High School: Grades 9-12

The rigor and depth of study in the High School requires a high level of expertise in each subject. Therefore, Haleakalā Waldorf High School teachers are masters in their area of study, and teach with deep knowledge, enthusiasm, and passion for their discipline. 

The curriculum changes from grade to grade in developmental progression.

Ninth grade is a time to find balance between polarities
Tenth grade is a time to apply logical thinking to compare theories
Eleventh grade is a time to analyze philosophical riddles, ask the deepest questions, and master the tools of language
Twelfth grade is a time to synthesize and find meaning

The Morning Lesson is a special feature of the Haleakalā Waldorf High School curriculum. Here you delve into a subject for two full hours each day, for a three-week block of time with a specialist morning lesson teacher. This concentrated period of time allows for the material to be studied in depth, without distractions, and for a variety of interesting topics to be studied every year.  Morning Lessons are complemented by regular track skills classes in mathematics, English, arts and crafts, history, and athletics.

Overview of the High School Curriculum:

Grade Nine - Finding the Balance Between Extremes
  • English: Comedy & Tragedy, Literature of Central and South America, Writing and Literature, Persuasive Writing
  • History: Art History, U.S. History Early to 1783, World Revolutions
  • Chemistry: Organic
  • Physics: Thermodynamics
  • Biology: Anatomy & Physiology
  • Geoscience: Geology
  • Mathematics: Combinations & Permutations, Descriptive Geometry, Algebra 1 / Geometry

For example Haleakalā Waldorf High School students:

  • manufacture chemical scents in an organic chemistrylab
  • identify minerals and study their uses
  • trace the unfolding of revolutions in history
  • develop the art of charcoal and pencil drawing
  • sculpt bones when studying anatomy
  • practice calligraphy and page layout

Grade Ten - Developing the Tools of Comparison and Reason
  • English: Poetics, The Hero's Journey, Comparative Literature, Expository Writing
  • History: Ancient Greek History, History of Asia, History of Justice, U.S. History 1783-1876, Hawaiian History 1
  • Chemistry: Inorganic 
  • Physics: Mechanics
  • Biology: Botany
  • Geoscience: Meteorology
  • Mathematics: Surveying & Trigonometry, Geometry / Algebra 2

For example Haleakalā Waldorf High School students:

  • study the construction of bridges
  • interpret a weather map 
  • develop subtle capacities for language through exploration of poetry
  • investigate the acid-base chemistry of cosmetics
  • develop the feeling of certainty by proving geometrical theorems
  • discover the emergence of reasoning and logic by tracing the evolution of human civilization from ancient times to Greece
  • paint with color and draw with pastels
  • create masks from world cultures
  • throw pots on a wheel
  • design and print their own logos

Grade Eleven - Training the Power of Analysis
  • EnglishParzival, Shakespeare, Dante, Medieval Literature
  • History: History of Mercy, History of Music, the Middle Ages, the Renaissance, U.S. History 1876-1929
  • Chemistry: Atomic Theory
  • Physics: Electricity & Magnetism
  • Biology: Embryology, Marine Bio
  • Geoscience: Astronomy, Geoscience of Windsurfing
  • Mathematics: Projective Geometry​, Precalculus / Algebra 2

For example Haleakalā Waldorf High School students:

  • wire practical electrical circuits
  • study the chemical elements and their uses
  • make a model of the solar system
  • encounter the legend of Parzival through active reading, creative writing, and artistic expression
  • trace humanity’s search for meaning from the development of Rome to the enlightnment of the Romantic Poets.
  • capture individuality in art through portrait painting and sculpture
  • design and create their own jewelry

​Grade Twelve - Synthesizing and Finding Meaning
  • EnglishTranscendentalists, Russian literature, Faust
  • History: History of Architecture, U.S. History 1929 to Present, Hawaiian History 2, Government
  • Chemistry: Bio & Environmental Chemistry
  • Physics: Optics
  • Biology: Zoology
  • Geoscience: Applied Transdisciplinary Geoscience
  • Mathematics: Integral Calculus, Buisness Math - Statistics 

For example Haleakalā Waldorf High School students:

  • study DNA sequencing and how the human genome is deciphered
  • trace the development of atomic theory to modern particle physics
  • mix colored lights in stage design, applying knowledge of optics
  • investigate the origins of the human being through fossil evidence
  • explore the questions of the Transcendentalists:  What are the tasks and aims of the present civilization?  How can we develop a personal spirituality that enlivens culture?
  • comprehend current events and economic structures
  • choose individualized personal art projects, such as building Raku pottery
  • develop a Senior Project & Presentation that highlights their unique perspectives and passions
  • analyze how an automobile engine works
  • draft architectural drawings

Extra-Curricular Activities

Haleakalā Waldorf High School encourages students to pursue a wide range of extracurricular activities such as debate, drama, sports, community service, publishing literary magazines and yearbooks, exploring robotics, organic gardening, and pursuing environmental concerns. Teamwork and fundamental skills are stressed in sports in addition to individual achievement.


School Without Boundaries

Haleakalā Waldorf High School expands the boundaries of the classroom and offers students exciting opportunities to spread their wings in a new way--to learn and work off campus. Learning partnerships allows students to deepen and enrich their overall learning experience, build community, and gain real-world experience and confidence.


Travel and Experience Other Cultures

Our international exchange program is a one-of-a-kind opportunity for Waldorf students to step into a different culture while continuing their Waldorf education. Waldorf high schools worldwide provide many choices and possibilities. Living abroad can be an experience that stays with you for a lifetime!

Haleakalā Waldorf High School aims to attract an internationally diverse student population representing the planet's variety of cultural backgrounds.

International Connections...

Haleakalā Waldorf High School welcomes international students, and HWS students are encouraged to study abroad. Waldorf Schools form the fastest growing independent school system in the world, with over 1,000 schools internationally, offering high schoolers the chance to build connections through foreign exchange. The emphasis on the individual pursuit of learning, in-depth scientific thinking, expressive and substantial writing assignments, and constant problem-solving and projects prepare Waldorf graduates for college. Professors often remark how Waldorf students ask the deepest questions and have an innate enthusiasm for learning that is not exclusively motivated by wanting a good grade. The intimate size of Haleakalā Waldorf High School provides an ideal community for students to develop meaningful, long-lasting relationships with both peers and teachers. Students receive individual attention and enjoy participating in classes —no student is overlooked at HWS.

Creative Minds for Tomorrow's World...

Waldorf alums live all over the world and for the past 90 years excel at top-tier universities and in life.

Waldorf High School students are prepared for college and life and have the foundation and attitude for thriving in a globalized and interconnected world. The nuances and wealth of the Haleakalā Waldorf High School curriculum offer an education that combines internationally respected academic standards, a global perspective, and essential real-world skills and attitudes.

Waldorf graduates are world citizens, possess empathy, and are socially adept. They go to Harvard, win Fulbright scholarships, are CEOs of Fortune 500 companies, become research scientists, and join the Peace Corps.


“By the time they reach us at the college and university level, these students are grounded broadly and deeply and have a remarkable enthusiasm for learning. Such students possess the eye of the discoverer, and the compassionate heart of the reformer which, when joined to a task, can change the planet."

Arthur Zajonc, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Physics, Amherst College

For more information, please follow this link to our admissions page.