We believe it is each teacher’s responsibility in the Fine Arts Department to take a vested interest in the creative talents of our students. We must be ambassadors of our creative fields and be a positive influence on our students’ impulse to be artistic. Because the course offerings in our department are so diverse, a brief explanation of each follows.
In the Visual Arts Department, we believe it is most important to teach our students how to see because creating visual art requires an acute ability to study the visual qualities of objects as they appear in different environments. Four different levels of art are offered, allowing students to advance if they so desire.
In an art course we encourage creative thinking and risk taking in an environment that promotes artistic expression. We incorporate art history into the lessons so that students may understand the significance of their methods. Each project is graded using rubrics that focus on skills and techniques learned by the student. Students are required to keep a portfolio and exhibit works of art in the fall and spring art shows.
Basic artistic forms and techniques are taught in beginning art classes through teacher demonstration and examples. Each level builds on developed skills as students experiment with personal style and emulate the classical styles. In the upper level art classes, students are taught to develop their own artistic style.
Fine Arts Survey is designed to encourage an overall appreciation for visual, theatrical, musical arts and dance. The keystone of these courses is the ongoing investigation of what it means to be human, including the realization of self-potential, the assumption of sound responsibilities, and the capability to make reasonable choices. To these ends, Fine Arts Survey strives to provide students with the opportunity to cultivate those skills and points of view essential to a liberal arts education. Emphasis on the visual arts from the pre-historic era to the present allows students to see interrelationships between culture and creativity. Instruction in historical aspects of music, drama and visual arts affords the opportunity for students to see how creative thought and vision can enhance the ability to learn.
The Fine Arts Survey 8 course, required for all eighth graders, exposes our young students to the world of fine arts with a semester focus on music performance and another semester focus on visual arts (two teachers). We encourage and, in some cases, require students to view and attend opera, operetta, ballets, concerts, musical productions, dramas, art showings/galleries, museums, etc. in order for them to further explore various forms of artistic expression. Through encouraging student exploration in the various arts, we attempt to inspire creativity within them as well as develop an appreciation for contemporary and classic works of art and music. Our goal in this course is to inspire our young 8th graders to enroll in more classes within the Fine Arts Department and develop a love and appreciation for the world of fine arts.
Students who wish to explore drawing, painting, sculpting, photography, or digital art may elect to take the following courses: Art I, II, III, IV; TV Production I, II; Multimedia; 3-D Animation; Photography; Fine Arts Survey.