The Peacemaker Curriculum
For our children to learn, they first have to know the consequences of their actions and have to have positive reinforcements for their positive actions. One of the ways we address this is through a peacemaker curriculum which defines expectations, teaches problem solving skills, rewards positive behavior and outlines consequences for disrespectful and irresponsible behavior. Peacemaking is nurtured through the daily recitation of the “Peace Pledge” by the entire student body and staff: “We are Peacemakers. We are respectful in actions and words to God, self, others and all creation”.
Holistic Learning Program
Our Holistic Learning Program addresses the unique needs of today’s urban child and family choosing Sister Thea Bowman Catholic School. One of the components of the holistic learning program is Education Through Music and the Arts. Education through Music and the Arts (ETM) integrates art and music with language arts skills. It provides an innovative educational opportunity to empower urban children to break the cycle of generational poverty. ETM strengthens academics, enhances discipline, focus and creates an excitement for learning: a visual artist works with every student weekly; students in K-8 attend violin classes twice a week and participate in two modern dance residencies; students in Grades 6-8 participate in ballroom dance during the second semester; homeroom teachers also take these classes as a way to model life-long learning and to work in collaboration with the teaching artisans.
The peacemaker curriculum defines expectations, rewards positive behavior and outlines consequences for disrespectful and irresponsible behavior. Students participate in “Second Step”, a conflict management and resolution program teaching empathy, emotions management, impulse control, and problem solving. Students who successfully live these principles attend the monthly Peacemakers Activity, usually a cultural event, while those who have not been peacemakers attend a “Second Step” refresher lesson.
Extended Day Program
An optional Extended Day Program for all grades addresses the critical need for more time and assistance with academics and to offer wholesome and healthy after school opportunities (choir, computer, cooking e.g.).
Family University Program
As a way to address the needs of today’s student and their family, Sister Thea Bowman Catholic School has initiated home visits by the principal. School staff and parents/guardians have given input about the development of a “Family University Program”. In this program, classes are held for the adults of our school families as a way to offer support in parenting, learning new skills, and enjoying enrichment activities. Sessions of “Raising a Healthy and Responsible Child” have already been held, and have received positive feedback from those in attendance. The classes are taught by staff members and members from the community. As our work evolves, we see ourselves moving from educating the “whole child” to educating the “whole family” in our efforts toward breaking the cycle of poverty. Within this context our families recognize their need for support in parenting the next generation and knowing appropriate disciplinary approaches to raise responsible children.