How does St. Paul educate the whole child? We provide ample opportunity for a child to flourish in multiple disciplines.
Our robust co-curricular program, including fine arts, foreign language, music, physical education, and library, gives children an opportunity to expand their horizons and experience new things.
The faculty has designed classes that are purposeful, using their understanding of developmental stages to integrate new skills as each child grows.
The strong partnership between homeroom and co-curricular teachers further reinforces our belief that a child’s education extends beyond the foundational pieces of reading, writing, and arithmetic.
From the playing field to the studio, co-curricular classes enrich the St. Paul experience and foster creativity, independence, and a spirit of discovery.
From the first days of junior kindergarten through 6th grade, St. Paul’s library program is committed to helping students love and enjoy reading, as they use and understand the resources of the C.S. Lewis Library.
The lower school class time is devoted to developing an enjoyment of stories as students are exposed to different genres of literature during read-aloud stories. With assistance, students become more independent each year in selecting books from the library that ignite their interest in reading. As they are learning, we help them find grade-level books that foster curiosity and confidence.
Upper school students continue to develop library skills and become adept at finding books on the shelves independently. They begin to use the library's resources to research for classroom projects and assignments to become more familiar with the Dewey Decimal System. We strive to cultivate passionate and avid readers who have a complete understanding of the functions of the library. Reading is the key to unlocking imagination and unlimited success in so many future endeavors.
At St. Paul, students enjoy music classes once or twice weekly. Our primary goals are to develop and enrich the whole self, gain perspective on our world, and deepen each student’s relationship with God.
Students experience music through singing, playing instruments, moving, listening to music, and learning to read music. Students explore numerous genres of music including learning songs with scripture. Students learn the history and language of music while simultaneously applying their knowledge to the performance of music. New opportunities, challenges, and skills are introduced in different grade levels as children mature and develop readiness. Classroom activities, use of technology, and public performances help students gain confidence and competence throughout the year. Creativity in the learning process is always encouraged.
Sixth-grade students have the option of studying violin as an elective during their school day. These students meet four times throughout the week. Students learn techniques as well as further their notation and theory studies. String students perform at many of St. Paul's special occasions during the school year.
At St. Paul, we believe in the importance of daily physical activity because of the strong correlation between physical activity and increased brain development. Therefore, St. Paul students have physical education classes every day.
Physical education and athletics are about far more than learning to shoot a basketball or swing a baseball bat. Helping kids learn balance, coordination, agility, and overall body control benefit them physically, emotionally and socially. We want every child to be confident in his or her physical abilities and have a positive body self-image. Each one of them is in fact, “remarkably and wonderfully made!"
Our curriculum is focused on our students getting the most out of each class. Activities are changed daily to help ensure that the culture of the class stays fresh and exciting. While classes spend time on improving individual techniques and skills, the primary objective is for students to exert the most energy possible during a class period.
Instructors stress the importance of movement while also placing a heavy emphasis on teamwork, hard work, resiliency, sportsmanship, and leadership development. The PE staff challenges the students at a developmentally appropriate level to be the best that they can be and always give their best effort. Each student is different, and teachers do not compare students to one another but rather gauge individual progress and celebrate personal accomplishments.
At St. Paul, every student completes projects and classroom activities that explore basic art vocabulary, concepts, and skills. We strive to create an environment where students learn to appreciate art and creatively express themselves through art making.
In Miss Atema’s class, each child gains a basic understanding of the elements of art and principles of design. Students create artwork while learning about artists, art forms, and the process of creating art. Through this, each student discovers his or her creativity so that he or she can use that creativity in other areas of life.
In the younger grades, art is literature-based. Students explore books which lead to amazing projects. A note is sent home with each art project explaining the story and technique used to create the project. Through these projects, each student’s creativity is stimulated and cultivated.
As students explore other cultures in World Languages and Cultures class, they are guided in learning about the experiences of people around the world and recognizing similarities and differences with our own culture. Developing sensitivity and respect for all people, even when we don't necessarily agree with all of their beliefs and practices, enables students to show Christ's love to others in concrete ways.
In World Languages and Cultures, students study a variety of prominent world languages. Rather than learning discrete vocabulary words, they learn useful conversational phrases that enable them to greet, thank, and converse politely with people from around the world. Students also study non-verbal means of communication, learning the meanings behind gestures and social cues around the world.
Studying a variety of languages shows students how our globe is connected to the same root languages and deepens their understanding of how words work. Exposure to variety helps to prepare students to pursue a single foreign language in their next level school. As students progress through the WLC curriculum, they often develop an interest in a particular culture and language, giving them more purposeful direction when it comes time to choose a foreign language for deeper study.
Students' study of each language is complemented by a focus on the culture of a prominent country that speaks that language. Classes explore many aspects of culture—home life, school, entertainment, art, music, dance, food, transportation, clothing—with a focus on elements unique to the particular country. Students gain firsthand experience exploring the art, music, dance, food, and customs in each region. For example, creating Chinese calligraphy with ink and rice paper, or making block prints as we study Indian textiles.
As future leaders in our society, students need to be equipped to interact winsomely with people around the world, both within our borders and abroad. Cultivating respect and appreciation for differences in culture lays the groundwork for positive cross-cultural interactions.