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Sacred Heart Students Work Together in Education

Sacred Heart Students Work Together in Education

Sacred Heart juniors work on an activity in one of the science labs with visiting elementary  students.

Sacred Heart juniors work on an activity in one of the science labs with visiting Kindergarten Students.

Mrs. Deb Hammond, one of Sacred Heart’s Kindergarten teachers, and her students have enjoyed their classroom collaboration with the sixth graders this year.

At the beginning of the year each young Kindergartener is paired with a sixth grade student. As “Mass Buddies,” they sit together during weekly school Masses or sing together at Praise & Worship in the church. Hammond enjoys watching the bond form. “My heart smiles when I sit back and watch the relationship between the two grades—WOW!”

Sacred Heart 6th graders work with their kindergarten buddies on an activity. The 6th graders each created their own books centered on the creation story, & then worked through their lesson with their young friends.

Sacred Heart 6th graders work with their kindergarten buddies on an activity. The 6th graders each created their own books centered on the creation story, & then worked through their lesson with their young friends.

This year sixth graders have also worked with their Kindergarten buddies for other activities. Students in Ms. Dawn Ziegelman’s 6th grade class recently developed their own lesson plan centered on a book, and together they read the story and worked through the activity. Hammond says, “When we do these activities, my students are tickled pink! They love going upstairs for activities!”

The interaction between grades is not something solely reserved for Kindergarteners and 6th graders, however.

This year collaboration has also extended into the high school. Miss Sarina Bauer, a high school Environmental Science instructor, had her students create presentations, lessons and displays for the younger elementary students.
The 11th and 12th grade science students enjoyed sharing their class millipedes, roaches, and blue tongued skink with the bright eyed and excited elementary students. “Teaching here has been a lot of fun,” said Bauer. “What I’ve seen here at Sacred Heart and what I strive to do is build relationships with each student.”

By encouraging this kind of relationship, students are learning to present information in an understandable, entertaining, or engaging way.

Hammond taught many of the sixth grade students, and even many of our junior and senior students once upon a time when she was the preschool teacher. “The children have developed such a good connection with their buddies,” says Hammond, “and the older ones are such wonderful role models.”

The high school students have enjoyed their roles as mentors. “Working with the younger classes was really fun,” said Joe Johnson, a junior. “Teaching others really helped me understand what I had learned and it’s always fun interacting with the younger students.”

In the conversation among teachers, the plan is for the collaboration between the grades to continue. “I have seen the sixth graders blossom into confident, compassionate students,” says Hammond.

High School students plan today for their Future

High School students plan today for their Future

Students in last year's Career Development class talk with a visiting speaker about career options and job specifics. The semester long course will be offered again in the spring semester for juniors and seniors.

Students in last year’s Career Development class talk with a visiting speaker about career options and job specifics. The semester long course will be offered again in the spring semester for juniors and seniors.

Thinking about careers can be fun — but it is also important, particularly to students who are in their junior or senior year. Ultimately the goal at Sacred Heart School is to prepare students to be responsible and ready young adults who are socially aware, world-savvy, community-minded and equipped for life.

The Career Development course, taught by school counselor, Patrick Hart, is an elective designed to introduce junior and senior students to the world of career exploration and decision making. In this class, students explore their interests, skills, and needs to develop career goals. Students will gather information about careers and educational options in order to fulfill their career aspirations.

Their teacher, Patrick Hart, said that he was interested in teaching the class for a few reasons, “It is difficult to give ALL the class guidance required in high school. My thought process was that if I offered a semester course on Career Development, the students who wanted the course could take it as an elective.”

So far the students have been appreciative of the opportunity. Annika Thompson, a junior, is looking forward to taking the class next semester. “I know I want to be a paramedic and this class helps with careers.”

The course, now in its third year, has several objectives, which are individualized for each student: explore career options, identify self-values and personality type, identify interests and skills, gather information about colleges and grad schools, consider career decisions, select a major, and complete job searches.

