Course Offerings

Art Studio 1

Art I is a foundation class that explores all the art concepts from how to see differently to what the Elements and Principles of Art are and how they work with a little Art History. It is a prerequisite for all Visual Arts classes except Sculpture and it is recommended for that class. Students learn how to handle the three (3) different elements of line, texture, shape and form, value (shading), space, and color through the different mediums of pencil, watercolors, acrylics, oil, and chalk pastel, scratchboard, and mix media. They learn a variety of techniques such as 2-point perspective, shading, collage, crayon resist, grid enlargement, etc. By the end of the year, the student will have a good basic understanding of the visual art and what it entails to create a good work of art. 

Art Studio 2

This course is designed to accommodate the student who is interested in an advanced study in studio art. This course can be taken for three (3) years. The first (1st) year of Advanced Art concentrates on the design element of art, color theory, recognizing different artistic approaches, and expanding painting abilities. The second (2nd) year of Advanced Art, students learn more advanced color theory, how to see black and white and the grey scale in a color picture, advanced capturing light such as back lighting, and the beginnings of developing a concentration for preparation for AP Portfolio Art. For those students that do not want to take AP Portfolio, they can take a third (3rd) year of Advanced Art. In that third (3rd) year, the student will make a contract with the teacher on the work they will do each quarter. They are required to come up with four (4) works of art that relate to one another. All works of art must be in color and must be at least 10” x 10” or bigger. All students in Advanced Art and AP Portfolio will have assignments that everyone does like the vegetable/fruit still life, the self-portrait, negative/positive tree, and the “out-the-door” assignment. Everyone will also have weekly drawings due at the end of each month. 

AP Studio Art 2-D Design 

This is a class for the student who wants to develop a professional portfolio, has a good work ethic (self-starter), wants to investigate and develop an idea with their art and can work independently. Students will choose a concentration: AP Studio Art: 2D or AP Studio Art: Drawing. By April they must have twenty-four (24) works of art completed and ready to be photographed and put on the computer to be sent to the AP College Board – twelve (12) of these works in a concentration and twelve (12) in breadth. A concentration is a group of works that directly relate to one another and show a development of an idea. Breadth is a group of works that show how well you handle different mediums, how well you draw, paint, etc., and understand the elements and principles of art. There is a fee that the College Board charges for the “test” each year – the test is the portfolio. There are scholarships for this fee, so all students regardless of their financial situation can participate in this class. 


Beginning Sculpture is open to all students without prerequisites, although Art Studio I is recommended. All levels of Sculpture classes will explore the visual arts through sculptural mediums such as paper, wire, ceramics, plaster, and mix media. Students will learn sculptural terms, techniques, and methods to create a work of art. History of both sculpture and architecture will be studied. Elements and principles of Art and Design are emphasized in order for the student to understand what makes a good work of art and be able to defend and critique their own work. 

Advanced Sculpture

This class is open to students whom have passed at least one full year of Sculpture with a grade of a “B” or above. This class allows students to investigate and explore sculpture at a more advanced level. This class may be taken multiple years, with each year exploring a more challenging curriculum. Students will learn to research, build their knowledge base of techniques and mediums, and find inspiration from architecture and other historic forms of sculpture. This class will meet all the state and national advanced standards for visual arts. 

Acting 1

This course is designed for all students who are commencing their study of theater arts at El Molino. It is a prerequisite for all higher level acting classes. Course work includes: pantomime, theater games, improvisation, scene work, character study, and play and film study. Any student who wants to pursue a career in theater, film, or television or who wants to participate in El Molino Theater Arts productions should take this class. 

Acting 2 

Intermediate Acting and Theater Production is for students who wish to continue their exploration in the theater arts. This course is designed to broaden a student’s acting ability. Course work will include: cultural and historical implications of stage performance and film, types and styles of acting, and ensemble work. 

Acting 3

This course is an advanced production course, which is designed for students who are interested in the performing arts as a career or serious hobby. Students will learn advanced performance techniques including improve, mime, stage and film movement, the various acting styles, voice, dance and choreography, audition techniques, and characterization. 27 Students will also study, in-depth, the various movements in artistic performance and expressions as influenced by world culture and society throughout history. Both the fall and winter plays will be cast from this class. 

Oral Interpretation

This course is designed for students who would like to learn communication skills including argumentation, speaking style and performance ability. Students will learn necessary and important leadership and public speaking skills that will help them be successful in the world beyond high school. Students will research, write and give oral presentations. Participation in interscholastic speech and debate competition through the National Speech and Debate Association, California High School Speech Association and the Golden Gate Speech Association as well as membership in those organizations, is encouraged. Competitive events include Extemporaneous Speaking, Original Oratory, Oratorical, Humorous, Dramatic and Duo Interpretation. This course may be taken for four years and more difficult and demanding work is assigned for each successive year. 


