Waldorf High School of Massachusetts Bay
An Independent Waldorf High School For Grades 9-12

Practical Arts and Electives

Practical Arts and Elective are offered on a trimester schedule.

Acting and Performance

Elective Course
The Drama Elective offers the opportunity for students who wish to explore acting and performance more deeply. In the Drama Elective class sessions and extra-curricular rehearsals, students delve more deeply into choosing a challenging play, interpreting the language, exploring their characters, and practicing and developing techniques to bring a character to life. Students in the Drama Elective work on complex, modern pieces for most of the year, performing plays for the school community in April. Recent performances include Tennessee Williams’ “The Glass Menagerie” and several of his one-act plays, Sam Shepard’s “True West”, Sarah Ruhl’s “Eurydice”, and Frank Wedikind’s “Spring Awakening”.

Destination Imagination

Elective Course
In this elective, students will participate in the Destination Imagination (DI) program, a creative problem-solving competition where teams of 2-7 students choose a challenge and work together to develop a solution to present at a tournament in March.  Teams that do well move on to the state tournament and perhaps even to Globals. DI challenges range from engineering-based (e.g., build a device to move objects through a course) to artistically-based (e.g., write a play telling a story from three different perspectives) and are designed to encourage holistic, divergent, and innovative thinking skills.  Participants will be required to attend the DI regional tournament, which will be a full-day event on a Saturday in March. For more information about DI, check out www.destinationimagination.org.

Flag Football

Elective Course
Flag Football allows for friendly energetic team efforts while also allowing us to enjoy New England's colorful autumn great outdoors. We will learn a few team strategies, but mostly make fair teams and have fun while we PLAY THE GAME!!!

Hand Spinning

Elective Course
Students try to get as far “from sheep to shawl” (or scarf?) as possible. The class explores the steps to turn raw wool into a finished scarf or shawl. These steps include combing the wool and preparing it for spinning, then using a simple drop spindle and spinning the wool into yarn. If time allows, students will knit their own handspun yarn into a simple scarf or shawl.

Chinese Calligraphy

Elective Course
This workshop is an introduction to the principles , techniques, and art of Chinese calligraphy. Emphasis is placed on the techniques of using Chinese writing brushes, the execution of individual strokes, and the construction of Chinese characters in "regular" style. Students also acquire an understanding and appreciation of the aesthetics of Chinese calligraphy and its role in Chinese culture.


Elective Course
We will make a traditional Japanese bound book, and a flat back case bound book. Students will learn techniques of paper marbling and create paste paper for the covers.

Computer Programming

Elective Course
In this course, open to beginners and all levels of experienced programmers, students will learn to write graphics software. Each student designs and creates their own computer game and/or graphical simulation program. The primary language is BASIC, though experienced programmers may also work in other languages such as Python or Java.

Digital Arts

Elective Course
In this course, students develop skills in digital photography, digital darkroom and photo-compositing, animation and digital filmmaking. While most of the time is spent on individual and small-group projects of the student’s choice, some skill-building assignments are also required of all participants.

Knitting for Charity

Elective Course
Students in this class knit or crochet squares to make blankets for the estimated 14.8 million abandoned children and AIDS orphans in southern Africa living in dire poverty. Our squares join the thousands of squares from around the world in blankets sewn together by the organization KasCare through their Knit-a-Square project. According to the organization’s website: “As a children’s charity, KasCare’s knit-a-square program has two goals: 1. To warm and comfort these children with blankets, hats, vests and pullovers. 2. To raise awareness of this mostly hidden human tragedy.”

Model U.N.

Elective Course
The Model UN elective gives students an opportunity to advance their understanding of international politics by attending a model U.N. conference as delegates of a U.N. member nation. Prior to the conference, students research their assigned topics and write position papers that are the basis for their participation in the committee debates and discussions. At the conference, student delegates follow U.N. procedures to pass resolutions on their topics.

Watercolor and Acrylic Painting

Elective Course
Wielding a brush of color across an empty white expanse--- is there anything else like it? Working in gesture with all the varieties of mark-making possible using a brush as a tool, combined with the phenomenon of color is an experience like no other. We start with luminous pure transparent watercolors, exploring the qualities of light inherent in that medium. The second half of the trimester sees a switch over to the very opaque and saturated world of acrylic painting, with all its richness, immediacy and texture.

Yearbook I and II

Elective Course
Students focus on layout.  They manage publication deadlines and proofread the yearbook prior to submission.  They also finish soliciting advertisements and recognitions, and make sure all photos are complete.  They carry on with photographing students, faculty, and school events.

The strengths of Waldorf High School are many. One is the acceptance of all students and the welcoming, nonjudgmental atmosphere. Another is capturing the interest of students; it is real experiential learning.
Waldorf High School Parent
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