We Focus on Middle School

Hyla Middle School

Visual Arts

Kate Lovejoy
The objective of Hyla’s three-year visual arts program is to provide an art education that utilizes four basic art disciplines to teach art concepts and skills. These disciplines are art production, art history, art criticism, and aesthetics. By integrating these four disciplines, unlike most art programs that focus primarily on art production, Hyla’s program helps students develop perceptual awareness (understanding how all the parts fit together or why an artwork is well composed), critical thinking skills, and an understanding of art as a means of communication. Students also develop skills in producing visual art in a wide variety of media and techniques.


  1. Develop skills in producing visual art in a wide variety of media and techniques.
  2. Encourage creativity and support students “thinking outside the box” in their artwork. Every artwork created at Hyla, even if it is skill-based or simply an exercise leading up to a larger project, includes some aspect that encourages creativity. Very often at the middle school level this may be the most difficult part of an artwork because this age group is so driven by peer acceptance.
  3. Teach students to recognize, distinguish, and appreciate art and cultural influences of different historical periods and cultures.
  4. Communicate ideas and feelings through creative visual expression. Teach students that artists are inventors. Teach students the skills to communicate their ideas and feelings more clearly.
  5. Analyze, compare, interpret and evaluate art of self, other students, and major artists. Students will learn to identify and discuss the sensory (line, shape, color, value, texture, form, space), formal (balance, proportion, variety, movement, etc.), technical (media, tools, etc.), and expressive (mood, message, or idea) properties of works of art. Students will learn to distinguish between personal preferences and objective judgments of works of art.