The visual and performing arts are key components in the BHS curriculum. Our award-winning programs allow children to explore their own talents and interests, as well as develop an appreciation for a wide variety of art forms and cultures.
Under the direction of a faculty of high-regarded artists in their own fields, we provide early and continuous exposure to art and music.
Art classes are truly essential in developing the full potential of Bloomfield Hills Schools students.
Most people realize that art classes strengthen innate creativity and foster the growth of imagination, but they may not recognize that creativity and imagination are the backbone of investigation, problem solving and invention.
Elementary school students receive dedicated visual art instruction each week, with additional experiences integrated into the curriculum via interdisciplinary study.
We know that instruction in the performing arts is vital to a student's education. In elementary school, much of this instruction takes the form of music education. Most people realize that music is a core human experience. But many people fail to recognize that music is an active, experiential process that involves creative problem solving, musical decision-making and risk-taking.
Elementary school students receive dedicated music instruction each week, with additional experiences integrated into the curriculum via interdisciplinary study activities.
By the end of second grade, in the context of structurally simple music, students are able to represent, identify, perform, create and explain the dimensions of music in entry-level experiences. By the end of fifth grade, in the context of music of varying complexity, students are able to listen analytically, perform, create and represent the dimensions of music with increasing levels of independence.
Elementary students engage in music experiences outside of the classroom as well. They participate in vocal and instrumental performances both within the school and in the community, and attend field trips to high school musical rehearsals, the Warren Symphony Orchestra and MOT Children's Choir.
Not only do middle school art classes teach students to think more deeply, they teach them to observe and communicate in ways that words and numbers cannot.
Creating art teaches students to scrutinize, think and respond. Invariably, the students find their "voice" and produce personally expressive work – work that communicates how they feel. This is an especially valuable experience for middle school students.
Visual art concepts taught in middle school include:
- Elements and principles of art
- Digital art/photography
After-school clubs give middle school students additional opportunities to engage the visual arts, including the Fashion Design Club and Art Club.
Middle school performing arts instruction gives students an opportunity to engage in collaborative, temporal, creative experiences, enabling them to develop skills and understandings that are uniquely relevant to the requirements of a changing world.
Students in sixth grade enroll in a Creative Dramatics course and then choose from a variety of music courses. Seventh and eighth graders select from a variety of instrumental and vocal music electives, as well as courses in the dramatic arts.
- Musical Drama
- Theatre and Performance
Students students engage in music experiences outside of the classroom as well. They participate in vocal, instrumental and dramatic performances both within the school and in the community, and attend field trips to the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. After-school clubs give middle school students additional opportunities to experience the performing arts, including Jazz Band, Chamber Orchestra and Chamber Singers.
To meet high school graduation requirements, students must complete one credit of study in visual, performing or applied arts. In addition, students typically have 4 elective credits, which they can fulfill via arts courses.
The goal of the visual arts department is to engage the imagination, foster learning, develop discipline and build confidence through the use of artistic mediums, resources and techniques. Students compete in art competitions and exhibit their work in local and national venues.
The Bloomfield Hills Schools vocal and instrumental music, and dramatic arts programs are nationally recognized. From students interested in the Baroque and early classical era to those wanting to study contemporary jazz, we provide expert instruction and countless competitive opportunities. Sight-reading, musical theory, rehearsal skills and composition prepare students for collegiate music experiences.
Students have a robust offering of performing arts courses from which to choose, including:
- Acting I and II
- AP Music Theory
- Concert Band
- Concert Choir
- Dramatic Arts/Music
- Jazz Ensemble
- Music Workshop
- Philharmonic Orchestra
- Symphony Band
- Symphony Orchestra