Fine Arts at Saint John Academy
“The purpose of art is nothing less than the upliftment of the human spirit.”
῀ St. John Paul II ῀
Saint John Academy believes that a student’s spiritual, academic and artistic development go hand-in-hand to form a well-rounded child. Students are presented with a variety of opportunities in the arts, including both the visual and performing arts.
Saint John Academy’s art curriculum is designed to develop a young artist’s technical abilities and vision, through the study of a variety of traditional and contemporary media. There is no limit to what they are able to create. Students also work on large scale projects as a class, such as scenery and props for school plays and musicals.
Students’ work is showcased at the end of the year at Saint John Academy’s Fine Arts Night. Every year, in October, art by talented young SJA artists is displayed at the Children’s Artwalk at the Mclean Project for the Arts Artfest. Talented young artists from St. John Academy enter art that they have worked on throughout the year.
Drama enters our fine arts program as an avenue for the students to practice and enhance key presentation and public speaking skills. Each production at the school offers the students an opportunity to enter an environment focused on team work and self-confidence as the faculty and staff work with the students to nurture their creative talents.
The students at SJA put on three productions every year, usually during the spring semester. A middle school musical is the highlight of the year. Past shows include the junior versions of The Music Man, Fiddler on the Roof, The Pirates of Penzance and Oklahoma! Every year our 7th and 8th grade students put on separate productions as well. The 8th grade enters the Diocese of Arlington Annual Shakespeare Festival where 20 schools gather to showcase their talent in a medley of Shakespeare plays. Our 7th grade joins the drama environment at the end of every school year with a mystery play based on an Agatha Christie novel. The play is always written and directed by the students themselves and it provides a great transition as the students prepare to become leaders of the student body as next year’s 8th grade class.
Students in grades 3-8 have the opportunity to participate in the SJA Treble Choir (grades 3-5) under the direction of SJA music teacher, Ms. Maria Starrs, or in the Advanced Choir (grades 6-8) under the direction of Mrs. Michelle Jacobeen. Rehearsals are held in the music room twice a week from 7:20 – 7:55 a.m.
The Saint John Academy Band draws student musicians from grades 4-8. Grade 4, the youngest, forms the major portion of the beginner band. The beginner band meets for classes during the school day. Our advanced band generally consists of students from 5th – 8th grade with at least one year of experience. Advanced band members have classes during the school day and a full band rehearsal after school once a week. Concerts at school are given by both groups in the winter and spring. Furthermore, advanced band members are able to participate in the Diocese of Arlington Band Festival and both the beginner and advanced band members are able to participate in the Music in the Parks Spring Trip.