10.27.17

Arts for EACH child includes those with disabilities

Sweetwater District Band Teacher Amy Cruz is taking the challenge of making the arts accessible to EACH child to a new level at Bonita Vista Middle School. What began as a pull-out program for kids with mild-to-moderate disabilities has blossomed into a full class where students, teachers, and peer mentors gather together to make music.

Ms. Cruz worked with her Principal, Dr. Eduardo Reyes, the Director of the Visual and Performing Arts Department, Jeff Kover, and the director of Special Services, Dr. Ron Lopez to get funding for the class. Through their combined efforts, Ms. Cruz was able to have a stand-alone class, instruments, and the support of the teachers and staff of Bonita Vista.

Teaching instrumental music is always challenging, but even more so when students are disabled. “We have students with mobility challenges, a lot of them have dexterity challenges where manipulating their fingers can be difficult. Playing a standard instrument like a clarinet or saxophone or even a trumpet could be tricky because they don’t have the same finger strength but with our modified instruments, with recorders and the orff instruments, they’re able to participate and in meaningful ways. They’re making music but adapted to their ability level.” Ms. Cruz adapts music to the instruments and abilities of her students, while teaching them basic music fundamentals.

Working alongside Ms. Cruz are the Special Education teachers like Richard Giffen. He has found that, beyond the music lessons, “we’re able to make connections. Music is that language of communication that allows them to communicate with peers of all levels.” He is proud of the exposure that his students receive to experiences they might not have had otherwise.

Parents are happy with the program as well. “The students get to be on stage, they get to perform. For some of them that makes them very nervous but once it’s done and once they’re up there and they have that moment of ‘we did it’ they are just beaming and their parents are beaming. It’s great to give the parents the opportunity to see their kids with all of the other students performing” says Ms. Cruz. Her plan now is to make this class available to the rest of the district.

You can see these wonderful kids and their teacher on Youtube here:

10.24.17

District Orchestra Fall Concert

The District Orchestra Fall Concert is Tuesday, November 7th, 2017 at 7:00 p.m. Location: Eastlake High School Ruth Chapman Performing Arts Center (1120 Eastlake Parkway, Chula Vista, CA 91915)

Featuring the District String and Symphonic Orchestras under the direction of Jennifer Opdahl, Greg Caldera, and Maren Glover. General admission is $5.00 (free admission for children 4 and under)

Downloadable flyers here.

10.23.17

EastLake Middle School – Visual Art

EastLake Middle School’s 1st Annual Day of the Dead Celebration and Display is November 1st, 2017 from 5:30 – 7:00 PM at the EastLake Middle School Pavilion (900 Duncan Ranch Road, Chula Vista, CA 91914)

Downloadable flyer here.

For more information, please contact Visual Art teacher Andrea Arroyo at ELM.

10.11.17

Sweetwater High School – Art Exhibit

Sweetwater High School Advanced Art -Mediation/Relaxation Exhibition October 13-15, 2017 at The Healthy Spirit – 629 3rd Ave #B, Chula Vista, CA 91910. Reception is Friday, October 13 from 7-9pm. Open House is Saturday, October 14 from 12-5pm.

Downloadable flyer here.

07.28.17

Fortissimo Award Winners

Congratulations to two of our outstanding music educators! The California Music Educators Association-Southern Border Section has once again honored teachers in the Sweetwater Union High School District as Outstanding Music Educators. They will be recognized at the annual Arts Empower Mega-Conference in October.

Tamara Frazier, Castle Park Middle School: Middle School Music Specialist Award
Danielle Bruce, Hilltop Middle School: Richard Levin Orchestra Educator Award

Congratulations! We are all so very proud of you!

06.12.17

2017 VAPA Musical

The 2017 Sweetwater Summer Theater Institute presented CHILDREN OF EDEN on July 26-28 at 7 pm & July 29 at 2 pm – San Ysidro High School – Dr. Maida Torres-Stanovik Performing Arts Center (5353 Airway Road, San Diego, CA 92154) Performed entirely by Sweetwater District students.

Directed by Jose C. Lopez
Assistant Director: Rhys Greene
Choreographer: Valerie Ingram
Music Director: Tony Sacco
Vocal Director: Rebecca Land
Assistant Vocal Director: Barbara Schroeder
Stage Designer: Paul Maley
Theater Manager/Lighting Designer: Keith Davis
Sound Designer: Eusevio Cordova
Costume Designers: Kelly Fox & Marce Drysdale
Prop Master: Analyse Gutierrez

Pit Orchestra information here.

06.12.17

Pit Orchestra

The 2017 Sweetwater Summer Theater Institute presented CHILDREN OF EDEN on July 26-28 at 7 pm & July 29 at 2 pm – San Ysidro High School – Dr. Maida Torres-Stanovik Performing Arts Center.

