June 22, 2024
Search
Close this search box.
Search
Close this search box.
June 22, 2024
Search
Close this search box.

Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

MDS Explores the World Through Art and Song

Traveling back in time to the Jazz Age or painting a personalized version of Monet’s water lilies are highlights of students’ art and music appreciation education at Manhattan Day School. Students throughout the grades express their creativity, explore their intellectual curiosity and build their imaginations during their weekly art and music classes.

Song permeates the halls of the MDS eEarly childhood floor, as the greatly anticipated early childhood Shabbat and Rosh Chodesh onegs get students dancing and singing along. In the lower school, the music program engages students in music appreciation, theory, composition and performance. Students learn about music from cultures around the world, singing in different languages and learning about a diverse array of musicians. First and second graders have been learning about music from around the world through the Carnegie Hall’s Musical Explorers program. Students began learning about jazz music originating right here in America and have now traveled to a new continent, Africa, to learn about mbira music from Zimbabwe. Tanyaradzwa, the Zimbabwean musician they are learning from, plays the traditional instrument (with the same name as the musical genre) the mbira, also known as the kilembe. Students have been entranced by the beautiful sounds of the mbira, singing and playing along with shakers, as is traditional for Mbira musicians as well. MDS students’ travel plans will take them next to Haiti—another new country and musical tradition, where they will learn with singer-songwriter Emmeline in Hatian Creole. Students love learning about the musical traditions of other cultures around the world, and getting to sing in new languages as well. No travel restrictions or testing required in MDS musical explorations!

The art curriculum is designed to cultivate the skills and tools needed to showcase each student’s unique potential. Art is taught with the aim to develop students’ aesthetics, techniques and understanding of the history of visual art. Middle school students are introduced to artwork and artists that address social themes. Students explore portrayals of people who are similar to and different from themselves, enabling them to grapple with questions of justice and identity. Artists such as Norman Rockwell, Faith Ringgold, Romare Bearden, Pablo Picasso and Margret Burke-White aid in this exploration.

Leave a Comment

Most Popular Articles