The Bulletin

Math Night: A Review of Waldorf Curriculum

Thursday, March 2011

Mathematics Unfolded

April 7, 2011 Refreshments at 6:30pm / Presentation at 7:00pm

CWS Lower Eurthymy Room

What does a child in a Waldorf School experience on his/her first day of the 1st grade? Why, the teacher presents the student with two lines: a curve and a straight. Are there any other kinds? Not really. And just think about it: all of our numbers and letters, the primary symbols that govern our lives and interactions, are formed out of these two fundamental types of lines. On the first day of elementary school the child is presented with an archetypal experience.

Now this experience will be revisited and expanded upon in a multitude of ways and contexts throughout the child’s education. One of the most obvious of these contexts is mathematics. How do we measure curved lines, or calculate the area bounded by such lines? This is a question first addressed in 7th grade geometry, and re-visited again in high school calculus. Are there, in fact, two archetypal lines, or is there only one? This is a question taken up in high school geometry, and it constitutes a culminating response to that seed experience planted back on the first day of grade school.

The teachers at the Chicago Waldorf School would like to share with you the nature in which important educational themes are introduced, explored and metamorphosed through the grades always, of course, in harmony with the developing child. Last year we presented the theme of fire as it is introduced in 1st grade, and developed in chemistry lessons in the middle and high schools. This year we invite you to attend an evening in which the theme of the curved and straight line is developed through the 12th grade curriculum. On Wednesday, April 7th, at 7 PM, this PTO-sponsored evening will feature presentations from Nancy Szymanski, John Trevillion and Brian Gleichauf, representing the early, middle, and high school grades, respectively. We look forward to seeing you.

Please RSVP to Lisa Rekstad, PTO Parent Education Lead at lrekstad@gmail.com