Program of Studies: Performing & Visual Arts

Program Mission/Purpose

The mission of the Worcester Public Schools Arts curriculum is to prepare students to be artistically literate citizens with a lifelong interest and appreciation for the arts. Students will create, present and perform, respond and connect to artistic works in multiple media, define and defend their artistic voice, and become creative and collaborative problem solvers who actively contribute to our global community. Our curriculum pathways seek to develop expertise in at least one area of the arts and deepen understanding of self and society through the artistic media.

Course Offerings

2D Design

Course Numbers: 6062 (0.50)(H) | 6063 (0.50)(C)

Type: High School
Area: Art & Music

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2D Design: In this course, students will use the Elements and Principles of Design to explore works on a Two Dimensional plane. Students will examine the difference between expression and communication as well engage in inquiry and problem-solving. Students will use traditional and digital media to understand the creative process by conceiving and completing a project that demonstrates experimentation, invention, and technical mastery. As an honors level course, content will be covered at an accelerated pace. Students will study topics at a deeper level and will be expected to complete more independent coursework and assignments.


2D Design Magnet

Course Numbers: 6142 (1.00)(H)

Type: High School
Area: Art & Music

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2D Design Magnet: In this course, students will refine their use of the Elements and Principles of Design to create a portfolio of work focusing on the two dimensional plane utilizing inquiry and problem-solving skills. With materials chosen from the 2D Design course (traditional or digital) students will complete an investigation, with evidence of complex ideas, that demonstrates intention, originality, innovation, and technical mastery. As an honors level course, content will be covered at an accelerated pace. Students will study topics at a deeper level and will be expected to complete more independent coursework and assignments.


3D Design

Course Numbers: 6082 (0.50)(H) | 6083 (0.50)(C)

Type: High School
Area: Art & Music

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3D Design: In this course, students will build on key understandings and skill and will use the Elements and Principles of Design to visualize, design and build works in a three dimensional plane, whether physical or virtual. Students will complete assignments and critiques in which they think through 3 Dimensional works in an additive and/or subtractive method and engage in reflection and critique of current sculptural practices. As an honors level course, content will be covered at an accelerated pace. Students will study topics at a deeper level and will be expected to complete more independent coursework and assignments.


3D Design Magnet

Course Numbers: 6152 (1.00)(H)

Type: High School
Area: Art & Music

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3D Design Magnet: In this course, students will refine their use of the Elements and Principles of Design to visualize, design, and build works in a three dimensional plane, whether physical or virtual. Students will focus their fabrication techniques through a strategic use of materials and will address issues of understanding and envisioning space, objects, and scale and the built environment. Students will complete assignments and critiques that demonstrate their ability to analyze 3 Dimensional works in an additive/subtractive manner. As an honors level course, content will be covered at an accelerated pace. Students will study topics at a deeper level and will be expected to complete more independent coursework and assignments.


Advanced 2D Design

Course Numbers: 6072 (0.50)(H) | 6073 (0.50)(C)

Type: High School
Area: Art & Music

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Advanced 2D Design: In this course, students will advance their use of the Elements and Principles of Design to create a portfolio of work focusing on the Two Dimensional plane, building on skills developed in the 2D Design course. Students will create portfolios with either traditional or digital materials that reveal intention, originality, and technical mastery. As as honors level course, content will be covered at an accelerated pace. Students will study topics at a deeper level and will be expected to complete more independent coursework and assignments.


Advanced 3D Design

Course Numbers: 6092 (0.50)(H) | 6093 (0.50)(C)

Type: High School
Area: Art & Music

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Advanced 3D Design: In this course, students will explore the elements of art and principles of design while applying them to 3 dimensional format using various media. Students will explore historical periods to discover the roots of modern sculptural pieces and will complete critiques and assessment in order to refine the process of creative expression. Students will examine professional work as well as their own. As an honors level course, content will be covered at an accelerated pace. Students will study topics at a deeper level and will be expected to complete more independent coursework and assignments.


Advanced Drawing

Course Numbers: 6032 (0.50)(H) | 6033 (0.50)(C)

Type: High School
Area: Art & Music

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Advanced Drawing: In this course, students will deepen fundamentals introduced in the Drawing class and refine visual thoughts and ideas through self-selected media and techniques. Students will continue to work with the observed and imagined figue, still life, landscape, and thematic content. Students will further develop their analytical skills to critique their own art as well as art from various historical periods. As an honors level course, content will be covered at an accelerated pace. Students will study topics at a deeper level and will be expected to complete more independent coursework and assignments.


