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Academics

Academics

Curriculum

St. Jude School is fully accredited with the Ohio Catholic School Accrediting Association. Our curriculum follows the Archdiocese of Cincinnati Graded Course of Study for each subject.

Students at St. Jude benefit from instruction that integrates core curriculum, faith, and 21st century application skills.

Academic Support

Using the Response to Intervention Model (RTI) we identify individual student needs. When specialized support is needed the following intervention team members are available at St. Jude: two full time intervention specialists, a speech and language pathologist and a school psychologist. To ensure the physical and emotional health of our students, we also provide a full time nurse and part time school counselor.

Kindergarten

St. Jude provides a hands-on, engaging Kindergarten program with a maximum class size of 20 students per class. St. Jude offers a morning session, an afternoon session, and an extended day session available to morning students.

Grades One-Three

Grades one to three make up our primary school. To build a solid learning foundation, primary students are divided into three homerooms with small class sizes. Literacy and numeracy skills are a significant focus in these grades.

Twice a week, students in the primary grades are sorted into flexible differentiated reading groups across each individual grade level to meet the needs of each student and help them grow to their fullest ability.

Our second graders take the next step on their full admittance into the Catholic Church as they make two sacraments. During Advent, these students receive their First Reconciliation and in the spring-time, they are welcomed to the Lord’s banquet when they receive the sacrament of the First Holy Communion.

Grades Four-Six

Our fourth through sixth grade classes make up our middle school. At this time, students start to change classes every day and rotate between teachers who specialize in two to three academic areas. Using the foundational skills attained in previous grades, students further extend their critical thinking while learning content appropriate for each grade level.

Beginning in sixth grade, students are placed in leveled math classes. This allows for each child to learn at a pace most advantageous to his or her ability. The levels each work at a similar pace for the first semester with different depths of skills development. Acceleration of the math curriculum begins second semester of sixth grade for the higher level.

Grades Seven-Eight

The seventh and eighth grade comprises our junior high at St. Jude. Students at these grade levels see all four junior high teachers daily. St. Jude junior high consistently prepares students for success in high school and beyond.

During their final year at St. Jude, our eighth graders participate in a STEM Fair and have the opportunity to perform in the West-Side speech contest. In late winter, our eighth graders receive the final sacrament of initiation into the Catholic Church when they are confirmed.

The leveled math classes continue in our junior high. Students in the typical track will complete the standard course of study in seventh grade and will complete pre-algebra as eighth graders to prep them for Algebra I in high school. The students in the accelerated track will complete pre-algebra in seventh grade and will complete freshman level Algebra I in the eighth grade. This course culminates with the state end-of-course exam in algebra and allows students to earn credits towards high school graduation.

Technology

In the regular education classroom, students in primary grades have access to iPads for use in individual and small group activities to reinforce, enrich, or remediate learning. In fourth grade, students begin work in the Google Cloud Drive. A great deal of the technology work done in the regular classroom from fourth to eighth grades uses this platform on Chromebook devices.

Additionally, first through sixth grade students have a Technology period as a special once per week. Junior high students have this class twice. During this period, students do their work on PC laptops and learn the Microsoft Office Suite, including Word, Powerpoint, Excel, and Publisher. This is in addition to learning responsible and effective internet skills.

Fine Arts

Art class is taken by all students in grades one through eight. In class, students discover and practice techniques to produce their own art work while learning how to appreciate (critique) and understand art’s historical and cultural influences. St. Jude also provides a variety of mediums which allows students to explore their creativity and talent.

An after school musical theater program is offered to grades three-eight. The program offers two productions a year, one in the winter and one in the spring. In the past, the program has produced musicals such as Annie, The Jungle Book, and Elf.

Music

Music is offered as a specialized class each week. The younger students, grades one-three, focus on basic music concepts such as rhythms, Orph instruments, solfeg and voice. In grades four-five the students grow in their musical knowledge. This is supplemented through the learning and consistent practice of the recorder. A continued incorporation of additional musical instruments provides the framework for a typical course progression in sixth, seventh, and eighth grades. In sixth grade the students are introduced to basic acoustic guitar skills. In seventh grade a class set of keyboards are incorporated into the curriculum. In eighth grade the students learn ‘rock band’ which includes electric guitar, bass guitar, keyboard and drums.

Physical Education

Our physical education program helps students develop physical skills, balance and confidence. The curriculum includes activities that encourage children to obtain and improve upon abilities, such as running, catching, throwing, and hand-eye coordination. These skills are applicable to sports such as volleyball, baseball, soccer, and basketball.

Library

The St. Jude library is a beautiful space stocked with books for students of all ages. Homerooms have a scheduled library class which allows students to explore a variety of texts and resources. The school librarian helps students thrive by guiding them to age appropriate books and research information through the many tools and resources available at St. Jude. During the school year, the library also hosts the popular Follet Book Fair.

Spanish Elective

A Spanish elective is offered for grades six, seven, and eight during the school day twice a week. A minimal fee is required for this course. Students who complete this three year program have excellent exposure to the methodology for learning a foreign language and are well prepared to be successful in High School Spanish.

Enrichment

A pull-out Enrichment class is available from the second semester of grade four through the end of eighth grade. Students are selected by the school based upon standardized test scores, classroom performance, and teacher recommendations. Enrichment classes focus on reasoning, problem solving, research, analysis, and critical thinking. Classroom activities will include a variety of topics in multiple subject areas.

Bulldog Block

On most Fridays in grades four to six, students participate in the “Bulldog Block.” The purpose of the Bulldog Block is to provide an extra 45-60 minutes of time for some students to either practice or preview skills and provide other students with the opportunity to extend their learning. Students are assigned to flexible groups for the “Bulldog Blocks” based on a combination of classroom performance, skill development, and teacher observation. On a rotating basis, half of the children at each grade level will be practicing skills from the last week and/or previewing some upcoming content. The other students will work on an activity to extend their thinking.