Work and Play in Early Childhood

Freya Jaffke; Translated by Christian von Arnim

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Quick Look

Shows how rhythm and repetition, together with example and imitation, are the pillars on which early learning is based in kindergarten.

198 x 130 mm
Floris Books
Steiner-Waldorf Education; Parenting & Child Health
15 colour photographs
80 pages
Publication date:
01 May 1996


Rhythm and repetition, together with example and imitation, are pillars on which early learning is based. Freya Jaffke applies these simple principles in practical and sensible ways.

She describes children's play in a Steiner-Waldorf kindergarten setting, and provides tried and tested advice on this important stage of development.

This book includes sections on Planning the day; Festivals; Rhythms; Materials; Educating the Will; Imagination; Spontaneous and Planned Play; Example and imitation of adults; Stages of development; From crawling to contrariness; Work and play; Craft and handicraft; Creating a protective environment; Hyperactive and inactive children.

Table of Contents

1. Stages of development in early childhood
2. Life and work in a Waldorf kindergarten
3. Handwork in the kindergarten
4. Kindergarten work and the 'mantle' of the child's life forces
5. Setting an example and educating the will


'The book would probably be quite useful to somebody considering a Steiner education as an alternative to a conventional school, as it gives a good description of what goes on in their kindergartens.'
-- Hilary Woolf, Education Otherwise, December 2003


Freya Jaffke (1937 – 2021) was an experienced Steiner-Waldorf kindergarten teacher who lived in Germany. She travelled throughout the world to give courses on Waldorf early childhood education. Her books on early childhood have sold over quarter of a million copies worldwide and include, Celebrating Festivals with Children and Work and Play in Early Childhood.


Also available by Freya Jaffke:
Toymaking with Children
Celebrating Festivals with Children

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