Middle School Classes

List of 4 items.

  • Middle School Improv (Period 8) (7-8)

    Students have the opportunity to learn short-form improvisation games and skills. The class will focus on the basics of improvisation rules and playful games, and help prepare students interested in auditioning for the Windward’s Upper School ComedySportz HSL team.
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  • Middle School Theater (Semester) (7-8)

    Students are given the opportunity to explore the world of theater in this semester class. Each student will get an introduction to acting, writing, technical theater, public speaking, and stage presence. This course begins with an exploration of the ensemble through theater games and trust exercises. Students will have the opportunity to practice and define their performance voice and gain confidence as they perform for others. Improvisation skills are utilized to explore voice, non-verbal choices, character work, and narrative skills. Projects include adding context and emotion to non-context scenes, and preparing and performing comedic scenes. Students will also have an opportunity to workshop a personal monologue that they can use as audition material, learning how to make character choices and emotional breakdowns within the monologue and translating that to performance. Students can take Middle School Theater twice since there will be a variation of projects and focus.
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  • Performing Arts Core: Dance, Theater, and Voice (Year-long) (7-8)

    This course will introduce our youngest performing artists, whether they are new to performing or are entering Windward School with experience, to the fundamentals of theater, voice, and dance, and will create a platform for entering more advanced courses. Students in this course will learn the basic skills, techniques, and expectations for class, rehearsal, and performance in the disciplines of theater, voice, and dance. They will have the opportunity to work in rotation with three different teachers in each discipline, as well as be exposed to guest artists who will deepen their experience of each art form. The work of each discipline will culminate in projects and performances of famous musical works.

    Dance: Through stretch and strengthening work, positioning and alignment, and the techniques of jazz, hip-hop, and improvisation, students will develop an understanding of the body as a tool for physical development and creative expression.

    Theater: In theater, the students will get an introduction to acting, technical theater, public speaking, and stage presence. This course will begin with getting-to-know-you games and trust exercises. Students will find their performance voice and develop confidence while performing for others. Improvisation skills will be utilized to explore vocal work - ranging from long distance calling techniques to stage whispers; character work - using physicality, vocal, attitude lines, and emotions to create characters; narratives - basic storytelling skills, conflict and resolution themes; pantomime and physicality.

    Voice: The vocal component of the Performing Arts Core class will invite each student into a personal exploration (regardless of prior experience or training) of the following elements of singing: the basic mechanics of singing (posture, breathing and breath support, tone and pitch), vocal improvement (extending the vocal range and overall voice control) and song study and performance.
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  • Windward Theater Workshop (Year-long) (7-8)

    This course is designed for the Middle School student who enjoys theater and wants to explore acting, writing, directing, and performing a wide variety of material. This course will invite each student to engage in and focus on comedy performance through transformations, mime, breath work, listening skills, total body involvement, and group expression. Students will learn the basics of creating a scene/sketch both with a short and long narrative. The ensemble will utilize narrative and character improvisation skills to create personal written pieces. Students will give feedback, sharing constructive criticism from both an audience’s and director’s point of view. Additional education will include famous works within various comedy genres, narratives, character myths, and pathos. The primary focus is to build group awareness on and off stage, sharpen performance skills, and allow students to explore personal works in addition to the depth and nuances of comedy.
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Windward School is a 7-12, co-educational, independent day school in Los Angeles, California.