In the Middle School, students' course schedules include performing arts and visual arts (half a year each), and design (full year).
Students can also select from a myriad of creative and performing arts options through their LEAP Elective programme, clubs, and co-curriculars.
Middle Years Programme (MYP) Visual Arts is a required course each year from Grade 6 through Grade 9. The programme allows students to develop creative responses through a variety of media including drawing, painting, ceramics, sculpture, mixed media, photography, and digital arts. Throughout the programme, students engage with local and international artists through investigations, field trips to galleries, and our Artist in Residence programme.
MYP Visual Arts provides students with a solid framework in the creative process, technical skills, and techniques. Our students develop specific visual arts vocabulary to help them articulate their knowledge and create an understanding and appreciation of the global and cultural diversity of artwork. By continuously working through the creative process, students practice divergent and convergent thinking skills to help them find their own creative expression. The IB programme scaffolds students’ ability to think critically about the context of their work in the art world and take risks, and challenges them to push their creative potential. The skills learned in the visual arts can be applied across the curriculum and in students’ endeavours outside of school.
Performing Arts in the Middle Years Programme (MYP) is a liberal exploration of creating, performing, researching, and combining artistic expression in the areas of music, drama, and dance.
During their music units, students explore a variety of instruments, and develop their skills in improvisation, composition, and music technology and recording, with fundamental music theory and literacy underpinning the programme. Students learn to compose in genres such as protest music, video game music, and electronic music and also perform music from around the world.
During their theatre units, students focus on theatre for change, theatre design, devised theatre, movement pieces, realism duo scenes, playwriting, and performance. Students begin to explore their own personal connections to dramatic performance and to improve their skills both on and behind the stage and screen.
MYP Performing Arts culminates annually with Artsapalooza, the final performance of the year where all students in Grades 6-9 showcase their learning across disciplines. Dance, drama, and music are fully integrated as students learn about different cultures from guest experts. Facilitators differ from year to year, but in the past have offered bangra, capoeira, samba, boal, gamelan, shadow puppetry, and taiko drumming - to name a few!
Our engaging theatre Middle School LEAP offerings include Theatre Tech, Improv, Tools of the Actor, Makeup and Costume Design, and Playmaking.
Music co-curriculars (before and after school) include choirs, bands, and string ensembles.
Design encourages creative problem-solving that is human-centred through prototyping, experimentation, and adaptation.
Mulgrave students are expected to solve problems related to genuine local and global issues. Whether the issues revolve around the UN Sustainable Development Goals or culturally appropriate products, students in design learn to apply the design cycle in a creative, analytical, and productive manner.
Using a systematic approach, students conceptualise and evaluate ideas, turning them into tangible inventions, products, and solutions. The designer's role is to combine art, science, and technology to create new products or solutions that others can use. Digital tools such as 3D printers and CAD software facilitate this evolving role allowing designers to communicate, visualise, analyse, and produce tangible ideas in a way that would have required a greater workload in the past.
Design LEAP Elective options include subjects such as drones, textiles, and robotics.
Middle School students participating in the play are invited to enjoy original choreographic works created specifically for their unique roles. Students have agency in their learning and are involved in opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration and choreographic input. Learning opportunities are relevant to their interests and differentiated to each student, allowing for challenging and rewarding experiences. Emphasis is placed on performance skills essential for both individual and group dance pieces, such as timing, musicality, synchronicity, projecting to an audience, body language, stage directions, transitions, and expression.
Dance is also part of the joint PHE and Performing Arts curriculum.
Dance LEAP Electives in the Middle Years Programme offer ballet and contemporary classes allowing for the development of technique, flexibility, fluidity of movement, performance skills, and confidence dancing individually and as a group. Dance class etiquette and terminology are woven throughout.