With this in mind the students also complete sections on how to present yourself, writing a resume and cover letter, how to collect references, how to complete a job search and interview, and job advancement. A large area of focus within the course is on setting and reaching goals and how to develop a career network.

Once students have defined an area of interest, Hart helps connect them with individuals already working in that field. Hart has brought geologists, healthcare workers, designers, writers, police and others into his classroom as guest speakers.

Hart says that the course has a lot of flexibility. “Students should take the class to find out what they want to be, learn about what it takes to do that particular career, and learn if that career option is a good fit for them.“

Attitudes of Respect

Attitudes of Respect

Here at Sacred Heart School, we believe God is always with us…we are never truly alone.  It doesn’t matter what language we speak, whether we shout, sing or whisper, or even if we put our prayers or thoughts in code, He hears each message.”

- Jan Verdi, 6th Grade Teacher

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One of Sacred Heart’s 6th grade STAR teams present to the fourth grade classroom the principles of conflict resolution. The principles taught are then reinforced through skits, games and other activities. The 6th grade teams will present on a variety of topics to their peers in K-5th throughout the year.

Sacred Heart School has a long-standing tradition of operating as a community. As recent 2015 graduate, Megan Ogaard put it, “Family is perhaps the best possible description for what we have here at Sacred Heart.”

The tradition of family extends not just to the relationships that students develop at the school but also to the way they interact as a community. A lot of positivity can come from how the school is able to inject Christ-like attitudes into everything.

Sacred Heart has started some exciting things this year; All-school praise and worship, monthly senior breakfasts for student discussion and input, Olweus staff training and program implementation, the posting of anti-bullying rules which were written by SHS students, all-school announcements in grades K-12, and service recognition for seniors.

In the last few weeks, teachers have begun facilitating weekly class meetings as well as more all-school activities and class challenges which are meant to allow students to have fun and bond as a family.

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Mrs. Verdi’s 6th grade implemented the school message, “We Do Not Stand Alone” as part of their project on Morse Code.

“Our challenge is to all stand together because we do not stand alone,” said school counselor, Patrick Hart, when addressing students at a school assembly.

6th graders in Mrs. Verdi’s class have taken that theme into their studies. The students recently were completing an assignment on Morse Code. The students each created their “heart” in code, and then made a big banner for the door, which translates to “We are One Body.”

Their teacher, Mrs. Jan Verdi explained the purpose behind making the project more personable for her students. “Here at Sacred Heart, we believe God is always with us…we are never truly alone.  It doesn’t matter what language we speak, whether we shout, sing or whisper, or even if we put our prayers or thoughts in code, He hears each message.”

As a community students are also extending that bond beyond their walls to their peers at the other Grand Forks Catholic Schools. Combined, each K-5 class from Sacred Heart School, Holy Family-St. Mary’s School, and St. Michael’s School plan to complete group service projects. The Kindergarten recently completed their project, making scarves for the homeless.

Internally, our own sixth graders hold an important position at Sacred Heart as members of the STAR Team. As members of STAR, which stands for “Students Teaching Attitudes of Respect” 6th graders attend a training on conflict resolution offered by Peacemaker Resources and the Northwest Minnesota Foundation. All sixth graders are members of a STAR team, and they take what they learned back to their peers in Kindergarten through 5th grade.

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Kindergarteners get help as they create their tied scarves for the homeless shelter. The project was a collaboration with their peers at the Grand Forks Catholic Schools.

With so much continued focus on giving back and positive culture, the school is always excited at how they can continue to challenge students. The hope is that through continuing to provide and encourage a positive culture within the school students will feel a sense of belonging and a family atmosphere.

“Activities designed as a part of our plan focus on developing a sense of leadership, ownership, and pride in our school,” said School President, Carl Adolphson. “The focus is on following the values in the gospel about how we are to treat others with kindness, empathy, and compassion.”

