The Curriculum of the Steiner School - Class 5

Notes and Lesson Plans

Fifth Grade
updated July 10, 2024

Recorded here is my own personal collection of articles, resources, favorite links, teaching ideas, and lesson plans. It encompasses many years, from the very beginning of my experience studying and learning about Waldorf to the present time. People from all around the world visit my site and recommend it to others. Welcome!

This site records my journey. I hope my honesty is encouraging and helps break down some barriers that may prevent people from trying Waldorf methods. Because this is an ongoing site documenting my curriculum planning and ideas, some materials are more Waldorf-y than others. Please feel free to take what you like and leave the rest.

Class Five in Waldorf Education

Mission Statement - Consulting Services - Lending Library

Notes on Schedule of Main Lesson Blocks

Everyone does it differently, and you don't have to think of the main lesson topics as "subjects" because many of them are interdisciplinary. I labeled them to the left but it is a bit arbitrary.

However, I find it helpful to give them rough categories so that I can be sure we are balanced in the kinds of thinking we practice throughout the school year.

Each discipline has different habits of mind, and I like to rotate between them. Alan Whitehead suggests this, although he suggests using three-week long blocks. We do a nine month school year with month-long blocks: two blocks of each subject plus a class play each year.

You could combine 5th grade Fractions with Freehand Geometric Drawing, or have them as two separate blocks. Formal geometry tools are not introduced until grade 6. You could also do 5th grade Fractions as part of the Decimal Fractions block.

I couldn't find a Language Arts focus for grade 5 so I chose Friendly Letters. Business letters are done in grade 6. Also, Friendly Letters seemed like the next step after Personal Narratives.

I chose to do a block on the U.S. Presidents to complement our block on U.S. Geography because 2020 was an election year. I moved Greek Mythology to next year in order to fit this in. A block on U.S. Presidents could also be done in grade 8.

You can combine the first four Ancient Mythologies for this school year into one block (Charles Kovacs does this), but I personally like to give lots of time to Egypt.

Perhaps you might consider an order like this...
Decimal Fractions; United States Geography; Ancient Mythology (India, Persia, Mesopotamia); Composition (Friendly Letters); Botany I; Ancient Mythology (Egypt); Freehand Geometry; Botany II; Ancient Mythology (Greece)

A Peek into the Classroom

Morning Verse for Upper Grades

Gallery of Chalkboard Drawings in the Waldorf Classroom grades 1 - 8

Waldorf/Steiner Main Lessons and Main Lesson Blocks VERY helpful article
from the Sophia Institute Online Waldorf Teacher Training program

  • The Main Lesson - Principles and Features
  • The Main Lesson - Structure
  • The Main Lesson - Rhythm
  • The Main Lesson - Planning a Main Lesson Block
  • Sample Template for Waldorf/Steiner Main Lesson Block

samples from the Fifth Grade Curriculum by Live Education!

General Waldorf Resources

The Education of the Child in the Light of Anthroposophy
article by Rudolf Steiner

How To Create, Tell, and Recall a Story

Four Ways to Connect with Storytelling
blog post - Simplicity Parenting

Overview of Childhood Characteristics - includes the four temperaments
article by David Mitchell

Blackboard Sketching book by Frederick Whitney (1908)
available online for free - with step by step directions and illustrations

How to Bind a Main Lesson Book

Main Lesson Book pages shared by Christopherus Homeschool Resources

browse through my collection of Pinterest Boards
with chalkboard drawings and main lesson book pages for many main lesson blocks

Movement for Childhood - wonderful site!

Waldorf Today Newsletter
very interesting & free weekly newsletter sent via email each Monday

Block Rotations Grades 1 - 8 (PDF)
by Jamie York

Summary of Math Skills for Grades 1 through 8 (PDF)
by Jamie York

A Grades 1 through 8 Math Curriculum Overview (PDF)
by Jamie York

Word Problems in Grades 1 through 8 (PDF)
by Jamie York

Jamie York has a BUNCH of free resources on his site including sample math MLB pages for grades 1-11, and lesson plans and assessments for grades 1-5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12.

Waldorf Science Newsletter - issues available in PDF format
page 13 of Vol.1 has a Science Curriculum in the Waldorf School Grades 1-8 overview / one page handout, and page 14 has the same for the Waldorf High School Grades 9-12

World Geography and Waldorf Education
blog post - Switzerite

When Should My Child Begin Music Lessons?
article by Sarah Baldwin

The Spiritual Gifts of Handwork
blog post - Knitting with Children

"Foundations of Waldorf Education" Series Notes
FREE links to all 25 volumes in this series of educational writings by Rudolf Steiner

DO NOT MISS The Online Waldorf Library's tremendous selection of Waldorf education books converted into PDFs and available for FREE download! You can literally save $1000's of dollars!

Curriculum Planning

Little Bluestem Homeschool Co-op

This was the main lesson block plan for our fifth grade class:

    September - Decimal Fractions

    October - U.S. Presidents (Election Day on November 3)

    November - Ancient Mythology: India, Persia, Mesopotamia

    December - Class Play with 2nd graders (Puppetry of Aesop's Fables)

    January - Botany: Herbal Medicines

    February - Freehand Geometric Drawing

    March - U.S. States

    April - Ancient Mythology: Ancient Egypt

    May - Botany: Planting a Tallgrass Prairie

Resources & Recommendations Specific to Fifth Grade






Ancient India, Persia, Mesopotamia

Ancient Phoenicia

Ancient Egypt

Ancient Greece

North American Geography (or your home continent)

General Resouces

Literature & Composition



Drawing, Painting, Modeling

Class Plays

Is there a subject you're having a hard time finding resources for? Please contact the Yahoo Group for suggestions from our members or consider hiring a consultant.

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