ACADEMICS

ART


Years of research show that arts education is closely linked to almost everything that we want for our children: academic achievement, social and emotional development, civic engagement, and equitable opportunity. At St. Henry, art education includes understanding, contemplating, appreciating and enjoying the beauty of God in creation using color, design and materials. Education in the arts develops the capacity for creative expression and visual sensitivity through a variety of experiences, observations and performances in each child so that it can be integrated into their lives. The art curriculum includes learning to perceive, the language of art, knowledge of the artists and their art, the use of art tools and materials and building artistic abilities.

The art program is designed to be sequential, where children develop creative and artistic skills as they advance in grade level. They begin with the Elements and Principles of Design including the basic skill of line, shape, color, texture, balance, pattern, and form. They learn about composition and developing drawing skills. Learning experiences become more involved as children progress from each grade level, giving them the opportunity to expand their knowledge and skills in creative expression of their ideas. Children are encouraged to develop their ideas through careful thought and planning. Art projects allow for a broad range of expression of ideas to assure success. Effort is emphasized rather than results. Art is used to enhance all areas of the curriculum. They will design book covers for language arts, draw maps to integrate into social studies, and sculpt models for science concepts. The computer lab provides opportunities for students to explore technological media through the use of software and computer imaging. Enrichment activities include museum field trips, poster contests, Diocesan Art Contest participation, and an all school art display.

 
     

TECHNOLOGY


Computer Science education is more than just computer literacy. Computer science teaches students design, logical reasoning, and problem solving – all valuable well beyond the computer science classroom. At St. Henry, our computer science education taps into students’ interest in technology, helping them become technology innovators. Throughout the school, teachers build on these skills in their classrooms by allowing students to design technical solutions to problems in science, math, social studies, the arts, and literacy. This makes these courses more relevant for children, improving their engagement and achievement in these areas.

St. Henry is proud to be a Google Apps for Education School and an area leader in technology, as the school continues to evolve and progress in this digital age. Extensive teacher training, cloud based technology, and state-of-the-art hardware, like Smartboards, projectors, and document cameras, are present in every classroom. These allow the efficiencies of accessibility and advancement of educational goals, including academic achievement and college/career readiness in the 21st century.

The computer lab features 30 desktop computers and training starts there. Fully embracing responsible use of technology, students begin with completing the I-Safe Program that teaches Internet safety and protection from cyber-bullying. Once a week, K-8 students engage in a range of activities such as building websites, Skyping, programming, and keyboarding. Integrating interdisciplinary principles and teacher collaboration, students are able to enhance and extend learning.

Children in kindergarten through 3rd grades have access to shared Chromebooks and iPads as they gain exposure to technology basics each day. The entire student body has teacher monitored access to educational games and activities that make learning fun. St. Henry also uses research-based assessments like the monthly STAR test, to track progress and assist in optimal instruction.

Students in 4th-8th grades are excited each year to complete “Google Boot Camp” and then receive their personal Chromebook. They carry their Chromebooks from class to class and no longer have to compete for time in the computer lab. Cloud based technology has allowed the convenience of accessing planning calendars, documents, and communicating with teachers anytime, anywhere. Many facets of instruction such as collaboration, homework organization, assignment preparation, studying, and assessments help students gain 21st Century skills.


      

LANGUAGE ARTS


Language Arts presents literature, reading, writing and spelling and includes both listening and thinking skills. The language arts curriculum provides a variety of experiences to allow for individual differences and interests as well as to challenge each student to reach his or her potential and to develop the power to be a discriminating reader and viewer.

English language arts and reading classes are designed to provide a variety of written, literary and verbal experiences according to the Diocese of Covington English Language Arts Standards. The writing curriculum is vertically aligned using the 3.8 Method beginning in first grade with sentence structure and continuing to eighth grade with research and essay writing. Grammar and vocabulary programs supplement the writing process and are completed through an online program following 21st Century Learning initiatives and offering high student interest.

A new reading initiative affords students’ exposure to different genres and to build a culture of independent reading. Students are required to focus on set examples for each month ranging from classics, science, historical and non-fiction to poetry.

Oral communication skills are learned and practiced in all grade levels. Many instructional strategies are used including a sequential process of explanation, modeling, practice and presentation. To encourage critical thinking, dialogue, role-playing, interviews, and debates in all areas of the curricula to share, inform and persuade.

Response to Intervention has been established to address the learning gaps for students who fall below reading levels and to provide enrichment opportunities for those above. Monthly progress monitoring is completed with research based testing to evaluate student reading levels and provide targeted practice. Summer reading programs, in class activities, and online reading games are used to fill reading gaps and allow students to progress at their own level.



