Upper School
Upper School


The Ethel Walker School believes that the teaching and learning environment extends to the sports and activities arenas. Sports teach time management, instill a commitment to life-long fitness and challenge participants to win with humility and lose with grace. 

Every student at Walker’s participates in a sport or activity each season. Walker’s offers programs for the novice as well as the athlete interested in playing at the collegiate level. We offer teams at the Varsity, Junior Varsity, and Middle School levels. Sportsmanship, leadership and discipline are emphasized at every level. 

All students select 3 sports or activities per year from a menu of offerings divided by fall, winter and spring seasons. One season must be a team sport; Interscholastic sports teams, riding, dance or theatre concentrations all fulfill this obligation. 

Upper School sports and activities most often meet directly after school. Some teams, including Squash and Swimming, meet off campus so they may have practice at alternate times.

Team Sport Offerings*

Field HockeyBasketballLacrosse
Cross CountryRidingGolf
 Winter PlayTheatre

*Note: If there is sufficient enrollment in any Upper School sport option, a “thirds” team may be added

Individual Sport Offerings

Dance TechniqueDance TechniqueDance Technique
Riding LessonsRiding LessonsRiding Lessons
Outdoor AdventurePersonal FitnessPersonal Fitness


The riding program at The Ethel Walker School is designed to suit riders of all ability levels and involves them in every aspect of the equestrian experience. The goal for many girls is to compete in horse shows and in combined training events. Other riders are happy to ride and to spend time with the horses. Modern methods of riding are based on establishing principles of good equitation. Both the girls who compete and the instructors who teach them and coach them earn recognition at the local, national and, at times, international levels. All levels of instruction are offered in order to supplement the various skill and theory levels of the students. Please contact the Director of Riding for more information.

Courses in this department:

Individual Sport Offerings

Personal Fitness

Open to Grades: 9-12
Fall, Winter and Spring seasons 
Credit: Athletics 

This course is designed to teach the basic components of fitness and to assist a student in designing her own individual workout program. The student will develop greater understanding of the role fitness components play in managing overall health-related fitness. Activities include fitness assessment and work on both aerobic and strength training equipment. The class utilizes the equipment in the Goodrich Fitness Center.

Outdoor Adventure

Open to Grades: 9-12
Fall and Spring seasons
Credit: Athletics 

The students will explore various outdoor activities and enjoy the local scenery of Connecticut in the fall. Activities to include short hikes, rock climbing, canoeing, trail maintenance, and bicycling.


Open to Grades: 9-12
Winter season 
Credit: Athletics 

Students will explore yoga postures, philosophy and learn the therapeutic benefits of yoga. Activities will include yoga dance and movement.


Open to Grades 9-12
Offered: Fall, Winter and Spring for experienced dancers/Fall and Spring for beginners 
Credit: Athletics 

Dance classes are offered throughout the year with exposure to character dance, ballet, modern dance, tap, Afro Caribbean, and jazz. By declaring a dance major, students can take dance each trimester or audition for the winter play and/or the spring musical. Placement for experienced dancers is by the Chair of the Dance Department. Placement for Dance Workshop, varsity level dance, is by audition.


Team Sport

Open to Grades: 6-12
Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring 

Students have three lessons per week plus a practice ride and a classroom activity. Riders are grouped according to ability and experience. The Ethel Walker School Riding Program offers riders extensive opportunities to compete at home and away. There is an additional fee. 

Riding Lessons

Open to Grades: 6-12
Extracurricular activity 

After having an evaluation, riders are placed in an appropriate group. The fee is on a per lesson basis.

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