The structure of SFWS curriculum is designed to both stimulate and support the developing child. Students progress through the grades from ancient civilizations to the modern world with an understanding of the connections between individual development and the development of culture. Ushering the students through the grades, the class teacher often remains with the class for as many as eight years. He or she takes long-term responsibility for the student’s academic education, as well as for their physical and social development.
Our primary goal in the first three grades is to develop the innate human capacities of each child through a holistic approach to learning. Through rhythmic movement, artistic practice, and mental picturing, we stimulate the forces of will activity, feeling sensibilities, and imaginative thinking.
The children in grades four and five should have an awakening ability to see their place in the world and an active curiosity and the will to act upon it. The middle grade students show an increasing independence in following through with activities and responsibility in use of materials, based on the habits built up from the Kindergarten and early grades.
Beginning in the sixth grade and continuing through the eighth we hold an increasing expectation for the students’ sense of self-direction and responsibility for personal behavior and learning. We prepare the students to bring full forces of feeling and will to bear to meet the intellectual expectations of the high school curriculum.
Likewise, the self-discipline and work habits developed in the lower grades become the social and academic standards that will prepare the student for high school. From the subtle precision of a geometric construction to the resistance of wood beneath a chisel, the student’s whole being is challenged to meet the demands of thought and material substance.