Brooklyn Waldorf School middle school students enjoy playing exciting Phoenix basketball almost as Phoenix fans enjoy cheering for them.

The BWS Phoenix mascot is a source of fiery inspiration and a strong school spirit, especially in basketball season. That Phoenix spirit endures even this year, while team sports take a necessary break for safety.

Though team sports are on hold, students continue to enjoy safe Games and Movement classes as well as plentiful free time in our spacious gym and outdoor spaces.

We believe that physical and mental health are critical for child development and fundamental for academic learning and our curricular movement classes provide this, and more. Movement classes develop and build-on the principles and skills behind team-work: a necessity for social beings.

We also know that all of these skills will help our team sports come roaring back to the courts and fields when friendly competition is safe again.

The BWS Phoeonix girls and boys basketball teams are proud of their strong team records, high student participation and supportive fans. The friendly rivalries and cross-team respect that students develop are the hallmarks of healthy comraderie on and off the court and field.

Cross-country and volleyball afterschool options have been team development programs that help promote stronger player-team skills and build team interest.

Team Sports in the Curriculum

BWS athletics and teamwork, grows directly from the curricular movement classes taught in every grade.

Lively dance activities, Circus Arts and Bothmer gymnastics in the lower grades are the foundational movements that evolve each year into increasingly sophisticated, faster-paced team movement and sports. Deliberately building movement skills and confidence means that all students learn to feel capable as team contributors. When every student is allowed time and space to learn and practice team cooperation, everyone has fun and looks forward to the next challenge together.

The legendary Grade 5 inter-school Pentathalon is a truly grand finale of that year. It caps a year-long, low-intensity training that’s based on, and integrated with, their academic studies of ancient civilizations. The Pentathalon is also a taste of the team sports that students can enjoy the following fall, in Grade 6.

In the upper grades movement curriculum, students enjoy the fitness benefits of playing team sports in class. They learn the rules and techniques of each sport, but they also learn to appreciate joyful and graceful movement and the underappreciated, cooperative aspects that true teams require. Volleyball, basketball, handball, badminton, fencing, floor hockey, running, ultimate football, soccer and softball are just some of the team sports students will sample in the upper grades.

The movements class assessment standards become the athletic standards for our middle school, inter-school team athletics. Coaches, teams and players are expected to demonstrate high qualities of

(1) self-direction,

(2) responsibility for self and others, and

(3) collaboration and quality of work.

Players must also demonstrate a stewardship of school resources and facilities, responsibility for personal actions, positive contributions and ethical and respectful behavior towards others. Lastly, players must be able to work within groups to achieve group goals and to show effective and responsible use of time.