The first and foremost idea behind the emphasis placed on children engaging in art is that there are multiple ways of knowing, and thus multiple mediums for the expression of ideas, especially in pre-literacy years, that must be provided to allow every child a voice with which to communicate their understandings, thoughts and feelings of the beauty that surrounds them. Finding a way to express oneself, through artistic means, leads to self-discovery.
Children need the time to explore at their own pace, and educators encourage exploration by offering multiple opportunities to engage in open ended art which promotes creativity, encourages neural connection, builds fine motor skills and develops problem-solving abilities. In the Early Childhood Center students explore a variety of art processes and art materials. Whenever possible, projects are thematic and integrated with subjects studied in the classroom.
In High School students go on to study History of Art and elective courses such as basic design, drawing and painting, computer arts, and IB Visual Arts thereby preparing them for eventually for higher education in the artistic field.
Middle School art helps students develop a greater understanding of the elements of art as related to drawing skills, applied design methods (painting, mixed media, sculpture) and ceramics. Students will begin to prepare for the Media as well as advanced art courses to include IB Art. A portfolio and sketchbook for use until 8th grade will be required.
During the Elementary School years, students are the artists, and the classroom is their studio. “Teaching for Artistic Behavior” or “TAB” is an arts education pedagogy which allows students to experience the work of the artist through authentic learning opportunities and responsive teaching. The choice-based classroom offers students real choices for responding to their own ideas and interests through creative outlets. It supports multiple modes of learning and assessment for the diverse needs of the community.