The aim of the St. Catherine-St. Lucy school curriculum is to provide quality education which will meet the needs of individual students. Each year the principal and faculty engage in evaluation of programs and materials in order to improve the quality of learning. It has been our custom to present one phase of the curriculum at the monthly School Board meetings as a means of information and education.
Early Learning Program (for 3 and 4 year old students)
The objectives of the Early Learning Program are designed to provide a school experience that contributes to a child's total development. Students are exposed to pre-reading and pre-math activities, art, music, literature, visual materials, readiness games and formation of religious values and understandings. The program encourages emotional, social, physical, and intellectual growth, helping the child to gain self-assurance and a good experience of learning. Early Childhood/Pre-school programs follow the regular school schedule and calendar.
Reading - Language Arts
All teachers use a Whole Language approach to reading and language arts. The skills of reading, writing, listening, and speaking are integrated into a holistic language arts program. The Silver Burdette and Ginn Literacy Program is used as the basal text in grades K-5. Prentice Hall Literature (2010ed.) Is used in grades 6-8. These are literature based and interdisciplinary programs which introduce students to good literature and relates literature to other subjects. The basal program also emphasizes basic reading skills such as comprehension, writing, listening, phonics, spelling and creative expression.
Students at all levels also read several novels each quarter and are taught to write book reports. In addition, students are taught library skills in our school library and encouraged to use the public library.
In addition to the basic reading program used throughout the school, the MCP PHONICS PROGRAM is used in Grades K-6 This program reinforces phonetic skills and enables students to receive more practice using these skills.
Ginn “Envisions” mathematics program (2011) is used in grades PS-5. This program emphasizes a "hands on" approach to mathematics. Children work with many manipulatives and gain a greater appreciation for numbers. This program stresses basic mathematical concepts and skills along with problem solving and math application. Additional texts are used for the instruction of the metric system which is correlated to both Math and Science. Algebra texts are also used in the Junior High. Other materials, such as computer programs, tapes, films, manipulatives, kits and games are used to supplement the texts and reinforce mathematical concepts. The Stock Market and principles of investing are taught in Grade 8.
The Pre-School - Kindergarten Science program is integrated into the Language Arts program. Emphasis is placed on observation and discovery. Grades 1-3 use the Addison Wesley Science Program. Grades 4-8 use the Ginn Science Program. Junior High students also have the experience of working with science experiments and lab animals.
The basic textbooks for our (Grade 1-6) Social Studies program emphasizes family, neighborhood, community, cities, country, and world. Basic skills in map reading, study skills, the understanding of people and the way they live, environment and the relationship of people with their environment, understanding of our past and how it affects the present and current events are some of the basic thrusts of our Social Studies Program. World history and current events are stressed at the Intermediate and Junior High levels. The text for Grades 7-8 emphasizes American history. Students in grade eight study and learn to appreciate the U.S. and Illinois State Constitution. The Constitution test is given to the eighth grade students before graduation. In addition, African American studies is studied in depth in 7th and 8th grade. A special text, The African American Experience is used in these grades. Concepts of Peace and Justice as well as “Child Lures” (a child safety program), are integrated into the entire Social Studies curriculum.
The religion program in the school is under the supervision of the pastor, principal, and religion coordinator. The Benzinger and Silver Burdett programs have been adopted for all grades because we found that they contain the basic doctrine and traditional as well as modern approaches to religion. The books that are used in the classes that are called "religion" are only a small part of the total religion program. We feel that religion is a way of life as well as a way of worship and a statement of what a person believes. Therefore, we expect parents to be closely involved in the religion program.
All students, Catholic and non-Catholic, participate in daily religion classes. In addition, monthly YOUNG CATHOLIC ASSEMBLIES take place during school time for Catholic students in order to help them develop a deeper understanding of their faith. Catholic students participate in several Masses planned during the school year. Some classes attended Mass once a week while others attend Mass at least once a month. All students participate in other Liturgical celebrations in Church planned by teachers and students.
You are encouraged to worship at church every Sunday, either at St. Catherine's or whatever church you are enrolled as a member. It is your example much more than your words that tell children that worshiping God is a value in your life. Masses at St. Catherine-St. Lucy Church are at the following times on Sundays: 8:30am and 10:30am. On Saturdays, Mass is at 5:00 pm. All students are encouraged to attend the monthly FAMILY LITURGY with their families. These liturgies are planned by both school and CCD students and teachers. The dates and times of these family liturgies are listed on your monthly calendars.
Computers & Technology
Technology is available in the classroom and the computer lab at St. Catherine-St. Lucy School. We believe that the Internet, Promethean technology (interactive white boards in each classroom) and the school’s LAN offer vast, diverse and unique resources to students and teachers for limited education purposes. The internet is an ‘electronic highway' connecting millions of computers and individuals all over the world. The goal in providing this access is to promote educational excellence by facilitating sharing, innovation and communication with the support and supervision of parents, teachers, and support staff.
Physical Education classes are required for each child in the school. Classes are held on a weekly basis. Students wear their gym attire (navy blue sweatsuit and gym shoes) to school on gym day. No child will be excused from classes unless the parent presents a doctor's excuse. Classes are based on the state requirements and the Archdiocesan Physical Education Program.
Art and music are integrated into other curriculum areas throughout the school. A music teacher prepares students weekly for liturgical celebrations. Special assemblies are also planned throughout the year to help develop the students' appreciation of music. An all school TALENT SHOW is scheduled each Spring. Dance classes are also available to students (after school) interested in learning modern and liturgical dance.
Terra Nova standardized tests are administered to students in Grades 3, 5, and 7. These are the standardized tests given to all students in the Archdiocese of Chicago. Parents will receive a thorough explanation of the test results from their child's homeroom teacher.