Understanding the Steiner Waldorf Approach: Early Years Education in Practice

By Janni Nicol; Jill Tina Taplin | Go to book overview

10
Working at
partnerships to
support the child

Introduction

In this chapter we will be looking at how parents, educators, support staff and others can work together to support the children in our care. Working with parents is of particular importance, and we will see how through study, research, education and observation both the family and the children can be supported and included in the life of the kindergarten and beyond.


The importance of personal relationships

We are aware, as parents and educators, of the importance of attachment for the young child. There is much research to underpin our knowledge of how personal relationships affect the development of the young child either in giving nourishment and building up physical organs or in causing long-term damage both physically and emotionally. This is well documented by researchers such as Bowlby (1979) and Gerhardt (2004).

It is accepted that the quality of the environment, whether at home or in childcare, is important if not essential for healthy all-round development. The physical, emotional and verbal environment and the interaction with adults contribute to later outcomes and may affect the child’s life chances, educational possibilities and intellectual and social development as an adult. Nurturing support is a stronger predictor of children’s all-round achievement than any material circumstances of their upbringing. It is the quality and content that matters, not the education and income of the parents (Allan 2010).

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