Our Curriculum

Educating the whole child  –  spiritual, academic, social and physical - builds a strong foundation for their lives, their school and their community.

SPIRITUAL EMPHASIS

  • Virtues and Christian values incorporated in all aspects of the school.
  • Day begins with Morning Prayer-special intentions, announcements, pledge of allegiance and songs.
  • Religion classes are the first lessons of each day (replaces CCD instruction at local parish).
  • Instruction in the Doctrine of Jesus Christ and the Catholic Church, including Marian devotions, Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, Rosary and Stations of the Cross.
  • The entire school attends the Sacred Liturgy of First Fridays and Holy Days of Obligation.
  • Classes take turns participating in the Mass as lectors, offertory, petitions and singing in the choir loft.
  • Classes visit the Parish Church for instructional purposes or for prayer.
  • Non-Catholic students are expected to accompany the class to Church, complete all religion class assignments, and regard Catholic practices and beliefs with respect.
  • Celebration of All Saints Day, Advent, Christmas, Catholic Schools Week, St. Valentine’s Day, Lent, Easter and Crowning of Mary.
  • Elementary grades learn about and share a unique religion project with the school:
    • Grade 1 – dress up and have a parade for All Saint’s Day on Nov.1st
    • Grade 2 – lead the Crowning of Mary procession in May
    • Grade 3 – become their favorite Saint in the spring “Saint’s Alive” program
    • Grade 4 – re-create the Journey of Mary and Joseph as they lead the Posada in December
    • Grade 5 – present the Living Stations of the Cross during Lent
  • Preparation and celebration of Sacraments of Reconciliation and Holy Communion (2nd Grade).
  • Reconciliation is offered several times per year to Grade 3 through Grade 8 students.
  • Christian volunteer service activities extend caring into the community.

  HIGH ACADEMIC STANDARDS

  • Core curriculum of Reading, Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies and Geography.
  • Weekly special instruction in Art, Music, Gym, Computer and Library.
  • Computer instruction includes software and internet use, learning to type, research and creative writing.
  • Spanish immersion program includes vocabulary, pronunciation, culture and traditions, and literature. Kindergarten – 4th Grade 2x/week, 5th Grade – 7th Grade 3x/week, 8th Grade daily instruction.
  • Full day Kindergarten and Preschool, with day Pre-K option.
  • Daily homework for all grades, with substantial homework (1.5 to 2 hrs.) in Grades 6-8.
  • Cursive writing taught in the second and third grade.
  • Modern Woodsmen Speech contest, Knights of Columbus and other essay contests, Spelling Bee.
  • Curriculum meets or exceeds all State of Connecticut regulations and guidelines.
  • Iowa Test of Basic Skills standardized test (Grades 2-8) show scores for students above grade level in the national percentile rank for all tested areas (math, reading, language arts, science, & social studies).
  • Iowa standardized tests are used for diagnostic purposes & consistently show individual student growth.

Middle School – specifics

  • Focus on time management, study skills & effective writing prepares students for high school & beyond.
  • Modern Science Lab where students perform hands-on experiments, work on creative projects and prepare lab reports to supplement the classroom learning.  In 6th grade, the focus is Physical Science, 7th grade is Earth Science, and 8th grade is Life Science, including squid and pig dissections.
  • 8th grade Math is Algebra or Pre-Algebra, depending on student aptitude.  Middle School students use the IXL self-directed math program on the computer for accelerated or review learning.
  • Teachers are available before or after school to offer extra help and conduct exam reviews.

    EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES

    Sports

    • Athletic Director coordinates all sports and club activities.
    • Interscholastic (grades 5-8) Soccer, Cross Country, Girls JV and Varsity Basketball and Boys JV and Varsity Basketball.
    • St. John School hosts a girls and boys Varsity Basketball tournament each year.
    • Intramural (grades 3-4) Developmental Soccer and Basketball.
    • Skiing/Snowboarding Club also offered.

    Arts & Culture

    • Instrumental lessons are offered once a week for students in grades 4-8 for an additional fee.
    • Cadet and Advanced Band meet before school or during recess and have two concerts yearly.
    • Drama Club with a school musical “The Nifty Fifties” planned for spring 2016.
    • Students experience cultural programs during school throughout the year and field trips.

    Other

    • Mindstorm Robotics FIRST Lego League program started in 2012, open to 5th-8th grade students.
    • Other clubs and activities including, Student Council, Math Counts, Journalism Club, Mission Club & Yoga.
    • Family and Social Events including, Golf Tournament, Pumpkin Auction, Fall Festival, Veteran’s Day program, Christmas Lessons & Carols, Auction Gala, Walk-a-Thon, and Family Picnic.

     
    OTHER SERVICES

    • Morning Care (7:00am-8:30am) and After Care Program (3:00-5:30pm) available for additional fee.
    • Notification System “Alert Now” provides direct information to parents regarding school closings, early dismissals or emergencies.

      Partnerships with Town of Old Saybrook Public Schools:
    • Follows the public school calendar and decisions regarding school cancellation, delay & early dismissal.
    • Free public school bus service for Old Saybrook residents.
    • School nurse on site each day.
    • Daily hot lunch/milk program.  Breakfast bundle snack program provides options for mid-morning.
    • Police School Resource Officer provides classroom programs for each grade level, including the DARE Program in 5th grade and advanced program for Middle School.