Howard Dobson has worked in the field of education throughout his adult life, and has nurtured a variety of imaginative and intellectual interests along the way. Born in England, first educated at Archbishop Holgate's Grammer School in York, he eventually received qualifications in Earth and Environmental Studies (University of London), state Teaching Diploma (University of Durham), and Waldorf Teacher Training (Wynstones School, Gloucester).
Howard has been on the ground, in the classroom for many years, first in state and private schools for seven years, then in Waldorf high schools for 25 years (and still counting!). Schools and non-profit organisations, such as the Federation of Waldorf Schools in Southern Africa, continue to seek his expertise as an outreach facilitator in Waldorf methodology. Howard has been in this current capacity as Teacher Trainer since 1999.
Howard's professional interests include
- Spiritual Science and its holistic insight into the human being and the environment
- Creative Teaching
- Sustainable and Holistic living
- Biodynamic Agriculture and the nature of water
- Geological Sciences
On a personal note, Howard thoroughly enjoys outdoor activities, gardening and self-sufficient food production, folk music, and real ale.
Catherine van Alphen
Catherine van Alphen was born into an artistic family and grew up with a passion for painting, drawing and clay modelling, especially the subtlety of water-colours. After a Diploma in Primary Education from University of Cape Town, she took a Class One at Michael Oak Waldorf School at the tender age of 21 years! She also had a wonderfully inspirational year at Emerson College in the U.K. Later she married and had three children, now all grown up.
Catherine taught at Michael Oak for 11 years, taking two classes through the system during which time she became very involved in creating school festivals using drama and music. She later moved to the Centre for Creative Education and began training primary school teachers in educational methodology and the arts for the past 12 years. She graduated with an M Phil from University of Cape Town in 2005.