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god’s children in extraordinary variety

Points of Pride

We are proud of the work our teachers and students do throughout the school year. On this page, you will find just a few points of pride for STA from the 3rd Trimester of the 2019-20 school year.

Congratulations to the Class of 2020

Please join us in congratulating the STA Class of 2020! They have worked hard during their time at St. Thomas and we are very proud of their accomplishments. We wish them all the best at their future high schools over the next 4 years!

While our graduation celebration was not what we originally planned, we were still able to celebrate our graduates virtually by hosting a Zoom Graduation Celebration on Thursday, May 28th for the graduates and their families. We are hoping to have an in-person event over the summer if permitted.

STA’s Class of 2020
Matthew Cleggs – De La Salle Institute
Jaiden Flagg – Mount Carmel High School
Josiah Henderson – Mount Carmel High School
Landen Jennett – Holy Trinity High School
Jalen Johnson – Marist High School
Nita Kimble – Kenwood Academy
Brianna Kinsey – De La Salle Institute
Jaylyn Moore – De La Salle Institute
Milan Moore – Kenwood Academy
Gabrielle Nash – Mother McAuley Liberal Arts High School
Elijah Nix – Leo High School
Kayla Parker – De La Salle Institute
Faith Poppel-Agnew – Chicago Hope Academy
Jiovanni Rangel-Flores – St. Ignatius College Prep
Kiah Ritchie – De La Salle Institute
Kenyatta Rivers Jr. – Mount Carmel High School
Nevaeh Shaw – De La Salle Institute
Marai Singleton – Lindblom Math and Science Academy
Kendall Terrell – De La Salle Institute
Dion Trotter – Kenwood Academy
Micaela Turner – De La Salle Institute
Niya Ward – Walter H. Dyett School for the Arts
Logan Williams – Mount Carmel High School
Lazarus Wilson – De La Salle Institute

Check out the article recapping the Zoom ceremony published in the Hyde Park Herald.

Marlyn Peeples Award

Each year, we give the highest honor to the graduate who best exemplifies the St. Thomas the Apostle School values of courtesy and respect toward all. This award is being named after Mrs. Marlyn Peeples, long-time office manager at STA, and proud parent and grandparent. Marlyn embodied the virtues and root beliefs of STA. This award will be given in her memory each year. Congratulations to Lazarus Wilson on receiving the Marlyn Peeples Award!

Spotlight on 7th Grader, Darius Mason

During the school building closure, STA 7th grader, Darius, has not only been doing his e-learning, but he has also been working hard to help our community during the COVID-19 outbreak. He has been working diligently to sew masks for members of the Chicago Police Department, nurses at Christ Hospital in Oak Lawn, Riverside Hospital in Kankakee, the United States Post Office, the Cook County Juvenile Detention Center, and several high-risk friends and family members. In addition, he has been making healthy snacks for hospital workers! Darius stated, “I wanted to help them to be able to keep going so they can keep helping us.”

Darius has been recognized by local news outlets and even Chicago’s Mayor Lori Lightfoot on Facebook!

We are very proud of Darius and his good works for our community!

This South Side 7th Grader Has Sewn 400 Masks To Protect Essential Workers From Coronavirus – Block Club Chicago

Hyde Park Student Makes Healthy Snacks for Essential Workers – ABC 7 Eyewitness News

E-Learning at STA

Our e-learning program began on Monday, March 16 and lasted through the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. The goal of our e-learning program was to best replicate the learning experience that our students received in our building. While we recognize that there are certain components of in-person learning that cannot look the same on-line, we developed a robust e-learning program that ensured our students received the same learning outcomes. We are so proud of our students, teachers and families for all of their hard work during e-learning! Read about a few of the projects students completed below:

Middle School

This trimester, middle school participated in a shared reading of The Giver by Lois Lowry. Their essential question for the unit was, “How are words used to persuade?” They compared different elements of Jonas’s Utopian community to our own world and discussed the similarities and differences as well as the pros and cons of each. They used the text to produce a presentation in which the students designed their own Utopian communities. They were tasked to support their choices with evidence from the text and take on the role of a travel agent who is responsible for convincing their audience to move to their Utopia.

