Abiding Heart's Curriculum
A Fusion of Experiential Contemplative Curriculum Content with Steiner's Pedagogical Insights
The Abiding Heart's Experiential Contemplative Curriculum for kindergarten and primary (class 1-8) is rich, delightful, fun and transformative at the same time. It is a joy for teachers to teach this curriculum. Teaching becomes an art!
We deeply believe that our Experiential Contemplative Curriculum can help children heal, thrive and progress on the path of inner development and through this process, the people around them - teachers, parents, neighbours and community - can also heal.
The Abiding Heart’s Experiential Contemplative Curriculum include contemplative studies-immersed: circle time, storytelling, puppet shows, indoor and outdoor play, language learning, physical education and gardening, all in line with best practices in early childhood and primary (class 1-8) education.
The Abiding Heart's Experiential Contemplative Curriculum content is a product of 26 years of collecting and creating resources, lessons, activities, and literature in 17 different subjects in primary school (class 1-8) and more than 10 other themes for kindergarten. Our Experiential Contemplative Curriculum is very, very rich, wholesome, joyful and nourishing both to teachers and children. It is also a culmination of knowledge and experience of decades of dedicated work by experienced kindergarten and primary school teachers, special needs teachers, teacher trainers, curriculum developers, and other pedagogical specialists, working in many different cultural and socio-economic settings around the world.
Over the schooling years, children learn meditation, reverence and rituals, heritage arts and crafts, cultural studies, the sciences, sustainability and environmental studies, humanities, social studies, history, contemplative studies, contemplative movement and charya dance, music (playing musical instruments), singing, woodwork, stone carving and metal work.
At the same time, the Abiding Heart’s Experiential Contemplative Curriculum is designed to be flexible to meet the country’s natural curriculum guidelines to ensure that the children’s education prepares them for living and working when they become adults.
A large percentage of the children from various communities in Asia, Africa and other worldwide communities are expected to be fluent with more than one language. The Abiding Heart’s language curriculum offers a bilingual or trilingual learning environment that at the same time celebrates the rich traditions and cultures represented in each school. We provide our trainees with training on how to teach our integrated language-content curriculum and how to balance teaching two or three languages from kindergarten to class 8. Our languages curriculum has a strong emphasis on students learning to speak eloquently, read fluently, and write at a sophisticated level, so by the end of class 8 the children are beyond proficient and can shift from one language to another with fluency and ease.
The Abiding Heart’s Experiential Contemplative Education uniqueness is that it rests on contemplative traditions rooted in ancient wisdom rather than on prevailing education systems or worldview It places the emphasis on developing wisdom and compassion that is to be lived in the classroom and in our personal life. Abiding Heart Education™ fuses Contemplative traditions' worldview, meditation and application with Waldorf education methodology and developmental science to create our unique children’s transformational pedagogy. We conduct action research which informs the development of our curriculum and methodology as well as the children’s curricular content and learning approach. This transformational approach to learning is grounded in a process that nurtures the learners’ changing consciousness and fosters autonomy and ownership in teachers. Our curriculum interlinks all aspects of learning and knowing and advocates for self transformation by bringing about a shift in how children learn and experience the world.
The methodology of delivering our Experiential Contemplative curriculum is based on our fusion of various learning and teaching approaches: contemplative traditions, the Waldorf education framework and our transformational and experiential approach to education. The Abiding Heart’s Curriculum rests on contemplative traditions' worldview that is inspired by Dr Steiner's epistemology and experiential Buddhist wisdom with meditation and application in everyday experience. The Abiding Heart’s curriculum is delivered through twelve to fifteen main lessons blocks in each year group, one of which is the production of a class play. All subjects are immersed in the contemplative traditions' view: literacy, numeracy, creative writing, literature and poetry, contemplative studies and literature, visual arts, performing arts, history, the sciences, humanities, social studies, handwork, crafts, heritage learning, sustainability and environmental studies, horticulture science, home economics, and life skills and self care. Music, arts and movement are interwoven into the subject areas.
Abiding Heart's Experiential Contemplative teacher training courses prepares trainees with the necessary skills, knowledge and understanding of transformative experiential contemplative kindergarten and primary education, and also provide training in caring for and supporting children’s wellbeing. It is impossible to implement the Abiding Heart's Experiential Contemplative Curriculum without attending our two-year full time teacher training courses. Therefore, the Abiding Heart Education approach is an interdependence of our unique children’s transformational pedagogy delivered through our experiential contemplative teacher training.
Our teacher training courses interweave academic lectures, practical curriculum studies, heritage and experiential art classes, and meditation classes, all of which are necessary skills required for teachers to teach our curriculum. Our courses courses include a detailed training on how to teach the Abiding Heart's Experiential Buddhist Curriculum rich material and resources. The Abiding Heart's curriculum content is enormous! We have a very large amount of content and resources for every subject we teach children from kindergarten to class 8. The content of Experiential Buddhist Curriculum is a fusion of experiential Buddhism processed through the Abiding Heart learning methodology. It draws deeply on the live Buddhist experiential tradition which emphasises applying the knowledge acquired to everyday life in order to nurture an ongoing transformation. This new education approach brings transformational learning into the everyday reality of kindergarten and primary children.