Visual Arts

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Woodshop K

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           Every Kindergartener starts the year by building a “no-measure” box.  Beginning with this project allows students time to develop and practice newly learned skills at their own pace.  The “no measure” title is slightly misleading in that students will use precut pieces of wood as measuring tools.  I refer to the precut pieces of wood as units.  Everyone starts with a 1 X 3½ X 34 inch board, which accommodates all five pieces when measured correctly.  This process allows the children to see how units link together, the basic concept of how a ruler works. Successfully building a 3-dimensional box reinforces how measurement determines accuracy, balance and success.
           The rest of the year focuses on individual and collaborative creations - except for our final boat project.  
       The goal for kindergarten woodshop is to try to build what ever is imagined. Sometimes I ask for a drawing of just the front view. The kindergartener typically thinks in 2-dimensions, so drawing the front view of their idea feels complete for them.  For instance, if their idea is a birdhouse, their drawing will help me visualize their thinking.  Do they envision a flat roof or a pitched roof?   Will there be a door? In order to decide the overall size of their idea, they hold their hands apart to indicate how wide and then how tall.  For each direction I use the tape measure to measure between their hands.  After they cut their first piece of wood I literally stand up that piece of wood up on the workbench to introduce and talk about a 3-dimensional perspective.  Understanding dimensions and perspective will continue to develop and strengthen as the students become comfortable working with the medium of wood.
            The kindergarten year in woodshop establishes a foundation for all kinds of creative thinking and empowers independence.  The finished work reveals a wide variety of understandings and creativity!  
            Some of the hand tools we use are: claw hammer, saw, coping saw, hand drill, brace drill, square, screw driver, sand paper, file, C-clamp, bar clamp and wood glue.


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This year-long, advanced media production course is intended as a companion course to various senior offerings in the English department. Students will learn about various documentary and narrative film genres and will produce short, scripted films based on content developed in their English classes. Prerequisite: successful completion of Media Arts or equivalent. Juniors may enroll with consent of the instructor. This class will meet two times per week for the entire year; upon completion, students will receive one full credit.

Media Arts

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In this year-long course, students will learn the fundamentals of video production, including lighting, cinematography, sound recording, and editing. Although the class is intended for the novice filmmaker, experienced students are welcome, and projects will be adapted to challenge their individual skill levels. Class time will be primarily devoted to student- and instructor-designed projects that may include video poetry, music videos, public-service announcements, short features, and documentary projects. Our emphasis will be on developing projects from concept (preproduction) through construction (production and postproduction) to culmination (screening).


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Join the staff of the of the Garrulous Pine yearbook. Fundamentals of layout and design, typography, and photography will be intertwined with understanding different forms of journalistic writing. Experience is required for editorial staff. All others are welcome, and we’ll gladly put you to work! This class will meet two times per week for the entire year; upon completion, students will receive a half-credit.

Drawing & Painting

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Full year

Students in this course have the opportunity to express themselves in drawing, painting, and printmaking techniques. Emphasis is placed on acquiring a wide range of skills. In print-making, students will produce block prints, mono prints, embossings and etchings. Using the campus, we will draw and paint outdoors.  Studio work will include portraiture and life drawing from professional models. Projects include both assigned and independent, student-initiated pieces in traditional and contemporary formats. The class provides time for skill development, which supports students’ independent work.

Visual Arts K

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Visual Arts in Kindergarten

Making art is fundamental to being human.  Visual arts have always been a means of learning, reaching understanding, and communicating, of voicing, making connections, speaking to one another, and sharing-- in fact, the experience of what it means to be human.  Because each material lends itself to a new interpretation of experience, the studio is a place where kindergarteners are introduced to a wide range of materials and then encouraged use them to bring experience to life, to understand their world in new ways.  Through an exploration of both 2D and 3D materials, students’ natural curiosity is ignited, as lessons are framed to support children’s creativity and discovery.  Through this engagement students begin to develop a broader range of skills and techniques, both for making art and “reading” art. Some projects are cross-curricular in content, while others are focused primarily on students’ expansion of material fluency.

Please note:  Because teaching and learning in the studio is responsive to students and their interests, it is continually evolving, and the specific projects may change from year to year.  The essential concepts and attainment of techniques through using materials, however, remains.

Honors Art Seminar

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Full year

The purpose of this honors art class is to assist students in building a portfolio for college submission and for creating a record of the student's art work.  They can use the work from the past years, preferably from junior and senior years. Students will work some assigned projects: sketchbook assignments of observational drawing, life-drawing, self-portraiture, archtecture drawing for example. Students will also look at college requirements for their applications and work on those projects individually. A large part of the process will be individualized. The group projects will help to make sure that every student has enough variety in their portfolio. It also helps for the purpose of critiques to have some mutual projects.