Project Description

The 7th graders enjoy an intensive study of the Renaissance, which brings all previous cultural achievements to a glorious flowering and ushers in a new age of wide scientific inquiry and exploration.  The students enthusiastically dive into this exploration and take this energy into their own studies of Africa, South America, and Asia. They are also met with new opportunities to explore the world around them through chemistry, physiology, astronomy, and physics.

The Child

The seventh grade signals a very important change in the development of the child. Externally, the body is usually in the throes of puberty while, internally, the new force of intellect is born. In many ways, it can be characterized as the year of looking ahead. Finally able to call themselves teens, these students are chomping at the bit, ready to join the world. Their horizons are expanding, the social experience of the class is very important to them, and every day can be full of wonders even as they strive to balance a tender inner emotional life.  As the seventh grader moves into a new phase of growth – adolescence – she/he brings a new capacity for critical thinking to the subject matter at hand. These students are charged with emotional vitality and question everything around them. They seek to learn the boundaries of authority and the laws of science. 

The Class

Seventh grade is a time for students to assert their independence and to find their place among their peers. What better time to study the Renaissance and the Age of Exploration and the biographies of strong individuals in history, active members of society, who made their mark in science, exploration and art? 

The physical sciences continue with mechanics, beginning with the discovery of the lever principle in relation to the human arm. This block extends to the basic mechanical principles applied to ancient and modern machines. Further topics in physics are the laws of refraction, reflection, heat and electricity. Students study human reproduction and health. During the chemistry block, the students study the properties of acids and bases and the lime cycle. Combustion is a theme that leads into the study of physiology and the life processes. 

Astronomy continues as the heliocentric study of our solar system.

The vigorous mathematics curriculum brings students an understanding of negative numbers, algebra and plane geometry, graphing roots, powers and formulas. 

The geography curriculum includes the explorations of the New World by European explorers. In the creative writing curriculum of seventh grade, students synthesize all previous language studies as they explore oral tradition, the development of written language, and survey styles of poetry and prose genres. The world language curriculum includes grammar skills, reading, writing and conversation. 

Cyber Civics classes focus on information literacy.

The fine and practical arts continue with the addition of perspective drawing. 

During music class, students will participate in chorus and orchestra while studying musical styles, such as madrigals, ballads, opera and oratorio. 

Finally, physical education will include team games and preparation for the annual regional 7th & 8th Grade track and field meet including sprinting, javelin, long jump and discus.

Middle School Faculty:

Ania Kubik
Grade 6-8 – Shady Trees

Ania is a Waldorf-trained class teacher whose specialties are arts and handwork, and whose special interest is in movement.

She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia and a Waldorf Completion Certificate from the Waldorf Institute of Southern California (WISC) in Northridge, California. Ania has taught grades one through five as a class teacher and grades one through eight as a handwork teacher at the Pasadena Waldorf School, and grades five through twelve as an art specialist at the Waldorf School of Orange County. In addition to class teaching the Shady Trees combined class at Maple Village, she also enjoys contributing to Waldorf teacher education in handwork, drawing, clay modeling and painting at WISC, and clay modeling in the adult education program at the Waldorf School of Orange County. Born and raised in Syracuse, New York, and a former resident of the state of Virginia, she lives in Arcadia with her husband, Bill, and her teenage daughter, Tierra. Ania enjoys sharing the richness of the Waldorf grades curriculum with her class families, self-governance of Maple Village Waldorf School with her colleagues, and participating in the community life of the school.

Brooke Natzke
Grade 6 Main Lesson

Brooke Natzke first learned about Waldorf education in 1997 and became involved with an Arizona Waldorf charter school…

…in 2002 after having her own children. She holds a B.F.A. in Theatre from Arizona State University and moved to Northridge, California in 2006 to pursue her Waldorf teacher training. Brooke completed both her Waldorf Teaching Certificate with the Waldorf Institute of Southern California, and her California teaching credential with California State University, Northridge in May 2011. Her two daughters attend WSOC.