6th Grade Elective Course Descriptions

Below are descriptions of the potential elective courses being offered at PJH next school year.  When selecting an elective, be sure to pay close attention to all the requirements for the course, such as applications, auditions, fees, prerequisites, length of the course, etc.  This is not a guaranteed list and can change based on student demand, teacher availability, district requirements, and other unpredictable factors.

Band Intro A & B (Woodwind & Brass) & Band Percussion A & B (Drums) – (Fees vary): Anyone is eligible to sign up for beginning band. Previous musical experience is not required. Students will learn to read music and work in a group setting. The instruments offered will be Flute, Oboe, Bassoon, Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone, Trumpet, French Horn, Trombone, Euphonium/Baritone, Tuba, Bass Guitar and Band Percussion which includes Drums like; Snare Drum, Bass Drum, Timpani and Keyboard Instruments like; Xylophone, Marimba and Bells. There will be required performance opportunities throughout the year. Students and parents will be responsible for obtaining and caring for an instrument and purchasing a method book. The School District has a limited supply of instruments that can be rented for the year. Most students will need to either rent or purchase an instrument through a local retailer or obtain one through family or friends. If you have further questions, please email the Band Director, Mr. Manning at wayne.manning@psd201.org.

Choir Intro: All students are invited to come and sing to their heart’s content. Students will learn to read and understand music. They will have the opportunity to participate in performances displaying their newly discovered singing skills. Students will learn to sing separate parts in harmony with their peers.

Creativity, Culture and Crafts ($10.00 fee): This is a craft-based art course intended for the students who are interested in the creative process, but not interested in the fine art aspect (drawing/painting). Students will learn about the art and crafts of various cultures while creating works of art. Students will get to experience working with a variety of different mediums, while learning multiple studio techniques.

Creative Writing 6: This class is for the student who loves to write, but never seems to have enough time to do it. You will have the opportunity to use your imagination while expressing your talent through the written word. This course is designed to guide students in the creative writing process through experiencing multiple genres and writing workshops.

Drawing Comic Strips ($10.00 fee): Students will build upon realistic drawing skills by learning how to design memorable characters, facial expressions, story-boarding, body language, prop and background design, and learn the unique language of the cartoon artist. The class will also incorporate some writing skills with an emphasis on humor as students learn to tell entertaining stories using words and art. Earning a "C" grade or higher in either Realistic Drawing class is recommended, but not required.

Graphic Design: Have you ever wanted to tell a story only using technology? You can now with the skills gained in this graphic design class. Learn how to use words, art work, designs, and patterns to express yourself and tell stories through Adobe software. So let your imagination soar to new heights. Adobe Illustrator software will give you the skills to bring ideas to life.

Music Appreciation: This is a course where you can explore various music forms and mediums, experience the history and current use of music in pop culture, learn how music can affect your mood, and find out for yourself if music is a field you would like to pursue in school and possibly beyond.

Orchestra Intermediate A & B (Fees vary): This class is only available to students with previous orchestra experience. If you have orchestra experience that did not occur with Ms. Durrant, please visit with her so she can assess your abilities. Students will be responsible for providing and caring for the instrument. One can be rented through the school.

Photoshop: Gain technical skills with the use of Adobe Photo Shop software. Create a fun mix of imagination and artistic skills to bring original photo images to life. Let your imagination tell the story of photographs brought from home. You will be the master of the story. Adobe Photo Shop software allows you to manipulate photographs, embellish borders, and add sayings. Every photo has a story so become the narrator to your own personal photographs.

Realistic Drawing – Animals ($10.00 fee): Do you want others to say, “Wow!” when they see your artwork? Then this may be the class for you. But making artwork—takes work. Realistic drawing takes time and attention to detail—especially detailed shading. This means that this class might not be for everyone. Although students start out by drawing step by step with the teacher—it will advance to cover the high state and national visual arts standards—including those for 6th grade. Crafts, doodles and flat abstract ‘art’ will not be emphasized since students could do that at home without qualified and experienced guided instruction. If you like a challenge—if you care more about really learning and improving your drawing, than getting an easy ‘A’—this class is for you!
 
Realistic Drawing – Manmade Objects ($10.00 fee): This class is similar in design to the Animals class. In this course the drawings will focus on structures such as buildings and other manmade objects.

Spanish Language & Culture: ¿Hablas español? In this beginning class, students will explore the Spanish language and cultures. You will learn important skills to help you understand and appreciate different Spanish-speaking countries. Students are not required to have any previous instruction in Spanish to take this class.

Student Government A & B (Election Required): Students elected by their peers to be student body officer representatives for the next school year are placed in a class for the entire school year to allow them to perform their student council duties. This class takes the place of other elective choices.

Study Habits A & B (Selection Process): These are typically students who struggle to maintain good grades and need the extra time at school to complete daily assignments. Enrollment is limited to provide a small group setting and to allow for some one-on-one assistance. Teachers and staff will review the requests and select students who will be the best fit for the available positions.

The World of Fantasy, Folklore, and More 6: In this course we will be exploring literary works such as fantasy, fairy tales, mythology, fables, and legends. Students will read, write, analyze, create, and comprehend through various assignments and activities.
 
Yearbook A & B (Application Required): Students in yearbook learn to use computer software to organize, design, and edit the Preston Junior High yearbook. They will also be involved with taking photos of school activities, clubs, sports teams, etc. To apply for the Yearbook course you must complete a paper and an online application. Mrs. Marlow, (Yearbook Advisor todd.coburn@psd201.org) will review each application (both the paper and the online application) and pick the students that fit best with the class requirements. Not all of the students that turn in an application will be selected for the class. If you are picked for Yearbook; it becomes your #1 elective choice for the entire school year and takes the place of your other elective choices. Submit the Yearbook application to the office by May 1st of each year.