America’s system of education was built for an economy and a society that no longer exists. In the manufacturing and agrarian economies that existed 50 years ago, it was enough to master the “Three Rs” (reading, writing, and arithmetic). In the modern “flat world,” the “Three Rs” simply aren’t enough. If today’s students want to compete in this global society, they must also be proficient communicators, creators, critical thinkers, and collaborators (the “Four Cs”). St Columban School recognizes that the needs of students have changed and embraces the call to equip the students for their future.
The school’s integrated technology revolutionizes the learning process. Teachers now guide and facilitate while students take the responsibility for their learning outcomes. Students benefit from a technology-infused education with a 1:1 iPad program in grades 3-8 and a cart of iPads and a cart of Chromebooks to be used with the lower grades. Thinkers like Tony Wagner, Sir Ken Robinson, and George Couros inspire St. Columban School to revise its Student Learning Expectations to include: being able to formulate good questions, being imaginative and adaptable, and being entrepreneurial.
The school’s Makerspace area allows students to get hands-on experience with engineering, robotics, and other creative project. All students in Transitional Kindergarten through eighth grade go weekly to makerspace and get first-hand experience with design thinking. Innovation in school and the workspace requires connecting and remixing content from all subjects, including the arts, to find new solutions. The space also includes a green screen and computers for creating videos and other digital projects.
Engineering design process is one of the school’s focal points. Students learn to be comfortable with the iterative process and to understand there is always room for a new, improved version and new ideas. It also means breaking down subject silos. In 7th and 8th grade students work through an intensive engineering design process that applies advanced math and science skills to a yearlong engineering class.
Alongside vibrant academics programming available at the school, students go through their day in an environment that allows them to build a relationship with God and model Christ-like behaviors. Students in preschool to second grade learn about the Catholic faith through the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd, a Montessori-based catechetical program. The school has two sacred spaces that have been prepared for children to have a hands-on experience for faith formation, rooted in the Bible, Liturgy of the Church, and the educational principles of Maria Montessori. Additionally, the school provides students with active social justice programs to help students live out Gospel values. For example, students care for the community garden and the vegetables grown at the garden become gifts to the local homeless community. St. Columban students and families also walked in Concern America’s Walk Out of Poverty, raising over $11,000 for those in need.
St. Columban School is accredited by the Western Catholic Educational Association (WCEA) and by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). The school has a strong history in the Garden Grove community and serves a multi-cultural student body. To learn more about admissions for fall 2019, please visit please visit www.saintcolumbanschool.com or call the school office at (714) 534-3947.