Fifth Grade Homeschool Planning

Our youngest is going to be a FIFTH GRADER in the fall!  It doesn’t seem possible that we will have a high school graduate/college attendee, a high school sophomore, and a fifth grader this year! So exciting!

Fifth grade is one of my favorite years in the Waldorf curriculum and I can’t wait to tackle it for the third time!  I have an idea of approaching it in a different way in the past, and have essentially divided the curriculum by semester.  This is because I fully understand the  developmental reasons and anthroposophical reasons that the main stream of fifth grade in a Steiner School is the consciousness found developing though the Ancient Civilizations covered, but I always grappled with having to fit in North American Geography as well.  I felt that as an American, Ancient Africa and the Ancient Americas were not fully represented,and that  this was a disservice children. And yes, there is time for this in further grades in middle school and high school, but I was still bothered by it.

So this year I am doing things a bit differently and sort of dividing things into two semesters where we spend almost an entire semester on the North American geography part of the curriculum and a semester on Ancient Civilizations in the manner of most Waldorf fifth grades around the world.

August – North American Geography/Social Studies – Mexico and Central America, stories of the Olmec and the Maya ; Math Review in practice sessions

September – Botany; practice sessions devoted to freehand geometry

October – Math/Practice of Decimals and Fractions; Metric System using Canadian Geography –  3 weeks

November/December – Language Arts – The Stories of Hawaii – American Geography – The West, Southwest, Midwest, and Alaska


January – North American Geography – Great Lakes Region, Northeast, Southeast

February – Stories of Ancient Civilizations – 7 weeks, including Ancient Africa and the Nahua and Aztec as similar to Egptyian consciousness – see the book “Riddle of America” at the Waldorf Library On-Line for more about this

March – Botany

April – Greek Mythology

May – Greek History; practice sessions gardening and math

I am really looking forward to planning this out in detail.  I will be happy to share these blocks for sale once we have gone through them and of course look for notes for these blocks here on the blog, as well as previous posts from when I went through these blocks two other times!



7 thoughts on “Fifth Grade Homeschool Planning

  1. That’s an amazing looking curriculum 👀 We’ve been talking about what to do with our son Bruce and I think we might go with a part time school approach but who knows he’s only 11 months right now 😁 great read though 🙏

  2. I love this, Carrie! I had such a deep experience with California geography this year for fourth grade — working with the history here that has more in common with Latin America than with the East Coast where I grew up. I *tried* working with the Riddle of America publication and wish I could talk with you all about it!! There is so much to learn and contemplate. I feel we really need to understand Mexico so much more in our region. I thought you might enjoy this book which I came across of Mexican and Central American mythology all in one narrative: Feathered Serpent, Dark Heart of Sky: Myths of Mexico by David Bowles. And probably too specific but in case your readers are interested, here are a few incredible books from California for children to read themselves (or read alouds) — coastal California indigenous tales: How A Mountain was Made by Greg Sarris and a more appropriate alternative to Island of the Blue Dolphins: Dear Miss Karana by Eric Elliott. Many hugs!!

    • Thank you, Abby! Yes, we need some tea! I have seen the Bowles book but haven’t delved into it, so I am so glad to hear you liked it – I am going to look that up now. And thank you for the recommendations for California! Excited to check those out too!

  3. Hello Carrie,

    I know you develop a lot of your own curriculum for your homeschool. Have you ever written your own curriculum outline for the different grades to sell? I get so overwhelmed when I look at all the homeschool curriculums, especially since you can’t sample before you buy. Without limitless recourses how would I go about picking an awesome Waldorf curriculum to homeschool my kids?



  4. Carrie! Once again, I am excited to journey my first time through a grade and glean from your wisdom, going through it a third time. I’m looking forward to learning from your planning in the months to come.

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