Academic themes in the lower school serve as a backdrop for artistic endeavors

Projects not only build a strong set of interconnected creative skills but are also designed to tie into the rest of the curriculum in history, literature, and science. For example, in Fourth Grade, students design and build shields to reflect their study of Medieval times.

Visual Arts

Students work in a variety of media and technology to develop the skills and vocabulary to create and discuss art. As a student moves through the Lower School, more complex concepts and skills are added to develop a solid foundation in artistic expression.


Once a year, each class presents to the school an original theatrical play written expressly for them by DCD’s drama teacher. At each grade level, plays become more complicated, and students continue to expand their repertoire of theatrical skills. The audience writes fan mail to every child on stage.


Students learn basic musical concepts such as beat, rhythm, and form through songs, instrumentation, movement, whole-school assemblies and performances. Music classes incorporate independent singing through rounds, small-group instruction, and vocal ostinati.

Performance opportunities:
Grades 4/5 Chorus
Grades 4/5 Band
Lower School chamber ensembles
Private Music Program recitals


The woodshop experience in the Lower School progressively builds a widening set of skills and the satisfaction that comes from crafting long-term projects. Students take on more challenging work as they gain greater familiarity with an array of tools and techniques.

Meet Our Arts Faculty

List of 5 members.

  • Photo of Kevin Coakley

    Kevin Coakley 

    Dedham Country Day School
    Director of Arts, Middle School Athletics
    Lake Forest College - B.A.
  • Photo of H. Duane Claussen

    Mr. H. Duane "Duane" Claussen 

    Dedham Country Day School
    Music Teacher, Lower and Middle School Bands
    Wayne State College - BFAE
    Harvard University - M.Ed.
    Wayne State College - BFAE
    Harvard University - M.Ed.
  • Photo of Gerard Clifford

    Mr. Gerard "Gerry" Clifford 

    Woodworking Teacher
    Boston College - B.A.
  • Caroline Scheibe 

  • Photo of Elisa Sidoli

    Elisa Sidoli 

    Dedham Country Day School
    Drama Director, Middle School Arts Teacher, Director of Secondary School Counseling
    University of London - B.A.
    University of Wales - M.A.
    Harvard Graduate School of Education - M.Ed.
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