Fine Arts Courses


During the 2019-20 school year Elmwood Park High School will offer the following fine arts courses in the subject areas of art, English Language Learner, foreign language and music. To learn more about the Fine Arts Department, please click here.


ART | INTRO TO ART

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

9, 10, 11, 12

None

This is an introductory visual arts course that integrates art with students' personal and academic interests and their ability to explore and communicate ideas and concepts. Through learning foundational drawing, painting and ceramic skills, students will practice creative thinking, self-expression, planning and problem solving. Technology will be used to create drawings and support various aspects of the art-making process.


ART | PHOTOGRAPHY I

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

9, 10, 11, 12

None

This course is an introduction to photography course, which exposes students to the materials, processes, and artistic techniques of taking artistic photographs. Students learn about the operation of a camera, composition, lighting techniques, depth of field, filters, camera angles and film development. As students advance, the instruction regarding the creative process becomes more refined, and students are encouraged to develop their own artistic style.


ART | DRAWING AND PAINTING

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

10, 11, 12

Intro to Art

This course teaches the student techniques in painting and develops drawing and design skills. Students will use a variety of media and processes such as colored pencils, charcoal, ink, acrylic, watercolor paint and printmaking. Projects integrate technology, the study of cultures, history, criticism and aesthetics.


ART | CERAMICS AND SCULPTURE

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

10, 11, 12

Intro to Art

This course is for students with a personal interest in sculpture and 3-D media. Students will create three-dimensional artwork, using a variety of sculptural techniques and media. 3-D Studio is for the study of relief sculpture, clay slab and coil construction, landscape design, mosaics, metal and wire sculpture, weaving and paper mache. Within the projects there will be an emphasis on planning, sketching, multiculturalism, art history and art criticism.


ART | AP STUDIO ART: DRAWING

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

2.0 (four quarters)

11, 12

Intro to Art, Drawing and Painting

As an AP art student, you will be asked to emphasize research, experimentation, discovery, inventive thinking, critical analysis and problem solving in your work. Your goal will be to create a portfolio of college-level work, and at the end of the school year submit it for evaluation. A qualifying portfolio score can earn college credit and/or advanced placement. You will submit a digital portfolio as well as actual artworks. Each portfolio has three sections: Quality (Selected Works), Concentration (Sustained Investigation), and Breadth (Range of Approaches). Drawing can be addressed through a wide range of media.


ART | AP STUDIO ART: 2-D ART AND DESIGN

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

2.0 (four quarters)

11, 12

Intro to Art, Drawing and Painting

As an AP art student, you will be asked to emphasize research, experimentation, discovery, inventive thinking, critical analysis and problem solving in your work. Your goal will be to create a portfolio of college-level work, and at the end of the school year submit it for evaluation. A qualifying portfolio score can earn college credit and/or advanced placement. You will submit a digital portfolio as well as actual artworks. Each portfolio has three sections: Quality (Selected Works), Concentration (Sustained Investigation), and Breadth (Range of Approaches). Use the elements and principles of art in an integrative way in any two-dimensional process or medium.


ART | AP STUDIO ART: 3-D ART AND DESIGN

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

2.0 (four quarters)

11, 12

Intro to Art, Ceramics and Sculpture

As an AP art student, you will be asked to emphasize research, experimentation, discovery, inventive thinking, critical analysis and problem solving in your work. Your goal will be to create a portfolio of college-level work, and at the end of the school year submit it for evaluation. A qualifying portfolio score can earn college credit and/or advanced placement. You will submit a digital portfolio as well as actual artworks. Each portfolio has three sections: Quality (Selected Works), Concentration (Sustained Investigation), and Breadth (Range of Approaches). Students will explore 3-D Design issues through additive, subtractive and fabrication processes.


ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNER | ENGLISH AS A SECOND LANGUAGE (ESL) BEGINNING I/II

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

9, 10, 11, 12

Placement determined by
ACCESS test scores of 1.0-1.5
and teacher recommendation

This class is part of a course sequence designed for students who recently came to the United States and have limited English proficiency. The classes will focus on learning the basics of the English language as well as exploring American culture.

Using a variety of methods, students will work on grammar, spelling, vocabulary, reading comprehension, reading fluency and writing. In addition, students will learn about American history, customs, traditions, holidays and related topics. As students progress, they will be introduced to a variety of applications in daily life, including work applications, bank forms, bills, invoices and doctor forms.


ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNER | ESL I/II

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

9, 10, 11, 12

Placement determined by
ACCESS test scores of 1.0-1.5
and teacher recommendation

This class is part of a course sequence designed for students who recently came to the United States and have limited English proficiency. The classes will focus on learning the basics of the English language as well as exploring American culture.

Using a variety of methods, students will work on grammar, spelling, vocabulary, reading comprehension, reading fluency and writing. In addition, students will learn about American history, customs, traditions, holidays and related topics. As students progress, they will be introduced to a variety of applications in daily life, including work applications, bank forms, bills, invoices and doctor forms.


ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNER | ESL III/IV

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

9, 10, 11, 12

Placement determined by
ACCESS test scores of 1.6-3.0 
and teacher recommendation

This class is part of a course sequence designed for students who recently came to the United States and have limited English proficiency. The classes will focus on learning the basics of the English language as well as exploring American culture.

Using a variety of methods, students will work on grammar, spelling, vocabulary, reading comprehension, reading fluency and writing. In addition, students will learn about American history, customs, traditions, holidays and related topics. As students progress, they will be introduced to a variety of applications in daily life, including work applications, bank forms, bills, invoices and doctor forms.


ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNER | ESL ENGLISH I/II

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

9, 10, 11, 12

Placement determined by
ACCESS test scores of 1.6-3.0 
and teacher recommendation

This class is part of a course sequence designed for students who recently came to the United States and have limited English proficiency. The classes will focus on learning the basics of the English language as well as exploring American culture.

Using a variety of methods, students will work on grammar, spelling, vocabulary, reading comprehension, reading fluency and writing. In addition, students will learn about American history, customs, traditions, holidays and related topics. As students progress, they will be introduced to a variety of applications in daily life, including work applications, bank forms, bills, invoices and doctor forms.


ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNER | ESL V/VI

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

9, 10, 11, 12

Placement determined by
ACCESS test scores of 3.1 and above, 
and teacher recommendation

This class is part of a course sequence designed for students who recently came to the United States and have limited English proficiency. The classes will focus on learning the basics of the English language as well as exploring American culture.

Using a variety of methods, students will work on grammar, spelling, vocabulary, reading comprehension, reading fluency and writing. In addition, students will learn about American history, customs, traditions, holidays and related topics. As students progress, they will be introduced to a variety of applications in daily life, including work applications, bank forms, bills, invoices and doctor forms.


ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNER | ESL VII/VIII

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

9, 10, 11, 12

Placement determined by
ACCESS test scores of 3.1 and above, 
and teacher recommendation

This course is designed for students of various English skill levels. The class will focus on grammar, spelling, vocabulary, reading comprehension, reading fluency and writing. In addition to focusing on language, students will be introduced to many American literature masterpieces. Most of the works are adaptations, to ensure appropriate level material. Students will learn about story elements, such as characters, plot, setting and theme.


FOREIGN LANGUAGE | ITALIAN I

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

9, 10, 11, 12

None

The student is introduced to the basics of listening, understanding, speaking and reading in the Italian language. The student builds vocabulary, practices pronunciation, studies grammar, reads simple passages and writes original sentences. Italian culture is introduced and studied through lecture, readings, film and music.


FOREIGN LANGUAGE | ITALIAN II

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

9, 10, 11, 12

Italian I

The student continues the study of grammar, understands more complex structures, converses more freely in Italian, using a wider vocabulary, composes short, grammatically correct paragraphs and develops more insights into the Italian culture.


FOREIGN LANGUAGE | ITALIAN III HONORS

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

10, 11, 12

Italian II

The student learns to communicate effectively in Italian. Emphasis will be placed on vocabulary and complex verbal structures. Through appropriate literary works and films, the student will improve in comprehension and be able to interpret longer narrations. The student will be able to write story summaries, dialogues and compositions on a variety of subjects. The student will immerse himself or herself in Italian culture, art, opera and cuisine.


FOREIGN LANGUAGE | ITALIAN IV HONORS

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

11, 12

Italian III

In this fourth level of Italian class, students will continue to build vocabulary, learn new grammatical skills and will take an in-depth look at regions and cultural topics. Some of the vocabulary will focus on giving directions, ecology and the environment, songs and the world of music, television and immigration. Grammatical topics include the imperative and present conditional verb tenses, comparatives and superlatives, relative and indefinite pronouns, the present and past subjunctive tenses and the imperfect and pluperfect subjunctive. Students will learn how to incorporate these new skills into their speech and writing in Italian.


FOREIGN LANGUAGE | SPANISH I

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

9, 10, 11, 12

None

During the first year, emphasis is placed on developing, listening and speaking skills. These skills are developed by conversations and daily oral and written work. In addition to speaking and understanding the language on an elementary level, the students who successfully complete the course will also be able to compose simple paragraphs employing present and preterite tenses and read basic selections with comparative ease. Throughout the year various aspects of the culture are also discussed.


FOREIGN LANGUAGE | SPANISH II

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

9, 10, 11, 12

Spanish I

During the second year, greater emphasis will be placed on reading for comprehension. Emphasis will also be placed on increasing the pupil's ability to express himself accurately and idiomatically in all verb tenses. Structure and syntax will be studied in greater depth, so that these aspects of language can be used effectively and correctly in oral and written work.

Students who have taken Spanish I during grades 7 and 8 may earn one full high school credit in foreign language if they earn credit in Spanish II during their first year at EPHS.


FOREIGN LANGUAGE | SPANISH III HONORS

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

10, 11, 12

Spanish II

At the third-year level, appropriate selections of standard literary works are read. Together with short stories, poetry and various culture studies, they will form the basis for improvement in reading, comprehension, fluency and recall, as well as for oral discussion and extension of an active vocabulary. Written composition work will include story summaries, recounting of a personal experience and other suitable topics. A continual study of vocabulary, grammar and syntax will help students improve their speaking and writing abilities. Cultures will be emphasized through written and audiovisual materials.


