Middle school is a time for students to discover their artistic interests and talents.
All students take visual and performing arts classes and are exposed to a broad overview of the history, theories and techniques of each discipline.
There are so many different courses in the arts so that you can find your indivual love. Whether it's performing arts, dance, theater, or studio art - Latin has it all.
Wellness and personal expression are key aspects of the arts. Our teachers know students individually, and challenge them in a way that will empower them to do their personal best. We take our students' artistic skills to a higher level as we give them the opportunity to express their voice, and learn about society, history and culture. Showcasing student artwork in the middle school galleries builds students' confidence and brings awareness of the arts to the entire Latin community.
Reinterpreting Rockwell >>
Inspired by Norman Rockwell’s work, “The Four Freedoms,” eighth grade visual art students created digital collages to reinterpret one of the freedoms for a 21st-century audience whose demographic makeup and family structures differ greatly from the 1940s represented by Rockwell. The students had a choice to either make their reinterpretations a reflection of past times or how they witness these freedoms on display today. Drawing on lessons learned in American Studies class as well as their middle school Global Perspectives course, students selected topics and backgrounds that reflect issues of national and global importance in their lives. Using Photoshop, the students manipulated figures and environments to communicate their ideas.
Performing arts classes build students' self-esteem, teach them how to manage their time, and work with others. In the middle school, students are required to participate in the performing arts. Students in grades 5-7 explore arts via an applied music experience (band or chorus), drama, visual art, and creative movement (dance). Students in eighth grade choose from chorus, band, and arts cycle. The arts cycle courses consist of a rotation of a trimester of visual arts, drama, or dance.
In music classes, students work on music-reading skills, tone production, proper technique, and literature, culminating in public musical performances during the year. The dance classes focus on improving students' ability to demonstrate their conceptual understanding of space, time, and dynamics through composition. In drama, students are introduced to fundamentals like characterization, pantomime, plot study and design.
Participating in middle school and high school productions taught me so much about empathy and creative expression, and as I got older, I realized how much those skills in particular prepared me for leadership in the Latin community and beyond.
<< Sing Us a Song
Within each choral class, the students not only learn their pieces for the concert, but information is provided about each piece in order to give context and history. Students delve into a culture, a composer or a style of music that relates to the pieces they are performing. For example, the middle school choir prepared ‘Durme, Durme’ for the winter concert, a Sephardic Jewish lullaby that is sung in the Ladino language. Students heard original recordings of the piece, compared the language with other dialects, and explored the message and meaning of the piece. The winter concert also included songs from such places as Scotland, Kenya, South Africa, Israel, Brazil and Tanzania.
Outside the classroom
- annual 7/8 grade theater production
- annual 5/6 grade theater production
- Gospel Choir
- Model Building Club
- student art exhibits
One of the reasons why theater is so important is that it teaches empathy and presentation skills, and I found myself applying both to my schoolwork outside of the shows.
At Latin I am encouraged to be myself and pursue my own passions. And I think that has really made me an individual with my own style who is not influenced by anyone else.
Because of the amazing art teachers I had at Latin, I was able to become confident in the fact that art is what I enjoy doing more than anything else.