Spring 2023 Course Descriptions

Meet the Saints  WAIT LIST ONLY

Note: This class spans 2 class periods. You must register for both periods.

Dr. Jacob Pride & Mrs. Darci Byrnes
grades 2-4
Meet some of the great saints of the Church in this two-hour class taught by Dr. Pride and Mrs. Byrnes. Students will learn about the lives of the saints, be introduced to elementary theology, and complete hands-on art projects. 
Materials fee: $30

Frog and Toad & Friends Readers Theatre – WAIT LIST ONLY

Mrs. Elise Epstein
grades 2-4
This class is focused on experiencing the classic stories of Arnold Lobel. At every other class, we will be introduced to one of the author’s original stories. We will read the script together and try some simple expressive movements with the story. During the week, the actors will work on lines at home, then return to class the following Thursday ready to rehearse and perform the story. Please plan to work on lines at home with your child, especially when casted in a part with several lines. The performance video links will be sent to parents after class the weeks we record. 
Materials fee: $15

Geography & Games  WAIT LIST ONLY

Ms. Darci Byrnes
grades 2-5
Let’s travel around the world to learn about new places and the games kids play there! The first half of each class will explore a new country. Where is it on the map? What is unique about it? What is it like there? The second half of each class will include a game from that country. From Mancala to Ten-Ten, we will experience how kids around the world have fun!
Materials fee: $10

Elementary Physics  WAIT LIST ONLY

Ms. Darci Byrnes
grades 2-5
Each week, we’ll conduct a physics experiment to better understand God’s created world and HIs marvelous design. Students will keep a log book to record their observations. All experiments use basic household materials so that students can come home, replicate the experiment, and share with friends and family what they are learning. 
Materials fee: $10


Mrs. Claire Rojas
grades 4-7, grades 6-8, grades 8-12
Writing icons has a very long history in our Church, dating back centuries. Icons are particularly rich with symbolism in theology and thus serve as catechesis–the teaching and instruction of the True Faith. Students in this class will learn the history, methods, and techniques that go into writing an icon, as they work to write one themselves throughout the semester. 
Materials fee: $30

Inkling Adventures

Dr. Jacob Pride
grades 5-8
The two mid-twentieth century English novelists C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien wrote (among many other things) novels for children and both were devout Christians. The work of these two friends continues to find a home in every generation. As the American novelist Lloyd Alexander writes, “Like his fellow genius, Tolkien, C.S. Lewis has redefined the nature of fantasy, adding richness, beauty, and dimensions….In our times, every fantasy realm must be measured in comparison with Narnia.” For the fall, we studied the first two books of the Lewis’s Narnia chronicles: The Magician’s Nephew and The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. This spring, we are bounding into Tolkien’s classic book, The Hobbit (ISBN: 978-0-547-92822-7), which is a particular favorite of mine because it began my own literary adventures when I was in 5th grade. Like in the fall, we will continue to discuss the lives of Lewis and Tolkien in conjunction with their immanently Christian works. Join us as we continue our Inkling adventures!
Materials fee: None
Required texts: 
The Chronicles of Narnia by Clive Staples Lewis – ISBN: 0-06-623850-1
The Hobbit by John Ronald Reuel Tolkien ISBN: 978-0-547-92822-7

Martial Arts

Mr. Anthony Gallegos
grades 4-12
This is a beginner’s class designed for grades 4-12 who have little or no experience with a stand-up striking art. It will be rigorous. It will also be engaging and eye-opening by way of providing an excellent introduction to various aspects of a martial tradition. This idea of a “martial tradition” warrants a bit of discussion. It should never be forgotten that at its core the techniques introduced to the students are derived from combat sports and the battlefield. Students should come knowing that they are expected to conduct themselves with a certain amount of seriousness, and they will be expected to work hard, always mindful of the instructor and the safety of other students. At the end of this 12 hour course, we can consider the class a success if the student comes away with a good understanding of whether or not they might wish to pursue a program of martial arts study in the future.
Materials fee: None


