Painting and Drawing
In grades seven and eight, students use their pencils to create the complex forms they study in geometry. In painting classes, older students begin sometimes to paint on dry paper, allowing them to return to their work over several days. They also pre-mix their own colors and study veil and layer painting techniques. Students are challenged to develop skill in creating fuller, more detailed compositions.
Seventh-grade students no longer paint with the class teacher but take classes in the art studio. In these grades, the children often work with clay during main lessons, creating animals, cuneiform tablets, and other figures based on main lesson subjects.
In eighth grade, having worked with color throughout the elementary school years, students are introduced to the new medium of charcoal. They work only in black and white this year and are challenged to see their surroundings in a new way, as well as to handle this delicate medium with care.
Woodworking and Metal Work
As learned in main lesson, seventh graders apply their knowledge of mechanics towards projects making items such as a pair of tongs folding stools, or a moveable toy. In eighth grade, students are able to select from more complex projects, such as frames, stools, and shelves. In eighth grade, students study metalwork and learn to hammer bowls and simple jewelry out of sheet copper.
The seventh graders meet for a “block period,” where they have two double periods of handwork classes per week. The projects have varied throughout the years from wet felted slippers, needle felted marionettes, and hand-sewn Renaissance hats.
The eight graders also meet for a “block period,” where they have two double periods of handwork classes per week. As the students learn to make motors in science classes, they are introduced to the industrial age of the sewing machine. All students are expected to learn the use of the sewing machine, thread it independently, and sew accurately. While learning to operate this machine, their first project is either a drawstring bag or pillow to be given to a child in the early grades. After completing this simple assignment, their main project is an apron. The students first begin by drawing and designing their apron, which could be a traditional chef’s apron, a half apron or a carpenter’s apron. They carefully take use of their own body’s measurements and design a pattern.