Course Elective Descriptions
AVID stands for Advancement Via Individual Determination and is a college-prep elective aimed at students with a GPA between 2.0 and 3.5. AVID strives to teach motivated students how to improve their academic skills through activities such as Cornell note taking, Socratic method tutorials, binder organization, and time management. Students will have small group tutorials twice each week guided by college students. AVID also brings in a variety of guest speakers to expose students to different careers. Students also attend 1 college field trip per grade level. Prerequisite: application/interview process in the spring for the following school year.
Beginning Soprano/Alto & Beginning Tenor/Base Choir (full year)
Like-voice vocal ensembles for 6th, 7th, & 8th graders interested in singing.
No audition required. Students develop skills in reading music, vocal technique, and 2-3 part choral singing in a variety of languages and styles. This class prepares singers for upper-level choirs. Each spring students have the option to audition for the following year’s Concert Choir. Sopranos and Altos can move into Advanced S/A with no audition. Participation in school concerts required. There is a dress code for performances (financial assistance for any necessary purchases is available.)
Advanced Soprano/Alto (full year)
Middle-level like-voice ensemble for 7th & 8th grade Sopranos & Altos. Requires some choral and vocal experience and demonstrated skills, but no audition. Each spring, students have the option to audition for the following year’s Concert Choir. Students work to further develop skills in reading music, vocal techniques, 2-3 part choral singing, musical expression, and choral concepts in a variety of languages, cultures, and styles. This class further prepares singers for Concert & Jazz Choirs. School concerts required, community, and festival performances possible. There is a dress code for performances (financial assistance for any necessary purchases is available.) Prerequisite: choral experience preferred, or consent of instructor
Concert Choir- (full year)
Advanced mixed-voice ensemble for 7th & 8th graders. Prior choir experience, demonstrated vocal ability, fundamental music literacy preferred. Auditions are held each spring. Students work to deepen understanding and independence in music literacy, choral concepts, vocal technique, musicianship, and 3-6 part music from a variety of languages, styles, and eras. School concerts, community and festival performances required. There is a dress code for performances (financial assistance for any necessary purchases is available.) Vocal audition, skills assessment & previous choral experience required.
Jazz Choir- (full year)
Advanced mixed-voice ensemble for skilled singers interested in upper-level, small group singing. Usually a zero-period class. Prior choir experience, strong vocal ability, and sightreading skills necessary. Students work on vocal versatility, jazz technique, soloing, and advanced harmonies, concentrating on jazz standards, acapella pop, and chamber literature. School concerts, festivals and competitions required. Special outfits are a required purchase for Jazz Ensemble members (financial assistance is available). Audition & enrollment in another performing group required. Or consent of instructor.
Band – Beginning
This class is offered for students with no former band experience. Students will choose either the flute, clarinet, trumpet, or trombone and apply the fundamentals of posture, tone production, articulations, instrument care, and rhythm and note reading. This is a yearlong course, and the students are allowed to switch to oboe, saxophone, French horn, baritone, tuba or percussion during semester 2 with director approval. Students supply their own instruments, with the exception of tubas.
Band – Intermediate
Completion of one-year beginning band is required for admittance into this course. This group will perform at evening concerts. Performances are required.
Band – Advanced
This class exemplifies the highest level of musicianship and commitment and will contain primarily 8th grade band students with three years of experience or equivalent advanced skills. Placement is determined by need for balanced instrumentation, skill, and behavior. Self-discipline in practicing is required as is participation in after- school sectional rehearsals. This group will perform at concerts, assemblies, and festivals. Performances are required.
Band – Jazz
This class exemplifies the highest level of musicianship and commitment and will contain primarily 8th grade band students with three years of experience or equivalent advanced skills. Placement is determined by need for balanced instrumentation, skill, and behavior. Self-discipline in practicing is required as is attendance during 0-period rehearsals. This group will perform at concerts, assemblies, and festivals. Performances are required.
