Middle School Math Workshops with Jamie York


BRIDGE THE MIDDLE SCHOOL MATH GAP with Summer 6th, 7th and 8th Grade Teacher and Parent Workshops with Jamie York.

Refresh, relearn, and enliven your understanding of Waldorf middle school math in Boulder, Colorado. The cost is an affordable $180 for 3 days (earlybird price before May 15).

Following on the popularity of our all-grades teacher and parent workshops on the Art of Teaching Math, we are responding to a demand for grades-focused math workshops.

Our summer 2016 6th, 7th, and 8th grade workshops are an opportunity for teachers to enter the next school year, confident in their own mastery of grade-specific math topics.

These workshops are especially relevant for teachers with past math anxiety, who need to build confidence in their ability to meet the needs of their students. We also encourage parents to attend who want to deepen their grasp of a developmentally based approach to math, so they can support their children during the school year.

Math can be the least penetrated and the most poorly understood aspect of the Waldorf curriculum. And yet it is key to developing our capacity to think both clearly and creatively.

Math allows us to stretch our thinking beyond the sense-perceptible world. Math should be an adventure. Math is an ART.

We emphasize a balance between skills work and exercises that lead to true mathematical thinking. We don’t simply want our students to follow procedures blindly with no depth of understanding.

6th Grade: June 23 – 25, 2016

Includes: Business Math; Intro to Percents; Mental Math; Developing Mathematical Thinking; Math Puzzles and Games; Geometric Drawing; Consolidating Essential Math Skills.

 7th Grade: August 7 – 9, 2016

Introducing Algebra; Proofs through Movement; The Pentagon and the Golden Ratio; Mental Math; Developing Thinking with Ratios; The Four Ratios of ð; Math Puzzles and Games; Geometric Drawing.

8th Grade: August 11 – 13, 2016

Loci; Stereometry (Platonic Solids); Number Bases; Developing Mathematical Thinking; Mensuration; Percents and Exponential Growth; Math Puzzles and Games.

Below is a video with clips from Jamie York’s 8th grade platonic solids main lesson presentation (visualizing geometric form in movement). Participants in our 8th grade workshop will have the opportunity to experience the wonders of the platonic solids main lesson.


Our goal is to eventually make all our in-person workshops available online while continuing to offer in-person workshops. But this is a monumental project, and it is going to take us a while!

Find out more about our summer middle school math workshops at http://www.jamieyorkpress.com/workshops/

“The Lorax” – 8th Grade Eurythmy Performance


Shining Mountain’s 8th grade class contributed to our Earth Week celebrations by developing a lovely, heartfelt eurythmy performance Dr. Seuss’ beloved story “The Lorax”. The students collaborated with Eurythmy Teacher, Cristina Geck, to explore the story and bring it to life in movement, word and music. What a wonderful gift to our school community to celebrate our beautiful earth! 

Vimeo:  https://vimeo.com/164028585

Middle School Climate Strike Day | by Meg Gardner, Seventh Grade Teacher


What is the most important issue of our time?  This was the question asked of our Shining Mountain Middle School students by a 15-year-old Earth Guardian named Xiuhtezcatl Martinez.  Xiuhtezcatl is the brother of Itzcuauhtli Martinez, a seventh grader at Shining Mountain Waldorf School.

Their answer: Climate Change.

Climate change is creating the most intense impact on plants, animals, and humans today.  Humans are the root cause of this change that is so rapidly altering our planet and yet, we also have the potential to be the most influential and transformative factor in this movement.  Each of us, even middle-school-aged students, hold the capacity for this change.

We are powerful.

We have a voice.

We have the ability to create change.

This was the message we heard from Xiuhtezcatl and Itzcuauhtli.  This month, Xiuhtezcatl and Itzcuauhtli joined leaders from 147 countries to meet in Paris for the Climate Change Summit.  Their goal is to create international pacts, extending the Kyoto Agreements, and limit every countries’ contribution to climate change.

On Monday November 30th, we joined our seventh grade student Itzcuauhtli, by voicing our hope and intention for sustaining our planet.  The Shining Mountain middle school students gathered to speak about our love for this earth and what we hoped to never lose through climate change.  We also brainstormed all the ways we could individually make a difference in our own lives to help the earth.

These messages, inked on ribbons, were displayed before the school.  These ribbons were then sent to Paris, where Itzcuauhtli and Xiuhtezcatl  joined them with the thousands of pledges from around the world on the Tree of Life. 

We are proud to share our voices of love, hope, and intention with the Paris Climate Change Summit.  We hope our voices are heard by the international leaders and can form the intentions to create a healthy and sustainable world for us and for our future generations. 

Sixth Grade at Cave of the Wind
by Linda Newlin & Kylie Booth, 6th Grade Parents


Early legends of the Jicarilla Apaches, who migrated through the Pikes Peak region around 1000 AD, told of a cave in the Manitou Springs area where the Great Spirit of the Wind resided.

The 6th Graders had a glorious day touring the Cave of the Winds which has been a place to explore the underground world for more than 130 years. The cave is millions of years old, but was discovered in 1869 and opened for tours in 1881. 

After touring the cave, they experienced The Wind Walker Challenge Course which is a three-story obstacle course balanced on the rim of a 600-foot drop into beautiful Williams Canyon. Each participant was placed in a full-body harness and securely attached using an overhead tracking system. Students, parents and the teacher all navigated the challenging maze of steel beams, swinging ropes and ladders. The truly brave of heart took the extra challenge up on level 3 and climbed out over the cliffs of the Canyon on a single tight rope. Way to go 6th graders!

Our experience ended with a phenomenal zip line out over the canyon and back!

Denver Post Features SMWS Outdoor Ed Program

Campers' snowshoes are propped up outside of a snow shelter at Brainard Lake, above Ward, Colorado. (One-time use for Joshua Berman's Around Colorado column on winter camping.)

Shining Mountain’s Outdoor Education program is featured in a Denver Post article by our own Joshua Berman, Spanish teacher and travel writer.