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Arts

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Posted Wednesday, Nov 19, 2014 
The Dance Department auditioned over 75 Middle and Upper School students for Arts with a Heart 2015-HumanKIND! The Upper School Dance Production Workshop class also taught dancers sections from routines that will be seen in Casti's annual dance extravaganza. Mark your calendars: the show dates are February 6-8. For more information about this year's show and rehearsal times, please visit our website. www.artswithaheart.org.
Posted Thursday, Nov 13, 2014 

On Wednesday, the 9th graders attended a San Francisco Opera production of Puccini's La bohème as part of the core arts class. Before the opera, girls listened to various musical excerpts and learned about Puccini's musical vocabulary. They also heard a brief history of opera and learned about the evolution of opera from Mozart to Verdi. Students then traveled to the opera house and enjoyed hearing, seeing, and experiencing a working rehearsal. They connected the musical excerpts studied in class to a live performance and will continue to connect their experience to core arts class this semester.

Posted Thursday, Nov 6, 2014 

Castilleja welcomed renowned cartoonist and writer Liza Donnelly to campus as the school's Arrillaga and Morris Family Speaker for the year. When Liza became a regular cartoonist for The New Yorker in 1982, she was the youngest on staff and one of only three women. Now, as a self-described feminist and the author of more than fifteen acclaimed books, she uses her work to give women a voice and to create a sense of camaraderie in today’s world. She also serves as a Cultural Envoy for the U.S. State Department, where she shares her perspective on the importance of free speech and women’s rights with diverse communities around the globe.

While on campus Liza treated students to an all-school assembly in which she described how she found her passion for cartooning and advocacy, as well as the genesis of specific cartoons in her collection. She also met with student artists in a series of hands-on workshops, in which she demonstrated technique and gave feedback on the girls' works of art.

Posted Friday, Oct 31, 2014 

Halloween is about more than candy!! 7th grade art students took pumpkin carving to the next level!  As part of their cartooning unit, they studied the subtleties of facial expression and then designed and carved jack-o-lanterns to convey specific emotions. Can you guess the emotion?  (Left to right: shocked and surprised, scheming, enraged, terrified, silly and playful).  

Posted Friday, Oct 24, 2014 

Set sail for the hilarious musical comedy Anything Goes as 27 talented Upper Schoolers deliver such Cole Porter classics as: "I Get A Kick Out Of You," "You Do Something to Me," "It's De-Lovely," "All Through the Night," "Let's Misbehave," and -- of course -- the show-stopping name-dropping "Anything Goes!" Enjoy the zany antics of showgirl Reno Sweeney and her entourage "The Five Seas," star-crossed lovers Billy Crocker and Hope Harcourt, Robber Baron Eli Whitney and his long-lost love Evangeline Harcourt, Upper Class British Twit Lord Evelyn Ashleigh, Public Enemy #13 Moonface Martin and his Gangster's Moll Erma, The Captain Egbert Souse, The Purser Jean Dumer, Newspaper Reporters, F.B.I. Agents, Zealous Missionaries, and the Rest of the Sinners aboard the S.S. American as they as they croon, tap, and Charleston their way across the Atlantic!

  • Friday, Nov. 7th at 7:30pm
  • Saturday, Nov. 8th at 7:30pm
  • Sunday, Nov. 9th at 2pm

Tickets available now at http://www.castilleja.org/usplay

Original artwork by Izzy Lyseggen '15

Posted Wednesday, Sep 17, 2014 

Stop by the Anita Seipp Gallery to see the Fall Student Art Show featuring pieces from students in last spring's Drawing and Painting, Core Arts, and Advanced Art classes! This beautiful exhibit will run through October. Questions? Contact Seipp Gallery Curator Deborah Trilling at drilling@castilleja.org.

 

Posted Friday, Sep 5, 2014 

Auditions for the Upper School Musical--Cole Porter's hilarious musical comedy Anything Goes--will be Wednesday and Thursday, September 10 and 11, from 3:30-5:30pm in the Chapel Theater. Students should plan to audition both days, as singing, acting, and dancing will all be part of the audition process; be prepared to move and bring at least sixteen bars from a Cole Porter tune which you can sing a cappella. If you're interested in doing tech for the show, please speak with Mr. Ochi, or if you have any further questions about the auditions just find Mr. Mead or Mr. Ahmed.

