Reading & Resources I Love!
You Are Your Child's First Teacher by Rahima Baldwin Dancy. This is an excellent overview of the developmental needs of children from ages 0-6, and a great introduction to the basics of Waldorf early childhood.
Beyond the Rainbow Bridge: Nurturing Our Children from 0-7 by Barbara Patterson & Pamela Bradley. A practical and informative trove of wisdom for creating a healthy family life, including chapters on creative discipline and the value of imaginative play.
Literally anything by Janet Lansbury. I highly recommend her articles, which provide a wealth of knowledge on parenting and RIE, Resources for Infant Educaring and respectful parenting. I particularly like her book No Bad Kids: Toddler Discipline Without Shame, especially as an audiobook so that you can hear her tone as she speaks with children. Respectful, firm, caring. She also has an excellent book Elevating Childcare, A Guide to Respectful Parenting.
Simplicity Parenting by Kim John Payne is a guide to simplifying life- the answer to many of your behavior issues with children. Simplify your schedules, simplify your home spaces, simplify what and how much information your children are exposed to. Written by a child psychologist and retired Waldorf teacher.
Cradle of a Healthy Life- a collection of lectures from the Waldorf Early Childhood Association of North America. A more in-depth understanding of the Waldorf philosophy on early childhood.
Waldorf Games Handbook for the Early Years- Games to Play and Sing with Children Ages 3-7 by Kim John Payne, et al. Self-explanatory, a great collection to have on hand!
Rise Up Singing- a Collection of Words, Cords and Sources to 1200 Songs. Organized by Subject. A treasure trove of songs on many subjects, not necessarily all oriented to early childhood but an excellent resource nonetheless.
Autumn, Spring, Summer and Winter Series of Poems, Songs, and Stories by Wynstone Press - another invaluable seasonal collection.
Understanding Your Child's Sensory Signals by Angie Voss, OTR- An index of behaviors that adults may find unusual or confusing but are as common as distress with brushing hair or trimming nails, always wanting to be held, love gathering/collecting objects, dislike wearing jackets. Helps to understand the child's behavior and some ways to help. I honestly find it invaluable for any parent.
Festivals, Family and Food by Diana Carey and Judy Large- this is pretty much an all-inclusive guide to the seasons!
Crafts Through the Year by Thomas and Petra Berger- a great resource for moving through the seasons with children, through arts and crafts.
The Family Treasury of Jewish Holidays by Malka Drucker- a sweet book of Jewish stories, songs, recipes and explanations of Jewish holidays and customs.
Jewish Family and Life: Traditions, Holidays, and Values for Today's Parents and Children by Rabbi Susan Silverman & Yosef Abramowitz- an insightful and helpful guide.
Lifeways North America- the Waldorf Early Childhood Training Hub! I am currently taking their Early Childhood Certificate Training, but have also taken excellent courses online. Upcoming courses include Exploring Nature with Children, Brain Science and Your Child's Journey Toward the Self, and more. The book written by the founder of the program is called Life is the Curriculum, by Cynthia Aldinger- another excellent resource to help understand what children need during the early years of life, and ways for us to provide this for them.
Bella Luna Toys- a go-to for Waldorf-style toys, birthday & holiday gift inspiration, and learning about age appropriate play spaces. It can be pricey, but if you see something you like you can often make it yourself or find second-hand/alternatives online. Or support them! They are truly a wonderful resource, and the owner has beautiful videos on Youtube, called Sunday's With Sarah, such as this one about travel toys. Plus a great explanation of 'Waldorf toys' and the value of the sensory experience. That being said, also check out NovaNatural and Palumba as well.
Children's books: Children of the Forest Series by Elsa Beskow (and, truly, anything else by her!). The Story of the Root Children by Sibylle von Olfers, Summer, Spring, Autumn, Winter Series by Gerda Muller, Pippa and Pelle series by Daniela Drescher. Julian is a Mermaid by Jessica Love- not a traditional Waldorf book, but I am in love with the gorgeous illustations, and simple and inclusive messaging. Is it Passover Yet? by Chris Barash- also not Waldorf per se, but these series offer simple and sweet images showing the seasons changing as the Jewish holidays come nearer.