Lower School music instruction begins with a curriculum that is heavily influenced by the Orff musical approach. The curriculum is based on the idea that children learn better through ‘doing’ and therefore every student is given the opportunity to be successful and expressive through singing, movement, and playing instruments. Students will also begin learning preparatory concepts of basic music theory and music history.
Middle School students continue their discovery of music through ‘doing’ but are able to dig a little deeper into many of the same concepts that were introduced during their Lower School experience. As the students mature throughout their time at Frederica Academy Lower and Middle School, so will the depth of their understanding and appreciation of music. From your students very first music class in the Lower School to the conclusion of their Middle School years, FA students will work on the following concepts:
Expressing themselves through music by playing instruments and singing alone, in small groups, and in larger ensembles,
- Rhythm training, ear training and improvisation,
- Learning a basic to intermediate level musical vocabulary in order to promote a better understanding of musical styles and history
- Reading and writing skills to facilitate basic to intermediate level composition projects
Upper School students who wish to continue in the study of music can elect to take part in one or more offerings that are designed to accommodate many different interest and skill levels. The Upper School musical offerings are not in a rotation format as was the case in the Lower and Middle Schools, but are instead considered as an elective course and offered as a part of the daytime curriculum. The Upper School music offerings are as follows:
- Music Appreciation: Students that would like to continue music study in a similar setting to their Lower/Middle School experience may sign up for Music Appreciation. Musical skills are not prerequisite, though helpful.
- Music Ensemble: A performance class for intermediate to advanced level student musicians. Every semester, each Music Ensemble class is engineered to pair similar musical styles as well as cross-over styles.
- Independent Study: Our most in-depth offering, each Independent Study class that provides Theory, History and dedicated practice space to students who wish to pursue a study of solo repertoire and/or plan to explore music as a possible career path.
Lower School students receive instruction with an art specialist in the lower school art studio and ceramics studio. Students discover the elements of art as they work with different materials both two dimensionally and three dimensionally. Art history is introduced to enhance the lessons and help students connect the arts with other areas of the curriculum.
Middle School students attend art during the exploratory block. The middle school art curriculumbuilds on the skills learned in the lower school as students continue to explore and create. Instruction advances to the principles of art with continued emphasis on art history.
Upper School students schedule art as an elective class which meets daily for a semester. A Foundations course is the prerequisite giving students an opportunity to determine the areas of focus for future courses. Upper school classes work with paint, printmaking and ceramics. Art History is offered to 11th and 12th grade students.
Lower School students experience the basics of storytelling, theatre production, dance, puppetry and pantomime. The student will also learn how to communicate and demonstrate knowledge of narrative through participation in a theatrical production. The goal is to have the student perform comfortably before peers and adults in structured situations.
Middle School students attend drama during the 8th grade exploratory block. The middle school drama curriculum builds on the skills learned in the lower school as students continue to explore and create. Instruction is given in storytelling for the stage and for the screen. Students have the ability to work on small productions and scenes, as well as create video projects.
Upper School students learn acting as a craft, technical theatre as a skill and critical thinking as a tool through the practical application of the theatrical process.
Upper School students are offered electives in Media Production and in Film Studies. In Media Production, students explore the technology and creativity essential for making projects in both video and audio. Students are exposed to many different storytelling tools that include a variety of equipment in the Makerspace & Mac Lab. Students tackle projects in animation, fiction & non- fiction filmmaking, and audio production. Along the way they have the opportunity to write, direct, edit, and perform. Film Studies offers an overview of cinema history and explores the basic tools for analyzing the art of film.