Zoology Main Lesson
By Miss Anna Chaves, Class 5 Teacher
23 October, 2019
A study of the animal world in relation to the human being is taught in Class 4 in the Waldorf curriculum and is extended with another main lesson in Class 5. This lesson begins by looking at the physical body of the human being. We learn that the human being is made up of head, trunk and limbs, and we discuss this three-fold nature. The head, being our window to the outside world through our senses of seeing, hearing, smelling, touching and tasting, our trunk which carries our life-giving organs, and our limbs that allow us to stand upright and to create and take part in the outside world. Through this study we learn that animals are instinctual, that the animal’s body is more specialised than that of a human being and that this specialisation is what makes each animal unique. We also learn that the human being also possesses a special quality, that human beings have free will.
This year in Class 5 we focused our zoology main lesson on birds and sea creatures. The children worked on a research project on a bird or sea creature of their choice. This main lesson focused on the children’s research and writing skills, and included many trips to the public library. The project required a written component of 500-1000 words, an artistic element of drawing and painting, a diorama of their animal in their habitat, and an oral presentation to present their research to the class.
The children enjoyed this main lesson very much. They worked hard on their research and were excited to learn more about their own, and each other’s animals. Their projects had many interesting facts and beautiful hand drawn pictures. I was extremely impressed by the creativity of their dioramas, some of which included audio sounds of their animals. They became more confident when presenting their oral speech in front of the class and they felt proud of their work.