Personalized Learning at Holy Family

Through personalized learning, Holy Family empowers students to take ownership of their learning to ensure engagement, growth and preparedness for the future.

Personalized Learning at Holy Family

Through personalized learning, Holy Family empowers students to take ownership of their learning to ensure engagement, growth and preparedness for the future.

Personalized Learning at Holy Family

Through personalized learning, Holy Family empowers students to take ownership of their learning to ensure engagement, growth and preparedness for the future.

As personalized learning emerges as a leading research-based educational model – and as part of our commitment to ensuring every Holy Family student leaves our schools with the knowledge and skills to be college, career and citizenship ready – Holy Family is proud to offer a personalized approach to education.

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What is Personalized Learning?

At Holy Family, our Personalized Learning approach recognizes that every student is a gift from God, and they come to us with unique backgrounds, individual needs, and interests. Our teachers and school leaders partner with your family and get to know your children to create a learning experience that will prepare them to become the best versions of themselves.

 

In every personalized learning classroom, students engage in hands-on, project-based learning to practice and develop Cognitive Skills that will set them apart in college, career and life.

 

Students achieve content mastery at their own pace and in their own learning style through small and large-group instruction, peer collaboration, and self-directed learning.

 

Through one-on-one mentoring, they build the key Habits of Success proven to support academic achievement and well-being, while learning how to set and achieve SMART goals.

 

Working with community partners, Holy Family students are empowered to employ their God-given gifts as they enhance their sense of purpose in the world by exploring their interests and serving the needs of our community.

 

The Benefits:

Personalized learning provides that every individual, upon reaching adulthood, will be equipped with the skills, knowledge, and habits to realize their God-given potential, through engagement, discernment, growth, and excellence in all they do.

 

The approach encourages students to take ownership of their work while digging deeper into their interests.  As students progress, educators learn about each student’s academic strengths and challenges. Program studies have shown that many students who have historically struggled are able to access the curriculum in new ways, while students who excel are finding opportunities to accelerate their progress even further.

Video 1: Personalized Learning Introduction:

Video 2: Personalized Learning Reflections:

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Personalized Learning Testimonials
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Here's what students, teachers and famililes are saying...

"Now, when I don't get the top score right away, I don't feel defeated. I just try harder."

"Before I came into the program, I had never failed before. I always got the top grade in everything. I almost couldn't believe it when I didn't get the top grade. I got nervous and wondered if this program was for me. Then, after trying several times, I realized that this would take more effort. Now, when I don't get the top score right away, I don't feel defeated. I just try harder."

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Tess

Class of 2022

"I am so impressed with my fifth grader's ability to take detailed notes at such a young age! It’s been so rewarding watching this skill evolve from the beginning of the year..."

"The personalized learning program has been a positive experience for us. I am so impressed with my fifth grader's ability to take detailed notes at such a young age! It’s been so rewarding watching this skill evolve from the beginning of the year. I feel his progress is tangible and accessible to us as parents. Chase takes pride and accountability that he’s not behind and is succeeding by utilizing the progress reporting section. The summit program has allowed him to gain confidence and take ownership of his own learning, which was not the case previously in the more traditional model. I like being able to go on the Summit program to monitor his achievements instead of having to wait for conferences to find out how he is doing. Change is never easy for kids or parents. I feel what my fifth grader is doing with the personalized learning program is setting him up for great success in high school and college."

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Anna

Mother

"I appreciated the ownership that students showed over their learning..."

“I really enjoyed my visit to Holy Family, and in particular, appreciated the ownership that students showed over their learning. They were able to articulate what they were doing; why they were doing it; areas that they felt were their strengths and areas they thought they had an opportunity to grow and improve. Their ability to share specific examples across both their approach – the habits they took in their work – and specific content was really impressive.”

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Dr. Ryan Wise

Director of the Iowa Department of Education

“Personalized learning allows you to learn at your pace and in the way that’s best for you..."

“Personalized learning allows you to learn at your pace and in the way that’s best for you. It’s really for anybody. Sometimes, I struggle in school, and personalized learning is awesome for me. Last year, if I didn’t understand a math concept, it might be, ‘we’re moving on. I can help you after class.’ Now, if I don’t understand something I get help from my teacher and extra time in class until I do understand it. Also, if I do understand something right away, I can possibly move on a lot faster instead of waiting for everyone else to understand.”

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Ellie

Class of 2022

Four Pillars for Success

Personalized learning at Holy Family is built on four pillars that together support the growth and well-rounded development of the whole child – Cognitive Skills, Content Knowledge, Habits of Success and Sense of Purpose (also referred to as "Faith in Action").

Click on each pillar below to learn more:

The Unique Elements of Personalized Learning

  • Project-based, authentic learning
  • A core focus on real-world skills and habits for success
  • Student-driven learning supporting a sense of ownership of individual success
  • Mastery/competency-based progression/pace
  • Community partnerships that foster students' sense of purpose
  • One-on-one mentoring
  • Regular practice in SMART goal setting

 

Through our personalized learning, students become aware of what they are learning, why they are learning it and how they learn best. They become self-directed learners and develop behaviors and mindsets necessary for success.

 

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The Teacher's Role:
Teachers have the necessary tools to identify their students' unique needs and customize instruction to meet students where they're at.  Daily classroom interaction may involve full-class lessons, small-group workshops or one-on-one instruction and support, depending on the needs of the students' that day.  By getting to know their students' needs more keenly, teachers can build stronger relationships with their students and support their growth better than ever before.  As one Wahlert Catholic High School teacher puts it, "I have been teaching  for 30 plus years and I have never known students this well!"

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The Student's Role:
Students are empowered to become self-directed learners — with the support of teachers and personal mentors, they set goals for their learning, reflect on their progress and build habits and mindsets to help them succeed in college, career and life.

1901_N.Hayden_Future Proof Mentor

The Mentor's Role
One-on-one mentorship fosters a sense of connectedness and trust among our students and the adults at their school. Every student is paired with a mentor who will act as their advocate both inside and outside of the classroom through the duration of their years at each school. Mentors can be teachers, counselors, or principals who meet one-on-one with their student mentees for at least ten minutes each week, throughout the school year. With the consistent support of a trusting adult, students are empowered to set and achieve both short- and long-term academic and personal goals. Mentors also serve as a trusted guide and partner for parents at their child's school.

Personalized Learning Q & A

As with anything new, there will always be questions, and we want to help answer yours!  Here are a few to start with. If you have other questions, please submit the form below. Thank you!

Still have questions about Personalized Learning?

Submit your question here and we'll be in touch! If we feel your question is one others might also have, we'll post it here on the website.

Personalized Learning FAQs

Personalized Learning Parent Information Meetings

This summer, we offered two system-wide presentations to help our community learn more about personalized learning at Holy Family. If you were unable to attend a session, you can watch a recording here. If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact us or submit your question in the form above.

Additional Information & Resources

Summit Learning Resources:

The Institute for Personalized Learning:

Third-party articles and resources:

  • Chalkbeat.com Lisa Epstein, principal of Richard H. Lee Elementary in Chicago describes why she supports personalized learning (pdf)
  • Edutopia.org 3 Myths of Personalized Learning (pdf)
Contact Us

Holy Family Catholic Schools
2005 Kane St., Dubuque IA 52001
(563) 582-5456
holy_family@holyfamilydbq.org