These options are for Grades 6-8 only.
Click here to download the Libertas Selectives Course Descriptions (PDF)
(Music Requirement: Please make sure that at least one of your selectives is a music course, which is denoted with this symbol - (♫). Students are not limited to just one music course, but they must take at least one.)
Selectives for Monday/Wednesday/Friday Class
(♫) Band (Full-year) - Mr. Keenley, Mr. Klatt
Students will apply lower school music theory to learn the essential elements of playing a wind instrument. Instruction will focus on developing good tone quality, pitch, and the ability to play music in an ensemble. Band members will share music at school shows and events during the school year.
Art & Craftsmanship (Full-year) - Mr. Hebert, Mr. Saylor
The basic skill developed throughout the Art & Craftsmanship class is that of drawing. Students learn to draw basic three-dimensional shapes and move to more difficult assignments such as drawing the human person, the use of perspective, etc. Other projects include learning about and coloring heraldic shields with a special regard to understanding the color wheel. There will also be some light craft projects connected with various feasts throughout the year.
(♫) Advanced Acoustic Guitar (Full-year) - Mr. Whitebread
Designed for guitarists that have already taken ‘American Acoustic Guitar', this course seeks to further the development of guitarists that currently have a basic grasp of reading music, open position chords, song performance, and beginning music theory. As students continue studying the acoustic guitar, the class will include a richer exploration of applied Western music styles including jazz, country blues, modern pop/rock, and the guitar's historical roots in the medieval, baroque, classical, and romantic era arts. While the course is primarily open to all students who have successfully completed the 'American Acoustic Guitar' class, openings may be available by audition.
Speech & Theater (Full-year) - Mr. Thompson (Speech), Mr. Janeiro (Theater)
Building upon the bard tradition of Western Academy's festival days, Speech and Theater offers students a rich immersion in the history of theater as they mature in their acting craft and hone their public speaking skills. Students grow in their performance skills as they select, interpret, and master a repertoire of pieces composed of a wide range of prose, poetry, biblical passages, historical speeches, and dramatic source material. Additionally, students train to deliver informative and persuasive speeches with an aim to achieve the ancient dictum for their target audience: docere, delectare, movere (to teach, to delight, and to move). These skills cultivate the heart, the mind, the imagination, and the soul of the boy to be fully alive!
Selectives for Tuesday/Thursday Class
(♫) American Acoustic Guitar (Full-year) - Mr. Klatt
In this introductory course to acoustic guitar, students will learn to read, play, and perform on their instrument from a Western perspective. While drawing from the traditional roots of European harmony and African rhythm, the students will learn guitar basics in the context of American musical styles uniquely born in this country. Within the scope of a class designed for beginners, lessons will cover styles that span the blues, jazz, folk, sacred, classical and rock genres. Course content is aimed at achieving a basic proficiency on the instrument while fostering the skills of group performance, ear training, and reading standard notation.
Students are asked to provide their own guitar, clip-on tuner, guitar picks, and 3 sets of guitar strings. The anticipated expense is about $140 per student for all needed items including the instrument.
(♫) Choir (Full or Half-year) - Mr. Whitebread
This class continues the study of choral music developed in the lower school grades. The focus is on developing a healthy vocal technique, choral score reading and ensemble performance. The boys will learn to sing a variety of music (sacred, classical, folk, show tunes, etc.) and will also learn to sing in harmony with each other. The study of music theory and composition is emphasized throughout the year.
Chess & Logic (Half- year) - Mr. Creech, Mr. Thomas
Whether a general in battle, a lawyer in courtroom, a quarterback on the field, or a statesmen in the assembly, success in action or persuasion depends on clear and logical thinking. In Chess and Logic, students will develop and hone the logical and strategic thinking necessary to navigate the many complex, fluid situations of life. Students will cultivate these abilities through playing strategic games and solving logical puzzles. =
Introduction to Art History (Half-year0 - Mr. Thomas
This is a semester class that will be a brief introduction into the history of art, tailored to boys in the middle school. The class will begin with establishing a basic definition for art and then proceed to cover the major movements in art history, highlighting individuals who were leaders of those same movements. Students will learn what events and ideas surrounded the birth of these movements. Though the class is learning, primarily, about Western art, they will be given some exposure to the art of other major world cultures. Students should leave the class with a basic knowledge of major movements and artists, as well as having the cultural literacy to identify individual works.
Historic Battles (Half-year) - Mr. Inglish
Historic Battles will examine the lives and minds of great men whose effective and visionary leadership led their armies to victory in decisive world-changing conflicts. Through a study of battles from the classical, medieval, and modern eras, students will learn how to think strategically, act with efficiency and precision, and achieve success when faced with seemingly impossible odds. Students will put into action tactical and strategic principles learned from history by playing war and strategy games throughout the semester.=
(♫) Music Theory, History & Appreciation (Half-year) - Mr. Murphy
Students will be exposed to a variety of genres of music, studying the basic elements of the form and the major musical accomplishments of that genre. Music theory will build on material learned in the lower school, such as the rudiments of note-reading, note values and rhythm, time signatures, major scales and key signatures. The historical elements of musical development, as well as key persons who influenced that development, will also be studied.