History of the Waldorf School Windheok

The task of understanding is not to replicate in conceptual form something that already exists, but rather to create a wholly new realm, that together with the world given to our senses constitutes the fullness of reality.
Rudolf Steiner

In the early 1970s, the Anthroposophy began to interest people in the Windhoek area. At the same time, there were initial impulses to found a Waldorf School. Thanks to the determination of people who wanted Waldorf educational for their children, the first Waldorf kindergarten opened in 1976. Due to staff shortages however, the closure was inevitable after about 11 years. Four years later, the “Kindergarten of the Christian Community” opened.

 

The year 2000 was a sucessful year for the Namibian Waldorf community, because the long-awaited founding of a school became reality: A place in the center of Windhoek and 40 children for the first two double classes were found. The founding teachers were Mrs. Birgit Peter from Flensburg and Mr. Peter Benkhofer from Hamburg. The school grew rapidly so that a change of location was soon necessary.

 

On the eastern outskirts of the city, Hugo Gramm made a small farm available, wonderfully embedded in nature. The "Michaelis" dry riverbed, with its sand and colored stones invites you to discover and play. The original buildings, such as the farmhouse and stables, have been rebuilt and new buildings have been added. In the meantime, everything seems like a small dynamic village, with a student hostel, kindergarten, houses for caretakers, volunteers and teachers, with sports fields, play areas and tree shade areas, with a duck pond and chicken yard. More than 100 trees grow on the school grounds.

P1190056_edited.jpg
DSC_9457_edited.jpg

While the founding parents' children of German origin predominantly attended school in the first few years, more and more children from the various ethnic groups of Namibia began to join. The Waldorf School Windhoek is a Namibian private school that serves learners from all socioeconomic backgrounds. Namibia is one of the world's most unequal countries, both socially and economically. 

 

When Education Minister Abraham Iyambo visited us in 2012, he was very impressed by which way our students experience education. He showed an extraordinary devotion to the learners and saw this type of school as exemplary.

Large, often cross-class projects have always been highlights in the history of the school. One was "Hit the beat", which was held annually with grades 10 to 12. The students love to sing, solo and in choirs, to dance, to drum and to present other rhythmic performances. Stage appearances in Namibia alternate with tours in Germany - exciting topics such as HIV prevention, cultural diversity, respect for our earth play a role in terms of content and are implemented artistically.

 

Another project is the Parzival Main Lesson in grade 11. The nature of Namibia offers excellent opportunities to bring Parcival's paths to a deep inner and outer experience. The middle school students eagerly strive towards cross-class-projects such as Mozart's opera “The Magic Flute” or the musical “Peronnik”. A black light theater enriched with choir, drumming and shadow theater is on stage in the ninth grade.

Recurring, strongly anchored activities encourage the learners to grow beyond the ordinary and to raise their individual potential. These projects have a strengthening effect on the children and young people.

 

Today the school has entered into adulthood with a rich history. The demands of the times (economic crisis, corona pandemic) are enormous and call us to shape the future with new ideas and imagination.