• May 23 - 27

    Posted by Seth Geltman on 5/22/2022

    Our 5th, 7th, and 8th graders continue to examine and discuss classic movies. As they view Singin' in the Rain and It's a Wonderful Life, students have written scenes in proper screenplay format; looked at a famous storyboard, and talked about how storyboards function in movies; analyzed ways in which camera angles are used to manipulate audience reaction; and discussed how changes in technology have changed moviemakers' approaches and styles.

    Having worked with elements of art and music over the course of the year, we're also seeing how filmmakers employ and combine techniques of sight and sound in this amazing art form. 

    Our 6th grade students have been composing string quartets with Musescore. Through this exercise, we're working with structure, melody, harmony, and interlocking rhythms, and seeing how multiple musical programs handle data in the MIDI format.

    I'd like to thank our students, parents, and community for getting Alita off to a good start this year. I hope everyone has a very pleasant summer, and look forward to continuing our work next year.

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  • May 16 - 20

    Posted by Seth Geltman on 5/15/2022

    The students’ hard work for our Student Spotlight paid off well. All our participants created projects they took pride in, and enjoyed sharing with our community. This event was the culmination of weeks of work for these kids. Here is a video of the exhibits before visitors attended, another during the event, and here are stills (set one and two) that show students’ tables.

    As we enter our final weeks, our classes are viewing and analyzing classic movies — Singin’ in the Rain for the 5th/6th grades and It’s a Wonderful Life for 7th/8th. Since we’ve studied aspects of art and music, we will discuss how great moviemakers combine these in imaginative ways.

     

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  • May 9 - 13

    Posted by Seth Geltman on 5/8/2022

    As we head into our Student Spotlight event, our students make final preparations with their trifolds, podcasts, posters, journals, paintings, and 3D printouts. We're excited to present this work to our school and community on Tuesday, May 10th.

    I've noticed excellent momentum and attention to this presentation in almost all of our students. Here's our layout for the Student Spotlight event.

    Student Spotlight event

    Looking forward to sharing our work!

     

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  • May 2 - May 6

    Posted by Seth Geltman on 5/1/2022

    Our students continue preparations for Student Spotlight. Many have completed quite a bit of computer work for this in the lab over the past few weeks.

    colton

    At this point, most have created a painting, an informational
    poster, a podcast, a daily journal about their topic, and their own chosen format for one component.

    SSN

    Several students have created 3D models. Some have
    been designed in Sketchup, while others have been drawn by hand in the iPad Sketches app, imported to Illustrator, and exported to a format for our 3D printer. It's exciting to see our students' imaginations literally take shape with wonderful sculptural forms.

    goldfishAs we move into the final week before Student Spotlight on May 10th, students will add more information to their trifolds, and complete a fifth component. For this, they'll compose music about their topic. We'll be using use Garageband and Musescore.

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  • April 25 - 29

    Posted by Seth Geltman on 4/24/2022

    Our students continue to create work for the Student Spotlight event on May 10th. The latest component is a podcast, based on the students’ self-chosen topic. Students used Soundtrap, a Spotify product, to combine voices, sound effects, and music. Our kids made some excellent podcasts, including investigations of digital art and the ocean.

    Additionally, we partnered with the Denver Public Library for the students research. Almost every student corresponded with a librarian and also got an “eCard” to the library. With this, they can access DPL’s vast resources both in-person and digitally. My hope is that students will benefit from this research opportunity for many years to come.

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  • April 18 - 22

    Posted by Seth Geltman on 4/17/2022

    CMAS testing prevented most class meetings last week. Students are currently creating podcasts about their Student Spotlight topics. We’ll enter these in this podcast contest. Students are using Soundtrap, a sound recording and editing software site from Spotify, to produce their podcasts.

    For students’ research on their Student Spotlight topic, it would be great to tap into expertise within our own community. If you work in the field of a student's topic, or have knowledge of it, would you consider corresponding via email with a student about it?

    If so, please email me at sgeltman@cherrycreekacademy.org, and I'll get things coordinated.

    Here’s a list of the topics.

    topicsTo this end, we’re also working with the Denver Public Library to acquire customized librarians’ resources for research. It’s exciting to introduce our students to such a valuable institution, and I’m hopeful they’ll make a habit of using DPL for high-quality research.

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  • April 11 - 15

    Posted by Seth Geltman on 4/11/2022

    Using Adobe inDesign, our students created posters for their Student Spotlight projects. Among the dozens of inDesign features we utilized for this were Text Effects, Text Wraparound, Align, and Frame Shapes. We're printing them up on our big color printer, and will feature them on the Student Spotlight project trifold.

     

    posters

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  • April 4 - 8

    Posted by Seth Geltman on 4/4/2022

    I'm excited about the artwork our students are creating for Student Spotlight. Over the course of the year, we've discussed and done exercises with elements of art, such as composition, geometry, emotion, and use of color. Most students applying this, and bringing great creativity and care to their work.

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  • March 28 - April 1

    Posted by Seth Geltman on 3/27/2022

    It was exciting to listen to our students’ creativity as they used our instruments to create music for their ‘memory creep’ music. To emphasize the idea that lack of instrumental expertise should not inhibit composing music, I discussed with students this obituary of Core Knowledge songwriter Irving Berlin.

    berlin

    Although incredibly accomplished, Berlin's skills as an instrumentalist were limited. In the same way, our students didn’t let lack of experience with an instrument limit their creativity, as they collaborated effectively to record their compositions.

    We also discussed film composer Jonny Greenwood’s reflections on how an early experience with experimenting with instruments in school inspired him.

    We also discussed Core Knowledge artist Jackson Pollock in the 7th/8th class, and Core Knowledge artist Boticelli in 5th.

    After reviewing my presentation about Impressionism vs. Expressionism earlier in the year, we discussed how Pollock exemplified Expressionism. In the Computer Lab, students visited the Museum of Modern Art’s page about Pollock, selected their own detailed views of his work, and shared these with the class. I highlighted the energy in Pollock’s work, and encouraged students to convey that same level of energy in the paintings they’re making for our Student Spotlight event.

    The 5th graders worked through a similar process with Botticelli.

    In the coming weeks, students will focus on Student Spotlight projects. We have an excellent variety of topics and techniques for presenting them.

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  • March 21 - 25

    Posted by Seth Geltman on 3/20/2022

    Our 7th and 8th grade students finished animations of a character they designed and voiced, based on the concept of ‘Memory Creep.’ We’ve learned about and discussed hindsight bias with our How to Decide book throughout the year. The ‘Memory Creep’ voices some of hindsight bias’s catch phrases.

    memory creep

    See the 'Memory Creep' video.

    Through the process of making this, our students worked extensively with Photoshop’s layers and drawing tools. Additionally, they created ‘Memory Creep’ music with our instruments. This will serve as the score of the animation.

    We continue to work toward the Student Spotlight event. This presentation, from our first (and only ‘in real life’) Student Spotlight gives a sense of this event. Our previous two events (here and here) were online due to Covid.

    Students are currently designing posters for their exhibits.

    julia poster

    joey poster

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