             

LIBRARY


All students visit the library weekly where they are exposed to literature appreciation, library etiquette, author studies, reference skills, genre introduction including fiction and non-fiction, and an understanding of the Dewey Decimal System. In kindergarten, the Orton-Gillingham approach is used to introduce and reinforce phonemic awareness and phonics, gradually building to sight words, fluency and comprehension strategies.

Our media center, in addition to providing in excess of 24,000 books at all grade levels, provides much technological support through computer assisted filing of literature and reference materials, video presentation and video recording of discussions. It also provides access to more than 2,500 computerized comprehension tests through the accelerated reader program.

    

MATHEMATICS


Mathematics at St. Henry identifies skills needed to be mathematically literate in a world that increasingly relies on calculators and computers to carry out computational procedures. The mathematics curriculum develops skills that the learner can use in problem solving approaches to investigate and understand the underlying mathematical features or content of a problem, develop a variety of problem solving strategies with emphasis on both multi-step and non-routine problems, formulate problems from the real world and mathematical situations, asking key questions the answers of which may provide useful information, verify and interpret results with respect to the original problem, generalize solutions and strategies to new problem situations, and help the student acquire confidence in using mathematics.

Our mathematics approach is both computation and concept driven using differentiated instruction and supplemental resources for all levels. Computation skills are integrated into daily instruction by classwork as well as online programs that track individual progress. Problem solving skills begin early using manipulatives. Later, critical thinking is emphasized via collaborative work and project based learning.

Student differentiation is facilitated using several vehicles. Tiered instruction and online resources such as XtraMath, ALEKS, and Khan Academy allow students to work at their own pace. St. Henry’s Response to Intervention program targets specific math skills and topics, offering remediation, reinforcement, and enrichment opportunities, thereby addressing all ability levels. Lastly, Advanced Math is offered for those eighth grade students ready for Algebra 1.

All 4th-8th graders have a Chromebook at school and have the option to access the textbook either in print or online. Additionally, interactive manipulatives, tutorials, games, and quizzes provide engaging ways for students to learn, practice, and study.

Whether it’s learning the basic facts, mathematical foundations, problem solving, or algebra skills, St. Henry students benefit from analytical emphasis, online tools, and most of all, differentiated instruction.
 

                     


MUSIC

Instrumental and vocal music fill the halls of St. Henry school. Whether it be the keyboard lab, percussion instruments, or recorders, students learn to read and play music. They can join a church or honor choir, participate in the music elective, or take instrument lessons after school. Children also gain exposure to music theory, composers, and diverse genres. The music teacher uses a specialized kinesthetic approach for maximum participation and enthusiasm.

                   

RELIGION


Rooted in the Catholic faith, St. Henry School cultivates the seeds of faith that continue to develop throughout our students’ kindergarten, elementary and junior high years. In every classroom, our faith is taught, learned, experienced and lived in our students, faculty and staff.

Preschool and Kindergarten students discover a love of learning about the world around them and most importantly, a love of the God who made them. Children in our elementary school receive a strong foundation in our Catholic faith. In every class, including Religion, St. Henry School students learn about God’s love and about the doctrine of the Catholic faith in developmentally appropriate lessons. Students attend Mass once per week and are involved in grade level service projects that teach children how to give of themselves as they are called to be Christ to one another. They are actively engaged in classroom and school-wide prayer services and special liturgies throughout the school year. In second grade, they learn and receive the sacraments of First Reconciliation and First Eucharist.

Junior high students at St. Henry are challenged spiritually as they grow into young men and young women. Children work together as they expand their knowledge of Church doctrine and history. Most importantly, they use group and self-reflection as they internalize their faith on a deeper level. They also celebrate Mass and plan prayer services throughout the year. Students collectively organize and support service projects that benefit agencies such as: The Ed Colina Foundation and St. Vincent de Paul. Sacramental preparation for Confirmation is accomplished in the classroom as parents work closely with our teachers in the preparation process.


Religion #1   Religion #2   Religion #3
Religion #4   Religion #5

SCIENCE


The goal of the science curriculum is to provide hands-on investigation and analysis of science questions by guiding students at their own pace. Students accomplish this using a newly renovated and fully equipped science lab, animal dissection, STEM activities, and LabQuest probes. Field trips include a zoo overnight, river exploration, a working farm, and a nature preserve. The KEEN engineering program is one of many programs brought into the school. Focus on the scientific method begins as early as kindergarten with a science fair held annually for all students. St. Henry is also home to various small animals, providing students with real life animal observation and student care opportunities.


           

 

SOCIAL STUDIES

St. Henry students learn social studies through the integration of sub-disciplines including history, geography, culture, and government. Scaffolding the previous grades’ instruction, programs include an online worktext that connects vocabulary, geography, primary sources, and content knowledge. The curriculum is vertically aligned to include all major historical periods and the study of local, state, and federal governments is woven into each grade level.

