Quarterly, our art teacher, Mr. Abbate, offers courses in art weekly after school to students in 4th Grade or higher. Each session is unique unto itself. Parent funded, students are allowed to explore their talents learning new skills that are adapted and applied in different forms of art. Children learn to draw, sketch, sculpt and paint with various mediums such as water color, soft clay, ceramics, chalk, charcoal, colored pencils, oil pastels and acrylic paint. Each session is fun filled with snacks and 1:1 instruction. Students and Mr. Abbate collaborate in curriculum such as learning how to make caricatures to incorporate into independently produced mini graphic novels.
Utilizing tubs of legos, plates and figurines, students have the opportunity to produce unique creations that are neatly arranged in our special display cases in the hallways of our school. The students engage with each other in a setting where their creativity can flow. The students also gain computational skills while learning engineering and coding principles in a fun way!
Using the outdoors as our classroom, your student will learn how plants grow, how animals adapt, and how to be environmentally conscious in today’s society. The students contribute to our holy garden that is home to many butterflies, vegetables and flowers. Students have the opportunity to care for classroom pets and collect samples of leaves and insects to observe, draw and classify. Sessions occur monthly during months of favorable weather. Parent volunteers are available for supervision and for the opportunity for parent and child bonding in what a better venue than nature.
Free Onsite Tutoring
We care about your student’s success in school. Your teacher is available after school for free 30 minute tutoring sessions. For those in extended care, students have the opportunity to contact their teachers after school with questions on homework as well.
Best Buddies Program
All students have the opportunity to have a best buddy. Each younger student from Preschool to 3rd grade is paired with another older student from the 4th through 8th grade. The buddies attend weekly mass, special events, library reading time and recess together. It is great to observe the special bond they form throughout the years. If you see your child waving at someone at a park, it is probably his or her buddy from school!
Community Service Projects
Throughout the year, the school provides opportunities for students to engage in the community through giving and service projects. From giving on Green for Jeans Day to donating articles of clothing for PADS, our students monthly keep those unfortunate close in their hearts and minds. Two Can Tuesdays assist in supplying our Parish’s food pantry with food, toiletries and other products. Our Service Saturday Program allows for families and staff to engage in community service projects of choice throughout the year wearing our spirit gear with pride. St. Thomas of Villanova Catholic School partners with leaders in the community to offer other opportunities of service hours for those undergoing the sacrament of Confirmation. Even our second graders, for the sacrament of First Communion, also contribute in raising funds to special worldly projects such as providing clean water to villages in third world countries.
Cultural Events & Educational Field Trips
With special donors and the grants, St. Thomas of Villanova Catholic School is grateful to provide an extensive cultural events program for our students. Students have the opportunity to engage in different events throughout the school year ranging from educational movies such as Born in China to The Nutcracker musical at the Marriott Theatre. Our junior high school students visit many museums such as the Museum of Natural History and attend the Lyric Opera. Our third graders learn the history of the pioneer days at Spring Valley Nature Center and Heritage Farm while fifth through eight grade students attend overnight trips to Camp Timber-lee, the Springfield Capitol and Abraham Lincoln Memorial Presidential Museum and Loredo Taft Outdoor Education Field Campus. And don’t forget, our preschoolers and kindergartners have their annual trip to Goebbert’s Pumpkin Farm.
Lunch Brunch Wednesdays
Led by our licensed social worker, students have the opportunity to have lunch together to discuss in a safe environment topics related to building friendships and age related social issues. Subjects include expected behaviors during play, social responsibility, leadership characteristics and appropriate conversations when communicating with peers either through social medial or face to face discussions.
As an active student advisory board, students as young has fourth grade have a voice and opportunities to contribute to the community in the school, parish and the Village of Palatine. The purpose of the student council is to allow the students to gain leadership skills by organizing and carrying out school activities and service projects. In addition to planning events that contribute to school spirit and community welfare, the student council is the voice of the student body. They help share student ideas, interests and concerns with the school wide community.
Scholastic Bowl is an academic club that competes in our conference against other school teams. Scholastic Bowl competitions involve students answering questions in a variety of areas related to STEM, literature, art, history, geography, government and mythology. Students research components of these areas and meet regularly for strategic planning and study sessions.
New to our school, the math team competes with other schools involving students solving mathematical equations related to basic math to algebra. Working as a team, the students are able to solve these problems in an allotted time. They use skills related to typical Common Core Math concepts while obtaining and utilizing other math concepts as well.
Our school supports the Scout Programs. Girl Scouts of the USA have troops in our area ranging from the Daisies and Brownies up to Girl Scouts who may utilize our school as a meeting place and resources to carryout community projects. The Scouts BSA also hold troop meetings especially for our young Cub Scouts. This allows for our school families of sisters and brothers to adventure together.