The High School Prep Division of Holy Trinity: An Episcopal School, prepares middle school students for admission to the top High Schools, both public and private, in the Washington D.C./Baltimore area. As at The Daisy Lane School and the Primary School, the faculty at the High School Prep is committed to educating the whole child – academically, emotionally, spiritually, and physically. Our students thrive amidst academic rigor and grow in independence and self-esteem. Our curriculum is comprehensive and challenging.
The art program is a means of self-expression and imagination. The curriculum explores the basic essentials of art theory, techniques, and art history. The program incorporates the guidelines of the National Visual Arts Standards into interdisciplinary projects that challenge students, emphasizing the creative growth of each student as a whole person. Students begin with two-dimensional media and gradually move to three-dimensional work with a focus on art elements of texture, line, color, space, value, form, and shapes. Painting techniques and collage reinforces knowledge of textures and compositions, while simple printmaking techniques are introduced as well. Sculpture and clay work enable tactile skills in exploring the shaping of art and how it comes to life.
Nutrition, Adolescent Growth and Development along with safe and healthy lifestyles are emphasized in a well-rounded Health Education Program.
Students are encouraged continually to express themselves, literally and creatively, through written and verbal skills. They are taught the appropriate use of grammar, punctuation, grade-level vocabulary, and proper sentence and paragraph structure. Recalling details, analyzing plots, predicting outcomes, and interpreting themes are taught through the reading of stories, poems, biographies, and non-fiction selections. High School Prep students are expected to respond to literature aesthetically, creatively, and critically, through oral and written expression. They learn a variety of literary styles, utilize literary terminology, and develop logical and analytical thinking. Creative Writing, Literary techniques, Dream Poetry and Novel Selection and Study are part of the Literature Program on all grade levels.
High School Prep Library houses a collection of about 6,000 titles selected to support the school’s academic curriculum and to encourage the love of reading. Research and information literacy skills are taught through projects assigned in conjunction with the classroom curricula. This is a partnership with classroom teachers, preparing and presenting instruction in a structured environment, that directly aids students in effectively and efficiently completing projects. Students are taught to use print materials and online resources in order to satisfy their information needs, and how to properly cite their sources. While all students are allowed to check out library materials, specific borrowing policies vary depending on the age of the student. There are no overdue fines; however, replacement costs for lost or damaged books will be assessed. Final report cards and achievement test results are withheld until all books are returned and delinquent media fees are paid.
(students may access these sites through the student portal)
The mathematics program emphasizes the development of problem solving techniques, as well as the mastery of basic addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division facts. Singapore Math programs and techniques using math manipulatives are used in grades 5 and 6. Honors courses are offered in Pre-Algebra for 7th grade students and Algebra 1 for 8th grade students along with advanced Independent Study in select grade levels. The emphasis in mathematics is always on understanding basic concepts first before the progression to abstract thinking skills. Through our program, students gain a comfortable ease with basic mathematical skills and cultivate the confidence to apply those skills in high school and beyond the classroom.
Music Theory and Appreciation are part of a unique music program where all our students are required to play a musical instrument and be part of one of five different bands: Cadet Band, Concert Band, Symphonic Band, Wind Ensemble, and Jazz Band. There is an organic progression in music education as our students transition from grade 5 to grade 8. Our students learn characteristics of music (e.g., rhythm and dynamics), develop skills for performance (articulation), gain the ability to respond to sound and competence in reading and notating musical symbols.
Through exposure to varied musical genres, perspective of music’s role throughout history, and the relationship of music to the fine arts and other curriculum discipline, Holy Trinity students develop an appreciation of music as an essential aspect of history and culture. As they participate in improvisation exercises, students learn to organize musical ideas and sounds and develop an ability to critically evaluate musical performances and compositions. The music program at Holy Trinity far exceeds the guidelines set forth by the Maryland Department of Education.