Orchestra Director – Tony Sacco
Keyboard – Kyra Sacco

Accompanist – Barbara Schroeder
Flute – Jia Wen Chen (ORH)
Piccolo – Geli Samia (OLH)
Soprano Saxophone – John Cochran III (ELH)
Oboe – Jeremiah Vargas (OLH)
Alto Saxophone – Jason McCann (BVH)
Tenor Saxophone – Anthony Belen-Gonzalez (SYH)
Baritone Saxophone – Eliezzer Rodriguez (SYH)
Trumpet – Israel Avila (MOH)
French Horn – Adrian Lacsamana (BVH)
Trombone – Myles Gonzalez (BVH)
Percussion – Gabriel Ledezma (BVH)
Drum Kit – Angus Campos (SYH)

06.12.17

2017 Sweetwater Summer Arts Academy at Camp Cuyamaca

The Sweetwater Summer Arts Academy is a FREE one week camp offered each summer to over 150 Sweetwater Union High School District students in Visual and Performing Arts classes and takes place at Camp Cuyamaca, the Outdoor School for the San Diego County Office of Education. 

The intense week closed with student performances and an art exhibit on Saturday, June 24th, 2017 at Chula Vista High School. It featured our district’s best String Orchestra, Choir, Concert Band, Jazz Band, Dance, Mariachi, and Visual Art.

Camp Director was Debbie Nevin-Armstrong from CVH, Concert Band Instructor Eric Mabrey from OLH, Jazz Band Instructor Fred Marx from MOM, Orchestra Instructor Greg Caldera from ELH & MVA, Mariachi Instructor Fredd Sanchez from NCM & SUH, Visual Art Instructor Andrea Arroyo from MOM, Dance Instructor Valerie Ingram from CVH, Choir Instructor Michael Sakell from CVM & CVH, and Accompanist Lionel Jasmin from various school sites.

06.12.17

2017 San Diego County Fair Winners

By Keilyn Cendana, MOH – Best of Class and winner of the San Diego Chapter of the Colored Pencil Society of America award.

Congratulations to the 2017 San Diego County Fair Student Showcase – Best in Show and Best of Class award recipients from the Sweetwater Union High School District!

By Xavier Cordova, MOH – Best of Class

Fine Arts Results:

Teacher Student School Division Class Ribbon
Young Xavier Cordova MOH 4308 Print 005-10-12, 2-4 yrs Best of Class
Exum Ashleigh Alqueza OLH 4300 Ink 004-10-12, 1st yr Best of Class
Young Keilyn Cendana MOH 4302 Pencil 004-10-12, 1st yr Best of Class
Burner Dafne Martinez De La Parra RDM 4307 Collage 002 – Gr 8 Best of Class
Burner Mikala Quiambao Villanueva RDM 4301 Pastel 002 – Gr 8 Best of Class
Burner Mikala Quiambao Villanueva RDM 4302 Pencil 002 – Gr 8 Best of Class
Burner Angel Solano RDM 4316 FineArt 002 – Gr 8 Best of Class
Burner Karlee Paiste RDM 4307 Collage 001 – Gr 7 Best in Show

Photography Results:

Teacher Student School Division Class Ribbon
Helton Mathias Cien HTH 4707 Phone 005-10-12, 2-4 yrs Best of Class
Lim Trace Thompson BVH 4708 Aerial 005-10-12, 2-4 yrs Best of Class
Lim Rebekah Torres BVH 4708 Aerial 004-10-12, 1st yr Best in Show
Helle Cedric Vitug BVH 4709 Action 004-10-12, 1st yr Best of Class
Lim Arie Jajati BVH 4707 Phone 003 – Gr 9 Best of Class
Helle Veronica Macias BVH 4709 Action 003 – Gr 9 Best of Class

Video Results:

Teacher Student School Division Class Ribbon
Exum Xavier Sanchez OLH 4904 PSA 002 – 9-12 Best of Class
Exum Jessica Villarin OLH 4902 Music Video 002 – 9-12 Best of Class

Graphic Comm Results:

Teacher Student School Division Class Ribbon
Helle Vivianna Estrada BVH 4507 2pg Spread 014 – 9-12 Group Best in Show
Lim Fabian Llamas BVH 4505 Typography 004 – 10-12 1st yr Best of Class
Lim Yax Trejo BVH 4500 PS Ad 004 – 10-12 1st yr Best of Class
Helton Eilana Rodriguez HTH 4516 Group Project 003 – Gr 9 Best of Class
Lim Kailani Del Rio BVH 4500 PS Ad 003 – Gr 9 Best in Show
Lim Earl Purser BVH 4505 Typography 003 – Gr 9 Best in Show

New Media Results:

Helton Ella Geonzon HTH 4100 Ed/Info 011 – 9-12 Indiv Best of Class