New SHS course challenges students to explore Physiology & Anatomy

New SHS course challenges students to explore Physiology & Anatomy

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Miss Sarina Bauer’s Anatomy & Physiology course allows students to explore and further come to understand the normal structure and function of the body. Michele Remer, a senior trying to decide if a medical career is right for her has enjoyed being able to take the class during High School. “My sister loved her anatomy class in college, which made me want to try it now.”

Bauer says that students are very eager to learn the material, and complete experiments in the lab. The course has had a positive reception, particularly amongst students who are looking at college in the coming years.

However, not everyone in the course is medically or research motivated. “I know a lot of students are taking it out of pure interest, said Bauer.

Petrie, a Blue Tongue Skink, meets some of Ms. Bauer's Anatomy & Physiology students. Petrie may be around for a while as she will live to be 20 years old, but she won’t be alone — she joins the other class creatures, the Hissing Cockroaches.

Petrie, a Blue Tongue Skink, meets some of Ms. Bauer’s Anatomy & Physiology students. Petrie may be around for a while as she will live to be 20 years old, but she won’t be alone — she joins the other class creatures, the Hissing Cockroaches.

The class has many opportunities to not only learn about the anatomical structures, but to study the interrelationships within them.  Among the more interesting tasks are the dissections, which will include eyeballs, hearts, kidneys, brains, and fetal pigs. “I also expect to do many activities such as artificial blood type testing, artificial urinalysis experiment, and case studies,” said Bauer. “To understand human health, you must first understand how the body is formed, and how it functions.”

Bauer, who has her Master’s in Physiology and Histology from UND, taught at Northland Community and Technical College for a year. She says she really enjoys teaching at Sacred Heart School. “I like the sense of family this school gives its students and faculty. It’s a very personable school, and it’s nice to be at a school that cares so deeply about each and every student.”

 

 

Students Challenged to Serve here at Sacred Heart School

Students Challenged to Serve here at Sacred Heart School

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Students volunteered to clean Sacred Heart’s adopted stretch of highway in September.

At Sacred Heart School, students are encouraged to understand how service fits into a larger picture of the world.

This year the continued call for service was made more concrete and official, with a 100-hour service challenge to students in grades 9-12. In the fall, it was announced that seniors who have achieved 100+ hours of service by graduation will be recognized with a special white honor cord. This is done in conjunction with the school’s philosophy to foster students who become “citizens who are responsive to the needs of society.”

Last week high students gathered on a Saturday morning to help clean a stretch of highway the school has adopted. The students clean this adopted stretch along highway  each fall and spring — and don’t seem to mind doing the task.

In addition to the challenge to serve others, Sacred Heart is unique in the offering of a Christian Service Learning Class, which fosters the call as Christians to serve others.

Christian Service Learning explores the Christian foundations of service as found both in Scripture and in the Tradition of the Church. Their teacher, Roger Pieper, explains that, “students have been especially studying how all Christian service is a continuation of the mission of Christ to bring all of humanity into relationship with God, which is only possible by recognizing the dignity of each person.”

On Tuesday, the CSL students spent their first day at their service sites, the Women’s Pregnancy Center in Grand Forks, Altru YMCA, and assisting Fr. Bill Sherman.

Students volunteered to clean Sacred Heart’s adopted stretch of highway in September.

Students volunteered to clean Sacred Heart’s adopted stretch of highway in September.

The call to service does not start in just the high school. In the elementary, students are constantly encouraged to serve and are provided ample opportunities through events such as Rake-a-thon, Advent clothing, food, or toy drives, visiting the nursing homes, and various other volunteer opportunities during the year. During Rake-A-Thon, the younger students in Preschool-2nd grade pick up litter around the community, while older students in grades 3-12, faculty, and administration rake the lawns for over 30 homes in the greater Grand Forks community. This year’s Rake-A-Thon will be held October 23rd (weather permitting).

