The Rooted Family - Waldorf Parent and Child Group

September was a beautiful month, full of sunny weather. I was delighted to host the first Parent and Child Waldorf Group to celebrate the Autumn Equinox.


I had been busy in preparation dyeing silks and creating husk dolls and little felt pumpkins etc and learning songs by heart and practising the story ready for this special day.


We had 7 families altogether with a mix of ages from baby to 6. All of these families are were home educators and the idea of the group is to have something suitable for ages 3-7 with younger siblings most welcome to join in.


We met near the apple trees where I began welcoming the arrivals.


We all put out blankets and sat together where we sang the Good Morning Song. It was lovely to see smiley faces and the anticipation of the little ones as it was the first time for our group to meet together. I felt nervous but excited!



Good morning dear Earth,

Good morning dear Sun,

Good morning dear resting stones, and beasts on the run.

Good morning dear flowers and birds in the trees,

Good morning to you, and good morning to me.



We then sang some seasonal songs with actions


Autumn is near,

Nights turning cold,

Blackberries in the hedgerows and leaves red and gold.



Yellow the bracken, golden the sheaves,

Rosy the apples, crimson the leaves.

Mist on the hillside, clouds grey and white.

Autumn good morning, summer goodnight.



Autumn is a time of Harvest. The Autumn Equinox is a time of perfect balance in the year when the length of the day is exactly equal to the length of the night. It is a turning point - from now the nights will grow longer as we move towards winter. Autumn brings cool fresh air, mist filled valleys and dew drops glistening on spider webs. The leaves are changing colours, red, amber and gold. The trees transform. Who will catch a leaf and make a wish?


Fruits and berries and nuts and full and ripe and shining in the hedgerows. birds are feasting on an abundant Harvest gathering seeds and nuts of all kinds creating stories for the months ahead. Apple shine ripe and round. nature provides abundantly to give us all strength and resilience for the winter to come. It is time to give thanks and celebrate. (segment from The Children's Forest book)



I have a basket I 'll tell you why I'm picking blackberries to bake in a pie.

I'll mix them with apple, put pastry on the top.

If my pie is good enough don't buy one from the shop.


Beginning of story time.


Hearken in my tiny ear,

Hold the shell so close so near,

Stories of the sea I hear.

From the shell upon my ear.


What can I be and where can I go? (holding the shell)

The story is called The Snail and the Pumpkin by Susan Perrow (I use a shell that looks a little like a snail and a pumpkin made of felt and a couple of simple silks green and earth coloured.)


Slowly slowly, oh so slow, this is how a snail does go (sing)


There was a little snail,

travelling down a grassy track,

She moved oh so very slowly,

Because her house was on her back.


She came across a pumpkin,

Of a size so grand,

And thought here's the biggest mountain

In the whole of my land.


Moving oh so very slowly,

she started up the side,

The handwork in climbing

She tried to hide


For as she climbed, she sang a song,

To help the hours not seem so long.


Slowly slowly, oh so slow, this is how a snail does go (sing)


When she reached the top

She stopped for a rest.

Then moved across,

Singing her best.


Slowly slowly, oh so slow, this is how a snail does go (sing)


She started down the other side ,

If she was tired, this she did hide,

She kept on singing as she went down.

Until she was back on level ground.


Slowly slowly, oh so slow, this is how a snail does go (sing)


Back on the ground, she continued on her way.

Along the grassy track with her house on her back.

Singing a song, as she travelled along.


Slowly slowly, oh so slow, this is how a snail does go (sing several times getting slower and quieter)


To end the story and transition I come back to this song


Autumn is near,

Nights turning cold,

Blackberries in the hedgerows and leaves red and gold.


We then sang some more songs:


Lean daddy long legs underneath a stone,

Have you any company or are you alone?

Peep, peep under peep and you will see,

2 spotted ladybirds are sitting here will me.


Lean daddy long legs underneath a stone,

Have you any company or are you alone?

Peep, peep under, peep and you will see,

3 beetles inky black are sitting here with me.


