Students at The Basilica School of Saint Mary are continuing their 2019-2020 school year through eLearning as they observe the directives put in place due to COVID-19.
Teachers actively engage with their classes by posting lessons and supporting videos and offering live video sessions to instruct and field questions. As with everything in our lives, mornings and afternoons begin and end with daily prayers posted for parents, students and our community. The school continues the tradition of celebrating birthdays and special intentions for our families. Please join our prayers by following us on Facebook or Instagram.
Each Tuesday, we highlight a teacher in our school. They have a message we think you might like to hear. These weekly pictures and messages are part of a social media campaign that shows on our Facebook and Instagram pages. You can view all of them there.
Meet our #teachertuesday of the week, Mr. Richard Woolfolk, middle school math teacher at The Basilica School of Saint Mary, and his chicken and work friend, Pauline, who stays at home.
Mr. Woolfolk "believes all students have the ability to succeed. It begins with a positive environment and relationship with the principal, teacher, and classmates." Mathematically, he provides students with ample opportunity to practice with an emphasis on automaticity through mechanical familiarity. He helps students to see mistakes and miscalculations and often presents them with errors purposely for them to analyze. The practice, similar to learning piano scales, is what Mr. Woolfolk has discovered to be the leading cause of success and understanding. "Once fluency is established through high-frequency problem solving, concepts are much more easily understood."
Mr. Woolfolk claims that the students at this school are exceptionally motivated and thirsting for knowledge with a clear focus on where they want to be in the years ahead. That energy has remained as we have transitioned from the classroom to the e-learning environment. He can’t imagine how challenging it must be for them right now, vying for computer time and access, waiting on questions to be answered by their teachers, and wondering how this will all affect them. Yet these students continue to complete and submit their work promptly.
Mr. Woolfolk's favorite aspect of the students at The Basilica School of Saint Mary is simply how friendly and courteous they can be. "I am bombarded every day with students well-wishing me on the day, the weekend, or something as special as my daughter being born. Moreover, I have never had students thank me for a class as these students do. It has persisted throughout the school year. I am just as grateful to them for making my experience so positive!"
Lent is our time of preparation. A 40-day journey of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving, Lent is a journey that spans Ash Wednesday through Holy Week, culminating in the great celebration of Easter. As Catholics, the spiritual pillars of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving guide us in daily reflection on our own lives as we strive to deepen our relationship with God and neighbor—no matter where in the world that neighbor may live.
The third pillar of this season of sacrifice is ALMSGIVING. Bishop Burbidge has asked that we support the CRS Rice Bowl, a Catholic Relief Services' Lenten faith-in-action program for families and faith communities. Through this program, our students will deepen their personal experience of Lent, and hear stories from our brothers and sisters in need worldwide. We devote our Lenten prayers, fasting, and gifts to transform the lives of the poor.
Our families support our classroom instruction by encouraging your sons and daughters to collect money for the poor in their rice bowls. Here is a link to resources that will help you at home with daily reflections and prayer as well as week-by-week stories about people around the world.
Congratulations to the following Basilica of Saint Mary teams for winning their division in the CYO Basketball tournaments and in regular season standings! Many thanks to all of our student players who participated this season and to the volunteer coaches and referees. Go Saints!
Division Sportsmanship Award: Winners are selected on recommendations from competing teams within each division.
4th Grade Boys – Coach McElwain
5th Grade Girls – Coach Cremer
5th Grade Boys – Coach Young
Regular Season Team Accomplishments
1st Place for their Division:
4th Grade Boys – Coach Loving (D1)
4th Grade Girls – Coach Safavian (D2)
5th Grade Girls – Coach Cremer (D4)
6th Grade Boys – Coach Pickard (D3)
6th Grade Girls – Coach Loving (D1)
8th Grade Girls – Coach Fore (D2)
8th Grade Girls – Coach McMahon (D4)
Runner-Up for their Division:
6th Grade Boys – Coach Fuqua (D4)
6th Grade Girls – Coach Caballero (D2)
Congratulations to Coach Caballero’s 6th Grade Girls and Coach Fore’s 8th Grade Girls teams for placing 2nd in their division tournament!
Congratulations to our Champions for the NVJCYO D4 8th Grade Boys, Coach Elsinger’s Team!
Congratulations to the overall Champion of the NVJCYO 6th Grade Girls Division 1 League, Coach Loving’s Team!
Each Tuesday, our school highlights a teacher who helps to form our students into Saints, Stewards, and Scholars. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram to see the complete lineup of our highlighted teachers.
"Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies". -1 Corinthians 6:19-20
While you are distancing yourself from others, Mrs. Amy Bruce, one of the PE teachers at The Basilica School of Saint Mary reminds us that God gave us one body which we need nourish and keep healthy. She understands how important it is for children to be physically active during their youth and that doing so will help them to create healthy habits that can continue throughout their lives. Now more than ever, getting outside and being physically active is not only vital for our physical health but more importantly, our mental health. Exercise is a great way to reduce stress and improve mood, especially during these trying times. Thank you, Mrs. Bruce, for helping our students and their families!
Per Diocesan policy, The Basilica School of Saint Mary will follow the closure of the local public school authority normally followed for weather closures. The school will close beginning on Tuesday, March 17.
We will be closed at least until Monday, April 13. As of today, we do not know for certain the Diocesan calendar dates for Easter Break. We will keep you informed as the information becomes available.
Additionally, all after school and extracurricular activities are canceled or postponed until further notice.
The Basilica School of Saint Mary has been working with the Alexandria City Health Department, The Virginia Department of Health, and the Diocese of Arlington during the past several days. Please know the safety and well being of our students is of paramount importance during this coronavirus situation.
At this time, we have no confirmed cases of the coronavirus in our school, and the Alexandria Health Department has not determined the community-spread of the coronavirus in the City of Alexandria. However, for an abundance of safety, the school will be undergoing a full deep cleaning this weekend, March 14 and 15.
Parents and guardians should check emails for more details.
Each Tuesday, we highlight a teacher at our school in our social media and the news. Our faculty is dedicated to providing our students with faith-filled quality education and we would like you to meet them. This week we feature our Art Teacher, Mrs. Beth Casey.
"Give children a variety of experiences to cultivate and nurture their creativity" is what Mrs. Beth Casey, the Art teacher at The Basilica School of Saint Mary, sets out to do each school day.
"If I can reach a child through their artistic ability, and make them feel successful, then I am successful." Mrs. Casey understands that teaching children ages 5 through 14 (grades K-8) is a privilege. She appreciates the broad spectrum of skills and medium she introduces to her students and accepts her mission to make learning art interesting and fun!
Tuesdays are a good day to check our social media and the news when we highlight a teacher at our school. Our faculty is dedicated to providing our students with faith-filled quality education and we would like you to meet them.
Meet Mrs. Mary Costello, 6th-grade math and science teacher at The Basilica School of Saint Mary! Currently, Mrs. Costello's students are deep into learning about energy sources, the differences among them, what "renewable" energy means and how these resources are made and used. She is a "powerhouse" among her students, energizing them to be eager learners, be curious and ask questions.
Mrs. Costello's Catholic faith radiates in her kindness towards her students, helping to provide a solid foundation for science and math, and problem-solving skills in daily school life.