School President, Carl Adolphson, says, “we plan to continue volunteer opportunities such as ditch cleaning, Rake-a-thon, and food and clothing drives. By giving our students the opportunity to serve others we hope, upon adulthood, they will be compassionate, selfless, caring and giving individuals.”

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Former Viking & Super Bowl Champ Matt Birk inspires students at SHS

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birk2Sacred Heart’s first ever DAY-ONE speaker, Matt Birk, invigorated 5-12 students, parents, grandparents and parishioners about the coming year with a message about his faith journey. He spoke to students, saying that they don’t need to be stressed or worried about the day to day stressors of this world. “I don’t want you to make the same mistakes I made. Our identity is secured in our faith. We can be confident. We don’t have to worry at all about the future.” 

 

Matt Birk took a few moments after his presentation to speak with a few members of the PCW football team. birk3

Birk encouraged some of the football players, saying, “Participating in high school football let’s you experience something that not everybody does, and it’s not like anything you will ever get to experience again.  Sooner or later your football career will be over, so make sure that you enjoy every second of it.”

 

 

 

High School Baseball Teams Go to Bat for EGF Food Shelf

High School Baseball Teams Go to Bat for EGF Food Shelf

 High School Baseball Teams Go to Bat for EGF Food Shelf

 On Tuesday, April 21st the East Grand Forks Senior High Green Wave will face the Sacred Heart Eagles in a High School baseball game.  The intra-city game that afternoon will be hard fought on the field for local bragging rights and will also feature some friendly competition off of the field.

The East Grand Forks Home Run Club, a local supporter of youth baseball, has come up with an off-field challenge for both schools.  The HRC will collect donations for the East Grand Forks Food Shelf from players, parents and fans from each of the schools.  All those attending the games that bring a food item to be donated will place their item(s) in a Sacred Heart collection box or a Senior High collection box.  The school with the largest donation will be deemed the winner of the Food Shelf Challenge.

The Home Run Club will also add to the fun.  The HRC will make a monetary donation to the Food Shelf on behalf of both varsity baseball teams based upon the number of pounds of food collected by each school.  Another savory twist added to the late afternoon at the ballpark will be with the sale of the delicious grilled burgers at the concession stand.  The HRC will donate one dollar to the Food Shelf for every hamburger sold at the park that day.  Fans can enjoy great baseball and a great burger all while lending a helping hand to the local food shelf.

Both varsity and junior varsity games are scheduled for that afternoon with the varsity game at 4:30pm followed by the junior varsity game starting at approximately 6:30pm.  All games will be played at Stauss Park.

 

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Tim Gust ‘56, speaks to Career Development Class

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Sacred Heart School understands that students will eventually graduate and move out into the world. A unique offering at the school is a Career Development course offered in the fall semester to junior and senior students. The purpose of the course is to explore different career options, help students make a decision on a career direction, help them select a major in college, how to conduct a job search, find internships, set goals, and the importance of networking. The course is taught by Sacred Heart School’s guidance counselor, Patrick Hart.

Gust, the founder of the career and counseling program at Sacred Heart, poses with Patrick Hart, the current school counselor and instructor of the Career Development course.

Gust, the founder of the career and counseling program at Sacred Heart, poses with Patrick Hart, the current school counselor and instructor of the Career Development course.

