Curriculum Grades 1-8

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History, language arts, science, math and geography are taught in main lesson blocks during the morning main lesson hours.  The curriculum is enhanced as the children spend time with specialists engaged in handwork, Ojibwe language and culture, music, and woodworking.

A unique feature of schools inspired by the Waldorf approach is that teachers typically stay with the same class from first through eighth grade, building a closely-knit classroom community. The grade school program supports all children in developing their highest potential by encouraging the artistic, creative and imaginative life, and by providing a strong foundation in academic studies.

Subjects are taught in such a way that involves the whole child in the learning process, including having each child write and illustrate their own lesson books beginning in grade one.  An interdisciplinary approach is used to present a wide range of academic subjects including mathematics, grammar, creative writing, botany, zoology, chemistry, physics, physiology, history, and geography in blocks of three to four weeks per subject. Teachers strive to bring the information alive, first within themselves and then through their lesson presentation. This approach awakens the enthusiasm and interest of the students.

By middle school, the students' capacities for learning begins to truly flower, and their teacher meets them with lessons of greater depth and scope.  Mathematics builds upon discoveries made in the earlier grades through rhythmic movement, recitation and games, which laid the foundation for developing the newer skills of algebra and geometry.  Literature and history give a broad overview of cultures throughout the ages, from humanity's earliest stories and myths, up through ancient history and into modern times. In history and geography, students critical thinking skills are developed as they explore humanity's transition to a modern industrial civilization.

 

first grade

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Language Arts

Fairy tales and nature stories, pictorial introduction to the alphabet, beginning writing and reading.

Mathematics

Quality of numbers, skip counting, introduction to the four operations of addition, subtraction, division and multiplication, Roman numerals, multiplication in rhythm, introduction to mental arithmetic and math facts.

Specialty Subjects & Activities 

Ojibwe language and culture, speech, class play, form drawing, wet-on-wet painting, beeswax modeling, singing, pentatonic flute, knitting, jump rope and circle games. 

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second grade

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Language Arts

Development of written and oral language skills through exploration of riddles, fables, parables, myths and legends. Using materials drawn from classroom literature, children begin reading and writing longer sentences. Cursive is introduced.

Mathematics

Continuing to grow the children’s capacity with the four processes of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division introduced in grade one, children now also move into place value, multiplication tables, math games and geometric patterns.

Specialty Subjects & Activities

Ojibwe language and culture, daily pentatonic flute, class play, crocheting, knitting, felting, wet-on-wet painting, beeswax modeling, form drawing, as well as movement games that develop coordination, dexterity, spatial orientation and rhythm.

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third grade

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Language Arts

Creation stories from various cultures, history and legends of the Hebrew people, grammar, punctuation, narrative writing, parts of speech and spelling.

Mathematics

Long division, long multiplication, measurement, money, length, weight, liquids and mental math.

Life & Agricultural ARts

Shelter-building, cooking, spinning, weaving, dyeing, gardening and farming.

SPECIALTY SUBJECTS & ACTIVITIES

Ojibwe language and culture, speech, class play, stringed instrument, form drawing, wet-on-wet painting, beeswax modeling, singing rounds, diatonic flute, crochet, games and folk dancing

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fourth grade

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Language Arts

Norse and Finnish sagas, grammar (parts of speech, verb tense, punctuation), letter writing, report writing and narrative writing.

Mathematics

Fractions, averages, introduction to decimals, geometrical drawing, and mental math.

Social Studies

Local and state history and geography, including Native American studies, and map-making.

Science

Zoology (human and animal)

SPECIALTY SUBJECTS & ACTIVITIES

Ojibwe language and culture, speech, class play, stringed instrument, form drawing, wet-on-wet painting, beeswax modeling, singing rounds, diatonic flute, cross-stitch, games, Maypole dancing 

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fifth grade

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Language Arts

Active and passive verbs, use of capitals, punctuation, descriptive compositions, and written and oral reports.

Mathematics

Calculations with fractions and decimals, place value with decimals, construct circles and geometric forms, mental math

Social Studies

Ancient civilizations  of India, Persia, Mesopotamia and Egypt, along with their history and mythology, Greek mythology and history.

Geography

United States

Science

Botany

SPECIALTY SUBJECTS & ACTIVITIES

Second language, speech, class play, knitting with four needles, woodworking, wet-on wet painting, singing, diatonic flute and games.

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sixth grade

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Language Arts

Continued grammar and punctuation, expository, descriptive, narrative and report writing.

Mathematics

Business math, percentages, mathematical formulas, and geometry and precise geometric drawing with compass and straight edge.

Social Studies

Roman history, medieval history, rise of Islam. 

Geography

Europe

Science

Earth-centered astronomy, mineralogy, and physics (sound, light, heat, magnetism, static electricity).

SPECIALTY SUBJECTS & ACTIVITIES

Second language, speech, class play, hand sewing, woodworking, wet-on wet painting, singing, recorder and games

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seventh grade

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Language Arts

Creative writing, poetic forms and research papers.

Mathematics

Pre-algebra, negative numbers, exponents, Pythagorean theorem, geometric drawing and perspective drawing.

Social Studies

Renaissance History, biographies, Reformation, Age of Exploration.

Geography

Africa and/or South America

Science

Inorganic chemistry (combustion, acids and bases, solutions), physics (acoustics, optics, heat, electricity and mechanics), physiology (systems and organs).

SPECIALTY SUBJECTS & ACTIVITIES

Second language, speech, drama, hand sewing, painting, singing, recorder and games.

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eighth grade

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Language Arts

Short stories and story elements, Shakespeare, reading and discussing novels, essay writing and research papers.

Mathematics

Algebra, plane and solid geometry (Platonic solids), graphing linear equations, surface area and volume, number bases.

Social Studies

U.S. and Modern history, biographies, French, American and Russian Revolutions, the Industrial Revolution and the Civil Rights movement.

Geography

World trade and distribution of resources, Asia

Science

Organic chemistry (photosynthesis and digestion), meteorology, physics (including hydraulics, aerodynamics, electromagnetism and mechanics), physiology (senses, muscular and skeletal systems).

SPECIALTY SUBJECTS & ACTIVITIES

Second language, speech, drama, mentorship project, class trip, machine sewing, painting, clay modeling, singing, recorder and games.

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