My inner pragmatist spends a lot of time contemplating what she can tell you that will be immediately useful to you on this journey. It's true that yes, this is a journey of many steps, and ultimately there's no rush. But there is also the reality of needing to jump in and get started somewhere, yes?
So, maybe it makes sense to start here?
I am 100% certain that Steiner never said we should go broke giving our children a Waldorf-inspired education and lifestyle. He did say that we should emphasize natural materials, and that teachers should consciously choose open-ended playthings and supplies for the home or classroom that will nourish a young child’s senses. It’s true, sometimes the toys and supplies made from beautiful, natural materials DO cost more, and well, rightfully so. They are often handmade, and they are worth more than their plastic counterparts, plain and simple. This leads me to my next thought.
It isn't always going to look the same.
At no point did Steiner ever say that we must buy all the same things that other Waldorf-inspired families own. Nor did he say that we must teach our children in exactly the same way. In fact, he was pretty clear about that,
“According to each teacher’s individuality, outer forms of teaching may vary enormously in the different classes, and yet the fundamental qualities are retained...in a Waldorf school outer forms do not follow set patterns, so that it is quite possible for one teacher to teach his class of 9 year olds well, while another who takes a completely different line, can be an equally good teacher…and as long as the teacher feels in harmony with the underlying principals, and with the methods employed, he must be given freedom in his work instead of being tied to fixed standards” ~ Rudolf Steiner
Freedom! (George Michael style. You're welcome :)
What a relief, yes? There is so much freedom to be gained here, when we remember that the expectation was NEVER that we would all "do" Waldorf in exactly the same way.
Inhale.....exhale. And, repeat.
All our best,
Robyn (& Brian) Wolfe