This course is designed for 7th and 8th grade students who have an interest in graphic design, including digital drawing, photo editing, animation, and typography. Students will complete projects based on real-life graphic design markets, such as advertisements, animations, and multimedia applications. Using raster-based (e.g. Adobe Photoshop) and vector-based (e.g. Adobe Illustrator) software, as well as drawing tablets, students will learn project management and professional standards, while developing their own design aesthetic and artistic style in the digital arts.
In this course for 7th and 8th graders, students will learn the foundations of ceramics and pottery through a variety of functional and non-functional sculptural projects. Projects start with basic hand-building techniques–pinch-pot and coil methods–as students build vessels and figurines. They then move on to more advanced techniques with the slab-roller, culminating in the final Tea Set project where all skills are used. Through these projects, students explore and express their own design aesthetic and artistic style through the development of their unique ideas in the three-dimensional forms they sculpt and their application of color, texture, and pattern using clay glazes.
In this course for 7th and 8th graders, students will learn a variety of traditional applied arts and crafts inspired by a variety of cultures. Students will complete projects using different media, such as glass mosaics, life-casting a papier-mâché mask, jewelry, weaving, calligraphy, and linoleum block printmaking. Through these projects, students explore and express their own design aesthetic and artistic style through the development of their unique ideas.
Drama - Intro to Theatre
Description not available.
In this course for 7th and 8th graders, students will learn the fundamentals of drawing using a variety of media, including graphite, charcoal, conté crayon, and ink. Value, proportion, scale, anatomy, and perspective are explored to create a realistic depiction of form and space. Students will participate in numerous practices and exercises to develop muscle-memory and observational skills, resulting in improved rendering of the human form and the world around them (e.g. natural world, man-made objects, etc.). Through these exercises and projects, students will develop their own design aesthetic and artistic style in mark-making and composition.
Foods I will be an exploration in baking. We will learn different mixing methods, types of breads, and a variety of other lovely baked goods from around the world. Foods I and Foods II may be taken in any order.
Foods II will have a cooking focus and center around making meals and savory dishes. We will learn knife skills, herbs and spices, regional cooking, and a variety of other kitchen skills. Foods I and Foods II may be taken in any order.
This Family and Consumer Sciences course focuses on sewing and child development. We will spend 6 weeks on each topic learning a variety of sewing skills as well as how to work with small children. Much of this class is project based with students working at their own pace.
Are you interested in engineering, building, and programming robots? Lego Robotics is a trimester class for 7th/8th graders that will put you and a partner in control of the design and programming of your very own robot. This is a hands-on class in which teamwork is important. Students will work to design, construct, and program LEGO Robots to compete in challenges against others in the class.
Industrial Technology I
This is an introductory class designed to give students experience in as many “industrial” areas as allowed by our facilities and equipment. The areas covered will include safety; manufacturing techniques using wood, (metal, plastic) ; hand and power tools; basic drafting, computer aided drafting, and design. This class may be taken in addition to Woods.
This course is designed for students who have an interest in being a leader within the school. Students plan and lead school assemblies, spirit days, No Tardy Parties, and after-school activities. In addition, this group works on projects that benefit the community such as the Food and Coat Drive, Family Building Blocks Season of Giving, and the Judson Recycling Program. In class, students will be introduced to the characteristics, attributes and skills that encompass effective leadership. Students who want to participate in Leadership class must meet the following requirements: excellent daily attendance (90% or higher), no D’s or F’s, a consistent positive attitude, and no N’s or U’s in Conduct and Work Habits.
Orchestra — Beginning
No previous experience required. Students will be learning alongside 5th grade students from the local elementary schools, so willingness to work with younger students and commitment to maintaining an appropriate learning environment are required. Students typically rent instruments from the local music stores (parents are encouraged to contact the director is this is not feasible). Performances are required.
