Strong Minds. Kind Hearts.
Friends Academy Celebrates Unity Day with First Community Group Meetings

On Thursday, October 10, the Friends Academy community wore orange to honor Unity Day, part of Bullying Prevention Month. The day was also marked with the first meetings of all-school Community Groups, which bring together students and adults in all divisions to strengthen bonds across campus.

Visual Arts

Lower School

The most important objective of the Lower School Visual Art Program is to create an atmosphere of encouragement, enthusiasm, and acceptance for the creative efforts of the children.

Lower School Visual Art offers a welcoming, safe and inspiring work environment where students are encouraged to take risks and develop their aesthetic awareness. Personal views are respected, differences are celebrated and all students are considered working artists. Through carefully designed explorative activities, students engage and experiment with a wide range of materials and processes that will allow them to discover their creative potential.

The Visual Art curriculum in the lower school is closely integrated with Global Studies in Early Childhood through fifth grade. Integration takes place where there is an authentic overlap of goals and objectives for both disciplines. Integrated and kinesthetic activities help students gain a deeper understanding of grade level objectives while having the opportunity to think and study them through various artistic, scientific, mathematical and cultural lenses.

In addition to the regularly scheduled Art class, Art/Science is offered to students in grades two, three, four and five. By thinking and creating like an artist and scientist, students begin to understand how both disciplines share many skill sets as well as reflect and support one another.

Our Lower School Curriculum is founded on the following principles:

  • Exploration of new ideas
  • Making interdisciplinary connections
  • Introduction of age appropriate skills and techniques
  • Development of executive functioning and analytical skills
  • Serve as a cornerstone of the Global Studies Curriculum

Middle School

The Middle School Visual Art Program seeks to function as an introduction to studio art, linking past art experiences at the Lower School level with an eye toward preparedness for the Upper School Art Program.

To this end, Middle School Art introduces students to a broad range of experiences and media, emphasizing problem solving, aesthetic decision making, inventive thinking, craftsmanship, and risk taking through creative studio processes.

In the Middle School, all students receive regular instruction in Visual Arts, Theater, Music and Dance. This includes Sixth Grade Arts Block, an integrated multi-disciplinary arts course.

In the Middle School curriculum we emphasize:

  • Understanding of the students personal connection to artistic expression
  • Ability to work individually and in groups
  • Embracing challenge
  • Personal growth and development

Upper School

Upper School Visual Art is designed to help students become visual problem solvers.

They learn to express their ideas and develop an artistic voice by exploring techniques and materials in studio settings. There are various opportunities to explore advanced studio techniques and materials in 11th and 12th grade.

Throughout the year student work is exhibited in the Dolan Center Atrium and Art Gallery.

In the Upper School, students must finish one credit of Arts as a graduation requirement, which is done through elective courses.

In the Upper School our program expands as we focus on:

  • Understanding yourself as an artist
  • Discovering your own voice and sharing that through your artistic work
  • Mastery of skills and techniques
  • Ability to articulate artistic process
  • Knowledge of historical context

Department Members

MaryJo Allegra - Lower School, Convenor

Allison Doherty - Middle School, Upper School

Amanda Fisk - Middle School, Upper School

Jess Levey - Middle School, Upper School

John Regan - Middle School, Upper School