Today’s post, from the Seventh Grade curriculum section from the Moving through the Grades chapter in the book Waldorf Education: A Family Guide by Fenner and Rivers, © Michaelmas Press. The chapter was written by Karen Rivers, editor and author of Chanticleer, a former quarterly publication for Waldorf Schools.
“As seventh grade children enter puberty, they are also adventuring across a basic threshold experience on their way to self hood . . . If their spirit of inquiry and creativity in a social context can be fostered in puberty, they will surely find it sweet to enter adulthood. . . .To help them cross this threshold, we present a rich panorama designed to take them out to civilizations and people who share their mood of soul, as well as lead them to a closer look at each one’s own environment and inner being.”
Here is a summary of curriculum highlights for each subject:
History: Renaissance and Reformation are studied and seventh graders relate to the challenge to traditional authority that is the hallmark of this era. “Birth in the Renaissance parallels birth in the student’s thinking, feeling and willing.”
World Geography: Covers the globe and takes shape through the exploration of the time and also complements the study of “climate, tides and geographical influences on culture and economic life.”
Science: Mechanics in physics are studied such as lever principles and early machinery, and also the chemical study of combustion, fire, digestion, and oxidation. Physiology of humans is introduced at this time.
Mathematics: “This year the students venture into mathematical thinking that has no relation to physical perceptions. This makes real demands on the child’s imaginative powers.” This includes algebra, square and cube roots and ratios, and continued geometrical drawing.
Literature: Creative writing and literature is taught with the theme “Wish, Wonder and Surprise” and is “designed to bring consciousness, balance and refinement to the adolescent’s emotional life.”
Music: Renaissance music is taught in both individual and group choral and instrumental work. “
“Eurythmy explores poems with contrast, wonder and surprise; ballads with quick dramatic movement, drama and tragedy. In Handwork the children sew hand puppets or slippers and learn embroidery, Carving and clay modeling continue.”
For more information about Spring Garden Waldorf’s unique Class 7 curriculum, speak with or email our Admissions Director who can also put you in touch with our current Class 7 instructor.