Catholic Schools Week 2016

Fontbonne Hall Academy, Bay Ridge

At Fontbonne Hall Academy, Bay Ridge, young women can find their inspiration to become leaders of tomorrow in a variety of fields. New offerings and expanded programs, especially in the fields of music, art, dance and foreign language provide students with opportunities to explore their talents, discover their potential and excel.

Music Designation

Fontbonne’s incoming Class of 2020 will be the first to have the opportunity to earn a diploma with a music designation. In order to earn the music designation diploma, students will be required to complete five units of music courses in four years. The curriculum will include history of music, music theory and three units of music performance that can be earned through participation in vocal ensemble and select chorus. The school is working toward adding instrumental courses in 2017-18.

Fontbonne’s Art Program begins immediately in freshman year with a one-year required art course in visual perception. The course requires each student to tap into her creativity to paint as a cavewoman, act in her own short film, create an abstract piece of Earth Art using sand on the beach and build a Pop Art sculpture.

Major Art, Design

In sophomore year, interested students can pursue a three-year course of study in major art. An introductory studio course begins with learning to draw simple shapes and then incorporates techniques such as pencil shading, mechanical drawing and deep perspective. Students explore classical composition and contemporary design, and painting assignments challenge their observational skills and conceptual creativity.

In Major Art 2, the second year art major will begin to develop a personal portfolio of artwork that investigates portraiture and life drawing, two-point perspective and building design, and experiments with a variety of challenging painting assignments.

Major Art 3 is designed for those individuals intent on pursuing a career in the visual arts and allows each art major the opportunity to investigate the wide variety of 21st-century materials that must be incorporated into any contemporary artist’s arsenal for both personal expression and undergraduate admission.

Photography is also available in senior year and covers the creative use of both digital and traditional cameras.

Creative Movement

Beginning in the 2016-2017 school year, Fontbonne will partner with Collective Movements to offer a dance class for the first time. This class will focus on women’s empowerment, individual confidence and diversity of thought, with emphasis on the collaborative and creative processes.

This yearlong course of study will be divided into three major units. Students will first focus on working together as an ensemble and working to hone the building blocks of creative movement, including flexibility, musicality and balance. In the next unit, students will delve into shared leadership within the ensemble and will begin developing their own choreography.

In the final unit of study, the focus will shift to planning and executing an end-of-year showcase, including organizing the costumes, venue and lighting. The course culminates in a final performance in June.

The Foreign Language Department offers Spanish and Italian and will begin offering French in the fall of 2016. Latin remains mandatory for sophomores.

“Fontbonne believes in educating the whole young woman,” says Principal Mary Ann Spicijaric. “These new programs, especially in dance and music, truly complement our strong science and technology programs.

“Our goal is to allow every opportunity for our students to discover what they love to study during their high school years.”

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