Posted Wednesday, Aug 13, 2014 

On Saturday, August 16, at 7:30pm Casti alumna Sophie Delphis '06 will sing Poulenc's La Voix Humaine in San Francisco (Old First Presbyterian Church, 1751 Sacramento Street). This forty-minute, one-act opera was composed by Francis Poulenc in 1958 for a soprano and orchestra; the theme centers around a jilted woman's last phone conversation with her former lover, and is not to be missed! Tickets are $25, sold only at the door.

Posted Monday, Jun 2, 2014 

On Friday, June 6, the Cypress String Quartet offered a master class and worked with the Upper School String Quartet. This master class was open to the entire Castilleja community and took place in the music room (lower level of the Gunn Family Administration Center). This was a fantastic opportunity for music enthusiasts to hear a professional string quartet play and listen to what they had to say about learning music. Attendees also united to support student musicians Rosie C. '16, Elyse G. '17, Greer H. '17, and Simran S. '18. In a thank-you note to the quartet Greer wrote, "Your advice and suggestions will really help us out in our performances, and I will take them forwards into my ensemble life. Your quartet is very inspiring, and your teamwork is admirable to anyone doing groupwork! I am so lucky to have been in this lesson."

Known for its elegant performances, the Cypress String Quartet (Cecily Ward, violin; Tom Stone, violin; Ethan Filner, viola; and Jennifer Kloetzel, cello) has been praised by Gramophone for its “artistry of uncommon insight and cohesion,” and its sound has been called “beautifully proportioned and powerful” by The Washington Post. The Cypress Quartet was formed in San Francisco in 1996, and maintains a busy national and international tour schedule, making appearances on concert series and in venues including Cal Performances, the Kennedy Center, the Library of Congress, Stanford Lively Arts, the Krannert Center, and the Ravinia Festival. Their collaborators include artists such as Leon Fleisher, Jon Nakamatsu, Awadagin Pratt, Gary Hoffman, Atar Arad, and James Dunham.

The Cypress Quartet members received degrees from many of the world’s finest conservatories before coming together as a group. These include Juilliard School, Guildhall School of Music & Drama, the Royal College of Music (London), the Cleveland Institute of Music, and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. After a residency at the Banff Centre and a fellowship at the Center for Advanced Quartet Studies of the Aspen Music Festival, the Quartet coached intensively in London with the Amadeus Quartet. Cypress Quartet members play exceptional instruments including violins by Antonio Stradivarius (1681) and Carlos Bergonzi (1733), a viola by Vittorio Bellarosa (1947), and a cello by Hieronymus Amati II (1701).

Posted Monday, Jun 2, 2014 

Members of music ensemble MUSE (grades 6-12) attended San Francisco Opera's production of the musical Show Boat on Friday evening to celebrate a year of making music together. Show Boat was composed by Jerome Kern with lyrics written by Oscar Hammerstein II and is based on a novel by Edna Ferber. Tony Award-winning actor Bill Irwin performed the role of Cap’n Andy Hawks and American bass Morris Robinson's performance of "Ol' Man River" reverberated throughout the entire War Memorial Opera House. If you are interested in joining MUSE next year watch for audition information in early fall or contact Dr. Hart.

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Student Life
Posted 11/12/2014 10:18AM

Congratulations to Lea S. '16, who traveled to Los Angeles to participate in the Siemens Competition in Math, Science & Technology and placed as a Regional Finalist! The weekend started on Friday, where competitors were given a tour of the campus by a Caltech "buddy" to whom each participant was assigned. That evening students presented their posters to the public, where the Caltech community as well as middle- and high-schoolers came to view the posters and ask questions about the projects. The weekend finished with the competitors making presentations and holding a question-and-answer session with around a dozen judges, as well as a celebratory dinner.

Lea says, "It was truly a special weekend. Most of all I enjoyed getting to know so many talented, smart, and interesting students from across the country. From hearing everyone else's projects in their presentations, to discussing a mutual love for English, to learning about new mathematical concepts, it will be a weekend I will never forget. It makes me want to continue to pursue science even more than before."

