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Speech & Debate would be counted as either:

1. an extracurricular activity (which is GOOD, because colleges are looking for those, too)

2. OR, as part of an English credit (many state high school graduation requirements want 0.5 credit of rhetoric/speech/public speaking)

3. OR, if it really worthy of awarding a separate credit, then it would go under the Electives category.



Fine Arts are things like drawing, painting, music, photography, filmmaking, drama, sculpture, or digital arts such as graphic design, 3-D animation or other computer art software ...



For a student not interested in music or art, you could do woodworking, metal working, glassblowing, jewelry making, or other fine art/craft (check out your local community college or even Parks & Rec program for classes). Or learn some of the Digital Arts. Or, if the student totally doesn't want to "do" an actual fine arts, you could create a Fine Arts Appreciation course that could count for Fine Arts, with 1 semester for art and one for music -- for example: learning about/viewing art, read some art books, go over some art history, watch some Sister Wendy videos, go to art museums and a few lectures on art. Same thing for music, except go over composers, etc.


Or, what about dividing a Fine Arts Appreciation course into 4 quarters:

- art appreciation

- music appreciation

- theater appreciation

- film appreciation


Or, what about an actual "doing" of different fine arts in each of 4 quarters, to try out different things. Surely, a student can "suck it up" and do something they don't care for over 9 weeks -- who knows, your student may even discover a previously unknown interest! ;)



BEST of luck! Warmly, Lori D.

Edited by Lori D.
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I agree with the others. There are many fine arts, but Speech and Debate are not in that category.


I have a ds who needed a high school Fine Arts credit, but he hates all things Fine Arts. I made the suggestions other posters did, along with a few other ideas. He was not inclined to study any of them.


I suggest you check to see what the universities require for Fine Arts as college entrance requirements. Our state universities require 1 credit in one Fine Arts course. This means one credit in art or 1 credit in music, not .5 credit in art and .5 credit in music. The combo would meet the high school requirement, but not college entrance. So be informed before you make the decision on the course content. My ds needed 1 credit in the same fine art.


The solution for my ds was to have him take an Art History:Renaissance to Modern course at our cc. It was one semester long, which gave him the 1 credit he needed for high school as well as met his college Fine Arts requirement. He decided that he could endure one semester, but couldn't fathom a two semester course. It was the least objectionable option for him, and the bonus was that he accomplished is college requirement at the same time, which helped him to recognize that this was the best use of his time for a course he did not want to take at all.


My ds, the Fine Arts hating child, actually admitted that the art history course was interesting and he loved the instructor. He also discovered that because we had studied the historical time period with such depth, he was already basically familiar with about 2/3 of the artists and/or their works. He knew history, making learning about the artist easier because he knew the context already.


Anyway, this could be another option to consider.

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I have a ds who needed a high school Fine Arts credit, but he hates all things Fine Arts. I made the suggestions other posters did, along with a few other ideas.



Yes, original poster is not alone -- several years ago, when we had the time in our schedule to get that Fine Arts credit done, I made a list of about FIFTY ideas for fine arts. And I mean, I had a fantastic list with a VERY WIDE variety of ideas. BOTH DSs looked at it and said "meh" to ALL the ideas. Please. That is just lazy teen boy attitude. That's when I realized people who aren't willing to make the decision that needs to be made have just given *me* the right to do so -- and the impunity to make the choice without any more consultation with those whome the decision will affect. ;)


So, I decided on what made MY life easier -- and, similar to Photo Ninja, outsourcing was part of that solution. :D

Edited by Lori D.
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If the student prepared and performed one of the Interpretative events (humorous, open, duo, etc.) I would have no problem counting it as fine arts. These events are theatrical in nature. Otherwise, it would be a speech credit and part of an English credit.

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If Speech is not Fine Arts, what do you do for a student that has ZERO inclination toward art or music?


Wikipedia lists these under Fine Arts. Maybe something in there would look interesting to him:

1 Background - The word "fine" does not so much denote the quality of the artwork in question, but the purity of the discipline. This definition tends to exclude visual art forms that could be considered craftwork or applied art, such as textiles.


2 Two-dimensional work

2.1 Illustration

2.2 Painting and drawing

2.3 Comics

2.4 Mosaics

2.5 Printmaking and imaging

2.6 Fiber art

2.7 Calligraphy

2.8 Photography


3 Sculpture

4 Conceptual art

5 Dance

6 Theatre

7 Film

8 Architecture

9 Games - Wikipedia says this is debatable

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In Texas, public school students have to have a 1/2 credit in "speech." So, you could list this simply as "speech" credit. These classes tend to focus more on public speaking and business communications. I know of some private high schools that will count certain speech courses as a fine arts credit--especially if there is more drama/theater in the course material.


Depending on how the course is structured, you may be able to do credit for a particular topic which the debate portion is centered on. If there is a particular topic that will be thoroughly analyzed throughout the year, such as tax policy, you could do an economics credit.

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My son has fine art phobia, also. I told him that he absolutely HAD to take some sort of fine arts and he decided on a "3-D Art" class through a public school enrichment program.


He is absolutely LOVING it. He is so excited and has done some pretty amazing projects. I think he just needed the push into it and a fun, exciting teacher. This class allows him to make things with his hands, not just sit and draw. He would have detested that kind of class.


Ds is also taking a Speech and Debate class through the enrichment program. I just assumed that it will get an elective credit. Now I need to check and see if it will actually be eligible for an english credit. I was told that the school gives a whole credit for this class, but I just do not see how they can do that when they only meet once a week, even if there is quite a bit of research and speech writing during the week. It feels like more of a half credit to me.

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It says "Carnegie Subject = Arts : Includes any one Carnegie Unit of visual and performing arts course(s) meeting the requirements for high school graduation."


That's all I have to go on.


Okay, then I would say he'll have to produce some art and not study art history. Just seemed an odd requirement to me.

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It says "Carnegie Subject = Arts : Includes any one Carnegie Unit of visual and performing arts course(s) meeting the requirements for high school graduation."


That's all I have to go on.



A Carnegie Unit means 120 hours = 1 credit (or unit)

The Carnegie Unit was developed in 1906 as a measure of the amount of time a student has studied a subject. For example, a total of 120 hours in one subject -- meeting 4 or 5 times a week for 40 to 60 minutes, for 36 to 40 weeks each year -- earns the student one "unit" of high school credit.



As far as the visual and performing arts portion goes... Can you share what state you are in, which will allow us to do a search and help you figure out what exactly is permitted as a "visual and performing art" -- from what I am seeing, that is left up to the individual states to put into practice the vague National "No Child Left Behind" standards, and seems to include everything from:


- Visual Arts = traditional arts (drawing, painting, photography, filmmaking) to Digital arts; art history/artists/movements/appreciation

- Music = learn an instrument or sing; perform in band/orchestra/chorus or jazz, rock or other band; performance, singing, or even composing with Garage Band software

- Drama/Theater = backstage, scriptwriting, set painting; performance

- Dance = performance of ballroom, jazz, ballet, hip-hop/breakdance/other modern urban forms

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