Every child at Washington Episcopal School studies visual and performing arts.
Students have full use of two beautiful art studios, a ceramics studio with two kilns, multiple music rooms, and a stage. From the youngest children in PK3 to the oldest in the Middle School, students perform in plays, create two- and three-dimensional art, and learn music.
Learning expands beyond school walls on field trips to local art museums and theaters, as well as fantastic opportunities to create and observe art on study trips to Utah, Italy, France, and Spain. WES strives to expose students to a wide range of artistic forms, to create in them a lifelong appreciation of art, and to provide an outlet through which they can express their individual voices.
Our Art Center features two beautiful studios with ample natural light and space. Students create art using a wide variety of media, including paint, charcoal, pastels, and ink. The Ceramics Studio, with two computerized kilns, glazes, and tools for hand-building techniques in clay, allows students to work in three dimensions. We also have a Grades 7 and 8 Ceramics Club.
We believe that every child is filled with a spirit of creativity and has the ability to produce wonderful art. Classes nurture this spirit by integrating art-making themes and concepts that children explore in science, math, history, and literature. All children have art weekly, and children may extend their experience in after-school Art Clubs.
Artwork by every child is displayed as a completed project in our hallways throughout the school year. In early spring, WES hosts an Arts Celebration Week as the culminating celebration of artwork produced by all WES students. Activities include special guest artist presentations, self-guided parent tours, and more.
"Art is the product of everything that we learn in life. It is an expression of who we are and what we know from the inside out."
— Janice Davis, Early Childhood Art Teacher
Our kind, accepting environment allows each student to flourish artistically and shine on stage.
At WES, there’s much to applaud. It may be an individual choral performance, a trumpet solo, a Shakespearean production, or a comedic play that makes you want to cheer.
Music classes allow our students to learn about rhythm as they play the drums, dance to the beat, and learn new songs. Students develop their gross motor skills, singing voice, and musical ear through vocal exploration, singing games, simple folk dances, and music listening activities. Through song, they retell the Christmas story at their annual performance.
In spring they take the stage at their May Day performance to the delight of the audience.
In addition to having fun and learning new skills, students develop self-confidence and learn to feel more comfortable with their ability to communicate through our program.
Throughout the school year all students present projects, read at Chapel, share written stories, and more! Even the most reluctant public speakers learn key skills and develop the confidence to present their ideas and work in a variety of group settings.
Each class from Kindergarten through Grade 4 explores the stage by presenting plays that often include reciting poetry, dressing in costumes, singing songs, dancing, and portraying historical figures.
Our goal is to give students the opportunity and ability for expression, appreciation, and development in music. This is achieved through independent and ensemble performance, movement and expression, music reading and notation, and observing professional performances.