Catalina Adventure 2019

Our 7th graders had the opportunity to take their learning beyond the four walls of the classroom and “dive” into God’s beautiful Creation as they explored Toyon Bay on Catalina Island at the Catalina Island Marine Institute (CIMI)! 

Through observation, inquiry, and hands-on experiences the students learned about fish, sharks, algae, oceanography, plankton, invertebrates, creatures of the deep, island flora, island geography, and they even completed a squid dissection! 

Beyond the labs, the students worked together and strengthened our community while snorkeling and kayaking. The 7th graders encouraged one another while hiking, and rock climbing. We even had a Talent Show- “St. John’s Got Talent!” 

Throughout the week we prayed and completed devotions. The students led a worship service Thursday night to praise God for the wonderful opportunities that we had throughout the week to enjoy, learn about, and appreciate His fascinating Creation!

Here is a link to a video created by one of our 7th graders with pictures and video that he took during the week. Here is a link to all of the Catalina Blog photos from the week!

Some 7th graders shared what they learned during the week and when they felt God’s presence:

I learned how to dissect a squid. I saw God when hiking in the mountains. -Bella

I learned at Catalina how to really work together to accomplish something. Night snorkel. I saw God during the rock wall, because love is always on top. -Evan G

I saw God in His creation of animals. I learned that it is very hard to put on a wetsuit. – Jackson

I learned that bioluminescence glows in the dark. I felt God’s presence in “long division.” – Cooper J.

I saw God give us peace and to work together for a great purpose and us working like a well oiled machine and I learned how to dissect a squid. -Jack

I learned the fundamentals of the ocean. I saw God through the bonfire, it made me feel watched. – Owen

By: Yvette Stuewe, 7th grade science teacher

Tide Pool Fun and Learning!

The 5th grade students and teachers wrapped up their school year by exploring the tide pools at Little Corona Beach.  Before going to explore the 5th graders studied what the tide pools are made of and the different types of animals that can be found in the tide pools.  After visiting the tide pools, the students had to use the information they learned from the field trip to create an animal that they thought would be perfectly adapted to live in the tide pools. The students also wrote a haiku to describe what they experienced on their trip and to summarize their learning.

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8th Grade History Comes Alive!

Highlights of our 8th graders trip to D.C., Gettysburg and New York.

Check out this awesome student-created video!!!

Eighth-graders got to expand the classroom walls and visit actual historical significant locations to our our nation’s’ history and government. We began our six-day trip by visiting Mount Vernon, home to George Washington. Then we got learn about the value of freedom touring Arlington National Cemetery and observe four of our own St. John students partake in the wreath laying ceremony. On day two we got to go to the Pentagon to visit the outside memorial and tour inside of the building. Our evening was filled with an awe-inspiring illuminated tour of the National Mall.

The interactive Bible museum was a favorite of our eighth-grade students. We got to walk through the stories of the Hebrew Bible and listen to the the story of how the followers of Jesus became a thriving community. Mid-week we traveled to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania to learn first-hand on how this three-day battle was the turning point of the Civil War. Next, we traveled to New York to see the Wicked Broadway Musical. Our morning tour boat allowed us to view the Statue of Liberty and experience what immigrants saw when they were arriving at Ellis Island. Meeting our walking tour guides in lower Manhattan allowed us to hear first hand how the Dutch first settled along the Hudson River in 1624. Our walking tour ended at the 9/11 Memorial Museum. On day six we were able to go to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Central Park and have lunch in Time Square and make it on time to the airport to return home Friday evening.

Angie Bender, Middle School Teacher

5th Grade at Riley’s Farm!

Last Thursday and Friday, our fifth graders were able to take part in a wonderful field trip to Riley’s Farm.  This field trip is an overnight adventure where the students are Revolutionary War soldiers.  The students get to reenact battles between the British and the colonists.  They eat rations like a colonial soldier would eat. (They also get the delicious Riley’s Farm feasts as well.)  They participate in training drills and writing with quill and ink.  They are able to actively see some of the things that the colonists may have encountered regarding the Stamp Act and other intolerable acts that took place under British rule. The fifth graders also enjoyed a rousing speech given by Patrick Henry.  The students were excited to participate in this unique hands-on learning experience.

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Learning about life in early Orange County

Stick a sock in it? Put it through the ringer? Ring up a friend?

Our third grade classes had the opportunity to take a field trip the Heritage Museum and Kellogg House in Santa Ana. Five generations ago, Hiram Kellogg was one of the first influential architects in our local area. He was one of the first to have electricity in his home and loved boats. He designed his house with many ship themes, including using a ship mast as the center
point of his house. The Kellogg house was passed down from generation to generation prior to being made into a museum for students to learn about our community’s past.

On this trip, students learned that life was very different back 100 or so years ago. Entertainment was playing a piano or organ, or listening to music on a phonograph. But phonographs wouldn’t stop on cue, so you would ‘stick a sock in it’ to mute the sound. Washing clothes was done by hand, and then ‘put through the ringer’ to squeeze out the water before hanging up to dry. Talking on the phone required a landline, and you would have to know the correct code/pattern to ‘ring up a friend.’ This trip was a fun experience for our students, as they got to discover our local history in a very tactile and hands-on way. The Heritage Museum and Kellogg House allowed these students the opportunity to through hands-on experience. Learning reinforced beyond the traditional classroom walls.

By: Jeff Courvoisier, 3rd Grade