The Upper School (Ages 14 to 19)
When the children leave their Class Teacher at the end of Class 8 in the Lower School, this marks a new phase in their development where academic challenge now predominates.
Questions, discussion, criticism – all the activities of the enquiring mind – grow in strength. At this stage the curriculum strives to foster clear independent thinking and pupils are encouraged to explore ideas that can lead them to ideals. Pupils are now taught by specialist teachers. The task of all the teachers in this phase is to enable the unfolding of the inner being and individuality of the young person into an independent, capable and responsible adult.
In some upper schools a limited range of GCSE and A levels or other recognized equivalents are offered alongside the full Steiner curriculum year on year, experience shows that Steiner pupils consistently produce examination results well above the national average and pupils progress to a wide range of universities and other tertiary education programmes.
Some UK Schools offer the New Zealand Certificate of Steiner Education, a qualification fully based on the Steiner curriculum
Pupils leave school as well rounded and sociable individuals and with broad range of skills and qualities that are valued by employers and admissions tutors at universities and colleges.
The Upper School curriculum
The whole class teaching continues in the Upper School and all pupils continue with general subject lessons, including: languages, arts and crafts, religious studies, sports, drama and music. The Main Lessons including: English Literature, World Literature, the History of Drama and Poetry.
In Maths, they study Number Patterns, including Permutations and Combinations, Conic Sections and Trigonometry.
Science Main Lessons include:-
- Biology – human physiology and anatomy, human physiology and embryology and botany and cell biology;
- Chemistry – organic chemistry, inorganic chemistry, chemistry of the elements;
- Physics – transport, power, Newtonian mechanics
Other Main Lessons include:-
- History – 20th century, Ancient Civilisations
- Art History – Ancient Art, Egypt, Mediaeval Times, the Renaissance, the Impressionists
- Geography – Climatology, Meteorology, Geomorphology
Class trips continue to play an important role throughout the Upper School, e.g. in Class 9 the pupils may go abroad on a language trip. In the last year of school, there will usually be a foreign trip to look at aspects of European culture.