The Exp Summer Daily

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The Experimentory Blog

Our year-round blog has the most recent updates

Exp Summer Daily Blog

The blog becomes active each summer starting just before we're in session. Its a great place to see what our students are doing on a daily basis.

Day 10: Music + Film, Hitting the Right Note

Jul 20, 2017 8:21:20 AM

At the Experimentory, we believe that innovation happens at the intersections between disciplines, people, and ways of thinking about the world, which is why our course clusters are the heart of our program. Our projects-based clusters pair disciplines together in fresh and exciting ways, allowing students to learn by doing and to discover new passions. While our students are busy creating, coding, cutting, drawing, filming, and wiring things together, Media Manager Kayla Corcoran has put together a focus series on our three clusters to explore how the learning process unfolds at the Experimentory; last but not least - Music + Film!

“No, no wait, cut,” yelled Tiffany to her actors: Will, Derek, and Vincent. Tiffany and Vanessa were filming and directing behind the scenes, patiently waiting for their actors to get into place and recreate the their scenes, play by play. “That’s it, we’ve got it!” she said, and the boys scrambled back up from the floor. Tiffany, Vanessa, and their crew were working on their second project for the Music + Film cluster, whose official title is Storytelling for the Eyes and Ears.

“My goal is to teach students to be more critical spectators,” film teacher Mr. Correa remarked. “In our world, there’s so much media and we are constantly saturated with images and sights and sounds,” he noted. As a teacher, Mr. Correa said, he wants students to learn how to filter what they see. Creating is only one part of the equation; the other part, listening and understanding: “How do we analyze what we see? How do we decode the images on screen? How do we get below the surface of something that’s been created?”

Kevin L. and Justin get to work on their scripts. Write on!


Music teacher Mr. Peisch described the project that Tiffany and her group were working on: “The students are creating silent film scripts inspired by two orchestral masterpieces (hint: Richard Strauss and Igor Stravinsky!) They are filming and editing their scripts in preparation for their final fiction films accompanied by soundtracks of their own composition!” The students are building on what they’ve learned so far in the class: in music, Mr. Peisch noted, “the students have expressed various emotions using drum sounds and sampled sounds, and are moving on to the study of melody and harmony.”

The students are loving Music + Film. Said Blossom: “It’s so fun and it’s really different than what I’m used to. We’re creating music on GarageBand and filming and making movies.” The movies being made include the following subjects: a superhero movie about bully prevention; a movie about a town 5K; and a horror film whose plot is TBD. But what’s awesome about the films is that they’re all inspired by the same pieces of classical music, so the students are demonstrating all of the different directions the music could possibly go in.

Screen Shot 2017-07-20 at 7.59.48 AM.png Screen Shot 2017-07-20 at 7.59.29 AM.png
Jessica Z. and Qiheng write plots and make beats for their films. We can definitely get down with how much fun this looks!


Reported Mr. Peisch: “These students are a blast to teach - open, curious, energetic, smart, collaborative, and creative.” And they’re developing those character traits more and more everyday when they enter into their cluster classroom. We can’t wait to see how these final film projects turn out!

To see more of what’s happening in Music + Film and in our other clusters, be sure to follow our daily blog, and look for updates and photos on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Flickr.

The Exp Summer Daily provides news and updates while we are in session in July and August. The rest of the year, check out the Experimentory Blog for posts feature our students, teachers, classes, values, goals, and plans for the coming year.