By Stacy Drector
In today’s tech savvy world, St. Mary’s students have the unique opportunity to learn in a state of the art STEM building. Using 3D printers, digital microscopes that allow students to capture images on their iPads and project based learning, teachers have the ability to “structure the curriculum to meet the needs of our students,” said Science and Engineering Department Head Diane Haas. Mike Jalbert, History Department Head, has students use research “to share what was learned and work cooperatively with their classmates” which is the foundation for a variety of projects such as Google slides, YouTube videos and Tik Tok.
In addition to iPads and technology, reading classics and contemporary literature is just as important. English Department Head, Larry Doherty’s motto is “Dinosaurs didn’t read and look what happened to them, don’t be a dinosaur.” Reading is encouraged, not just in the classroom, but also at home. Students in grades 6-12 read such classics as: Animal Farm, Catcher in the Rye, Macbeth, Lord of the Flies and To Kill a Mockingbird, along with contemporary novels such as: The Giver, Hatchet, The Kite Runner and The Things They Carried. It is important for students to read books written by diverse novelists, who focus on multicultural communities such as Salvage the Bones, A Long Walk to Water, Fences and The Other Wes Moore. Silent reading at home and school are a new addition to the curriculum and it is a big hit with students.
“We want our students to leave our campus and step onto any college campus and feel comfortable with the technology required at that level,” said Artie Gribbins, Assistant Principal for Integrated Technology. With a curriculum rich in technology and tradition, we are confident that every one of our students will be successful.