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Rudolf Steiner’s Pedagogy of Imagination

A Case Study of Holistic Education


Thomas W. Nielsen

This book investigates the concept and practises of imaginative teaching. Since Rudolf Steiner (founder of the Waldorf schools) wrote extensively on the subject and is renowned for his contributions to education, his work is used to develop insights into the nature of ‘imaginative teaching’. Given the societal changes since Steiner’s time, however, the topic is further developed by examining imaginative teaching in three Steiner primary classrooms, using the methodological means of ethnography and phenomenology. The insights gained from this undertaking are used to re-theorise aspects of Steiner’s writings about imagination and holistic education. In this study it is argued that imaginative teaching is made up of three modes of pedagogy and seven teaching methods, and that these modes and methods form a most potent means for connecting children with aesthetic, intellectual and physical development.
Contents: Literature Review: Rudolf Steiner and His Educational Philosophy - Interpreting Rudolf Steiner - The Spoor to Anthroposophy - Education as Anthroposophy – Method: Hermeneutic Phenomenological Case Study – Findings: Grounded Theory of the Pedagogy of Imagination - Three Class Room Studies – Rudolf Steiner’s Pedagogy of Imagination Reconsidered – Wholeness, Imagination and Teaching in the 21st Century – Synthesis of Findings, Implications and Recommendations.