Advanced Painting

Course Numbers: 6052 (0.50)(H) | 6053 (0.50)(C)

Type: High School
Area: Art & Music

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Advanced Painting: In this course, students will deepen painting skills, concepts, and themes introduced in the Painting class. Students will further advance their painting on a two-dimensional surface, building structure and composition; color; flat pattern; modeling and light; and texture. Students will explore and research the history of the medium as well as examine its' transition into more contemporary practices. As an honors level course, content will be covered at an accelerated pace. Students will study topics at a deeper level and will be expected to complete more independent coursework and assignments.


American Rhythm Tap

Course Numbers: 6442 (1.00)(H) | 6443 (1.00)(C)

Type: High School
Area: Art & Music

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American Rhythm Tap - In this course, students will study a style of American Rhythm Tap using precise rhythmical patterns of foot movement and audible foot tapping. This style of dance is derived from the traditional clog dance of Northern England, the jigs and reels of Ireland and Scotland, and the rhythmic foot stamping of African dances. The class will engage in thorough warm-up exercises, across the floor combinations, rhythm and techniques emphasis, followed by routine and combination work. Focus in this class will include contemporary and improvisational and rhythm tap styles. Students learning outcomes will include the ability to analyze and break down warm-up and practice habits; a deep understanding of tap technique and terminology; and the ability to evaluate and relate tap dance with regard to contemporary culture. As an honors-level course, content will be covered at an accelerated pace. Students will study topics at a deeper level and will be expected to complete more independent coursework and assignments.


AP Art History

Course Numbers: 6061 (1.00)(A)

Type: High School
Area: Art & Music

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Advanced Placement Art History: In this course, students will explore the history and development of art and architecture in the western world from antiquity to the present, and will also examine and make connnections to art of non-European traditions and cultures. Students will develop a deeper appreciation of art in context, including issues of patronage, gender, social-political situations, and religion and will explore the intended purposes and functions of art in relation to history and culture. All classes will be held at the Worcester Art Museum. As an Advanced Placement course, college level content will be covered. Students will take the Advanced Placement examination.


AP Art Studio 2D

Course Numbers: 6081 (1.00)(A)

Type: High School
Area: Art & Music

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Advanced Placement Art Studio 2D: In this course, students will use 2D as a focus to creatively and systematically investigate formal and conceptual issues. Students will address: a sense of quality in their work; a concentration that expands on a particular interest or problem; and the breadth of experience in the technical and expressive means of the artist. The portfolio will reveal independent thinking and analysis of culture through the making of art. As an Advanced Placement course, college content will be covered. Students will submit a portfolio of work, which serves as the Advanced Placement Examination.


AP Art Studio 3D

Course Numbers: 6091 (1.00)(A)

Type: High School
Area: Art & Music

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Advanced Placement Art Studio 3D: In this course, students will use 3D as a focus to creatively and systematically investigate formal and conceptual issues. Students will address: a sense of quality in their work; a concentration that expands on a particular interest or problem; and the breadth of experience in the technical and expressive means of the artist. The portfolio will reveal independent thinking and analysis of culture through the making of art. As an Advanced Placement course, college content will be covered. Students will submit a portfolio of work, which serves as the Advanced Placement Examination.


AP Art Studio Drawing

Course Numbers: 6071 (1.00)(A)

Type: High School
Area: Art & Music

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Advanced Placement Art Studio Drawing: In this course, students will use drawing as a focus to creatively and systematically investigate formal and conceptual issues. Students will address: a sense of quality in their work; a concentration that expands on a particular interest or problem; and the breadth of experience in the technical and expressive means of the artist. The portfolio will reveal independent thinking and analysis of culture through the making of art. As an Advanced Placement course, college content will be covered. Students will submit a portfolio of work, which serves as the Advanced Placement Examination.


AP Music Theory

Course Numbers: 6181 (1.00)(A)

Type: High School
Area: Art & Music

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Advance Placement Music Theory: In this course, students will develop, practice, and master music theory skills including dictation, sight-singing, listening skills, and keyboard harmony. As an Advanced Placement course, college level content will be covered. Students will take the Advanced Placement examination.


App Music I

Course Numbers: 6403 (1.00)(C)

Type: High School
Area: Art & Music

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Applied Musicianship I: In this course, students will learn and/or advance their skills as instrumental musicians. Students will study proper performance practice, technical skill development and the basics of music theory, composition and songwriting



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