Arts integrated coverPhoto The arts are integrated with the curriculum across the grades and disciplines. Many projects in visual arts will link to classroom themes of study, upcoming curricular trips, and community events in ways that challenge students to express themselves with visual and performance art. 

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Even among teachers, there is an ever-changing integration and collaboration between different disciplines and divisions. See some of the highlights from the integration of the arts below.  


History, literature, reading, writing, music, dance, and art are transformed through the creativity and skill of the students into an expression of their own understanding, humor, and evolving sophistication. Read more about Lower School Musicals here


Second graders recount their families' personal journeys to the Bay Area as part of a year-long study of Immigration. Read the full experience of how immigration altered California and see a slideshow of the students' journeys here.


Culmination is a chance for students to present their semester-long arts and electives projects and demonstrate what they've learned. Get an in-depth account of what happens during Culmination nights at Nueva. 


Through the creation of Power Animals, students integrate learning in SEL, writing, and visual arts. Traditionally done early in the sixth grade, it is a perfect time for students to learn about themselves while also sharing aspects of themselves with their classmates and teachers.

They begin with reflective practices in SEL that reveal their animals and move on to learning about the importance of Power Animals in Native American culture. They research their animal’s significance and characteristics, and in writing class craft an essay describing a chance encounter with their animal. Their writing assignment challenges them to be storytellers while integrating all they have learned thus far about their animal.

In art class, students collect images to gain perspectives on their animals, and with special attention to form, balance, texture, and body position, they work in clay to make their own hand-held fetish. Once fired, students work in layers with glaze to add depth and realism through nuanced color, learning the qualities of the materials and application techniques.

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Every other year, students in seventh and eighth grades spend the fall semester studying the Silk Road. As one of the most beloved experiences in Middle School, the curriculum integrates science, math, humanities, writing, art, and music.

Throughout the semester, the Silk Road theme is woven through their classes, giving them a rich experience in history and culture of that time. At the end of the semester, students recreate the Silk Road as a Bazaar on our campus, displaying their wares, crafts, tools, and food while sharing their knowledge.

One of the exciting elements of the culmination is that students explicitly assume the role of their chosen character, and teach their classmates, teachers, and parents about their profession. As merchants, scholars, artisans, cooks, musicians, and more, the Silk Road Bazaar demonstrates the true depth of their learning.

Art plays a central role in the Silk Road study, as students make their costumes, experience music and food of the time, and gain a deep sense of this ancient culture. This hands-on approach makes the experience tangible, and helps students truly understand how the Silk Road connected the world in its time, and brought about impacts they can still see in their lives today. View more about the student experience of the Silk Road.

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Ten Minute Walk



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