Children with Special Needs in the Classroom- TERM 2

During Term 2: PD Seminar 5 and 6 over two days.
Friday 2nd  June from 9.30-4.00 p.m. and Saturday 3rd June 2017  9.00am – 1.30pm
Presenters: Janina Papas, Wolfgang Maschek, Tania Hungerford, Irmhild Kleinhenz.

Please note: participants can register for one or both days.

As Teacher Trainers we have long been aware of the growing number of students with special needs in all classrooms. Working with special needs children is one of the standard units of study in our 2-year full time course. We are keen to offer to classroom teachers this special professional development opportunity in addition to our existing annual range of workshops. This workshop in particular addresses challenges such as sensory integration disorder, ADD, ADHD and other modern life disorders.


PD 5-17:      Friday 2nd June 2017, 9.30am – 3.30pm

Session 1:   Nourishing Life forces – the basis of all pedagogy

Our life forces carry our physical body and inner life from birth to death. Physical existence and growth, sense perception and emotional life bear and create the ‘norms of life’. These ‘norms of life’ rely on the life forces, while at the same time they can strengthen or deplete them. As teachers, our task is foremost to nourish life energy and to hold the complete human being to its fullest capacity.

The 12 senses are the gateway between our inner and outer world and therefore govern whether life forces are nourished or depleted. In particular, healthy development of the lower senses in early childhood creates the basis of healthy feeling and cognition in primary and secondary years, whereas premature cognitive tasks will deplete life forces in early years.

How can we as teachers develop a guiding concept of ‘life forces’ and ‘norms of life’ for our ever more challenging work in the classroom?


Session 2:   Sensory integration – practical tools for the classroom (Janina Papas)

Following the notion of the 12 senses being ‘’the gateway between our inner and outer world’’ Janina has developed a helpful tool for class teachers, which focuses on early floor movements, called ‘The Pencil Case’. This series of specific exercises allows class teachers to assess ‘ease of movement’ through observation and to address basic issues of sensory integration. It can help to ‘reset’ the developmental process in a holistic and enjoyable way as a ‘will’ aspect of morning circle or dedicated movement class. 

Previously a class teacher, Janina has worked for many years in the field of Sensory Integration. She provides therapeutic sessions for individual children and trains class teachers here and overseas.                                                        

Please bring comfortable clothing for the floor exercises.


Session 3:   Learning Challenges and medical practise (Irmhild Kleinhenz)

Some years ago at a Kolisko conference, the key note speaker summoned up the event with the extraordinary statement: “In the near future, the medical practitioners will be the teachers and the school teachers will be the therapists.” Learning challenges and disorders are often approached as medical conditions and it may be the doctor prescribing change of life style or holistic therapies rather than medication. Some of these ‘holistic therapies’ will be partly administered through regular classroom activities.

Irmhild will share the vast experience of her medical praxis working with children and parents and her approach of collaboration with class teachers.



Janina Papas: Janina has worked many years in the field of sensory integration. She provides therapy to individual children and trains class teachers here and overseas.

Irmhild Kleinhenz: Irmhild is homeopath working with Anthroposophy. She has had thirty years of experience in private practice and specializes in teaching professionals the fundamentals of Anthroposophic medicine and therapy both nationally and internationally. Irmhild currently works from the Melbourne Therapy Centre and teaches adult education at the Melbourne Rudolf Steiner Seminar.


PD 6:      Saturday, 3rd June, 8.30am – 1.30pm (TERM 2)

 Session 1:   Disorder and Balance (Wolfgang Maschek)

How a ‘Balance in Education’ can help to harmonise some of the modern disorders (ADD, ADHD, OCD, ODD etc)

By definition, ‘disorder’ indicates a condition where things have gone out of the expected array of a functioning order. Every effective therapy will engage with the question of what exactly causes the disorder. Recognising possible causes will guide the way to restore what has gone ‘out of order’. With his ‘Balance in Education’, Rudolf Steiner has given clear indications for hygienic  balance in the human condition and the particular needs for healthy childhood development. His wisdom provides the key to unlock the causes of these modern disorders.

After a warm-up with movement and rhythm, Wolfgang will bring the basic ideas of a ‘balanced education’ in practical terms and relate them to the possible causes of common disorders. Out of this understanding, he will explore harmonising strategies for the classroom.


Session 2: Dissociation – Re-integration (Tania Hungerford)

 Trauma is a dissociation force – the use of clay modelling in the class room is an example of a tool to re-integrate

Trauma can hinder development and dissociates not only the brain but the whole human organisation. Our senses, life forces, thinking capacity, emotional well being, and our sense of self and self esteem are often deeply affected and ‘out of order’. The task of the therapist and of the educator is to help with the re-integration within the human being.

Tania will give a brief overview of the dissociating effect trauma can have on the human. She will discuss what the conditions for resilience building are and how you as a teacher, professional or parent might be able to facilitate this. Furthermore Tania will discuss and provide an experience of artistic work using clay modelling as an example of a therapeutic tool for re-integration of what has been dissociated.



Wolfgang Maschek: Wolfgang has over 30 years of classroom experience, is a full time tutor at the Seminar and mentors Schools here and overseas. He is a tutor for designing teaching and learning programs with a focus on Rudolf Steiner’s approach to ‘Balance in Education’.

Tania Hungerford: Tania is a tutor here at the Seminar, specialised in art, counselling, art therapy, social sciences and special needs with the particular aspect of trauma counselling. Tania is also a private practitioner in the fields of counselling, trauma counselling and art therapy.


Please note: These two days can be booked separately or as a package

Cost: PD 5: Friday, 2/6/16      $180

PD 6: Saturday 3/6/16   $150

PD 5&6 package              $300

PD 9 (a repeat of PD 6) on Saturday 12th August: $150

These PDs address and certify Australian Professional Standards for Teachers

APST 1.5; 1.5; 4.1; 4.2; 6.2; 6.4; 7.4

In the event of a course being cancelled, notification will be no less than 2 weeks before the event;

Our nominal cut off date for enrolments is one month prior to the date. If you wish to enrol after that date please make personal contact with Wolfgang on 9876 5199.

Any person who is travelling from Interstate and booking accommodation should take out appropriate travel insurance to cover themselves in the event that our course cannot go ahead.

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