Songs to share

Waldorfschoolsongs.com is an extensive online repertoire of music used in dsc_0898-300x249the Waldorf Schools. This website is meant to be a source of inspiration and an indispensable guide for everyone who sings with children and adults.

The idea for this website began in the Netherlands, and was first launched as vrijeschoolliederen.nl. In the Dutch school system, singing with children is no longer common. The many pedagogical uses and benefits of choral singing are no longer recognized; fewer and fewer teachers know how to incorporate music into their lesson plans, and for that reason less and less children learn to sing at school. The culture of choral singing is quickly disappearing, in spite of the fact that singing is a natural part of child development.

Waldorf Schools make singing an official part of the curriculum and an intrinsic part of the daily lesson cycle. Music lessons and singing make significant contributions to the School’s tripartite focus on heads, hearts, and hands, or the social, emotional, and cultural development of a child.

Over the years, the Waldorf School movement has built up rich repertoire of music to use as educational aids; these include folk songs, rounds, international tunes, camp songs, and Christmas carols in all genres. Some of these songs are particular to the Waldorf Schools (such as some festival songs), but the vast majority are universally fun, beautiful, and inciting for children and adults alike.

Many of the songs available on Waldorfschoolsongs.com cannot be found in published collections; previously, they could only be obtained from fellow teachers. Hidden treasures and class favorites rarely made it beyond the classroom door, which meant that many interesting song material remained relatively unknown and underappreciated. Even teachers who regularly incorporated singing into their lesson plans often asked the following questions:

  • How can I order the enormous collection of materials I’ve collected and stashed in various folders so that I can quickly find the song I’m looking for?
  • Where can I get my hands on more new and interesting songs?

This website was created to address these questions. In other words, it is meant to help make the collecting and sharing Waldorf School songs easier. Paper copies have been replaced with streamlined musical notations, which have in turn been added to a growing online database. The user-friendly platform we’ve developed makes searching for songs, browsing, and discovering new songs simple and enjoyable. In addition, you can listen to songs, view the sheet music, and even download and print songs for your own personal use. This website makes a vast repertoire of songs readily—and freely—available for everyone, regardless of whether or not they are affiliated with the Waldorf Schools.

dsc_0750-256x300The songs on this database have been organized according to age group. These aren’t strict categories; some may find the songs too childish, others too complicated. Sometimes rounds or songs written with multiple parts for an older age group can be sung in unison with younger children.

The collection of songs on this website is never complete; every month new songs are added. We hope that visitors will send their favorite songs to the editorial staff so they can be uploaded onto the database for others to use and enjoy. This way, Waldorfschoolsongs.com can be a valuable teaching aid and a source of inspiration for others. More importantly, Waldorfschoolsongs.com hopes to renew and strengthen the singing culture in schools by making beautiful, age appropriate music available for everyone.

dsc_0898-300x249This website is made possible by the generous support of our sponsors. On the page sponsors and donors you’ll find a list of all the organizations that have financially contributed to the creation and maintenance of Waldorfschoolsongs.com. Nor would this website be possible without our staff of volunteers, who help with the digitalizing, correcting, uploading, translating, and organizing of our vast repertoire of songs; our special thanks goes out to the enthusiasm and devotion of Jolente Regeling, Alo Besemboen, Huib Lammers, and Marcel van Os and many others.

Waldorfschoolsongs.com is a music library devoted to sharing songs in a modern way and for everyone. Music is only music from the moment you can hear it; this website is meant to bring good music to sympathetic ears.

On behalf of the editorial staff,

Matthijs Overmars