Mrs. Monica Mayhak
grades 4-7 (minimum age 9 years old)
AmeriTowne is an award-winning educational program that teaches students about business, economics, and free enterprise in a fun and hands-on way. 
Materials fee: None
Required texts: None

Please note the following mandatory attendance dates and deadlines:
Feb 23 – Mayor speech videos due (instructions will be provided mid-February)
Mar 2 & 3 – Job interviews at CCE or via phone and online voting for Mayor and Towne Laws
Mar 9 – Meeting for Business Managers and Accountants at CCE
Mar 16 – Meeting for all AmeriTowne participants (snow date – Mar 30)
Apr 5 – TOWNE DAY! 

Angels & Demons: A Philosophy of God

Dr. Jacob Pride
grades 7-12
Drawing from such great doctors of the Church as St. Augustine and St. Thomas Aquinas as well as more contemporary authors, such as C.S. Lewis, Dr. Peter Kreeft, and Dr. Paul Thigpin, we will study and discuss the existence of God, the “Necessary Existent.” I am emphasizing angels and demons in the course because even our non-Christian society finds them fascinating, although their understanding of them is severely wanting. As Dr. Kreeft says in his book, Angels (and Demons), “[Angels] really exist. Not just in our minds, or our myths, or our symbols, or our culture. They are as real as your dog, or your sister, or electricity” (17). Understanding–or beginning to understand–these magnificent creatures of God help us to understand who God is. Like us, angels are only relatively infinite, whereas God alone is absolutely infinite, but knowledge about the angels can and should bring us to greater love and service of God. Per Sheed’s advice, we will make frequent reference to Sacred Scripture. We will also use the Catechism (Revised 2nd Edition, 1997) as a foundational text.
Materials fee: None
Required texts:
A Rulebook for Arguments, 5th edition, Anthony Weston – ISBN 
Angels and Demons, Ignatius Press, Peter Kreeft – ISBN 978-0898705508
Theology for Beginners, Frank Sheed – https://www.dynamiccatholic.com/theology-for-beginners/TBEG.html
Screwtape Letters, Dynamic Catholic – ISBN 0060652934

Speech Communication

Mrs. Elise Epstein
grades 8-12
The goal of this class is to assist students in building stronger communication skills in a safe, supportive class environment. Students will practice both listening and speaking in a variety of presentation styles. In fact, “speaking” will be the central focus of class time each Thursday. At-home preparation during the week for each assigned speech will be required, but assignments will start small and grow as the class grows in experience and skill. The schedule below includes the interesting variety of speech styles that will be covered, though the time spent on each section will likely vary.

  • Intrapersonal Communication
  • Visual Aids Speeches
  • Partner Speeches
  • Manuscript Speech
  • Storytelling
  • Acting and Dramatics
  • Memorized Speech
  • Extemporaneous Speech
  • Researched Speeches
  • Final Speech

Materials fee:

The Quest for Shakespeare

Dr. Jacob Pride
grades 8-12
The title of this course comes from Joseph Pearce’s book of the same name. I will use Pearce’s words to describe the course, since my own quest for Shakespeare reflects my former college teacher’s experience so closely: “It was only slowly that I came to realize that much more was known about Shakespeare than most of us have been led to believe. One fact followed upon another until a point was reached where I decided to embark upon some serious research myself. Doing so, I became convinced that Shakespeare was indeed a Catholic, at a time when Catholics were subject to a great deal of ruthless persecution, and that this fact has radical consequences with regard to the study of his works” (9). With this in mind, we will go on our own adventure, our own quest, for Shakespeare.
Materials fee: None
Required texts:
The Quest for Shakespeare, Joseph Pearce – ISBN 978-1586172244
Henry V, No Fear Shakespeare – ISBN 978-1411401037
Romeo and Juliet, Ignatius Press – ISBN 978-1586174392