Posted 11/11/2014 03:38PM
On November 9 the sixth graders gathered in the Dining Room to write notes and prepare care packages for last year's seniors who are off at college or taking a gap year to pursue an interest. They enjoyed learning where all the members of the Class of 2014 are this year and telling them a little about their first year at Casti.
Posted 10/29/2014 04:31PM

Teachers connect with developers to hear about new and emerging technology tools. This month, the iPad Student Leads had a chance to connect with women developers and innovators - Christine Egy Rose and Patty Chang. Their company, Scoot and Doodle, raised $2.25 million in seed funding and the students had the opportunity to play with the (not-yet-released version) of their app, Scoodle Jam. iPad Student Leads explored with the app, which allows for whiteboard drawing and has easy-to-use manipulatives for topics like math and design thinking. The students offered feedback, giving student voice to the user design of the project. Students were able to ask questions of the developers and exchange feedback with each other. The iPad Student Leads are looking forward to more opportunities to connect with other women developers in the field and to exploring what the iPad has to offer the student experience!

 

Posted 10/28/2014 03:57PM

Spirit week started off with a bang!  The Disney-themed day saw the Circle filled wtih characters from Hercules (6th grade), Cinderella (7th grade), Lilo and Stitch (8th grade), Peter Pan (9th grade), Frozen (10th grade), 101 Dalmatians (11th grade) and Mickey Mouse (12th grade). Faculty and staff got to play villains and came decked out as everyone from Cruella deVille to Maleficient and the evil Queen from Snow White! Check out some of the great photos below:

 


Academics
Posted 11/20/2014 04:18PM

This week, Mr. Mitchell and Mr. Smith's 10th grade Individual & Society classes participated in a "Philosopher's Salon," in which students dressed up in a certain philosopher's traditional outfit, had tea and scones, and responded to questions about modern controversies. The philosophers (Confucius, Aristotle, Machiavelli, Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, and Mill) addressed issues ranging from gun control, to eminent domain, to representative democracy, and students responded according to how their philosopher would have answered the questions. Aditi S. '17 says, "It was rewarding to think logically about situations through different philosophers' points of view."

Posted 11/13/2014 02:22PM

On Wednesday, the 9th graders attended a San Francisco Opera production of Puccini's La bohème as part of the core arts class. Before the opera, girls listened to various musical excerpts and learned about Puccini's musical vocabulary. They also heard a brief history of opera and learned about the evolution of opera from Mozart to Verdi. Students then traveled to the opera house and enjoyed hearing, seeing, and experiencing a working rehearsal. They connected the musical excerpts studied in class to a live performance and will continue to connect their experience to core arts class this semester.

Posted 11/12/2014 10:18AM

Congratulations to Lea S. '16, who traveled to Los Angeles to participate in the Siemens Competition in Math, Science & Technology and placed as a Regional Finalist! The weekend started on Friday, where competitors were given a tour of the campus by a Caltech "buddy" to whom each participant was assigned. That evening students presented their posters to the public, where the Caltech community as well as middle- and high-schoolers came to view the posters and ask questions about the projects. The weekend finished with the competitors making presentations and holding a question-and-answer session with around a dozen judges, as well as a celebratory dinner.

Lea says, "It was truly a special weekend. Most of all I enjoyed getting to know so many talented, smart, and interesting students from across the country. From hearing everyone else's projects in their presentations, to discussing a mutual love for English, to learning about new mathematical concepts, it will be a weekend I will never forget. It makes me want to continue to pursue science even more than before."

Posted 11/10/2014 02:55PM

As part of their People of the Earth Innovation Grant, 6th grade teachers Sarah Barnum (science) and Laura Docter (history) continue to identify and explore points of interdisciplinary intersection and to jointly design collaborative active lessons around these areas. On Monday morning they talked with students about geological time versus historical time and watched a short video to help the girls visualize the history of the Earth and of humans. As a ticket out the door, the girls recorded what they learned so far, provided evidence to support it, and recorded questions that they had based on what they learned.

In the afternoon session, groups of 6th graders walked through time in both the context of the history of the Earth (as they study in science class) and the history of people (as they study in history class). They traveled along the geologic timeline with Ms. Barnum. With a scale of 100,000 years per 1 cm, the 4.54 billion-year-old history of the Earth led students from the Bell all the way to Good Court. Dr. Docter noted that human history was limited to only a tiny piece at the end of that string (approximately the last 40 cms), so she changed the scale to 1,000 years per 1 cm (100 times bigger) and looked in more detail at only the last 4 million years on her walk. Only the last 2 cms of that walk were the common era, or the last 2014 years. The class then sat down and began to answer their own questions from the morning session using evidence from the learning experiences. Students will continue to explore the questions that came out of these interdisciplinary lessons -- and provide evidence to answer them -- in both science and history classes.

