Girls thrive in our classrooms because they are afforded a sense of agency and a platform where they develop their voices and learn how to use them effectively to have a say in their own education.
Math, science, history, English, creative arts, and world languages (Latin, Spanish, or French) are the core of the Walker’s Middle School curriculum. Hands-on learning is used extensively to build engagement and enhance skills. Alongside academics, we teach wellness and study skills, and require community service to instill a sense of confidence and personal balance.
Explore the classes The Ethel Walker Middle School has to offer by clicking through offerings by grade level, or by taking a look through our more in-depth curriculum guide.
Under the guidance of a master beekeeper, students study at Walker's on-campus apiary to determine if a hive can be productive without a queen, why bees make honey and the structure of the hives.
In the 7th grade Creative Non-fiction unit, students write magazine articles about topics that are of interest to them and to the rest of the Walker’s community. Articles are combined into a digital magazine to share.
Every eighth-grade student delivers a three- to five-minute speech in front of the entire Middle School. Each speech is written in her authentic voice regarding a topic that the student is passionate about.
Lacuna (noun); a gap; an interval
Each winter, the entire Walker’s community engages in a week-long series of unique and immersive classes during a school-wide Lacuna. Middle school students come together from across the grades to experience classes outside of the traditional classroom disciplines.
In a Middle School Lacuna class called “Empanadas and Entrepreneurship: Designing a Latin American Food Truck, students study cooking, multiculturalism and business. The class culminates with an event where the girls market their empanadas to the community, calculate their profit and loss statements and explore the origins of the dish through an examination of its history. For some, in the “Storytelling for Social Justice” class, they explored the power and voice of storytelling using poetry, essay, song, music, video and the visual arts to tell their story about what moves and motivates them. Some students partner with faculty to create original curriculum on topics that matter the most to them.
At most schools, a gap in the schedule means a loss. At Walker’s, a lacuna —or gap —means a chance to explore new topics without the confines of a typical classroom experience.
Our Community Partnerships program aims to develop students’ sense of empathy and explore what it means “to look beyond ourselves and recognize the needs of others,” a verse from our school meditation that guides us. In addition to providing service to the community, Walker’s Community Partnerships program allows our students to gain valuable skills while also serving others. Students begin participating in community partnership program in sixth grade and continue through the Upper School where they can create new partnerships based on their individual interests or serve as part of an established program.
Under the guidance of the Middle School Head of Community Partnerships, students participate in an array of activities including reading to younger students at a local school.