Grades 5-9
The Experience
Middle School: Grades 5-6

Arts: Grades 5-6

Middle School boys are nothing if not imaginative—so in these grades, our talented teachers (respected artists and musicians in their own right) help boys direct their energy and creativity into an expanded world of visual and performing arts.

Our faculty members are driven by the thrill of seeing a boy take the stage, paint a canvas, or play an instrument with results he never thought possible. We nurture their creative side and find that the single-sex environment helps boys shed their inhibitions around artistic expression. Our boys are encouraged to explore a variety of artistic pursuits before honing and focusing their talents when they reach the Upper School.

Arts Courses: Grades 5-6

List of 8 items.

  • Choral

    The B#s choral ensemble is an opportunity for Middle School boys to explore the basics of vocal technique and choral singing. Working collaboratively, the students learn healthy vocal production, thoughtful musical phrasing, and music literacy, all while working to blend and harmonize as a chorus. Throughout the year, the boys perform for the community, their friends, and families, at events such as the Winter Concert, Grandparents' Day, and the Spring Concert.
  • Middle School Band

    Band 5 and 6 are designed for students in their second and third year of musical study in saxophone, brass, or woodwinds. This course contains opportunities to develop scale knowledge and proficiency, refine instrumental mechanics, ensemble listening, intonation, and individual practice skills. Music is drawn from a variety of time periods and styles. Students learn how to build unity in an ensemble setting, while still maintaining individual accountability.
  • Orchestra

    The Fessenden Orchestra is composed of students with at least two years of experience on their instruments. Music is drawn from the Western Classical canon, folk music from different cultures around the world, and film scores. The prerequisite skills needed to be successful in the Orchestra are a firm knowledge of music notation, the two fundamental scales on their instrument, basic string notation markings, parts of the instrument, and familiarity with third position and the concept of vibrato.
  • Percussion Ensemble

    Middle School Percussion introduces students to a variety of percussion genres from Western and non-Western musical traditions, including music from Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia. Students study specific musical traditions, performance techniques, and compositional techniques of multiple cultures, illustrating the important role of music as a means of expression. Throughout the course, boys have the opportunity to play and perform various percussion instruments, building playing technique, music literacy, sight-reading skills, and other technical and functional skills of each instrument and musical genre. Students learn how to build unity within an ensemble setting, while still maintaining individual accountability.
  • String Ensemble

    String ensemble is intended for students with 1-2 years of experience on the violin, viola, cello, and bass. Students continue to develop their instrumental technique, music reading, ensemble playing, and rehearsal etiquette. The String Ensemble performs at Winter and Spring Concerts, and there may also be opportunities for ensemble members to play a piece with the Orchestra.
  • Theatre Arts

    In Theater Arts, students are introduced to the practical techniques and strategies of theatrical performance. The boys explore units on theater games, improvisation, stage combat, and basic stagecraft. In fifth grade, the semester culminates with a full staged production of an adaptation of "The Odyssey," taught in conjunction with the 5th grade English class. In sixth grade, the boys write and produce their own one-act plays.
  • Studio Art

    Studio Art is designed to give students the opportunity to grow their knowledge of a variety of mediums, from drawing and painting to three-dimensional sculpture and ceramics. Students will learn how to express their thoughts with images, colors, and textures through an iterative process, as well as articulate their process through verbal reflection. In addition, the boys will have opportunities to showcase their work to the larger Fessenden community throughout the school year.
  • Private Instrumental Lessons

    For an additional fee, students may request private music lessons in any of the band and orchestral instruments, as well as guitar and piano.

Meet the Arts Team

List of 7 members.

  • Photo of Marissa Apland

    Marissa Apland 

    Director of Arts & Vocal Music Teacher
    (617) 964-5350
  • Photo of Sharon Chen

    Sharon Chen 

    Music
  • Photo of Nicholas Francese

    Nicholas Francese 

    Music Tutor
    (617) 964-5350
  • Photo of Matthew Glenn

    Mr. Matthew Glenn 

    Instrumental Music Teacher
    (617) 964-5350
  • Photo of Joseph Lareau

    Mr. Joseph Lareau 

    Music
    (617) 964-5350
  • Photo of Paul Perez

    Paul Perez 

    MS & US Theatre
  • Photo of Victoria Stearns

    Victoria Stearns 

    MS & US Visual Arts
© 2015 The Fessenden School. All Rights Reserved.
The Fessenden School
250 Waltham Street
West Newton, MA 02465
(617) 964-5350

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