Finding creativity through performance
In the Lower School, we offer performing arts classes within the regular curriculum as requirements, along with a creative assortment of electives that meet during and outside of the school day.
General music classes meet at all grade levels, with curriculum that is specifically designed for each grade covering the skills of music reading and theory, listening and music appreciation, singing, and performance. All third-graders are given their initial instrumental experience through group lessons on violin or cello. Students are taught through a rote approach during this first year in the strings program. Each fourth-grader has the option of continuing with a stringed instrument (violin, viola, cello, or string bass). Reading music and furthering technique are emphasized. Fifth grade string students who elect to continue with the program meet for strings class and as members of the Junior Orchestra. This orchestral experience enables students to put into practice the technical, ensemble, and other skills acquired in the basic strings program. The Lower School choral music ensemble, Choristers, is a non-audition group made up of third through fifth grade students who desire to broaden their singing experience beyond what is offered in classroom music.
Drama and Dance
The drama curriculum begins in the third grade. Group cooperation and social growth are key elements to the entire Lower School program. Each grade level presents a production, either a play or a collection of improvisations. Working toward a goal for the benefit of the whole is a major thrust of this project. Dance is introduced in the fourth grade with a unit on square dancing, and the fifth-graders prepare a special dance for the End of the Year Sing.