The Arts

Nurture your creativity and develop a deeper understanding of the creative process. Now, more than ever, the options available to students post-study are many and rewarding.


Music is a fundamental form of expression, both personally and culturally. Areas that are covered include music history, composition, technology and performance. They will be expected to perform in front of an audience both as a soloist and as part of a group on their chosen instrument.

Junior students use instruments and audio technology. They use focused listening to identify, transcribe, and manipulate musical elements, thereby evaluating a range of musical pieces for various purposes and performances. 

Senior students have a personalised learning programme assessed using NCEA and Unit standards, and are able to work at their skill level. A variety of criteria is available in Technology, Performance (Solo, Group and Second Instrument), Composition, Arrangement, Instrumentation, Score Reading, Aural, Harmonic and Tonal Analysis, and Research.  

Although a student may not be in the Music option classes, they can sit performance and external standards if approved by the Teacher in Charge of Music.


Our Music suite has excellent facilities for individual/group tuition and practice. This includes:

  • singing
  • piano (group and private lessons available)
  • guitar (bass, acoustic, electric)
  • drums (rock, jazz, drum corps)
  • strings (violin, viola, cello. double bass)
  • brass (trumpet, trombone, tenor horn)
  • woodwind (all sizes of saxophone, clarinet, flute)


Students build on their kete of previous skills and knowledge in each year group, developing their characterisation, script analysis, practical application of drama techniques, performance skills and technical knowledge. 

Through Drama, students build their capacity in creative and critical thinking and develop communication skills and confidence. Taking part in performances, whether on stage or behind the scenes, provides countless opportunities to practice collaboration, teamwork and problem-solving – skills that will serve ākonga well beyond the school gates.

Year 9 students experience Drama in a “taster” rotation with the other arts. After this, they can choose a longer, stand-alone course of Drama and take part in cross-curricular collaborative projects. Year 10 students can take a half-year course of Drama, focusing on foundation skills, working with scripts and creating pieces for performance.

Senior students explore theatre creation, working with scripted text, features of theatre form, analysis of live theatre and participate in a class production. They build their understanding and application of complex performance skills, developing the capacity for meaningful and convincing portrayals in performance. We endeavour to view at least 2 pieces of live theatre per year. Year 13 students can consider sitting the Drama scholarship exam at the end of the year.


Dance is a university-approved subject and we are pleased to offer a full programme across all year levels.

Students are exposed to excellence in dance performance through trips to the theatre to see live performances, workshops and specialist guest tutors. In 2023 Year 12-13 students had the opportunity to attend an intensive Dance Camp in Auckland. They worked with some of the country’s leading choreographers and tutors in tertiary and professional industry settings. Providing high-quality, specialist and targeted experiences reinforces the values of our Kura and the viability of Dance as a subject. 

Students learn valuable life skills through dance including; communication, responsibility, awareness, critical thinking, collaboration, risk-taking, and critical awareness of social context. As an embodied language, dance has its own literacy where students process and demonstrate their thinking through movement, further exploring and developing their ideas through choreography. They also experience a wide range of dance genres, including hip-hop, contemporary dance and cultural dance. 

Past students have gone on to study dance as a career and are now performing and choreographing internationally.  

A Senior Dance Showcase is held annually, in which students perform their NCEA choreography and performances to friends and whānau. This is a wonderful opportunity to share the culmination of their hard work in preparation for exams.

Visual Arts

The emphasis of Visual Arts is on practical study and exploration of various fields, media and techniques. This includes drawing, painting, design, photography, printmaking and mixed media. The visual environment is used as a basis for students to develop perceptual awareness, creative imagination and personal style, build facility skills, and think creatively.


The emphasis of this course is a practical study of digital photography. It is suitable for students who have not previously taken art and is an exciting journey exploring various conventions within this field. The creative, expressive and technical skills developed will benefit future life and art choices.


Experience in painting will allow students to make informed choices about the visual art disciplines they may wish to continue with at a later stage. The creative, expressive, and technical skills developed will benefit future life and art choices.


The design journey explores various design conventions giving students personal skills to develop their ideas. The design outcome uses a digital process but can be inspired using conventional drawing processes. The creative, expressive, and technical skills developed will benefit future life and career opportunities.

More detailed information can be found in the The Arts section of SchoolPoint – our online interactive course selection tool.