Public Presentation Skills & Ethics Symposium
(9) In this semester-long Fine Arts class students view and reflect on the films The Great Debaters, and The King’s Speech. They learn Art Sager’s SPEC format for speaking and make 12 presentations. They review videos of all their talks and develop goals for their future talks. They memorize and recite Marc Antony’s funeral oration from Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar and Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. They peruse weekly an issue of the current events magazine The Week and take a quiz on it. Crucially, they participate in 15 hours of The PPS Ethics Symposium with Mr. Wann and Mrs. Kingsbury. The weekly symposium usually lasts between 60- 80 minutes. Students are invited to ask questions and share their thoughts about a variety of issues and topics including: lying, peer pressure, major school rules and the disciplinary process, culture shift to a new school and categorical and consequentialist moral reasoning.
Forensics & Advanced Public Speaking
(10, 11, 12) In these semester-long Fine Arts elective students prepare and make a variety of presentations primarily persuasive talks. The tenets taught for years by Art Sager are the foundation of all presentations. Additionally students practice prepared readings, impromptu speaking and speaking to solve a moral dilemma. Debate is also practiced. Students learn Parliamentary Extemporaneous and Oregon/Cross-Examination style debating. We read and discuss The Economist weekly. Finally, students are required to participate in at least two interscholastic debates.
Fall Drama (Afternoon Program)
All students are welcome to join us for a play, comedy, dramatic piece, or student-written production. No prior experience is necessary; no audition required. Past shows include Little Foot, Rumble in the Garden, Arden City, The Crucible, Hamlet, and The Children's Hour.
Winter Musical (Afternoon Program)
During the winter season, students rehearse and perform a full-scale musical production. All students are welcome; no prior experience necessary. Lead roles will be auditioned at the beginning of the season; no audition required for students who wish to be a part of the ensemble. Past shows include Young Frankenstein, Legally Blonde, Singin' in the Rain, The Wedding Singer, Beauty and the Beast, Grease, and Chicago.
Spring Drama (Afternoon Program)
All students are welcome to join us for a play, comedy, dramatic piece, or student-written production. No prior experience is necessary; no audition required. Past shows include 9 to 5, Harvey, Arsenic and Old Lace, Cabaret, Teen Noir, and Noises Off.