FOREIGN LANGUAGE | SPANISH IV HONORS

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

11, 12

Spanish III

Students in the fourth year will improve their skills in written and oral Spanish through various projects and presentations during the year. Such projects may include newsletters, relief maps, themes/essays, speeches and research projects. There will be extensive review of grammar, syntax and vocabulary. Honors credit may be earned.


FOREIGN LANGUAGE | AP SPANISH

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

2.0 (four quarters)

12

Spanish IV

Students in the Advanced Placement Spanish course will cover material equivalent to a third-year college course in advanced Spanish composition and conversation. This four-quarter course will emphasize the use of Spanish for active communication. It will encompass aural/oral skills, reading comprehension, grammar and composition. Extensive training in the organization and writing of compositions and the expression of ideas orally will be an integral part of the course. The students will also read abridged versions from well-known authors in Spanish literature. The students will study from practical AP exams in preparation to take the AP exam in May. All students enrolled in Advanced Placement Spanish are required to take the Advanced Placement exam in May.


MUSIC | CONCERT BAND

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

9, 10, 11, 12

Passing grade in previous year’s
band class and/or director's approval

The Concert Band is open to all students who have shown an acceptable level of progress and performance throughout their elementary school band training and can qualify by audition with the director. Prior experience on an appropriate instrument and the ability to read music notation are essential components of success in this course. The music covered will include the baroque through contemporary periods of composition, with the main emphasis being placed on rhythm, articulation, intonation and the total band sound. Advanced players may participate in All-Conference Band and the ILMEA Senior Festival. All choir students who are enrolled in band should see their directors to discuss a PE waiver. Commitment to Concert Band should be considered for four full years.

In addition to concert appearances, the Concert Band will appear as a marching band and as a pep band at parades and athletic events. Attendance at all performances and after-school rehearsals is required and will be graded. A sincere and serious commitment to band is vital to the ensemble and its success.


MUSIC | CHORALE

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

9, 10, 11

None

The Chorale is open to all students and is a beginning choir designed to provide a foundation for the Concert Choir. The Chorale studies and performs a variety of music throughout the year. A commitment to singing and performing is important, and upon successful completion of Chorale, a student can then audition for Concert Choir and/or Swing Choir.

Chorale students participate in the four major concerts of the year, and attendance at all concerts is required.


MUSIC | CONCERT CHOIR

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

10, 11, 12

One year of Chorale and
director's approval

The Concert Choir is the largest performing vocal group at the high school. The Concert Choir performs at the four major concerts each year as well as commencement. Advanced performers may audition to participate at the ILMEA competition and appear as solo vocalists throughout the school year. Along with more advanced part-singing ability, a sincere interest in musical training, participation and performance is vital to the group.

Attendance at all four major concerts is required.


MUSIC | JAZZ BAND | HONORS OR REGULAR

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

0.5 (one quarter)

9, 10, 11, 12

Director's approval

Jazz band meets from 7 to 7:45 a.m. on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.

Prior experience on an appropriate instrument and the ability to read music notation are essential components of success in this course. Students will explore and perform a variety of music styles, including swing, rock, ballad and Latin. Improvisation and elementary concepts of music theory will be introduced. The Jazz Band will perform at least four times throughout the school year. Prior experience is required on an appropriate instrument (saxophone, trombone, trumpet, drum set, guitar, bass or piano) as well as the ability to read notated music and/or approval of the director.

Attendance at all performances and after-school rehearsals is required and will be graded. A sincere and serious commitment to band is vital to the ensemble and its success.


MUSIC | SWING CHOIR

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

10, 11, 12

Director's approval

The Swing Choir is the most advanced choral offering at Elmwood Park High School, and it is limited to those students who excel in vocal talent and part-singing ability. This performance-oriented ensemble will focus on all types of music with an emphasis on proper singing, staging and microphone technique when called for. Performers may audition to participate at the ILMEA auditions and appear as solo vocalists throughout the school year.

Students must audition to receive director's approval to enroll in this course. Attendance at the four major concerts plus commencement is required with occasional out-of-school performances throughout the school year.


MUSIC | MUSIC THEORY

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

9, 10, 11, 12

None

This course encompasses the study of the language of music notation and composition. Students are taught to analyze and understand written music, compose music and identify aspects of recorded musical examples. This course is a must for anyone considering a career or college study in the arts. However, it is also a useful and interesting course for anyone with a strong interest in music. Confident music-reading skills in both treble and bass clefs are STRONGLY recommended as a prerequisite.


MUSIC | VOICE

CREDIT

GRADE LEVEL

PREREQUISITE

1.0 (two quarters)

11, 12

Director's approval

Students will benefit from group and individual vocal instruction. They will familiarize themselves with the characteristics of vocal production and the anatomy of the vocal mechanism.

Students must audition to receive director's approval to enroll in this course.