The Education of the Child
And Early Lectures on Education (CW 293 & 66)
As early as 1884, while tutoring a boy with special needs, Steiner began a lifelong interest in applying spiritual knowledge to the practical aspects of life. Steiner originally published the essay at the core of this book in 1907. It represents his earliest ideas on education, in which he lays out the soul spiritual processes of human development, describing the need to understand how the being of a child develops through successive “births,” beginning with the physical body’s entry into earthly life, and culminating in the emergence of the “I”-being with adulthood.
Also included are several early lectures on education, ranging from 1906 to 1911, well before the birth of the Waldorf movement in 1919.
ORIGINAL SOURCES: The essay “The Education of the Child in the Light of Spiritual Science,” translated by George and Mary Adams, appeared originally in German in the journal Lucifer–Gnosis (nr. 33), 1907, under the title “Die Erzieuhung des Kindes vom Geschictspunkte der Geisteswissenschaft.” It is included in vol. 34 of the Collected Works of Rudolf Steiner, published by Rudolf Steiner Verlag, Dornach, Switzerland, 1987. The lecture “Teaching from a Foundation of Spiritual Insight,” translated by Robert Lathe and Nancy Whittaker, is included in Ursprungsimpulse der Geisteswissenschaft, vol. 96, as “Erziehungspraxis auf der Grundlage spiritueller Erkenntnis”; the lecture “Education in the Light of Spiritual Science,” translated by Rita Stebbing, appeared as “Die Erziehung des Kindes vom Standpunkt der Geisteswissenschaft”; and the lecture “Education and Spiritual Science,” translated by Rita Stebbing, appeared as “Schulfragen vom Standpunkt der Geisteswissen-schaft” in Die Erkenntnis des Ubersinnlichen in unserer Zeit, vol. 55; the lecture “Interests, Talent, and Education,” translated by Robert Lathe and Nancy Whittaker, is included in Antworten der eisteswissenschaft auf die grossen Fragen des Daseins, vol. 60, as “Anlage, Begabung und Erziehung des Menschen,” all of which are in the Collected Works of Rudolf Steiner, published by Rudolf Steiner Verlag, Dornach, Switzerland, 1987. The lecture “Interests, Talents, and Educating Children,” translated by Robert Lathe and Nancy Whittaker, appeared originally in the magazine Die Menschenschule, vol. 31 (nr. 6),1957 and vol. 48 (nr.1), 1974.
C O N T E N T S:
Introduction by Christopher Bamford
The Education of the Child in the Light of Spiritual Science
Teaching from a Foundation of Spiritual Insight (Berlin, May 14, 1906)
Education in the Light of Spiritual Science (Cologne, Dec. 1, 1906)
Education and Spiritual Science (Berlin, Jan. 24, 1907)
Interests, Talents, and Educating Children (Nuremberg, Nov. 14, 1910)
Interests, Talent, and Education (Berlin, Jan. 12, 1911)