu.au, come along to one of our Insight Day (held every term) on the 10th August, or contact the school on 9658 0700.