ACADEMICS 
ACCELERATED READER
The Accelerated Reader is a computerized reading management program. The children usually become a part of this program during their 2nd grade year. At the discretion of their teacher, and if the students are reading independently, they will be introduced to the program earlier. AR is an individualized reading program that allows each student to independently move at his or her own pace and level of reading ability.

The goal is to have our students read more and to select better books. As a result, children will become better readers and better students. Children choose a book from a list of carefully selected titles; after reading the book, the students takes a test  in the library or their classroom at a time designated by their teacher. The test measures reading comprehension. Points are awarded based on the point value of the book and the student’s score on the test. Students must practice reading in order to improve their reading ability. The Accelerated Reader program keeps track of each child's performance and generates a report of their reading growth..




BATTLE OF THE BOOKS
Battle of the Books is a program offered to students in grades 4-6  to promote reading. The program runs from October through March, one time per week during lunch and recess. The children read from  a pre-selected list of books and compete in teams answering questions relating to these books. Correct answers get points,  totals are tallied throughout the program, and the winning teams receive awards at the year's end. All participants receive medals  and a new book.
 
CHESS CLUB
Saint Mary's Chess Club is an exciting opportunity for our students  to learn chess in a fun and exciting environment.  CheckMates Chess Academy provides chess instruction for students in Kindergarten through 8th grade.  Saint Mary School offeres several levels of chess for beginners through advanced players.
 
FIRST LEGO LEAGUE
Saint Mary students in grades 4-6 can participate in the First Lego League program. This program introduces children to real-world engineering challenges through building robots to complete certain thematic tasks. In this program Saint Mary students design, build and program robots, apply real-world math and science concepts, research challenges facing today's scientists and hone critical thinking, teambuilding, and presentation skills.
 
 

MATH CLUB
The Math Club is open to students in 7th and 8th grades. Once a week they meet to tackle complicated math issues and prepare for various competitions. 
 
SPELLING AND GEOGRAPHY BEES
Students in 4th-8th grades participate in the school Spelling Bee.  The Bee begins in the classrooms with each class winner going to the school-wide Spelling Bee. The winner of the School Bee continues to the Lake County Regional Sectionals in Deerfield to compete against 29 of the best spellers in the county.
 
Saint Mary students in grades 4-8 participate in the National Geographic Bee. The Bee starts in the classrooms with students answering 7 rounds of questions varying in content, including questions about US Geography, georgaphy terms, continents and world cultures. Class winners then compete in a school-wide Geography Bee. The school winner takes a written test and up to 100 of the top scorers in the state become eligible to compete in the Illinois Geography Bee in April. The State Bee winner travels to Washington D.C., all expenses paid, to participate in the National Geography Bee Championship.
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Nicole Raftery,
Jul 8, 2011, 2:05 PM