Curriculum

The Academic program at the Academy is organized on a five day rotating schedule with eight academic periods.  All classes are forty minutes in length. Offerings are aligned with the Common Core Standards and infused with the Catholic Identity Initiative for each content area, either meeting or exceeding state minimum graduation requirements.

Classes at the Academy of the Holy Family are small, enabling students to receive individual attention. The standardized testing results of students from Academy of the Holy Family are higher than the national average in every category – math, critical reading and writing.

The courses are designed to delve into the depths of a student’s talent and creativity and to expose them to different media, art forms and artists’ styles. The curriculum includes, but is not limited to, art history and appreciation, drawing, painting, sculpture, found art, graphic design, set design, and jewelry. Non-juried art shows are part of each year’s experience, and students learn through museum visits and cultural events during the academic year. Student art work is exhibited throughout the campus, and cultural art displays remind us of the cultural and historical roots of our international students.

The purpose of the courses offered in the Business & Technology Department is to give students the ability to become proficient in using technology as a tool that will be required of them as they continue their high school and college education and enter the professional world. Our focus is on identifying the proper tool for the job (college application essays, flyer for a club activity, graph of data observed in a science experiment, etc.) and then learning how to use the software application to achieve the desired results. Through hands-on experience, students become familiar with design, writing computer programs, the digital world, and the changing face of technology.

Life Skills classes prepare students for family, work life, and careers by empowering individuals to manage the challenge of living and working in a diverse global society.   Hands-on projects and daily work are the major emphasis for grading. Topics include, among many others,  time management in school and in life, home décor, etiquette, job applications and interviews, auto care, financial skills (loans, credit cards, balancing checking accounts), health and safety,  and the secrets of a beautiful marriage.

Foods: Foods 1, Advanced Foods, International Foods

The foods courses offers the students a robust curriculum covering nutrition, consumer skills, kitchen appliances, meal planning, food preparation, cooking techniques, presentation, cultural foods, and arts such as specialty desserts and international cooking. Students prepare foods for various events throughout the academic year including the Fall Tea, Pro-Life Café and celebrations with faculty and families.

The English curriculum at the Academy of the Holy Family focuses on a sequential approach to learning through courses designed to build upon one another as students grow in their reading, writing, speaking, and critical thinking skills.

The required texts allow students to explore and analyze diverse literary materials in each course. In addition, the students encounter works from a variety of other sources–essays, stories, poems and songs–that augment the texts.

In English I, provides a survey of literature from Homer’s Odyssey to the Psalms. Creative writing and literary analysis encourage students to develop a writing voice.

In English II, students consider world literature through a study of genre. Writing skills are emphasized.

English III provides a study of American Literature, and British Literature concludes the program. Along the way, topics include women in literature, ethnic writing, creative poetry, and interdisciplinary collaborative writing assignments.

English Language Learning (formerly known as ESL) assists non-native speakers to develop the skills necessary for academic success in the United States and prepares them for careers in which fluency in English is necessary. The ELL Department believes in the effectiveness of acquiring these skills through immersion. Therefore, the students who are developing their English skills have the opportunity to interact with students and adults who are proficient in speaking the language at school, in the dorms, during weekend activities, and as guests in the day students’ homes.

The ELL classes provide individual and small group instructions for emergent and continuing English language learners by offering varying curriculum opportunities. The classes are small, and are tailored to meet each student’s specific needs.

The students learn to read, comprehend, speak, and write English at a rate that is both comfortable and challenging. Western culture, especially American, is central to the ELL experience, and students are intrigued as they learn to shop, order, and eat-out, navigate the dynamics of proper social etiquette and discover the complex history of Western life through field trips and entertainment.

Here we learn a modern world language in a cooperative rather than competitive setting; students encourage, support, and help one another. Every student during every class will practice conversation and reading aloud in the target language.

Standard grammar, culture, conversation, and literature are the focus for each grade level. The students study theory and vocabulary at home, then do a hands-on workshop in the classroom.  Gardner’s theory of Multiple Intelligence infuses the learning experience so that every student has the chance to succeed.

The goal of the Mathematics Department at The Academy of the Holy Family is to stimulate the intellect, cultivate reasoning ability, and prepare students for higher-level math courses in college. A variety of challenging courses are offered to prepare students for their future, including Pre-Algebra, College Prep (CP) or Honors Algebra I. C P and honors Algebra 2, CP Geometry and honors Geometry, CP and honors Pre-calculus, Advanced Algebra and Trigonometry, AP Calculus, Accounting 1, and Personal Finance. Each of these courses is designed to challenge the student to reach their own God-given potential.

Concert Choir

This ensemble, open to students in grades 9 through 12, meets four times a week. Vocal development is emphasized through ensemble singing and technical study. Choral works from the standard classical choral repertoire as well as from contemporary music and multicultural pieces are studied and performed. Students have the opportunity to perform solos and to work in small ensembles. The Chorus performs throughout the year at various events and presents major performances at Christmas and in the spring. The student also have the privilege of providing prayerful musical selections for school Masses and other prayer services throughout the year. Students who play musical instruments enhance all aspects of Academy life from prayer services to bonfires.

The purpose of this program is to increase the students’ knowledge of personal and community health. It stresses the importance of developing the students’ awareness of the benefits of making healthy daily life choices and the way these decisions affect their physical, mental, emotional, spiritual and social health. Health I and II are classroom courses, while physical education includes class and gymnasium aspects.

Students learn the history and development of psychology as a science over the last two hundred years, the workings of the human mind, developmental psychology, the human personality and the role emotions play in the human psyche, psychological disorders, case studies, theories and methods. Because this is a discipline that deals with the human person, it is in sync with Christian values and the Christian view of humankind.

Students who enroll in this course can expect a challenging vocabulary and the need to take comprehensive notes. All upper-class students are encouraged to take this course to understand themselves and their interaction with others.

Christian values are for every believer, irrespective of their religious affiliation. The philosophy of the Religion program at the Academy of the Holy Family is for our students to develop a basic knowledge of the Catholic Christian virtues. They will be encouraged to deepen their relationship with God through their prayer life and be guided to live as followers of Jesus Christ. They will be encouraged to be active members of their faith in order to positively impact the world. The courses include Overview of Catholicism, Sacred Scripture, Church History, and Theology of the Body (marriage preparation and morality).

In seeking truth and wisdom, we delve into the microscopic and expand our horizons to fill the universe while finding connections that hold everything together. Curiosity leads our students to find their own answers and frequently to a passion which becomes a part of their career.

The science curriculum offers the following courses: College prep and honors Biology, Conceptual Physics, CP and Honors Chemistry, CP and Honors Anatomy and Physiology, and  Earth Science.

Our lives are a series of continuous experiences spanning the years of our own existence. As one new event is experienced and reflected upon, we prepare ourselves for the next encounter. In order to take full advantage of our myriad experiences, we study the lives of others in the hopes that their trials and tribulations will help prepare us for our own future. To ensure the most effective study of humankind’s shared past, students will study contemporary and modern readings of situations, listen to speakers who have seen this history firsthand, experience through projects, activities, and skits what it was like to live in the past, and make the difficult decisions that can shape history. This is accomplished in the courses offered at the Academy: American History, Civics, World Cultures,  and World History.