Holy Spirit provides many ways for students to know many of the adults in our school community. The adults in the building get to know students through Spirit Families in which students of different grade levels are placed into "family" groupings for All-School Masses and other activities; as they supervise morning recess, lunch and arrival and dismissal times. All of this is provides seamless transitions as students move from grade to grade.
Primary Grades (K-2)
We believe that every child is a unique gift from God. Our focus is to foster the spiritual, intellectual, emotional, and moral growth of each individual child.
We believe that the primary grades are a critical time for the acquisition of fundamental skills. During these years, teachers help acclimate students to the structure of the school day and lay the foundation upon which the remainder of their education and formation will rest.
These are the years when students study “the basics.” Students go from reciting the alphabet reading. They begin by counting fingers and toes and, by the end of their primary years, are adding and subtracting in their heads.
Primary teachers monitor closely the progress of every student, mindful that every student’s set of skills and abilities emerges in a unique way. The primary teachers’ daily instruction is designed to respect the pace and unique developmental needs of students at this level.
Intermediate Grades (3-5)
During the intermediate years, teachers help build on the foundation established during the primary years and increase the rigor of instruction. Students make the transition from learning to read to the process of reading to learn. This change often takes some getting used to for both students and parents. At this stage, students begin to take on more individual responsibility for their class and homework.
With a solid academic foundation in place, intermediate teachers embark on a new journey with students, one in which students begin to have definite preferences about the content they learn. While intermediate teachers continue to monitor the progress of every student, daily instruction is more rigorous, and a more extensive assessment process is utilized.
Teachers follow every child’s development throughout the intermediate grades and provide continuity and instruction designed to meet their unique needs. Helping the intermediate student develop organizational skills is one of the primary goals of the intermediate years.
As students enter the intermediate years, peer relationships take on more importance. Teachers assist students as they begin to navigate new and unfamiliar relationships.
Intermediate students also begin to develop leadership skills as they participate as school patrols and lectors at All-School Masses and begin to help coordinate social justice projects.
Middle School (6-8)
The middle school years are often equally fun and challenging for students. It is a time of increased independence, balanced with dependence. The learning process is well on its way, and the strengths and interests of each individual student clearly emerge. During these years, the rigor and demands of learning often compete with the demands of a student’s social and emotional development.
Middle school teachers encourage student self-direction in learning and guide students toward accepting increased responsibility for their own education. Each middle school teacher demands quality work in the content area he or she teaches.
During the middle school years, teachers also take on the role of advisor. As an advisor, teachers provide responsible adult guidance and support as middle school students undergo normal, yet often challenging, developmental changes that directly and indirectly affect learning.
Holy Spirit’s middle school is a departmentalized program in which teachers specialize in a particular area of study. Students have the same set of teachers for three years. Teachers provide continuity and instruction designed to meet every child’s unique needs.
Middle school students also have the opportunity to take on leadership responsibilities within the school community by planning school spirit events, coordinating social justice projects, leading our “Spirit Families,” and preparing for full initiation into the Catholic faith in the sacrament of Confirmation.