Beyond the Classroom

 

One of the underlying tenets of Waldorf education is the emphasis on human connection. This unique education is also naturally flexible and innovative to meet the needs and challenges of our times. Today we face a dichotomous need to sustain human connection and community while maintaining social and physical distance. Our Beyond the Classroom online curriculum embraces and reflects our pedagogical capacity to respond to this need. In the spirit of learning, courage, and joy, our faculty has collaborated with enthusiasm and imagination to bring our vibrant curriculum into your home.

Originally, we anticipated that Beyond the Classroom distance learning would last several weeks and we hoped for the promise of returning to campus after Spring Break. As we face an extended closure through at least mid-June, we approach the last eight weeks of our 2019–20 school year with renewed intent — and healthy Waldorf curiosity. How can we refine Beyond the Classroom to keep students in preschool through grade 12 connected to their teachers and classmates in distance learning for a longer term? How do we best collaborate with families who must balance teaching with parenting, careers, and self-care? In this 100th anniversary year of Waldorf education, we were invited to “Learn to Change the World.” None of us imagined that a pandemic would change our world to the degree it has. But this is our world, and it is our moment of opportunity. Can we learn to change? If we approach the changes we face with hope and resilience, what we stand to learn together-apart might be nothing short of magnificent.  

Our Beyond the Classroom program is built upon the following four principles:

  • Connection — We affirm that the value of relationship remains at the core of our school and supports students in their learning. We seek to deepen our ties in new ways.
  • Predictability — In a sea of constant change, we develop rhythms that sustain and nourish student development. We strive to communicate adjustments and align expectations.
  • Flexibility — The distance learning format requires teachers to reshape lessons and re-imagine their teaching, students to participate with greater openness and independence, and parents to provide support as never before. 
  • Empowerment  — This may be the challenge of our lifetimes, and it is a formative experience for our students. We continue to build and trust in their capacities to thrive in a changed world, creating their own bright futures.

Parents receive regular communication about assignments and can schedule time to speak with teachers. And you can visit our SWS Chalkboard Archive to read weekly Beyond the Classroom updates from Head of School Tracy Bennett. See below for more specifics based upon your child(ren)’s grade.

Online Curriculum Overviews

 Resources