The Grades

As a developing Waldorf Grade School, we endeavor to teach the child through "head, hands and heart." The Waldorf curriculum instills a living wisdom that enriches the intellect and deepens the natural joy and wonder of learning, integrating the arts in both academic and practical activities. Academic excellence, the visual and performing arts, social responsibility, and moral integrity are the hallmarks of this time-tested education.

In Waldorf schools, the same teacher ideally remains with the class from first grade through eighth, providing an extraordinary continuity in curriculum and a deep understanding of and appreciation for each child. The main lesson subjects, taught in blocks of three to four weeks, are presented during the first hours of the morning. The intent of this approach is to focus fully on one theme, which is presented in an interdisciplinary and artistic way, actively connecting the subject with the child's feelings and maturing intellect. Specially trained faculty teach French, handwork, music, physical education, eurythmy and woodwork.

To read more about the grades programs from the perspectives of both a parent and a graduate, go to the following links: Coming to Waldorf and Origins of My Dedication to Learning.

First Grade

Language Arts: Capital Letters, Oral Recitation, Introduction to Reading, Drama

Literature: Folk and Fairy Tales

Mathematics: Number Concept, The Four Operations (+, −, x, ÷), simple times tables

Nature Study: Stories, artwork, outdoor exploration

Form Drawing: Straight Line and Curve, Linear Forms

French: Songs and verses, Dances and Games

Physical Education: Cooperative Games, hiking, imaginative outdoor play

Handwork: Knitting

Artwork: Painting, Drawing, Modeling

Music: Pentatonic flute, Singing, rhythmic activities

Second Grade

Language Arts: Lower Case Letters, Simple Parts of Speech, Reading, Oral Recitation, Drama

Literature: Fables, Legends of Saints and Heroes

Mathematics: The Four Operations Continued, Concrete Computation, Column Addition and Subtraction, Multiplication Facts

Native American Lore

Nature Study & Earthcrafts

Form Drawing: Linear Forms

French: Songs, Dances and Games, Poetry and Stories, Alphabet and Numbers

Physical Education: Cooperative Games, Hiking, Outdoor Play

Handwork: Knitting and Purling, Crochet

Artwork: Painting, Drawing, Modeling

Music: Pentatonic flute, Singing, rhythmic activities

math writing

Third Grade

Language Arts: Cursive Writing, Parts of Speech, Grammar and Punctuation, Reading, Spelling, Oral Recitation, Drama

Literature: Old Testament Stories

Mathematics: Four Operations Continued, Carrying and Borrowing, Multiplication Tables, Time, Money and Measurement, Computation and Problem Solving

Food, Shelter and Clothing

Farming & Gardening

Form Drawing: Vertical Symmetry

French: Songs, Dances and Games, Poetry and Stories, Color and Action Words

Physical Education: Cooperative Games, Hiking, Outdoor Play

Handwork: More Complex Crochet and Knitting Projects

Artwork: Painting, Drawing, Modeling

Music: Soprano Recorder, Singing, Music Notation Introduced

Fourth Grade

Language Arts: Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling, Letter Format, Reading, Oral Recitation, Poetry, Drama

Literature: Norse Mythology

Mathematics: Fractions, Long Division, Computation and Problem Solving

Zoology

Local Geography & History, Mapping

Form Drawing: Braided Forms

French: Songs, Dances and Games, Poetry and Stories, Days, Months, Seasons, Telling Time

Physical Education: Cooperative Games, Team Skills

Handwork: Cross Stitch

Artwork: Painting, Drawing, Clay Sculpture

Music: Singing (Rounds), Music Notation, Instrumental Music, Recorder

recorder javelin

Fifth Grade

Language Arts: Grammar and Composition, Spelling, Reading, Report Writing, Drama

Literature & History: Ancient Civilizations, and Mythology (Indian, Persian, Babylonian, Egyptian, Greek)

Mathematics: Decimals, Mixed Numbers, Computation and Problem Solving, Ratios and Percents

Botany & Zoology

North American Geography & History

Form Drawing: Free Hand Geometric Drawing

French: French Geography, Foods, Subject Pronouns and Verb Conjugation

Classics: Egyptian and Greek Language and Culture

Physical Education: Greek Olympic Events

Handwork: Four Needle Knitting

Woodwork

Artwork: Painting, Drawing, Clay Sculpture

Music: Recorder Ensemble, Singing (Rounds and Harmonies), Music Notation, Orchestra and Chorus

Sixth Grade

Language Arts: Grammar and Composition, Spelling, Reading, Report Writing, Drama

Literature & History: Rome and the Middle Ages

Mathematics: Business Math, Computation and Problem Solving, Geometric Drawing

Astronomy, Mineralogy & Geology, Physics

Geography of Latin America

French: Conversational French, Grammar and Vocabulary

Classics: Latin and Roman Culture

Physical Education: Team Sports, Archery

Handwork: Fabric Sculpture

Woodwork

Artwork: Painting, Drawing (black and white media), Clay Sculpture

Music: Recorder Ensemble, Singing (Rounds and Harmonies), Orchestra and Chorus

geometric drawing woodworking

Seventh Grade

Language Arts: Grammar and Composition, Creative Writing, Spelling, Reading, Report Writing, Note Taking Skills, Researching, Drama

Literature & History: The Renaissance and the Age of Exploration

Mathematics: Negative Numbers, Inequalities, Pre-algebra Skills, Geometry

Physics, Chemistry, Astronomy, Physiology

European and African Geography

French: Conversational French, Grammar and Vocabulary

Classics: Latin and Roman Culture and Literature

Physical Education: Team Sports, Archery

Handwork: Sewing Clothing

Woodwork

Artwork: Painting, Perspective Drawing, Clay Sculpture

Music: Recorder Ensemble, Singing, Orchestra and Chorus

Eighth Grade

Language Arts: Grammar and Composition, Creative Writing, Spelling, Reading, Report Writing, Note taking Skills, Researching, Drama, Literary Forms, Elements of Style, Shakespeare

Literature & History: American History, Modern Events, Life and Work of Shakespeare

Mathematics: Pre-algebra Skills, Algebra, Geometry

Physics, Chemistry, Physiology

World Geography, emphasis on Asia

French: Conversational French, Literature, Grammar and Vocabulary

Classics: Latin and Roman Culture and Literature

Physical Education: Team Sports

Handwork: Machine Sewing

Woodwork

Artwork: Painting, Drawing, Clay Sculpture, Other Media

Music: Recorder Ensemble, Singing, Orchestra and Chorus

This is not the current site of Orchard Valley Waldorf School. I designed the site and maintained it for the school from its founding in 2004 through 2011. I have reproduced it here for historical as well as sentimental reasons, and it includes much out of date material. The school's current site can be found at www.ovws.org. — Numa Haase