Lean daddy long legs underneath a stone,

Have you any company or are you alone?

Peep, peep under, peep and you will see,

4 skinny earwigs are sitting here with me.


Hurry little children, come along with me.

Come into the garden and shake the apple tree.

I will shake the big one, you will shake the small.

When we filled our basket,

Home we'll take them all, home we'll take them all.


We are walking, we are walking,

As the leaves they flutter down.

We are walking we are walking, catch a leaf of golden brown.


We are skipping, we are skipping,

As the leaves, they flutter down.

We are skipping, we are skipping,

Catch a leaf of golden brown.


We are running, we are running,

As the leaves they flutter down,

We are running, we are running,

Catch a leaf of golden brown.


I am the wind I breeze and blow, mmm mm mmm mm

Listen, listen how I whisper, mm mm mm m

In the tree, listen to me.


We then walked through the beautiful woods, where the children were running and skipping and noticing leaves and mushrooms, and picking up special feathers, looking at the different leaves and noticing the changing colours.


We arrived at the stream where the children were so excited to be able to splash in the water.


We all had picnics in the sunshine and chatted and the kids climbed trees and splashed in the water and ran around. The mummies connected with one another and it was just lovely!


I put out some natural materials as an invitation for the children and parents to create and connect with the materials.


There was clay, conkers, acorns, feathers, stokmar beeswax, cocktail sticks. It was wonderful to see the children exploring with the materials creating all kinds of interesting shapes and creations. They had a lot of fun. Many of them spend a long time sculpting the clay with their little hands running to the stream to make the clay wet for moulding.


I then gathered together the children by singing a song several times whilst lighting the candle and the children started to gather around me for stories;


All is quiet, all is calm,

It's time to light the candle.


Benji and the Turnip Story : told with handmade puppets and silks

(I took this story from Susan Perrows book - Healing stories for challenging bahaviour)

I changed some of the words to work with the Autumn Equinox.


Once upon a time there was a little boy called Benji.


Benji wanted more than anything in the world to have a turnip lantern for the Autumn Equinox and he wanted to make some turnip soup.


So Benji went into the garden and planted a turnip seed and Benji said to the turnip.


Turnip, Turnip grow for me, grow as big as big can be.

That I may make for Autumn Equinox time the finest lantern that ever did shine and some delicious turnip soup for me to eat.


The Sun shone down on the turnip seeds and the rain watered the turnip and the turnip started to grow. It grew and it grew until it was the biggest, roundest, juiciest turnip that anyone had ever seen.


Finally Benji decided it was time to pull up the turnip.


He wen into the garden and took hold of the turnip top and started top pull and he pulled and he pulled and he pulled but the turnip didn't budge one bit. Just then into the garden came Mother. What are you doing Benji?


I'm trying to pull up a turnip.

Mother, mother pull with me, pull as hard as hard can be.


So Mother took hold of Benji and Benji took hold of the Turnip and they pulled and they pulled but the turnip did not budge one bit.


Just then, into the garden came Grandfather.


What are doing Benji?


I am trying to pull up a turnip,

Grandfather, grandfather, pull with me, pull as hard as hard can be.


So the Grandfather took hold of Mother, and Mother too hold of Benji and Benji took hold of the turnip and they pulled and they pulled but the turnip would not budge.


Just then into the garden came a Rabbit.


What are you doing Benji?


I'm trying to pull up a turnip.

Rabbit, Rabbit pull with me, pull as hard as hard can be.


So Rabbit took hold of the Grandfather and the Grandfather took gold of the Mother and the Mother took hold of Benji and they pulled and they pulled but the turnip did not budge one bit.


Just then into the garden came mouse.


What are doing Benji?


I'm trying to pull a turnip.


Mouse, mouse pull with me, pull as hard as hard can be.


So mouse took hold of rabbit, Rabbit took hold of Grandfather, Grandfather pulled the Mother. Mother pulled Benji and they pulled and they pulled but the turnip did not budget one bit.


Just then into the garden came caterpillar.