“The capacity for leadership exists in everyone, but most people never take the time to develop it. Leadership is determination, courage, confidence and the ability to view a situation and respond to it.”
Sean Covey, Author, 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens
Research tells us that there are definitive leadership skill sets or competencies that can be taught and learned. Holy Family Academy takes a direct approach to leadership development beginning in the primary grades and extending throughout the middle school grades.
Our goal is to help each student:
- become a person of integrity, one of the most important and effective traits of a leader
- acquire a variety of academic and emotional problem-solving tools, including conflict resolution
- seek to understand and empathize with individuals within a group
- participate in a variety of teams to develop capacity and accomplish tasks. Team members are assessed by the teacher and each other, and given feedback on their participation as a team member.
- see his/her role as a leader within the broader church today and in the future.
Leadership training :
There are many ways in which HFCA brings opportunities to practice various forms of leadership:
- Servant leadership—With Jesus Christ as our model, students are encouraged to be the “hands and feet of Jesus” in the world and to serve others in need.
- Character development— The Academy incorporates the virtues into our curriculum to reinforce the nee for respect, trustworthiness, responsibility, fairness and citizenship.
- Social-emotional development–Balancing the social-emotional foundation with strong academics creates the emotional intelligence necessary to succeed in the 21st century
- Cross-grade interaction–Our school is divided into “neighborhoods” which include a cross-section of children from different grades who meet, work and worship together.
- Self-reflection and evaluation–Goal-setting and self-evaluation are integrated throughout the curriculum. Students are given realistic opportunities to practice what they learn and to make mistakes under the guidance of their teachers.
Our rapidly changing environment will put many demands and stresses on our young adults. Holy Family Academy is committed to training its students to be leaders at work, in peer situations, and in our Church.
Our school motto is “to develop leaders and thinkers grounded in faith.” Faith is integrated into everything we do at HFCA as we strive to educate the whole child’s academic, social, and spiritual development.
- Our distinctly Catholic environment provides the setting for service to others, spiritual growth, and moral decision-making.
- Many of our Inquiry-based learning units are linked to Catholic social teachings further integrating our faith to academics.
- Promoting social and emotional learning helps students manage emotions and increase empathy. These skills help resolve conflicts and reinforce the importance of making thoughtful decisions.
Holy Family Academy students learn the beautiful prayer of St. Teresa of Avila–“Christ has no body on earth, but ours.” We are all called to be the hands and feet of Jesus–at school, at home and in our world.
Much planning and research has gone into developing a “thinking curriculum” at Holy Family Academy. We hold high expectations for student achievement and success in key subject areas, and provide instruction that extends beyond the “basics”. Holy Family Academy embraces current “best practices” approaches to education that rely more on teaching students critical thinking and develop problem-solving, decision-making and research skills that enable them to become life-long learners.
Holy Family possesses the following attributes to encourage every child to be a thinker:
- Our learning environment is supportive and nurturing. Small class sizes, averaging 23 students per class and including a teaching assistant, personalize the learning experience for each student. Teachers respond to individual needs and support each student’s particular aptitudes
- Through Differentiated Instruction, all students are given assignments that are appropriate to their learning needs rather than just to the grade and subject being taught. When applicable, children are given opportunities to work above their grade level expectations. and talents.
- Holy Family Academy has used Inquiry Learning as a means of incorporating state standards into the core content areas of social studies and science. The Inquiry approach ensures that lessons are student-centered, relevant, hands-on, meaningful, and engaging. Not only are students learning content, but they learn content as it applies to real life situations. This ensures greater retention of learned concepts, and encourages students to go beyond the basics into a more enriched and expanded realm.
- Our students participate in AIMSweb benchmarking and progress monitoring. This web-based tool uses frequent student assessments to track each student’s progress, help set individualized goals and alert teachers to the need to make instructional changes.
- Inquiry integrates multiple disciplines in the same project. It reinforces to students that ‘real world’ problem solving involves the application of math, science, social studies, and language arts skills. See the results of our 3rd grade’s inquiry unit on the solar system. They actually created their own website! Go to http://hfcathirdgrade.tripod.com
- Technology is thoroughly integrated into the curriculum rather than being taught as a separate content area.
- Holy Family Academy has received over a $1.5 million grant to implement a first-in-the-world educational application using a virtual Web 2.0 platform. Through the work of Dr. Emily Alford, Holy Family students will focus on an inquiry-based learning unit that will increase the students’ understanding and use of 21st century communication technologies, including a Web 2.0 social networking platform, blog, wikis, emails and a Facebook-like component all through a secured intranet environment. Click here to learn more…
We believe that our students find their learning experiences challenging, engaging and motivating. We believe that our “thinking curriculum” will produce confident individuals who can communicate well and are good at learning new things and coping with change. These qualities will enable our students to continue the quest for knowledge throughout their lives.