The middle school students have also taken their Socratic Seminars virtual! Each week, students responded to a question that was meant to deepen and extend their understanding of The Giver. After recording their videos, the students used sentence stems to respond to the videos of their classmates in order to have a collaborative discussion about the text!

In addition to reading The Giver 6th Grade read Esperanza Rising, and 7th and 8th read A Wrinkle in Time. The students also completed a unit on Good News both in the world during the COVID-19 Pandemic and the “Good News” of the Bible.

Pre-K 3

The Pre-K students completed a safari project during e-learning. The project started with the students visiting the San Diego Zoo virtually and using Lightbox as a resource to access e-books in order to learn about Giraffes. The students completed so many different activities throughout this unit including reading Giraffes Can’t Dance and making binoculars, hats and vests for their safari. The final part of the unit was making a safari diorama in which they made their very own safari and displayed all of the animals they learned about. The students had the opportunity to explain and show their models to their classmates when they were done. We are proud of all the hard work the Pre-K students put into this project!

3rd Grade Opinion Writing

The 3rd grade students have been learning to express their opinions during e-learning! They have been sure to add details to support their opinions. Most recently, they worked on sharing their opinion on what they believe is the best book. Check-out Graham’s and Jai’s opinions!

3rd Grade Opinion Writing Samples

2nd Grade

Both 2nd grade classes have been hard at work during e-learning!  In Social Studies, both classes were learning about different landmarks around the world.  Both classes worked on projects in which they learned about animals and world landmarks. It was wonderful to see students practice these important research skills. Mrs. Gough’s and Mrs. Malnar’s classes joined together once a week for group “lunch bunch” Zoom calls and students played games, went on virtual scavenger hunts and did some fun brain breaks. They had fun getting together, at least virtually, with each other!

STA Cares Week

In April, our students celebrated “STA Cares Week” as an opportunity for our school community to care for ourselves, families and community. Each day, students had the option of completing activities showing care.

  • Motivation Monday – Care for the sick: Students wrote motivational messages and cards for those who are sick.
  • Talk to God Tuesday – Care through prayer: Students participated in an all school prayer service and were encouraged to have a family prayer time at home.
  • Workout Wednesday – Care for your body: Students completed a workout from Coach Stan and were encouraged to make a healthy choice with their family, such as making a healthy recipe or going for a walk outside.
  • Thoughtful Thursday – Care for your mind: Students made “thank you” cards for all of our helpers: nurses, doctors, teachers, grocery store workers and more! They were also encouraged to meditate and have some quiet time.
  • Fun Friday – Care for your loved ones – Students were encouraged to have a virtual playdate, share “highs and lows” with their family members, play a board game or complete a puzzle.

Children’s Book Week

At the start of May, STA students and teachers celebrated Children’s Book Week! Each day had fun reading activities for students to do and various read alouds from STA teachers for students to enjoy. Some of the highlights of the week included:

  • Taking a favorite book outside to read
  • Reading in a safe, dark place with a flashlight
  • Building a fort with pillows and blankets to read in
  • Reading to a pet or stuffed animal
  • Planning a virtual reading “playdate”
  • Reading an informational text to learn more about a favorite topic
  • Making their own books

The grand finale of the week was dressing up like a favorite character from a favorite book!

Virtual Field Day

Thank you to the HSA for organizing a fun-filled Virtual Field Day for STA! The students and teachers enjoyed many fun activities throughout the day. Each classroom started the day with a roll call in which they came together to show their STA pride. Throughout the day, the students enjoyed a magic show from a magician, competed in a Tik Tok dance challenge, and celebrated with a dance party DJ’d by DJ Trois! The winner of the Tik Tok dance challenge was Ms. Hendzell’s 4th grade class! They will enjoy a virtual pizza party as their prize!

Coming Soon – STA’s Playground!

We are very excited that work will begin on the construction of STA’s new playground this summer! Our original start date of June 10, 2020 has been delayed to late July/early August due to delays with equipment manufacturing because of COVID-19. We are grateful for the community’s continued support and for the generosity of so many who made contributions to the fund for the playground. A rendering of the design is below. We will keep you posted on the progress and look forward to inviting you to see the finished product when it is safe to do so.


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