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Upper School Arts Curriculum

Studio Art: 2D

In Studio Art: 2D, students practice a variety of art processes on two-dimensional surfaces. Students grow their drawing skills, examine a variety of visual ideas, and expand their creative problem solving skills by exploring drawing materials, techniques, methods, and concepts. Students maintain a sketchbook journal that bridges the gap between the brain and final artwork, organizes thoughts, and provides resources for inspiration.

 

Students practice proper discourse for art critiques and fine tune their visual vocabulary. Students also explore historical and contemporary artists’ work in order to understand the extensive realm of drawing and two-dimensional design and acquire an overview of a variety of artists who utilize drawing media. Students share their artwork with a large audience during the annual Family Art Night and All School Art Show, as well as a variety of art exhibition and competition opportunities in the community.

Studio Art: 3D

In Studio Art: 3D, students experiment with a variety of sculptural techniques, using both conventional and unconventional sculpting materials and tools. Projects include altered books, ceramic vessels, sculpting with color, the art of bobble heads, and a famous portrait mini gallery.

 

Students practice proper discourse for art critiques and develop an artist statement explaining the motives for their work. Students also explore historical and contemporary artists’ work in order to understand the extensive realm of three-dimensional design. Students share their artwork with a large audience during the annual Family Art Night and All School Art Show, as well as a variety of art exhibition and competition opportunities in the community.

Fiber Arts

In Fiber Arts, students are introduced to the principles and elements of design through the use of a variety of paper and fiber media. Students explore paper cutting, weaving, collage, sewing, and sculpture. Students begin the course creating artist trading cards that are reflective of their interests and also combine a variety of materials to create fabric story quilts. Students incorporate fabric, sewing, beading, gluing, and water soluble pastels into their work. Other projects include paper molas inspired by the Kuna women of the San Blas Islands, puppets, and linear representations of family through family trees.

 

Students compose artist statements that explain the processes, motives, inspirations, influences, and overall idea behind their artwork. Students also explore historical and contemporary artists’ work in order to understand the extensive realm of the fiber arts. Students share their artwork with a large audience during the annual Family Art Night and All School Art Show, as well as a variety of art exhibition and competition opportunities in the community.

Printmaking

In Printmaking, students are introduced to the principles and elements of design through a variety of printmaking techniques, including stenciling, dry point, block printing, woodcut, and screen printing. Students create a portfolio of prints, learn how to properly number and sign a series of work, and participate in collaborative works of art.

 

Students explore printmaking's place in contemporary culture and also explore historical and contemporary artists’ work in order to understand the extensive realm of printmaking. Students share their artwork with a large audience during the annual Family Art Night and All School Art Show, as well as a variety of art exhibition and competition opportunities in the community.

Theater Arts/Drama (10th-12th Grade)

In this performance-based course, Upper School students work as actors and members of the production staff for the annual Upper School Play. From acting parts to scene, costume, and lighting design, there is truly something for everyone. Participation in rehearsals, production meetings, and public performances of the Upper School Play are expected of all students in the course.

Upper School Show Choir (9th-12th Grade)

Upper School Show Choir is a girls’ ensemble for SA and SSA singing and choreography and is an elective full year course. Show Choir members develop a strong commitment to singing contemporary music with good choral skills, dancing, and stage presence. Performance opportunities include school concerts, as well as regional community events. Show Choir members have opportunities for solo performance, as well as to choreograph some of their own routines.

Upper School Band (9th-12th Grade)

Upper School Band is a wonderful group of dedicated instrumentalists. Students develop an essential command of rhythmical independence, necessary for selections that demand multiple patterns to be performed simultaneously. Many Upper School Band students bring keyboard skills to the ensemble and utilize those skills in performances. A common love of music and playful banter amongst the ensemble creates a special camaraderie and true sense of teamwork. Performance opportunities include school concerts, as well as regional community events.

Upper School Strings (9th-12th Grade)

Beginning in 3rd Grade, private lessons in violin, viola, and cello are available during the school day. Middle and Upper School students may choose to continue to study strings, becoming members of the Middle or Upper School String Ensemble. Performance opportunities include school concerts (including the Winter Concert, SpringFest, and Spring Strings Recital), as well as community events such as the Quad City Arts' Festival of Trees.