Although we are not a conservatory, Community High’s courses in the arts are considered “core” classes, and are required and weighted in the same way as those in other disciplines. We consider the arts to be vital to an engaged citizenry, and essential to the development of full mastery of other subjects, to self-exposition and critical thinking.
Fall 2018- Spring 2019:
Alla Prima Oil Painting This class will introduce students to small scale compositions (8” x 8”), thumbnail value studies, and beginning color theory. We will be working on canvases using walnut oil and Gamsol- instead of linseed oil and turpentine- so the paintings will have all the benefits of oil, without the nasty smells! We will learn to mix colors on a pallet in shades, tints and tones and in three values from light to medium and dark. The class will have weekly painting assignments based on still life arrangements chosen by each student for their own work. We will complete a small painting every week. The paintings will include monochrome, complementary color, and split complementary color compositions.
Creative Writing In this course students will explore the craft of writing, while experiencing the reciprocal relationships between writing, reading, publication and discourse. They will engage with a variety of literary forms, genres, and methodological approaches to develop their technical versatility and their understanding of the practice of writing on a fundamental level. Simultaneously, they will explore the social and ethical dimensions of literary practice. Students will be expected to write several hours’ worth of text per week, and to be reading at least one book of fiction, poetry, or other ‘non-factual’ text throughout the semester. They will be expected read each other’s work most weeks, and discuss it with sensitivity and detail. Other sessions will be devoted to in-class writing activities, writing games and experiments, and discussions on literary issues or technique, in which substantial participation is also expected. Following each assignment, they will collaborate to edit and produce a chapbook of their work for distribution within the school community, culminating in a perfect-bound anthology at the end of the year. During 2nd Semester, regional and visiting writers will be invited to discuss their practice and participate in workshopping.
Critiquing Cinema In this course, students will be expected to look at film critically while exploring the notion of genre, industry, and other contextualizing material. This should allow students to understand cinema more objectively and give them the basis to watch, research and discuss film academically.
Dance This class will focus on aerobic dance mostly in the form of Latin inspired ZUMBA and hip-hop moves set to music and led by an instructor, to boost your metabolism, tighten and tone your whole body, burn calories and develop choreography as you learn fun moves and develop confidence with your dance skills. Students will develop their own basic choreography and perform a dance based fitness routine. Zumba is an exhilarating, effective, easy-to-follow, Latin-inspired, calorie-burning dance fitness. A typical class is structured to inspire as well as educate students on the history and importance of exercise, as it relates to various types of physical activity. Emphasis will be placed on each participants mind/body as well as flexibility, which will enable a greater understanding and appreciation for the physiology of a dance workout; comprised of aerobics, muscle strengthening, and interval training. This course is an Aerobic dance participatory course. Students will be provided with beginner working knowledge of Hip Hop and Zumba dance routines. At the completion of this course, the student should be able to: Demonstrate basic skills in both Zumba and Hip Hop Dance and follow instructions given by instructor as skill sequences are developed.
Film Production Film Production concentrates on student vision and desire to create filmic material. We use student created pieces to spark lectures and discussions on knowledge needed to obtain said product. The student will gain an immense amount of hands on learning as well as theory to better shape their understanding of how cinema is made. At the end of the year students should be able to display a competency with equipment and an understanding of positions, genres, motifs, and the running of a shoot.
iPhone Photography This course will introduce photographic methodology and art concepts as related to this visual medium (subject matter, composition, etc.). We will also study images that have remained world icons in the evolution of the photographic medium. We will use the camera contained in students’ personal phones. This course includes critiques, art statements and a group exhibition (thesis portfolio). At the beginning of the semester, class time will be used to introduce and talk about methodology and concepts. Then, we will find a rhythm to engage in critiques after shooting sessions. We will view and edit constantly to find the subject matter that will become a thesis portfolio. There will be a midterm exam and a feedback session. This will involve a test about photographic concepts, icon images and vocabulary. During the feedback session, students will have one-on-one time to express their ideas as to be able to choose the subject matter for their thesis portfolio. We will also have a final exam, which will be an expanded version of the midterm. Both the midterm and the final will include a final draft of art statements. The semester will conclude with a group exhibition of the final portfolio in hard copy paired with its art statement. All of the materials related to class time will be provided by the instructor. Hard copy images will be the responsibility of each student.
Music Theory I This course provides an overview of Western music theory. Through close tutorial, students will master the basics of harmony and composition. The majority of students will be musicians, but musicianship is not required; this class is meant to augment performative instruction.
Music Theory II This course provides an overview of Western music theory. Through close tutorial, students will master the basics of harmony and composition. The majority of students will be musicians, but musicianship is not required; this class is meant to augment performative instruction.
Performance Band Students will study ensemble performance by choosing material, charting material, rehearsing and performing in a musical ensemble, using core rock/jazz instrumentation: drums, electric bass, electric and acoustic guitars, keyboard and a vocals. Lyric sheets, notation, tablature, audio recordings, video recordings, and relevant historical data relating to the writing, the era, or the recording of a particular song are used to research how to best arrange, rehearse and perform. We will also encounter popular music history organically, and benefit from periodic master classes by musicians touring the area. The year culminates with a professional recording session.
Physical Education The physical education block includes weight training, cardio, injury prevention and proper form. The course and fitness center is designed and equipped to train students on properly gaining strength and endurance. The weight training will incorporate fitness activities focused on building muscle strength and endurance. Strengthening activities will work all the major muscle groups: legs, hips, back, chest, abdominals, shoulders, and arms. These strengthening activities include lifting weights, push-ups, sit-ups, and working with resistance bands. Endurance activities will be limited to some aerobic exercise such as jogging running or walking and sports related activities such as swimming, basketball and soccer. Repetition and equipment usage will vary based upon desired outcome and benefits. At the completion of this course, the student should be able to: Develop or improve individual muscle strength and endurance, understand and or explain the benefits of weight training and general health, and perform and create an individual strength/endurance workout for themselves.
Sculpture In this class students will explore 3D design techniques and concepts with found materials, water based clay, polymer clay and balsa foam. Frequent demonstrations, critiques and museum visits will help students engage their work on aesthetic and conceptual grounds; they will hone creative decision making and critical observation and discussion skills. Students will complete six or more sculptures throughout the class. They will be evaluated on their attentiveness toward new techniques and concepts, work ethic, progress as creative problem solvers, and adventurousness and empathy in critique.
Theater Production A yearlong course, tackling production activities in the manner of a professional theater company. As we will be mounting two productions, students will be expected to tackle assigned roles, learn lines in a timely manner, work as a member of the artistic ensemble and assist with production values when needed. Additionally, students will have an opportunity to participate in the ESU (English Speaking Union) Shakespeare Competition. Theater Production is an immersion of theater styles, production and an exploration of each student’s potential as an actor or as a production specialist (props, lighting, costumes, set construction, marketing and more). Students will have an opportunity to explore how professional artists express their ideas and practice their craft by attending workshops as well as exploring theater offerings at area colleges and professional theater throughout the year.