Orchestra – Intermediate
Students with one or two years of instruction in grade school, or equivalent in private instruction, are eligible. Violin, viola, cello, and bass instruction will be provided. Public performances and festivals will be held regularly for this ensemble. Performances are required. Additional rehearsals before or after school are held occasionally. Prior notice will be given, and attendance will be required for all orchestra members. Prerequisite: consent of instructor.
Orchestra – Intermediate II
Students with two or three years of instruction in elementary school and middle school, or the equivalent in private instruction, are eligible. Violin, viola, cello, and bass instruction will be provided. Public performances and festivals will be held regularly for this ensemble. Performances are required. Additional rehearsals before or after school are held occasionally. Prior notice will be given, and attendance will be required for all orchestra members. Prerequisite: audition and consent of instructor.
Orchestra – Advanced
This class is for students playing at an extremely advanced level, most often after 4 years of instruction. Violin, viola, cello, and bass instruction are offered. Public performance, festivals, and competitions will be held regularly for this ensemble. Performances are required. Before or after-school practices and sectionals are held regularly and are required participation for all members of the orchestra. Prerequisite: audition and consent of instructor.
In this course for 7th and 8th graders, students will learn the foundations of water-based (e.g. ink and watercolor) and acrylic-based painting through a variety of projects inspired by different painting movements and cultural styles. Building off traditional Japanese and Chinese ink painting techniques in black and white, students move on to watercolor paints and color theory based on American landscape painting, and then Rennaissance-style techniques in acrylic such as glazing and layering of paint layers to give paintings depth and the illusion of form and space. Through these exercises and projects, students will develop their own design aesthetic and artistic style.
Paxton Patterson - Career Explorations
This course has 17 different modules where students learn about various career fields. The careers explored in this class include: Computer Aided Drafting (CAD), Computer Graphics & Animation, Design and Marketing, Digital Manufacturing, Environment & Technology, Flight & Drone Technology, Forensic Science, Home Maintenance Systems, Child Development, Culinary Arts, Nursing, Research & Design, Robotics, Sports Medicine, Structural Engineering, Veterinary Medicine and Virtual Architecture. Through computer based lessons and hands-on activities, students will experience a small taste of what it would be like to work in that field.
This full-year course is designed to introduce students to the Spanish language. The coursework focuses on building vocabulary, grammar, sentence formation, and appreciation of the culture of Spanish-speaking countries. Reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills are developed throughout the course. 8th grade students have the option to take this class for high school credit. Upon completion of this course and satisfactory performance on a proficiency test, students will be eligible for Spanish II next year. Students must be on or above grade level in English skills.
Students will continue to develop their Spanish communication skills in this full-year course. This course is equivalent to high school Spanish II . Upon completion of this course and satisfactory performance on a proficiency test, students will be eligible for Spanish III as a freshman. Students have the option to take this class for high school credit. Prerequisite: successful completion of Spanish I or teacher approval.
Sports and Fitness
This class will follow the same schedule as the regular PE classes with more of a focus on strength and conditioning workouts. Activities will include games such as badminton, volleyball, basketball, soccer, team handball, invasion games, track and field, and pickle ball using the PE Sport Education model.
Dedicated to promoting inclusion through shared sports training and competition experiences, Unified PE joins students with and without intellectual disabilities, competing together in a variety of team sports. Modeled after Special Olympics Unified Sports, this class was inspired by a simple principle: training together and playing together is a quick path to friendship and understanding.
This is an introductory class designed to give students hands-on experience in the Industrial Technology lab. This class will include safety, manufacturing techniques, proper use of hand and power tools, basic drafting, computer aided drafting, and design. This class may be taken in addition to Industrial Technology I.
In this class students collaborate to produce Judson’s yearbook using a digital workflow. They will design pages on computers, work with deadlines, keep daily notes and be part of a team. Taking photos outside of class time is required throughout the year. Students will need to be self-directed and self-motivated. Prerequisite: consent of instructor.