The Halton Waldorf High School Student Experience: Beyond the Classroom
Our small class sizes will give students the ability to participate in unique learning opportunities and activities beyond the classroom, in the broader community. The experiential curriculum will be unlike any other high school offering in Burlington.
The preliminary plans for the Grade 9 curriculum for 2018/2019 include many real and meaningful experiences that will engage the students:
- The welcome to high school trip in September will include several exciting days of social bonding, leadership and challenge in an outdoor setting; Tobermory high ropes and kayaking for example.
- An end of the year trip in June in the Ontario wilderness or on Lake Ontario.
- Curriculum supported programs at the Royal Botanical Gardens, Conservation Halton, Bronte Creek Provincial Park and Stratford Theatre.
- Physical Education opportunities outside of the traditional school gym such as sailing, golfing, horseback riding, rock climbing, skiing/snowboarding.
- The performance arts include choir, drama, and musical ensembles.
- The visual arts and crafts might include black and white drawing and painting, pottery, woodwork, metal work or basketry.
- There will be autumn and spring performance nights showcasing the students’ learning and talents.
- We plan to join the public school system’s Halton Secondary School Athletics Association for September 2018. http://hssaa.ca. We also hope to partner with Burlington’s Blyth Academy for some teams.
- Our students and faculty will determine our extra-curricular offerings which may include golf, cross country running, and skiing/snowboarding.
- Our unique access to golf facilities in Burlington will be an added bonus to the program.
Students will have an active social life both at the school and with other Waldorf schools:
- Weekly morning singing.
- Organized school social events such as barbeques and open mic nights.
- Joining the Toronto Waldorf School Halloween and semi-formal dances.
- Student Council will take the lead in planning social events outside of the school such as experiencing the local art and music scene.
The interests of the students and faculty will determine club offerings. Drama, Year Book and Robotics clubs and a Literary Magazine are in the planning stages.
In late May, students will live and work (daily chores and rhythm) on local organic or biodynamic farms for 3 weeks. As part of the science curriculum, the farm practicum fosters hard work, independence and a keen sense of the world they live in through the farm ecology all around them. This experience is unique to Waldorf education.
- One of the goals of Waldorf Education is to instill the spirit of service and volunteering in our students.
- Service opportunities in our local community will be part of the curriculum in each of the four years.
- There will also be a service week in Grade 11 and a service component in the grade 12 trip.
THE UPPER YEARS
GRADE 10 INTERNATIONAL EXCHANGE:
- One of the outstanding opportunities offered through the Waldorf system is the long-established language and cultural exchange program.
- Students live and study in a foreign language Waldorf high school for 3-4 months.
- Exchange partners will attend our school enlivening the social scene.
- Exchanges occur at Waldorf Schools in Europe and South America.
OTHER UNIQUE PROGRAMMING:
- In grade 10, the outdoor and experiential trips continue, a student play is produced, and the practicum is a two week Business opportunity arranged by each student in a business of their choice.
- Grade 11 sees the students running a small business as a fundraiser for their grade 12 trip, a week of Service to the community in the spring and the Marine Biology trip to New Brunswick in June.
- Grade 12 brings the year-long projects, the intensive senior drama production and the final trip that has a service component e.g. farming or working at a school in Costa Rica.
Photographs courtesy of the following organizations:
- Alkion Center Hawthorne Valley
- Berkshire Waldorf High School
- Green Meadow Waldorf School
- Sacramento Waldorf School
- Saratoga Waldorf School
- Toronto Waldorf School
- Waldorf High School of Massachusetts Bay