On Tuesday, students heard from Tim Gust, a 1956 Sacred Heart alum, who has found success in the field of Neuropsychology. Gust, who currently lives in Los Angeles, CA, wanted to talk to students about his life and their career decisions.  Gust reminisced a little about his time at Sacred Heart relaying tales about a few of the sisters that used to teach here. “Here at Sacred Heart we are fortunate to have had good teachers. A good teacher really does make the difference. It’s what counts….That’s my thank you to Sacred Heart.”
Gust quickly changed the focus to careers. “Ultimately I want you all to have jobs. How many of you are working now?” Gust then pointed around the room as students responded with their various jobs.” He then asked students what careers they were considering. Students provided a variety of responses: law enforcement, acting, vocal performing, author, medical fields, and architecture.
Gust said, “you have to get into an environment or situation that rewards your particular interest. Without that there is a chance you won’t be successful.” Gust relayed his own personal story of academic success but a struggle in college to succeed. “Your looking at a guy who initially flunked out of college as an engineer.” Gust said he chose his career because of family history and not because of any particular interest. “Had I taken an interest survey or put more thought into my career initially it might have been different.”
Gust turned to the counseling center at UND who helped him with an assessment and ultimately he finished his degree and went onto complete several more. It was during his doctoral studies at UND that Gust started the first career and counseling program at Sacred Heart. “That was something I really enjoyed — and wished I had it as a senior.”
Gust, the founder of the career and counseling program at Sacred Heart, poses with Patrick Hart, the current school counselor and instructor of the Career Development course.[/caption]

Gust, although semi-retired, is still doing part time work for the city of Los Angeles where he helps the city screen possible law enforcement applicants. He mentioned to students the importance of thinking about their career now. “If you end up with a DUI now it will mess you up and hinder your application years down the road. You’ll be looked upon differently.”

When students asked him what the most important tool was for success in life he responded, “Know as much as you can about technology. To be able to use technology well in any field — music, health care, etc. — will advance your career options.”

Gust ended by encouraging students to really consider their future now. “I encourage you to make the most of your life.”

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Students engage during “Theosis”

Theosis_MarkSacred Heart students already have daily prayer time, but the new “Theosis” program launched in the school on Monday will offer high school students a special opportunity to hear from a rotation of guest speakers on a variety of topics pertaining to faith, family, and life.

Theology Instructor, TJ Beyer, kicked off the program by asking students “What is the goal of Christians??” Following a round of responses the final answer from students was “to get into Heaven.” Beyer followed up with an explanation of Theosis saying, “with Theosis we share in God’s glory and become part of God. Our prayer is that you dive deeper into that mystery to get into heaven.”

Beyer introduced the guest speaker, Mark Hollcraft, Director of Life Teen Ministries and Newman Center Outreach at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Crookston, MN. Hollcraft asked students, “what does it mean to be inspired? What inspires you?” Students supplied a variety of answers such as family, sports, and music. “Now of all those things you said, as a way of knowing, you are giving me what exactly? Opinions.” Hollcraft explained to students that sometimes we are put in a position in this world where an opinion may be used in place of fact. So our first way of knowing things is ‘opinion.’ What is the second way?” A student quickly chipped in, responding, “Facts.” Hollcraft affirmed the answer saying that through facts we can prove knowledge. “How do I know all this is true? I saw it. I experienced it. I heard it.”

“Here’s a tough one. How do you know you love someone? Love does not make sense without a third way of knowing.” Hollcraft asked students what was a third way knowing. Students responded, “Faith.”

The Miracle of Lanciano had been brought up in the event’s earlier Trivia Challenge. Hollcraft was quick to refer to this in his talk, reviewing the story with students. The miracle was a divine response to a priest who doubted about the Jesus’ Real Presence in the Eucharist. During Mass the host was changed into live flesh and the wine was changed into real Blood. Hollcraft asks students, “What is the truth of this story? The miracle is a confirmation of something Jesus said 2,000 years ago. This is my body and my blood.”

“Think about this for a moment. The God of all the Universe created all things and in the culmination of his creation we received the Eucharist. Anything that can inspire you cannot inspire unless inspired by the One who created you.”

Bringing his talk to a close, Hollcraft again threw a question out to the students asking them how many of them wanted to inspire others. After students raised their hand he responded, “To inspire others you first need to be ready to be inspired. To breathe out you must first breathe in the Holy Spirit.”

“You guys have this unique opportunity to be in a Catholic School. Our faith is a daily decision. What are you going to let inspire you? Things of your faith or things of mediocrity? Let it be the breath of God. His breath is new life.”