Literary & Media Arts
Our new Literary and Media Arts curriculum is divided into two broad areas of instruction: Creative writing and journalism. This writing-intensive art form is offered as a primary arts focus for grades seven and eight, as a secondary art focus for grades six and seven, and to fifth graders as an arts workshop.

Media Arts is the study of journalism divided into two main areas of instruction, newswriting and production. Students will develop an understanding of the function and role of the media, learn the basics of newswriting, editing and layout, and produce the school newspaper, Arts OutLoud, and the literary arts magazine, YouthInk using their InDesign and Photoshop instruction. Students will also write, produce, and perform in podcasts and videocasts.  
Creative Writing
The creative writing courses will instruct and encourage students to write short works of fiction, drama, and poetry, as well as creative non-fiction narratives. Students will explore creativity, writings styles, and original voice through writing prompt activities and exemplar literature study. Students will build a supportive community of writers and write several works for their personal writing portfolios. Our student authors will present their writings in a school-wide literary magazine, through various online publication opportunities, and at live readings throughout the school year.
Fifth Grade
Fifth grade students meet once every six days for a 90-minute class to learn basic creative writing and journalism vocabulary and skills. The course encourages students to explore their approaches to writing and expand their creativity through imaginative prompts and games. Grade five Literary and Media Arts students also contribute to the school newspaper and literary magazine, collaborate with the Fifth Grade Showcase, and read their works at author presentations at the school.
Sixth & Seventh Grade
As a result of successfully completing creative writing coursework, students will improve their self-expression and original voice, and develop a greater understanding of genre-specific writing techniques. Students will compile their writing samples in a portfolio and publish their work in the school literary magazine and for online youth publications. Students will read and model exemplary literature to further their understanding of the writing craft. Students will also understand the basics of media writing and contribute to the school newspaper, podcasts and videocasts.  
Eighth Grade
Students have two classes a day in creative writing/journalism and one class a day in media design and production. We cover the following topics:
  • Audition Preparation/Portfolio Building: Students prepare writing from various genres to include in their high school audition portfolios and practice timed writing for the audition essay.  
  • Exemplary Literature Study: Students read and discuss classic literature such as House on Mango Street and Fahrenheit 451 as models of good writing to apply to their own writing.  
  •  Creative Writing: Students complete units on short stories, novels, poetry, drama, screenwriting, and creative nonfiction.  
  • Journalism: Students study journalism ethics, case law, writing and editing for publications and broadcast.
  • Media Arts: Students learn basics of InDesign, Photoshop and audio production and produce the school newspaper, the literary magazine, podcasts, and videocasts.  
Showcase Opportunities
Our literary magazine, YouthInk, contains original poetry, stories, artwork, and photography from our Literary and Media Arts and Visual Arts students, all displayed in a creative, professionally produced book.  A new edition of the magazine is produced annually.  

Our literary magazine, YouthInk, contains original poetry, stories, artwork, and photography from our Literary and Media Arts and Visual Arts students, all displayed in a creative, professionally produced book.  A new edition of the magazine is produced annually.  
Our Author’s Café is a family-oriented performance opportunity for student writer’s in grades 5-8 to present their writing in a creative, supportive atmosphere. While audience members enjoy refreshments, students present workshop productions of their plays, screenings of their podcasts and films, and live readings of their poetry and creative nonfiction.  

Literary & Media Arts students also write, design, and publish Arts OutLoud, the AACMS school newspaper, multiple times each school year.