The Visual Arts Program at Hickory Grove is filtered through a Biblical lens while using age-appropriate curriculum supplemented with online resources that highlight art skill and appreciation. The study of art creates more observant individuals who can appreciate the beauty of the natural world, with the hope that they will come to see God as an artist and draw closer to Him through the process of making art.
The elementary art curriculum sets the foundations of HG's art program: kindergarteners learn how to use shapes, primary colors, trace and draw by themselves to develop fine motor skills. First and second graders learn the elements of art texture and shape, developing into more independent artists. Third and fourth graders are introduced to various artists and techniques. Students master the elements of art lines and shapes and continue developing skills. Fourth and fifth graders expand their artistic vocabulary, focus on applying value to create depth, and explore more with 3D objects.
In middle school art classes, students create more than copy. There is an emphasis on advancing skills to enhance creativity and help young artists develop their own sense of style. A new vocabulary has been introduced along with projects to encourage whole class and individual practice mixing full saturation of one primary color to create secondary colors and tertiary colors. Students are also introduced to modern artists such as Pablo Piccaso to spark creativity and develop individual styles, first copying the artists’ techniques and then developing their own style and technique through different projects such as portrait paintings using mixed media.
The high school offers a variety of art classes geared to both the novice and the college-bound artists. The foundational Art I class develops basic skills while introducing students to the elements and principles of art as well as some art history. Art II builds upon these skills, helping students practice and master techniques.
Art III, Art IV, AP Studio Art 2D, and AP Studio Art are for the more serious-minded art students who may wish to pursue art beyond high school. These classes help students master skills and techniques. These classes also require student portfolios. All AP art students typically pass the AP exam with a three or a four. There was a slight dip with remote learning due to the pandemic which made it difficult to learn and practice the higher level of technical skills needed for AP.
Art Appreciation creates an awareness and appreciation for art in its various forms through study, discussion, written critique, and creation. By the end of the course, students have a greater understanding of art and discover a way to appreciate art in some form and how to use the fundamentals of art in their own lives.
Hickory Grove also offers four levels of yearbook. Students are introduced to the basics of photography, journalistic writing, publication, and business in Yearbook I. Students may continue their journalistic pursuits with Honors I, II, and III. In addition to the publication of the school yearbook, honor students publish three to four school magazines a year.