LOWER SCHOOL (PreK 3 – 8th)
The Sacred Heart philosophy of education, which has successfully informed instruction in Sacred Heart schools all over the world since 1800, mandates that learning take place in a flexible, child-centered community, that it engage the total child in the process of growth and development, and that, on all levels, it be intellectually challenging. Learning is a developmental process of interrelated elements involving the senses, imagination, and curiosity.
The children and teachers form a community who come together daily to pray, share, learn, and grow. This community is under the direction of the Lower School Division Head and Dean of Students who prepares an environment in which each child comes to see herself as both a unique individual and a valued member of the community. The immediate concern for each child is her spiritual, academic and social development and well-being. It is a collaborative effort among the administration, the children, teachers, and parents to ensure positive, growth-producing experiences for all students.
Each student is respected for her unique abilities, qualities, and style of learning and is expected to be motivated by intrinsic rather than extrinsic factors. She is given the opportunity to assume responsibility for her own learning, and she is challenged academically and intellectually.
The interaction of students with teachers and peers facilitates learning, and students experience a variety of school and community environments in an atmosphere of mutual trust. Preparatory students thrive in a community that is flexible, people-centered, expansive, and satisfying to all involved.
Pre-Primary (PreK 3-Kindergarten)
The I and II Pre-Primary program provides a safe and nurturing environment that addresses the developmental needs of the total child. The spiritual, physical, social, emotional, and cognitive development of each child is promoted through a concrete, play oriented approach to early childhood education. The curriculum is designed around thematic units with materials and activities chosen for their relevance to the young child’s world.
In the III Pre-Primary children begin in earnest to be readers, writers, and mathematicians. They grow daily in these areas as they become active learners in the school community. The classroom environment, rich in materials to stimulate the child’s natural sense of wonder, encourages learning as a whole—integrated and meaningful. The Pre-Primary curriculum includes Language arts, mathematics, social studies, science, art, music, French and religion. These subjects are integrated through unifying themes that spark curiosity and engage the child in active exploration.
The Pre-Primary program also includes physical education where the concepts of body awareness, motor coordination, strength, and eye-hand coordination are introduced. Games introduce the values of fair play, group participation, and cooperative play.
In the Primary School, the hands-on curriculum and skilled, caring teachers enable each student to discover the joy of learning and problem-solving from the beginning of their school years. The Primary years provide a nurturing environment that supports each student as their potential unfolds in light of the Goals and Criteria for Sacred Heart Schools. Teachers work closely with individual students and with small groups to ensure differentiated learning throughout the curriculum. Primary students participate in special school celebrations that encourage faith, sharing, gratitude, respect and community spirit while educating to instill self-confidence and leadership.
Preparatory (5th -8th)
In the Preparatory Years, faculty members trained and experienced in working with this age group implement a program that meets the spiritual, academic, physical, social and emotional needs of students during these years of rapid growth and change. The challenging curriculum lays a firm foundation for upper school and beyond by helping students to strengthen their basic skills while thinking in an increasingly abstract manner and mastering more specialized content. Students grow personally through clubs, leadership opportunities, service opportunities and the peer support program. Students follow a schedule of departmentalized and interdisciplinary classes that are small and taught by teachers with specialization in the subject areas.