Oak Meadow Kindergarten & 1st Grade

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I was so excited to be able to do a review on this very popular curriculum. I have
actually used bits and pieces of Oak Meadow over the past three years but it
was nice to see the whole thing and how it fits together.

*Through May 31 Get 20% off ALL their curriculum and 10% off enrollment*

2 books that are a must for the K-3rd grade are the Home Teachers Manual & The Heart of Learning.

The HTM explains how to get started and gives a peek into the main components of the early
grades like- form drawing, singing, drawing, storytelling, knitting & recorder.  I loved the criteria
sheet for each section that was helpful in answering questions.

The HOL
was a developmental guide about the nature of children, self-observation, how to bond
with your child, the 7-year cycles, relationships and early learning.  This is a very useful tool for
those just getting started to give them a good foundation of how they with this curriculum will
let your child unfold.

Kindergarten Review:

This 36 week lesson plan is a gentle, heart-centered approach using fairy tales, artistic
expression and integrating “school” for this age into everyday life. It encourages the teachers
(moms) to strive to unfold the potential within themselves as they grow into their new role.

This is a very thorough package that includes the syllabus which is your guide that houses all the
lessons. It give all the instructions you need starting with main lesson books and how to create a
daily rhythm.  In the back are verses, songs and fingerplays as a resource.

Teaching the alphabet is the primary focus of this Kindergarten Language Arts.  Details on how
to do this through stories and drawings are very specific.  The Fairy Tale Book includes all the
stories needed and are a collection of  Beatrix Potter stories, and other tales your young child
will enjoy.

The major work of Math in this Kindergarten is helping the child understand the qualities of
numbers. The syllabus lays out your daily lessons complete with recipes, activities, stories,
drawings and movement exercises.

Science is introduced by imaginative stories and experiences.

If you are looking for a totally “done for you” curriculum- this is it!  You can follow each daily
lesson which includes Circle time, morning main lesson, language arts, creative play, and
alternates science,  and math. Music, movement and crafts are also covered and there is a
separate “First Book of Crafts” which  helps the child with refinement of movement in the
fingers.

Also included is a Wee Sing CD & Song Book giving the opportunity for the child to express
through the hands and body and voice. And done for you songs for mom!

Oak Meadow has a health book called “Growing, growing, Strong” that can be used as a
supplement for states that require Health as a subject.

Overall, this is an amazing packed curriculum full of  all you would need for kindergarten.



 

 

 

 

First Grade Review:

If you used the Kindergarten curriculum than the progression to First Grade will be seamless as
it follows the same format- easy for you mom!

This syllabus has some similar foundational beginnings to set the stage on how to get the most
from the guidebook (and your daily lessons).

The Rhythm of the Day section is detailed, for example:
Circle: 15 min
Main Lesson: 45 min reading & writing
Free time, Lunch, Afternoon lesson, imitation activities, and creative play.

For anyone with strict state regulation this is an ideal curriculum as language arts is done daily
and math 3x per week, science 2x per week. (It is not set up in main lesson blocks)

Language Arts focus is on building a foundation for later work in reading.  This introduces 2
letters per week through the 1st Grade Fairy Tale book.

This is what I used for my girls in first grade. I find these fairy tales a bit milder than some of
the Grimm’s and it is why I chose it.  Each story incorporates the letter and has a drawing for
your child to put into their main lesson book.

Math emphasis is on understanding the 4 processes- addition, subtraction, multiplication and
division.  Again, presented through stories and pictures and movement. There are many
examples and pictures shown- which I find a big help for a visual person like myself.

Social Studies is incorporated through the Language Arts stories and bedtime nature stories
where the child experiences the rhythm cycles of nature, festivals, and holidays which helps with
time.

Science is again through a lot of nature and observation and creating a nature notebook.

Singing is continues and now Recorder is added. Beginner recorder book is included and is very
helpful. I used all the recorder books and still do!

Crafting and handwork and covered as knitting is introduced and seasonal tables suggested for
the home.  Movement exercises are sprinkled throughout the lesson.

This curriculum is set up on a 36-week plan with 3 semesters. Each semester has a forward
that explains the goals for those weeks and ways for the teacher to bring those ideas.

This is a very complete and done for you curriculum with all the art components included.  It is
great for those who are regulated by state restrictions and need main subjects everyday or
week. It also allows flexibility for a homeschool teacher to add in other projects, pieces or just
their own ‘flair”. (This is what I did) By having the main foundation, you are free to add those
extra things.

Oak Meadow also has extensive email & phone support for those who have purchased
curriculum as well as a fully accredited school which provides the ongoing guidance and support
of an expert faculty.
*20% off their products through May 31*
www.Oakmeadow.com

  • Cari

    Oak Meadow may be easy, but as someone who presents herself as an authority on Waldorf education, it seems irresponsible not to mention how widely Oak Meadow diverges from Rudolf Steiner’s indications for education. For example, the introduction of letters and numbers, if one wishes to follow Steiner, is inappropriate at the kindergarten level.

    Not that everyone must follow “authentic” Steiner, whatever that may be, but if one is trying to learn about Waldorf, it would be important that a website that purports to teach Waldorf would point such things out.

  • Waldorf Connection Blog

    Thank you Cari for bringing this up. Though I am no authority on Waldorf Education,
    it is true that Oak Meadow does not claim to be a true “Waldorf curriculum” but is
    Waldorf-inspired and has many Waldorf teachers on staff.

    They do start letters and numbers in the kindergarten which is earlier than
    Steiners indication of waiting until 1st grade.

    My intention was to do an ‘unbiased’ review of the Kindy & First Grade as I
    went through them and report on what they do offer.

    For those who want to be true to Steiner, they can decide if this
    would fit their needs or not.

    Thanks again for the comment :)
    Donna

  • http://slowmomama.blogspot.com Kim

    Its true that OM is not a pure Waldorf program. They don’t claim to be, either. But the Waldorf influences are there and it’s truly a beautiful program. And it’s completely do-able for new homeschoolers who need a starting point. I’ve been homeschooling for four years now, using a whole host of resources (from classical to Charlotte mason to Waldorf/ Christopherus). I used Oak Meadow when my oldest was in first grade. Now that I am going to be homeschooling three kiddos next year, we are going back to OAk Meadow.

  • http://apurplecrayon.blogspot.com/ Laura Rogers

    I used the Oak Meadow First Grade curriculum for my son. I believe that Oak Meadow provides a very important “gateway” to Waldorf Education. For those of us without any Waldorf experience or training, it can be so helpful to have a curriculum that is layed out specifically. I realize that it is not a purist approach, but it meets qualifications for curriculum in many states that other Waldorf programs might not be able to (or at least, it would be hard for a mother with no background in education to articulate it into standards and such). I am always lured by Live Education, Christopherus, and Little Garden Flower. They look like excellent programs too. I think there are many wonderful Waldorf helps and curriculum for homeschoolers, but Oak Meadow has an accessibility that is hard to match. I was very happy with our year of Oak Meadow. It is charming and has helped our family form better rhythmn in our days.