Then, for homework, the girls are creating their own personal timelines of their lives (on a very different scale than the other two timelines).

This is the third intentional point of curricular intersection related to the People of the Earth Grant so far this year. The first was in opening days where students explored disciplines and interdisciplinary learning and the second was exploring maps.

Posted 10/10/2014 04:00PM
The YouthMed division of the STEMx ACE Org hosted Dr. Amit Etkin of the Stanford University Neurosciences Institute this afternoon during EOP. Dr. Etkin shared his revolutionary work on tackling depression and other psychiatric and behavioral disorders using Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS), a non-invasive technique that can restore connections in the brain that have been damaged. The participants were fascinated by the scientific, ethical, and political questions such an innovation can bring about, and the future of the rapidly advancing behavioral science and psychiatry fields. 
On November 5, YouthMed will host a mammalian brain dissection to accompany the neuroscience talk that Dr. Etkin presented today. YouthMed will continue to host a series of physician and research lectures as well as accompanying dissections throughout the year. Stay on the lookout for upcoming opportunities!
Posted 10/02/2014 01:21PM
Four of the Castaruni club members who journeyed to Kenya this summer prepared an interactive project for the freshman C&C classes to share club activities and inform the nines about Castilleja's partnership with our sister school, Kisaruni. Using an entrepreneurship class that they did on the ground in Kenya, they taught the nines how to be global citizens and global historians. Using role play, they discussed similarities and differences between the two societies to better understand their specific cultures while also learning how to apply these concepts to the marketplace and entrepreneurial projects.
Posted 09/23/2014 12:00PM
The ACE Center and the seniors who travelled to Guatemala during their Global investigator trip welcomed Julio Florencio “Lencho” Meléndez Monterroso as our second Activist in Residence. He supports the on-going development of our global program and has been the on-the-ground education lead for our Guatemala trip for several years.

Lencho will be working closely with various Spanish classes and our Engineering and Sustainable Solutions class covering topics ranging from Mayan Culture and history to Sustainable Agriculture. He will also be a guest of honor at our "Celebration of Hispanic Culture" evening on Thursday, October 2.  
Posted 08/01/2014 09:52AM

On Friday afternoon Castilleja's Peninsula Bridge Program concluded with a series of spectacular student performances and a fun-filled reception. Peninsula Bridge is a summer enrichment experience for academically motivated rising fifth-grade girls from under-resourced communities. The girls connect and enjoy learning through language arts, math, art, science, and other activities, including gardening, yoga, dance, field trips, and much more.

As assistants and leaders, Castilleja students design curriculum, engage in program management and development, and mentor the Bridge students. With a variety of leadership opportunities that draw on their personal interests and reinforce their academic learning, Middle and Upper School students help to bring science, art, math, poetry, health, sports, cooking, and myriad other topics to life for the fifth graders. As they cultivate the inquisitive curiosity and budding confidence of the youth around them, Castilleja participants develop leadership skills, gain greater confidence, and experience the lasting rewards of personally meaningful, socially significant service.

Some of the highlights? Nancy L. '17, one of the Casti student leaders, says, "I remember the girls telling us how much they loved spending time with the TAs and playing fun games such as cat and mouse, sharks and minnows, and mafia. The field trips were also one of the highlights, because they gave the Bridge girls the opportunity to explore new environments, such as the beach, a farm, and museums. Of course, they also really enjoyed the lunch. :) In reality, the students loved all of the Peninsula Bridge Program. They received a prompt that asked them to list ten of their favorite things about Bridge, and they covered so much."

And the Bridge girls aren't the only ones who enjoyed the Program: "The TAs definitely loved writing back to the students' journal prompts, and getting to know them. We also loved teaching them new things and showing them different perspectives on many subjects. My favorite part of Bridge was talking to the girls about how their week was going, and learning new things about them. I'll never forget the End of Summer Celebration. It was beautiful, but bittersweet because that's when I felt like I was saying goodbye to such a wonderful moment. I do hope to continue to communicate with the girls."

Watch the slideshow below to get a glimpse of their summer!


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