In reply to Hedda's questions (message 65). 'Do your children have any difficulty sdjusting to state education post 6, or do they usually continue in Steiner education so this is not an issue' What children experience in Steiner kindergartens is the early part of what is a 'whole' experience of Steiner Waldorf education. What children learn in Class 1 (age 6/7) will work with respect to the kindergarten experience. In Class 1 for example they are introduced to the Alphabet in a very imaginative and creative way which follows comfortably from the imaginative space in kindergarten. Thus ideally children will remain in Steiner education right the way through, and many do. This of course, is not always the case though and some children will go on to state education. What I have heard is that by the age of 12, Steiner educated children will more or less be academically level with their State educated peers(whether they remain in Steiner schools or move to state schools) . However, they (former) have the added advantage of exceptional social, emotional and cooperative qualities. These qualities are indispensible for children who may move to State schools aged younger than 12, and of course for all of life's ensuing challenges. 'Is there anyway of monitoring the longterm success of this philosophy on the individual ?' This is always tricky, since so many other factors influence a child's life in addition to their educational experience. Nonetheless, having met many older Steiner educated children and some adults, I've frequently noticed several of the following qualities; emotional stability, calm confidence, maturity, neither self-consciousness nor precociousness, friendliness, and a great interest and curiosity in the world. Many also have noticably unique characters and appear very comfortable and content with their individuality. I also believe very strongly in what I see in the moment. In our kindergarten, the children are happy, healthy and lively. They are definitely not bored, and rarely hyperactive or unmotivated. Their play is rich and imaginative, and free as yet of limiting academic constructs or awakened sense of self. They are learning constantly to be comfortable in their own bodies, and to negotiate and cooperate with others. Also in response to a question from Hammered (message 68) 'I was wondering if you felt all children would suit and thrive in this environment?' At the heart of the Steiner priciples, is that children should be educated in a way that allows their unique individual qualities to flourish. Thus, for example, if they are especially academically orientated this will (in the course of the child's life) be accomodated for, yet if there is great talent in their hands and craftmanship so this shall be recognised. Yet, whilst all children are welcome in Steiner schools, certain children's circumstances may mean they find it harder to thrive there. In kindergarten for example, those who have watched a lot of television, or who are prematurely intellectually aware, or self-aware, may find it hard to enter the realm of play, since when they are no longer in the dream consciousness they lose their receptivity to the subtle nuances of the imagination. Whatever the child's background or life experience however, they will be welcomed and supported in their learning and development. And Steiner education has a very therapeutic effect on any life disturbances the children may have experienced. Humans exhibit an infinite variety of unique skills, talents and qualities, and the wider community needs and has a place for all of these. also 'The parents surely need to buy in to the philosophy at home to support what is happening at school.' As with any experience the child is having it is greatly beneficial for them to feel harmony between this and their home life.