Working at their own pace, students engage in collaborative projects, debates, simulations, and research to enhance their understanding of the content. Critical thinking is an important objective, as students apply history to current events. Field trips to the state capitol and museums contribute to an even higher level of learning.


SPANISH

There are many new innovative tools in our foreign language classes to ensure our students’ highest standards of learning are met.  Along with Google tools, we also use the website Duo Lingo to not only learn Spanish, but also introduce ourselves to other languages such as French and Italian. The students learn conversational skills as we practice verbal techniques in articulation of common Spanish phrases.                

Students often use journals entries to track progress and reflect on personal growth. These journals are written both in English and Spanish. Each day, students are given a prompt that they must then translate and respond to using Google Translate and other 21st century tools. Students learn technical skills adhering to proper usage of verbs, nouns, adjectives and more in the Spanish language.                

There is much focus on Spanish conversational skills which also strengthen our everyday social skills. By learning about other languages and cultures around the world, we are learning more about who we are. This prepares the students not only for the high school classroom, but for college and beyond. 



         
   


PHYSICAL EDUCATION

Students in grades K-8 participate in physical education classes, clubs, and electives. St. Henry uses the SPARK curriculum, which is aligned with national physical fitness education standards. Students can join clubs like running and archery. Periodic electives are offered in martial arts, cross-fit training, golf, and lacrosse. Athletic Boosters provide programs including basketball, cheerleading, volleyball, and cross-country. All students participate in the much anticipated Olympic Day with team building activities.

St. Henry school has an ongoing working relationship with the local EMS, police, and fire departments who conduct first aid and other safety training. The Federal Lunch Program assists in educating students on healthy eating practices. The Veggie Man Program and traditional instruction are included in the curriculum.


Physical Education #1   Physical Education #2

THEATRE

With our new theatre program every student in our growing school gets to enjoy performing arts! At St. Henry we strive to be Connected, Confident, and Contributing. Our Theatre Program focuses on strengthening our students Confidence so that they’re ready to face the challenges of everyday life.     
           
In theatre class students learn how to project our voices and speak clearly to a crowd. They also learn how to become a character and put on a show. Students also learn about the culture of theatre and history of its use around the world throughout time.     
           
Theatre is meant not only to entertain, but also to enlighten. Children are learning every day in this classroom what it means to compromise and work as a team. Whether we are selling products in a television commercial ad or broadcasting the local news, each student has a vital part they play in our project- based learning lessons.         
       
Offering theatre classes at each grade level helps students better prepare for annual showcases such as The Christmas Pageant, 7th grade Passion Play, Talent Show, and even the 8th grade musical. Students develop their presentational skills as we practice weekly church scripture readings for Mass. From storytelling to playwriting, we integrate all subjects of learning into our projects. Students will greatly enhance their memorization skills through performing short plays and monologues. The younger students also have a great time putting on puppet shows! 


           
         

INSTRUCTIONAL METHODS AND INTERVENTION


At St. Henry School, a blend of instructional strategies including multi-sensory methods, differentiation, intervention, inquiry-based learning, cooperative learning, and opportunities for research promote both “traditional” and 21st century skills. As part of professional development, teachers provide weekly lesson plans including evidence of differentiation, formative assessments, higher level thinking questions, and other 21st century skills. When visiting classrooms, the principal looks for frequent use of these methods.

Teachers of various grades work with small groups of students using tiered instruction. Student assignments and assessments at these different tiers are tailored to the individual ability of the student. In a math class, for example, students might be individually moving around the room working on problems at various leveled stations where the difficulty and amount of problems vary.

Throughout the school the use of research based educational activities are used both online and through a hands on approach. The use of elementary math manipulatives and activities from the Florida Center for Reading Research are the forerunners of multi-sensory activities. Reading Eggs and Reading Eggspress are individualized phonics and comprehension based online programs that are used in grades K-5. Teachers also conference with junior high students weekly to help set personal goals for reading and transfer to the student the responsibilities of goal setting, record keeping, and self monitoring. Sharing, exhibiting, and evaluating one’s own work is also encouraged.

The Response to Intervention team and classroom teachers identify essential skills in phonics, reading comprehension, and mathematics. Formative common assessments are then administered, and students with identified gaps are placed into smaller strategic groups where they receive more direct and individualized instruction. On target students gain some reinforcement practice. At the same time, students who are identified at the mastery level for these skills are given opportunities for enrichment. Students who continue to struggle in certain areas of reading may continue to work individually or in small group sessions with the Title 1 reading instructor. Using the Orton-Gillingham method, these sessions offer even more direct and explicit instruction. Collaboration with teachers and the RtI team takes place at weekly data meetings where instructional planning is discussed. Results of universal screeners are used to monitor student progress and set individual learning goals. Alternative learning plans for students with special needs are also discussed and implemented.
 
 
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