Previous Master Classes

Winter 2017:
Hip Hop with MA Dance Instructor Nicole Klaymoon.
Nicole led a class rooted in a reverence for each individual’s untamed and distinctive artistic expression and emphasized the cipher (free-style circle) to initiate the raw energy of house dance culture. The workshop began with high-energy house method technique class that includes foundational house footwork, improvisation, and innovative choreography that incorporates classic hip hop, waacking, and other social street dance traditions. 
When not at MA, Nicole is the Artistic Director and Founder of the street dance theater company, Embodiment Project. She has toured nationally and internationally with her company as a solo artist. She received a B.A. in Dance from UCLA and an M.F.A. in Performance Studies from the California Institute of Integral Studies.

Spring 2016
Multiculturalism, Identity and Diversity with Sanjai Moses, Bill Meyer and Nicole Stanton
At MA, we are deeply committed to multiculturalism, which is inextricably linked to a diversity of race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, thought, socio-economic circumstances, learning styles, and religious beliefs. Have you ever wondered how we put that commitment into practice in MA’s curriculum? Human Development Teacher and Dean of Multicultural Life Sanjai Moses, History Teacher and Department Chair Bill Meyer, and English Teacher Nicole Stanton, gave a presentation on how MA teachers introduce the ideas of multiculturalism and facilitate conversations about identity and culture. 

Winter 2016: 
Taiko Drumming with Galen Rogers
An axis of community, a path out of cultural depression, a tool to negate stereotypes of passivity: taiko is a dynamic and empowering drumming tradition with deep roots in Japan and a wide array of contemporary styes and meanings. In this hands-on master class, Galen Rogers introduced participants to the full-body technique of how to hit the drum in a way that is safe, efficient, and powerful. Participants explored a variety of rhythms, becoming more comfortable with syncopation, improvisation, and composition. This class focused on the experience of ensemble cohesion, on letting go of inhibitions, and joy! Galen Rogers began studying taiko when he was eight years old at the San Francisco Taiko Dojo, the first taiko school outside of Japan, and he performed for five years with the one of the premiere youth taiko ensembles in the world. He attended Oberlin College where he studied ethnomusicology and co-founded Oberlin College Taiko, and he is now the director of Jiten Daiko, an ensemble of post-collegiate taiko drummers based in San Francisco. When he's not playing, teaching, or thinking about, he is generally studying Balinese classical music with Gamelan Sekar Jaya, or practicing Gaga, Ohad Naharin's movement language. 

Fall 2015: 
Introduction to Mandarin Chinese with Yue Lin
Why is Mandarin Chinese called a tonal language? Why are basic Chinese characters described as pictographic? Want to learn how to exchange your contact information in Mandarin and how to interact with a waiter in a Chinese restaurant? Need some ideas for your next travel plan to China? This introduction to Mandarin Chinese allowed participants to discover a new language and a new culture. Yue Lin leads the Mandarin program at Marin Academy. Yue received B.A. degrees in Korean Language and Culture as well as Economics from Peking University, China; an M.A. in East Asian Linguistics and Pedagogy from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; and a Ph.D. in Comparative and International Education from Columbia University. 

Spring 2014:
The final Master Class of the year was with the wonderful and multi-talented Annie Elias, MA's Performing Arts Department Chair. In this theater workshop, participants explored the concept of "status," the power exchanges between humans that happen daily on a physical and mostly unconscious level. Based on Keith Johnstone's observations set down in his book Impro, the class explored the concept through a series of group exercises presented in a fun, non-threatening way! 

Winter 2014:
Every Breath We Take - A glimpse into AP Environmental Science with Liz Gottlieb & Ellie Beyers
According to the EPA, each one of us breathes about 3,000 gallons of air each day. During this MAster class Liz Gottlieb & Ellie Beyers explored air quality with the class. One of the main activities Liz and Ellie will facilitate with the participants is analyzing car exhaust.  Participants in this lesson analyzed levels of CO, CO2 and NOfrom different types of vehicles. Data was compared to data that MA students collected in class. Participants walked away breathing deeper and more easily knowing what impacts air quality and what indicators are in our immediate surroundings that act as benchmarks for clean or polluted air!

Fall 2013:
Trading in Lübeck: An Investigation Into the Economy of Late Medieval Europe
What is money? What determines value? What constitutes a fair trade? Indeed, what is the fundamental nature of commerce? World history teacher and library director Derek Anderson explored these issues and touched on the history of the Hanseatic League and the impossibly picturesque German city of Lübeck. Part lecture, part activity, part discussion, this class is one that Derek especially enjoys sharing with his seniors in world history.
Spring 2013:
Chemistry with John Hicks
Liquid, solid, gas? What do you know about the three phases of matter? One of the best parts about being a scientist is having the opportunity to create experiments to test your ideas. This hands-on MAster Class, taught by beloved chemistry teacher, John Hicks, gave parents a taste of how our sophomores create experiments to understand the properties of matter. Parents worked in teams, created a demonstration, and showed their new understanding.

Winter 2013:
History, Culture, and Identity: Making Meaning in a Universe of Text
How many visual images do you think you encounter in a single day? How many advertisements do you think you have seen over the course of the last twenty years? How many hours of TV have you watched in your lifetime? How many movies have you seen? For most of us, the answers to those questions involve some staggering numbers as we live in a world increasingly dominated by visual imagery. In this evening seminar with history teacher Bill Meyer, we pulled back the curtain and looked at the tools that the creators of visual imagery use to “make meaning”—and how the images they create can influence our sense of the world and even of ourselves. Parents looked at some terrific film clips and other images and had discussions that made them see things in a new way.