Visual Arts

Art, one of the most complex forms of human communications, possesses the capacity to stir the mind, imagination and spirit.

At Canterbury School, the Visual Arts program is essential to the college preparatory curriculum, helping students develop intellectually, socially and spiritually. In the classroom, art making is taught as a process comprised of visual analysis, skill development, intuitive discovery and critical thinking. The curriculum stresses perception and drawing, design concepts, problem solving, persistence and craft. Inventiveness and informed risk-taking are celebrated.

Art courses and work come in many forms throughout the grade levels including foundations of art, visual art, exploratory art, sculpting, photography, claymation, studio art, portfolio work, and computer art.

In a world of continual change, a visual arts education encourages students to see complex problems from multiple perspectives. It also trains them to seek and expect multiple solutions. Students graduate with strong critical skills, a developed aesthetic judgment, and the ability use images and objects to communicate both the practical and the poetic.


Students have the opportunity to showcase their work through art shows hosted by the school, as well as community art shows and competitions. Student artwork also is displayed prominently throughout the school on both campuses.


Grade 5 students are introduced to a course in Exploratory Art, where they study elements of visual arts and develop an understanding of drawing and painting.

Students in Grades 6 – 8 may take Independent Projects in Art, which introduces students to the sculpture process. Students in Grades 7 and 8 may enroll in Visual Art, a course that emphasizes strong drawing and painting techniques and art history.


High School students can pursue many visual arts courses and opportunities:

  • Visual Art Foundations: Through this course, students expand their knowledge of visual art through basic drawing, composition and technique.
  • Visual Art 2: Continuing to build on lessons learned in Visual Art Foundations, students explore a chosen media and techniques in depth.
  • Portfolio: This independent course is for students willing to make a serious commitment to a particular area of visual arts.
  • Photography: Students are introduced to basic techniques in photography including the practical and aesthetic elements of the art of photography.
  • Honors Photography: Students may continue to explore the techniques available in this medium of expression.
  • Computer Art: Design fundamentals, typography, layout, image manipulation and color are explored during this course which familiarizes students with the graphic design industry and processes for commercial print media.

Artist. Athlete. Scholar.

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