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Visual & Performing Arts Course Offerings



Beginning Piano / Guitar P  (9-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

Piano class is for students who wish to learn basic piano playing and musicianship. Students will learn to play chords, melodies, read music and be introduced to class piano techniques. Students will study many music styles and will have written as well as playing tests. Prior music experience is not necessary for admission.

Beginning Guitar is for students new to music or new to the guitar that want to learn and improve the foundations of music.  Students will learn to read music, scales, basic chords, and chord charts.  You do not need to have your own guitar to join the class but it can make practicing easier.  There will be playing as well as written tests.


Wind Ensemble P  (9-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

Prerequisite: Audition and instructor approval

Wind Ensemble is an advanced woodwind, brass, and percussion performing ensemble. This group prepares, studies, and performs appropriate literature for an advanced high school Wind Ensemble.  The Wind Ensemble prepares for public concerts, and festival performances.  Members of the Wind Ensemble are also required to play in the Terra Linda Pep Band which plays at athletic events (Football/Basketball games).

Jazz Ensemble P  (9-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

Prerequisite: Audition and instructor approval.

Jazz Ensemble is an advanced performing group. Instructor approval is needed to become a member of this ensemble. Students should have a year or more experience (in high school band) before auditioning for jazz ensemble.  Various styles of jazz music will be studied and performed. This group will perform at school functions, concerts and festivals. Outside class time will be required.

Digital Music Production P  (9-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

Prerequisite: some experience in music is recommended

Digital Music Production is a project based class focused on producing original works of music.  Students will learn basics of music theory, melody, harmony, as well as industry standard production technique.  Projects will be produced solo as well as in collaboration with grades being based demonstration of the material. 


Drama 1 P  (9-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

The skills you learn in Drama 1 will help you throughout your high school career, and beyond. In addition to being an introduction to theater, this course will help you build self-confidence, become part of a community, take part in daily exercises in creativity, and become a confident public speaker. In Drama 1 there is less emphasis on homework and more on daily participation and interaction and developing trust. The course offers an overview of the basic elements of theatre: acting, playwriting, voice and stage movement, technical design and theatre history. The development of confidence, self-esteem, and community is highly stressed throughout the year. The first semester focuses on improvisation and the physical and emotional awareness of the student as an actor/performer. During the second semester, the class works on a variety of projects designed to develop the student as a technically competent theater person. Involvement in the extracurricular theatre productions is highly encouraged but not required.

Drama 2 P, 3 P, 4 P  (10-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

Prerequisite: Drama 1 and instructor approval

The study of acting continues and the elements of directing are introduced. Plays are read and analyzed—a more strenuous study of theatre history is covered. Students will be encouraged to choose challenging and difficult plays, scenes and technical theatre designs to work on. Public performance will be required frequently. Drama 2-4 students have the opportunity to audition for Senior projects. Special projects and participation in the extracurricular productions are highly encouraged. This program should be a springboard for those students who want to continue their theatre education in college or in a theatre arts training program after high school

Drama 4 HP  (11-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

Prerequisite: Completion of Drama 2 or 3 and instructor approval

Drama 4 Honors is a class for senior drama students who wish to take on leadership roles in the drama department while deepening their understanding of the practice of theatre. The class will run concurrently within the existing Advanced Drama class. Students in the honors course will participate in the same projects as their peers, but will take leadership roles, and to complete additional projects and assignments. Honors Drama 4 will prepare students to work in college and community theater productions. Students will learn how to assemble and prepare material for auditions; they will expand their understanding and practice of improvisational skills; they will learn the steps necessary for script analysis and period scene study; they will develop and expand their theatrical resumes through project-based learning by managing and promoting department productions; and they will develop the skills necessary to produce and direct a theatrical production. 


Art & Design 1 P  (9-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

The elements of art and principles of design provide the framework for Art & Design 1. Students use a variety of materials to explore drawing, painting, printmaking and simple sculpture. Units include drawing methods, line, value, color, painting, and perspective. Students work from still lives, from photographs, from life and from their imaginations. The cultural history and appreciation of art is taught as a part of each unit of study. Work is primarily project-based, and includes occasional written and oral critiques and art historical exercises.

Art & Design 2 P  (10-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

Prerequisites:  B- or better in Art & Design 1 or any other Visual Art class

Students who have taken a beginning level art course may take this course for advanced level credit. The course is an expansion of Art and Design 1 and assumes that the student will work independently and produce at a high level. Students will refine their art skills in a variety of media, expand their knowledge of art history, reflect on how contemporary art intersects with their own work, and refine their critical thinking skills. Students will work on a variety of 2-dimensional projects in a range of mediums, participate in oral and written critiques, and study and reflect on art historical and contemporary artworks.