The band is one of the major instrumental-performing groups at El Molino. Through the execution and preparation of music for football games, band festivals, and concerts, students enrolled in the band increase their knowledge of music literature and theory and improve their technical ability on an instrument. 

Concert Choir 

Through the execution and preparation of music for concerts, festivals, and community performances, members of the choir will study music notation, literature and style, sight reading, vocal technique, and stage deportment. 

Stagecraft Technology 

This course is designed to prepare students for theater, television, and movie production work and design. Students interested in set, costume, makeup, lighting and sound design, and production should take this course. It is coordinated with the entire Fine Arts Department and affords opportunities to work backstage at performing arts productions. This course may be taken for four (4) years and more difficult and technically demanding work is assigned each successive year. 

Digital Photography and Yearbook 

This is a beginning class that includes an introduction to both film and digital photography. Students will learn about the history of photography from the beginning of the simplest cameras, through film cameras to the digital cameras of today. Students will start out with pinhole cameras, and then move on to using the 35 mm film camera and the development of film and photos. Finally, digital cameras and the use of Photoshop to produce an image will be taught. Students will perform all aspects necessary to the production of the school yearbook including writing, photography, business management, and digital graphic design. Students will become proficient in using Photoshop and InDesign computer applications and are expected to attend some school events, such as sports, drama, or dance productions. 

Dance 1

Beginning dance offers interested students in grades 9-12 multiple dance experiences in the areas of artistic perception, creative expression, historical and cultural context, and aesthetic valuing. This comprehensive program explores various forms of dance while maintaining a focus on the specific dance techniques of jazz, ballet, modern, and hip-hop. Performance in the Dance Spectacular production is an essential part of the curriculum. Students in grades 10-12 may receive P.E. credit if desired. 

Dance 2

Intermediate Dance offers qualified students in grades 10-12 (9th grade with audition and instructor’s approval) multiple dance experiences at an intermediate level. Intermediate dance students will move beyond the beginning levels of dance education and focus more intensively on furthering their dance training and developing personal strengths and abilities. Technical training in jazz, modern, and ballet will continue to be a year-long focus, along with developing performance skills through informal and formal performance. Two formal dance performances yearly, one in the fall and one in the spring, as well as a dance-related semester project, are essential elements of the curriculum. Students in grades 10-12 may receive P.E. credit if desired. 

Dance 3 

Advanced Dance offers serious students in grades 10-12, at an advanced level, multiple dance, choreography, and performance production experiences. Students will apply advanced choreographic principles, processes and skills, as well as advanced technical skills in various dance genres, to create and communicate meaning through the performance of dance. This is a balanced program that focuses on dance performance and production and enhances student learning by teaching self-discipline and decision making; promoting individual creativity and problem solving, providing opportunities for success and building self-esteem. Two formal performances yearly, one in the fall and one in the spring, are essential elements of the curriculum. A dance career-related research project and a theme-oriented original solo are also required, one (1) per semester. Students in grades 10-12 may receive P.E. credit if desired. 

Digital Marketing 

The Digital Marketing class will offer advanced digital media students an opportunity to create professional-level content for web and video in a work like environment. Students will be in charge of maintaining and updating the school’s web. Students will work with outside clients to develop web and video content for real businesses and organizations. 

Video 1: Digital Filmmaking 

This competency-based course provides students an introduction to creating digital video projects, using digital camcorders and non-linear editing software. This project-based course emphasizes confidence and competence building strategies to train students on these digital video tools as well as video techniques, pre production planning, scripting and story organization. Student projects are showcased at the annual El Molino Film Festival, as well as other local film festivals. In addition to class hours, additional hours and homework will be required outside of class time. The course operates in a working environment that is flexible, creative, self- paced, and provides off-campus privileges for students to complete video projects. 

Web Design

Students will learn how to design and publish pages for the World-Wide Web that includes text, graphics, animation, video, and audio. They will learn the fundamentals of HTML and CSS code, as well as the available WYSIWYG (what-yousee-is-what-you-get) programs that make web page development easy for both Macintosh and PC platforms. Students will learn fundamentals of graphic and screen design using Adobe Photoshop. Projects will be organized and published to the Internet. Students will also be given the opportunity to develop their own pages designed with their individual interests and expertise in mind. The object of the course is for students to learn how to provide reliable information and creative projects for the rest of the world to see and use. 

Advanced Media Production 

This Advanced video/media class offers students a hands-on training in Television production and advanced digital video skills. Students will learn advanced skills in digital camcorders, non-linear editing software and Television Studio equipment. The emphasis will be on refining advanced skills and techniques including planning, producing, directing, editing, and performing for video. Team and individual productions will be produced, as well as a daily video bulletin and Television program broadcast to the entire student body. Students will tape, produce and broadcast videos of school and community events. The course will emphasize creating a flexible and creative working atmosphere that stresses profession productivity and responsible and mature broadcasting standards.