Any student who experiences the full spectrum of the music program from preschool through eighth grade can expect to be prepared to choose music as a vocation or avocation. Due to the strong foundation of our music program, many of our students pursue music as part of their extra-curricular activity.
Points of Pride
Our Wind Ensemble, the top level band, is recognized for excellence when performing in national competitions such as the Dixie Classic. In 11 out of 12 years, our Wind Ensemble has received a SUPERIOR rating at the Dixie Classic. Often, the additional awards of outstanding soloist.
Concert Dress (Band Uniform)
All High School Prep students will wear the following for concerts and during all concert dress days: Long sleeve, plain white oxford shirt with button down collar, black uniform pants, black socks (or black or skin toned hose for girls), black dress shoes (shoes must be closed toe and non-athletic). Shirts and pants must be purchased from All-American Wear or Lands End.
All grade levels participate in overnight Outdoor Education experiences that include group dynamics, problem solving and environmental awareness. The outdoor education program provides unique opportunities for students to excel outside the traditional classroom setting. Camp locations include Camp Letts, Patuxent 4-H Center, Camp Sheridan, and Echo Hill. At each location, age-appropriate outdoor activities are conducted under the watchful eyes of professionals to help students cultivate environmental awareness, personal growth, and group interaction skills. Through these outdoor experiences, students learn to push personal limits, develop self-discipline and personal goal settings, and improve self-esteem.
Our fully equipped Reiber Arts and Athletics Center promotes physical fitness, healthy lifestyles and individual and team sports. Physical activity is also encouraged by recess periods in all High School Prep grades. The program is divided into units of work focused on seasonal sports and exercise. This includes instruction in the areas of physical fitness, knowledge, skills and sportsmanship, with special emphasis being placed on group participation and concepts that promote conflict resolution, honesty, and compromise. Through instruction, effort, and assessment, students participate in developmental lessons that flow from one class experience to the next
Weekly chapel services are conducted for all students in the division. Christian morals, principles and values are emphasized, along with community service in Sacred Studies classes. Through the Sacred Studies curriculum, students learn to appreciate the world and their place in society. They also learn how to establish caring and effective relationships with others, both inside and outside the school community. While all faculty assist with the development of each student’s character, there are lessons devoted to Sacred Studies instruction and discussion. Additionally, all students attend and participate in a weekly Chapel.
The science curriculum is designed with a hands-on approach in mind, actively involving students in the learning process. Through the use of inquiry-based activities, students participate in the scientific-thinking process. At grade-appropriate levels, they are educated in various units of biology, chemistry, physics, geology, and environmental science. Students are challenged to organize information and to communicate effectively. They are encouraged to think critically and become problem solvers. Students are motivated to learn the ways in which science affects aspects of the world, and how they, as individuals, can impact their environment. A yearly, student led Science Fair enhances instruction in Earth Science, Life Science and the Physical Sciences.
Ancient civilizations and world cultures and history are part of the High School Prep curriculum. Roots and forms of United States government studies are initiated in the fifth grade. In eighth grade, students sharpen their knowledge of citizenship and critical thinking skills through studies of the Declaration of Independence, Constitution, and Bill of Rights. Through literature, field trip experiences, and primary documents, our students learn to better understand the events in American History.
Culture and holidays, along with grammar and vocabulary are part of the Spanish Curriculum. Listening and vocabulary skills are the foundation of the intensive practice in reading and writing that is required in the 7th- and 8th-grade Spanish classes. Students in the High School Prep have access to individual tablets and Duolingo as an enrichment resource.
Our Technology program is an integrated part of our curriculum which supports our core academic values of critical thinking, collaboration, communication, resourcefulness and creativity. A full computer lab is available for class instruction in technology, as well as individual student and class use for curriculum area activities. Instruction in technology includes an introduction to coding, the use of Microsoft Office Suite, keyboarding skills and collaborative academic research with the use of the Google Drive apps. Through the use of laptops, tablets and interactive Bright Link projectors, teachers use technology resources to enhance their daily instruction.