Art & Design 3 P  (10-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

Prerequisites:  B or better in Art 2

An advanced course for students who have a serious interest in art, this course is designed to acquaint students with a more in-depth and personal approach to their art. Development of individualized expression is emphasized with choices in projects, themes and materials. Students will continue to hone their critical thinking skills with critiques and reflections. In the second term, students will decide between working on a sustained investigation of their choice or painting a door

Arts Intensive 4 P  (11-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

Prerequisites:  B or better in Art 3, or permission of instructor

Art 4 P places emphasis on developing creative expression and technique in Art. Students may concentrate on drawing, painting, printmaking, or a combination of media. Mastery of various media and techniques must be proven by an exhibition of completed work. Students will continue to hone their critical thinking skills with critiques and reflections. Focus will be placed on portfolio preparation for those planning to major in art at the college level. 

AP Studio Art  (11-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

Prerequisites:  Permission of Instructor

This course is intended for highly motivated students who are committed to the challenge and rigor of a college-level course while still in high school. Students will have the choice of producing a 2-D Design or Drawing Portfolio. The course requirements include the digital submission of images and written reflection on 15 pieces that showcase a “Sustained Investigation” of a theme or medium, and of 5 high quality “Selected Works.” In May of each academic year, students will submit portfolios to the College Board for formal evaluation. 

Ceramics 1 P  (9-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

Previous experience in art recommended

This is a beginning course focusing on the fundamentals of the ceramic arts. Students will learn the techniques of hand building (coil, slab and pinch), wheel throwing, and surface decoration.

Ceramics 2 P  (10-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

Prerequisites:  C or better in Ceramics 1 P

Students will continue their exploration of ceramic arts by further developing their technical & creative skills in clay. Both sculptural and wheel skills are explored along with additional techniques of surface decoration. 

Ceramics 3 P  (11-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

Prerequisites:  C or better in Ceramics 2

This course is for students committed to gaining independence, skill & knowledge in the ceramic arts. Self-discipline and willingness to seek challenges is expected. 

Photography 1 P  (9-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

This course provides an introduction to the art of photography and digital darkroom techniques. Students will learn to “see photographically” as they study units on light, composition and exposure. They’ll also learn how to use their camera’s creative controls to capture images that may then be enhanced with the image editing software adobe Lightroom. A digital camera with the ability to control shutter speed and aperture is recommended for this course.

Photography 2 P  (10-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

Prerequisites:  Photography 1

This second year course in photography will focus on advanced editing, printing and presentation techniques. Students will be free to pursue their own interests in photography but will be required to “specialize” in a different area of photography each quarter.

Introduction to Graphic Design (9-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F 

This Graphic Design course is the first course in a sequence of the Arts, Media, and Entertainment industry sector and the Design, Visual, and Media Arts pathway.  The course is designed to span the entire range of visual communication in a digital platform. Students will express creativity through digital media applications. They will learn the elements of art and the principles of design techniques to create products to educate, inform, and entertain using InDesign, Adobe Illustrator, and Photoshop.

Graphic Design 2  (10-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F 

Prerequisites: Introduction to Graphic Design

This course is the capstone course in the Design, Visual, and Media Arts pathway and is a project-intensive course where students will build on their skills and knowledge in visual design principles and practices, as well as project development. Students will advance and expand their understanding regarding the process of proposing, designing, and producing digital and print graphic design products, as well as understanding the impact and role that visual art/graphic design has on society and culture.  Through two-dimensional design projects, students will develop problem-solving skills, artistic perception, critical thinking, and self-reflection.  All students will design and complete an individual capstone project and build a professional digital portfolio of their design work.

Graphic Design 3, 4  (11-12) pending UC/CSU A-G Area F  

Prerequisites: Introduction to Graphic Design and Graphic Design 2

This course is designed for the self-motivated student who wishes to continue developing his/her design skills beyond the fundamental Graphic Design I/II course.  An emphasis will be placed on independent projects and school service projects, as well as an investigation of historical works of art and design. 

Digital Art and Animation  (10-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

Prerequisites:  B or better in any level of Art, Graphic Design, Photography, Ceramics, Music, or Drama, or permission of instructor

This course is designed as an introduction to 3D modeling and animation in the digital realm. Students will begin by exploring the 12 Principles of Animation using 2-D digital drawing, and quickly move into 3-dimensional digital modeling using Blender software. Students will learn how to model forms, apply shaders, light scenes, rig characters, and how to animate their models and characters. Historical traditions and practices of animation will be covered as well. At the end of the year, students will produce short, digitally animated pieces. This class qualifies as a prerequisite for the CTE Game Design course. Stills from student work may also qualify as part of an AP Design or Drawing portfolio.


