Students study the grain of tree growth patterns and the nature of wood. Shave Horses and other practical tools are constructed out of green wood. Draw-knife, gouges and other tools are used to shape a spatula or a spoon. Gouges, rasps, knives, scrapers and sandpaper are used to finish the project. Discussions focus on learning to gage thickness, smoothness, shape, and texture, as well as the efficient and safe use of tools.
Grammar and Composition We review much of the English grammar and punctuation studied in previous years. Students will develop a strong sense for style through the use of conditional sentences and the subjunctive mood. There will be an increased focus on composition and dictation in relation to our study of history, and an increased focus on precise description and sequence in relation to our study of the sciences. Reading and Writing To encourage a lifelong love of reading, daily opportunities for quality silent reading will be maintained throughout the year.
Drawing with colored pencils continues using themes from our main lessons. Value is explored using black, white and grey, and shadow. In painting, much work is done with light and dark in connection to the study of optics. Various color systems, primary, tertiary, complementary, and contrasting colors are explored. Dominant themes include value and contrasts, weather and geology, landscapes and seascapes, moods and tones.
Sixth grade students are ready to confront more complex questions of right and wrong. As they enter the turbulent teen years—in which childhood assumptions are challenged and earlier certainties abandoned—they rightfully demand to be included into humanity’s ongoing search for truth and meaning. Our study of ethics will be embedded into a broader study of history. Throughout history, a series of recurring conclusions on equality and reciprocity have emerged to become a bedrock of ethical thinking.
In sixth grade, students create a stuffed animal (designed and sewn by hand). This project challenges them to make imagine and make the shape of a three-dimensional animal out of cloth. This develops new abilities, from drawing to imagination of how a three dimensional creation can be formed from cloth. They work–perhaps for the first time–from the parts to the whole. This requires careful planning and attention to detail.