Because we believe that active learning leads to scientific literacy, hands-on science is the standard for St. John students.
Beginning in kindergarten lessons in life science, physical science, earth science, scientific reasoning, and technology lead students to the understanding and use of scientific concepts and principles.
Students in kindergarten through grade five participate in science lessons centered on units that include observing phenomena, experimenting with solutions and measurement, exploring nutrients and how they affect human health, modeling the structure and functions of the human body, and describing climate systems.
The Middle School Science curriculum focuses on key strands of the Washington State Essential Academic Learning Requirements:
- The study of systems in the natural world
- Scientific inquiry skills
- Application of scientific concepts in “real life”
- The study of the content domains of science (biology, earth science and physics)
Classroom instruction in the middle school is largely inquiry-based; students regularly carry out experiments, construct simple models that demonstrate natural phenomena, and participate in cooperative projects.
Environmental Education takes sixth grade students to outdoor education camp for a week to study, first-hand, primary interactions in Pacific Northwest forest ecosystems.
Exhibiting science projects at the school science fair is a highlight of the year. Students research, design and carry out experiments on a deeper level, and share their findings in a public forum.
When students leave St. John they should have a general understanding of important scientific principles, know how to design and carry out procedures to solve problems or answer questions, know the uses and limitations of scientific modes of thinking, and have a good idea of the huge influence of science and technology on their culture and their own lives.