Journalism and Media Studies 1 (9-12)  UC/CSU A-G Area G

Career Technical Education (CTE) Introductory Course

Industry Sector: Arts, Media & Entertainment

Pathway: Media Arts

Prerequisites: none

Journalism and Media Studies 1 (JAM 1) is a CTE introductory course where students learn and practice the fundamentals of journalism and multimedia, sharing the common thread of storytelling. 

Study ranges from the historical to current iterations of journalism and media production, with analysis of avenues including newspaper, website publication, magazine print, podcasting, photo, film and social media content. Purpose, bias, ethics, law, industry/career and context are prominent, ongoing lenses we apply.

Processes include: generating story ideas, researching, interviewing, note-taking, writing, producing, editing, publishing. There are photojournalism and design components, where students practice photography using DSLR cameras, photo editing and page layout with Adobe software. There is also an audio-video production component. Students select an extensive project during the second semester where they opt for a writing series, photojournalism essay, podcast series, or documentary film short. All student work is open to consideration for publication through either the student news organization, The Voice or the yearbook, The Oracle.

Journalism and Media Studies 2 (10-12)  UC/CSU A-G Area G

Career Technical Education (CTE) Concentrator Course

Industry Sector: Arts, Media & Entertainment

Pathway: Media Arts

Pathway prerequisite: JAM 1 (for The Voice); JAM 1, GD 1, or Photo 1 (for The Oracle)

Non-pathway prerequisite: None - students assigned as general staff

Journalism and Media Studies 2 (JAM 2) is a CTE concentrator course that builds atop JAM 1. This course is unique in that students are continually creating content and working towards publication through the student news organization, The Voice and the yearbook, The Oracle.

Students continue to solidify foundations in journalism and media studies with consideration on a more granular level. Focal points include: fine-tuning writing, documentation through photography, audio & video, production processes, particulars of the Associated Press resources, case studies of local, national and international media, and ways to develop and promote engaging student publications. The lenses of purpose, bias, ethics, law and context continue from JAM 1.

All coursework, discussion and content publication is introduced and facilitated by Mr. Sanderson alongside management and mentorship from Student Leaders enrolled in Journalism and Media Studies Leadership (JAM L).

Journalism and Media Studies Leadership (10-12)  UC/CSU A-G Area G

Career Technical Education (CTE) Capstone Course

Industry Sector: Arts, Media & Entertainment

Pathway: Media Arts Management

Pathway prerequisite: JAM 1 & JAM 2 (for The Voice); JAM 1, GD 1, or Photo 1 and JAM 2 (for The Oracle)

Journalism and Media Studies Leadership (JAM L) is a CTE capstone course that marks students’ successful completion of the pathway’s introduction and concentrator courses alongside strong student interest to lead by example and manage student publications, choosing The Voice or The Oracle

JAM L students take on roles such as Editor-in-Chief, Assistant to the Editor-in-Chief, Section Editor, Media Manager, Lead Designer, and Lead Photographer. By the end of this three course sequence, students will have built a comprehensive portfolio that showcases their skills development particular to major processes of journalistic writing, publication, and production with a career examination and preparation component. Successful pathway completion is marked by CTE certification and graduation sash.  

Film 1  (9-12) UC/CSU A-G Area F

This class will introduce students to film as an art form, as well as a potential career. Students will learn the fundamental skills necessary to produce and appreciate films and movies through hands-on work, viewing films, and studying theory. They will learn filmmaking techniques including basic camera angles, storyboarding, screen-writing, editing, equipment use, and finally the creation of short films. Students will learn about careers in the film industry, including those of cinematography, costume design, set design, and other professions. Film 1 students may also have opportunities to produce video projects to support TLHS programs and departments.

Film 2 (10-12)      UC/CSU A-G Area F

Prerequisites:  Filmmaking 1 with a passing grade of a C- or higher

In Filmmaking 2 students will learn more about the language of film, and about filmmakers and their style, with the aim of helping students find their own artistic voices. Students will review what they learned about screenwriting, composition, shooting, and editing, as well as preparation, lighting, and sound, and learn more advanced techniques. Film 2 students will work with clients to deliver video according to the clients’ needs, and will also develop their own material to feature at film festivals. Finally, Film 2 students will serve as project leads to guide and support Film 1 students. Film 2 is the capstone course for the Filmmaking CTE pathway.

For more information (including any updates since this information was posted) please check our Course Catalog