Making a Difference

Middle School Elective Course Descriptions

Course Descriptions 2024-2025

Art
Make, Create, and Innovate: Invites students to explore their artistic potential through a diverse range of mediums. From painting, drawing, printmaking, to mixed media,  this dynamic course fosters creativity, visual problem solving, and fine motor skill development through exploration of traditional and non-traditional materials. Join us to unleash your imagination and craft visually stunning works in a fun, supportive, and inspiring environment. ‚Äč‚ÄčEmbrace the joy of creation as we paint, sketch, sculpt, and collage our way through this dynamic exploration of the visual arts.

Form & Fire Creations: Unleash your creativity as you mold, shape, and sculpt clay into captivating forms. Finish your unique designs by exploring glazing and other unique decorative techniques. Explore the principles of three-dimensional design, mastering an assortment of materials and building techniques to bring your unique visions to life. Immerse yourself in the tactile world of artistic expression and innovation by experiencing jewelry making, sculpture, recycled art, custom fabrication, and more.

Digital Design Studio: Explore cutting-edge design software combined with 2-dimensional art techniques to bring your visions to life. From concept to polished execution, refine your skills in visual storytelling, typography, and layout, and emerge ready to craft compelling digitally finished masterpieces. Explore anime, comic books, graphic novels, cartooning, and more in this immersive class where creativity has no boundaries.

Career and Tech Ed

Culinary Arts: Do you want to learn to prepare food like a Pro? This course offers an introduction to the basic techniques of food preparation. The overall goal is to enhance your knowledge of foods, work safely in the kitchen, meal planning, and making informed decisions regarding food choices. Emphasis is placed on working skillfully and efficiently in the kitchen, food preparation and plating creatively.  “Hands-on” activities are varied to make the course extremely practical as well as academic.  Preparing food is the favorite part of this course! You will learn to make homemade pizza, breakfast burritos, cookies, pancakes, biscuits, macaroni and cheese, just to name a few!

Discovery Computer Science (8th only): Introduces students to computer science as a vehicle for problem solving, communication, and personal expression. The course focuses on the visible aspects of computing and computer science, and encourages students to see where computer science exists around them and how they can engage with it as a tool for exploration and expression. Computing is so fundamental to understanding and participating in society that it is valuable for every student to learn as part of a modern education. Computer science is a subject that provides students with a critical lens for interpreting the world around them. Computer science prepares all students to be active and informed contributors to our increasingly technological society whether they pursue careers in technology or not. Computer science can be life-changing, not just skill training.

Photography(8th Only): The Introduction to Photography course is designed to introduce middle school students to the fundamentals of photography as both an art form and a means of expression. Through a combination of hands-on activities, discussions, and projects, students will learn the basic principles of photography, explore different photographic techniques, and develop their creative vision.

STEM: Is designed to engage students in hands-on, collaborative, and innovative problem-solving activities rooted in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) principles. Through a series of challenges and projects, students will explore real-world problems, develop critical thinking skills, and apply STEM concepts to create solutions.


Theater Arts (8th Only): The Introduction to Theater Arts course is designed to introduce middle school students to the exciting world of theater, fostering creativity, collaboration, and self-expression. Through a dynamic combination of performance, exploration, and analysis, students will develop a foundational understanding of theatrical concepts, techniques, and history.

Music
Band: This course is open to all students who enjoy music and are excited to learn an instrument. Although prior band experience is recommended, students of all levels are welcome. If a student is interested in playing flute, clarinet, trumpet, alto sax or trombone, he/she will have to buy or rent their instrument. All students should buy or rent their instruments before the first week of school. If a student is interested in playing tuba, French horn, tenor sax, bari sax, baritone or bass clarinet the school will provide an instrument for the student to use. 6th grade percussion is filled by audition only. 6th grade Band is a continuation of the elementary school band program. The students will be playing more advanced music in a large ensemble. All students are required to attend weekly before or after school rehearsals. 

Choir: Students will learn proper singing technique and sight reading; they will also practice performing and participating in a choral ensemble.  6th grade Chorus classes will focus on general music concepts and choral/vocal technique, and a keyboard unit. These students will participate in a winter and spring concert to showcase their work. Students in the 7th and 8th grade Chorus classes will explore 3 and 4-part singing as well as continue with learning basic skills in keyboard playing. Analyzing and performing many different styles of music are important components of each choir course. Students will have the opportunity to perform at concerts and festivals, as well as in solo, small ensemble and large group performances. All students are required to attend weekly before or after school rehearsals. 

Orchestra: A continuation of the elementary school program and gives students the opportunity to learn and understand musical notes, symbols and terms as well as a chance to develop greater proficiency on their musical instrument. While students of all levels are welcome, previous instrumental experience is strongly recommended and daily home practice will be required. Students with no prior string experience may email the middle school orchestra director to discuss class expectations. Students must acquire a properly sized instrument for the first day of class, as well as accessories. Students will have the opportunity to perform at concerts, as well as ensemble and large group performances/competitions. All students are required to attend weekly before or after school rehearsals.