Notes on programming at The Arts Academy
Six habits of mind at the school frame our curriculum: Imagination, Communication, Empathy, Perspective, Analysis and Commitment. These habits of mind or core values are integral to curriculum and instruction. They promote critical thinking, problem solving, and analysis in anything studied. Just as John Dewey believed that knowledge is acquired by doing, we emphasize a studio or laboratory approach for learning that must include essential questions tied to real application.
Web 2.0 tools are used in curriculum and instruction at the school and each classroom is equipped with Promethean boards to support that work. Although we offer media arts, graphic arts, fine arts, theatre, dance, and music, as majors, there is an expectation that the tenets presented in art areas are integrated into science, math, English, social studies, and language classes. Collaboration among faculty members is encouraged and necessary. With future rostering, more planning time will be embed for teachers during the school day for their integrated project work. It is the belief of the Arts Academy that collaboration is essential to successful teaching and learning. This year, teachers at the school often arrive early and stay late to plan together.
Advanced classes are offered in the 11th and 12th grades, such as physics II, AP Calculus and AP Spanish, (AP courses are offered each year depending on students’ interests); electives are also available for 11th and 12th grades in music technology, digital story telling (film), animation, and broadcasting. All courses will continue to include proper benchmarking, objectives, standards, and logistical planning as they are established. We look forward to establishing internships and guest speakers working with our students in many courses.
The Arts Academy at Benjamin Rush is a student-centered community that encourages
intellectual growth and curiosity while promoting academic excellence in and through the arts
At the same time, we have established four goals for our school.
The Arts Academy at Benjamin Rush Goals
• Student-centered community
• 21st century Learning: technology integration, habits of mind application
• Writing across the curriculum
• Arts Integration
The Arts Academy is in the process of determining the course catalog for 2013-14. Please check back in the spring (2013) for descriptions of courses. Please see below for the SDP’s graduation requirements. The Arts Academy will also be offering some accelerated courses which will allow for students to accumulate more than the required number of SDP credits.
2013 Arts Electives (open to all 11th graders)
Students will engage in performing various musical styles and techniques not found in the traditional band and orchestra settings, such as jazz, blues, Latin, rock and funk. The goal of this course is to provide the fundamentals of improvisation, harmony and critical listening skills crucial to the art form.
Students will also create and perform their own original arrangements and pieces of music.
The Jazz Ensemble will be involved in public and school performances, including performances outside of school.
Digital Story Telling
This course is offered to students interested in learning how to write, produce, edit and webcast short, creative non-fiction audio and video clips. Students will produce audio and video Podcasts for a variety of purposes including news reporting, music and movie reviews, short subject and experimental video and audio productions. Students will learn the fundamental techniques of sound engineering and studio recording, musical scoring, visual composition and studio lighting and effective interviewing techniques. Students who take this course will be certified to independently operate the Rush production studio to produce their own work in the future.
Students will learn the basic principles of various forms of dance including Ballet, Jazz, Modern, Ballroom, African, Hip-Hop and other World Dance Traditions. We will study the historical and cultural aspects of dance as well as analyze dance in our society through interdisciplinary studies. The main component of the course will be the willingness to engage physically in dance and the secondary component will be reading and writing about dance. In the end the student will develop an awareness and appreciation for dance in society, learn kinesthetically and become physically fit in the process.
The Graphic Arts elective will explore all aspects of the commercial arts as they relate to commerce and the entertainment industry. Students will begin by studying the basic foundations of drawing, cartooning, and illustration. They will move from hand created work to digital production using Adobe Photoshop and Flash. The second half of the course will focus on animation techniques such as hand-drawn/traditional, claymation, and cut paper through the use of story development. The elective is open to all non-majors and is intended to improve confidence and visual literacy skills.
Chamber Singers is an elective open by audition to music-major and non-music-major students. This course is meant for students with a passion for music and singing. In this course we will study and perform choral literature composed and arranged for chamber ensembles, with an emphasis on contemporary works. In this course, students will study and perform a wide range of genres from different time periods and cultures. The course will also focus on proper singing technique, music notation, and solo performance.
1. Mandatory math test
2. GPA from Chemistry
3. At the request of the teacher, students may be required to write a short essay about why they want to take AP chemistry
Honors English and AP English
1. Recommendation from English teacher.
2. Overall GPA of 3.0 or letter written by the student explaining why they want to take the Honors English class and what they can offer to the class as a whole.
3. Writing sample that analyzes the theme, a character, or a symbol used in a novel, short story, or play.
(This will be assessed with AP Lit and Comp scoring guidelines that can be found here: http://www.collegeboard.com/prod_downloads/ap/students/english/ap07_sg_english_lit.pdf
4. Students who have taken an AP course in their free time will be given priority.)
SAT English and Math
Senior Capstone Course
School District of Philadelphia High School Promotion and Graduation Standards
A. General Promotion Guidelines
(minimal amount of credits)
1. Promotion from grade to grade should be based on credits earned:
• Promotion to 10th grade – 5 credits
• Promotion to 11th grade – 11 credits
• Promotion to 12th grade -17.5 credit or sufficient number of
credits to reach 23.5 by the end of 12th grade
2. A passing grade at the high school level is described as a D or
higher (65 or higher).
B. General Graduation Guidelines
1. A Grade 12 student shall graduate if he/she has
• Has earned a total of 23.5 credits, which include:
4 in English
3 in Mathematics
3 in Science
3 in Social Studies
1 in African American History •
2 in World Language
2 in Arts and Humanities
1 in Physical Education
.5 in Health
4 in electives
* This requirement becomes effective with the graduating
class of 2009.
One elective must be one of the following: Mathematics,
Science, International Baccalaureate or Advanced
Placement courses. Special admission schools and other
criteria-based schools or programs may predetermine the
electives to require additional subject area credits in math,
science or others.
• Completed a Multidisciplinary Project or a Service
Learning Project successfully.
* 20 hours of optional community service per year.