Day in the life
As a student at Catalina, you will have a different class schedule every day. Conversations with friends, meetings with teachers, Journey Days, team practices, and play rehearsals mean no two days are alike and something new is always around the corner.
Follow some of our students, both boarding and day, to learn a little more about what a typical day is like for a Catalina girl.
- Studio Art (7:55 a.m.)
- Peace & Justice (8:45 a.m.)
- School Assembly (9:35 a.m.)
- Free period (10:05 a.m.)
- French 3 (11:55 a.m.)
- AP English Literature (11:45 a.m.)
- Lunch (12:30-1:00 p.m.)
- AP US History (1:00 p.m.)
- Biology Lab (1:50 p.m.)
- After School
During this time I try to get as much homework done as possible. My favorite place to study when I have a tough workload is the library. However, since the opening of the Math and Science building, I have found the new space to be a stimulating place to study, so I occasionally go there for a nice study environment.
My last class of the day is Biology. Every Monday, our Biology class is devoted to a lab. At the beginning of class we might turn in homework, then receive directions for our lab. Labs are a fun opportunity for hands-on learning and allow me to gain a more comprehensive understanding of what we study in class.
- Advisory/Club Meetings (7:55 a.m.)
- AP US History (8:45 a.m.)
- Chapel (9:35 a.m.)
- AP English Literature (10:05 a.m.)
- Biology Honors Lab (10:55 a.m.)
- Free Period (12:35 p.m.)
- Philosophy (1:00 p.m.)
- Algebra 2 & Trig (1:50 p.m.)
Every Wednesday, we have this short period before school for either advisory or club meetings, depending on the week. On weeks when we don’t have advisory, we sign in with our advisors, and then attend any club meetings scheduled, which, for me, usually means yearbook. Having this period is new this year, and so far it’s been a great chance to get to have meetings that we might not otherwise have time for.
APUSH is one of my favorite classes this year. I love history in general, US history in particular is incredibly interesting to me because my family has a lot of connections to things we’re learning, so it’s fascinating to see how my personal history relates to class. Mr. Place, our teacher, is also extremely knowledgable, and willing to answer any and all questions. His sense of humor helps bring the events to life.
I’m a pretty voracious reader and have always enjoyed english, so between Dr. Kapolka’s singing and some pretty funny class discussions, this class is turning out to be one of my favorites. It’s not all fun and games though – Dr. Kapolka is making sure that we are all well prepared for the AP in May, using class discussion and essays to make sure we are ready.
Science is not my best subject, but I’m having a lot of fun with biology this year. Dr. Williams makes sure to include a variety of hands on experiences, such as sand crabbing at the beach, to make sure that we all get a chance to really see what we are learning about. That’s one of the best things about the school: the close proximity to the ocean gives us unique opportunities to see text book concepts come to life. This, coupled with the new building, means that we can take science to a whole new level.
Philosophy is taught by Dr. Murphy, who always has a modern take that makes even the most complex theory very interesting. We cover everything from Socrates to Freud, and most of what’s in between. This class is quite enthralling in that it pushes you to reconsider everything about life, from the pursuit of happiness to your relationship with the spiritual.
My favorite thing about math is that it’s (usually) pretty clear cut; the lack of ambiguity is pretty satisfying. This year, Ms. Duncan has been making sure everyone has the basic foundations of math straight while also working with us on PSAT and SAT prep. Math is an obviously important subject, and she makes sure everyone is confident in their skills.
- Intermediate Drama (7:55 a.m.)
- Spanish 2 (8:45 a.m.)
- Assembly (9:35 a.m.)
- World Religions (10:05 a.m.)
- Free period (10:55 a.m.)
- Algebra 2 & Trig (11:45 a.m.)
- Lunch (12:30 p.m.)
- English 2 Honors (1:00 p.m.)
- World History Since 1500 (1:50 p.m.)
In intermediate drama we learn the history of theatre and how to properly act on a stage. One of my favorite things our teacher, Mrs. Devlin teaches us is “the most important character to develop is your own”. She helps guide us to achieve that goal by inspiring us to develop key qualities. One of my favorite parts of drama is that we learn extremely valuable public speaking skills.
- Before Class
- Spanish 2 (7:55 a.m.)
- Free period (8:45 a.m.)
- Assembly (9:35 a.m.)
- Conceptual Physics Honors (10:05 a.m.)
- Scripture (10:55 a.m.)
- Geometry Honors (11:45 a.m.)
- lunch (12:30 p.m.)
- World History to 1500 (1:00p.m.)
- Chamber Choir (1:50 p.m.)
- After School
Right now we are learning different types of verb conjugations. I have taken spanish classes before but this is the first time I have done listening comprehension as well as speaking and writing evaluations. During class, if a majority of the class had a hard time with the homework, we answer questions that the book provides us with, and we write down example problems and notes.
This is my only free period of the week that takes place in the morning. It is one of my favorite times of day to have a free, because I can do homework or review for tests later on that day. Usually, I stay in Study Hall but we can study in the Library, outside, or in the new math and science center, as well.
Generally, science is one of my favorite subjects. I love learning about how things work and what they are made of. In Conceptual Physics Honors, we observe creative demonstrations, work on labs, and study with partners. It is really nice that we receive the opportunity to understand the basics of physics before taking a regular physics class.
- Free Period (7:55 a.m.)
- AP Studio Art (8:45 a.m.)
- Assembly (9:35 a.m.)
- Senior Journey (10:05 a.m.)
- AP Biology (10:55 a.m.)
- AP English Language (11:45 a.m.)
- Lunch (12:30 p.m.)
- AP French Language (1:00 p.m.)
- Free Period (1:50 p.m.)
- After school
AP Studio Art is the highest level art class at Santa Catalina: the class environment is meant to emulate that of a college course or even a private studio. We drift between the Apple desktop computers and 3-D printer in the digital media lab and the pastels, paints, pottery wheels, and printing presses in the art room to create pieces that will contribute to the portfolios that will be graded by the College Board at the end of second semester. It's a great way to start the day, especially after a long week!
When I get to study hall, I chat with friends and organize my books for the day. Soon, I hear our Student Body President say "please stand for the pledge," and then "student announcements, come on up." During announcements, I am reminded that the French Club is meeting at lunch today, learn that the Mock Trail team took ﬁrst place on Sunday, and fondly look back on freshman year physics when Mr. Tuttle announces that his class will begin building their "egg shoes" today. Then today's lunch is announced, and I get ready for third period.
Journey and AP English Language are my favorite parts of my Friday schedule. As seniors, we discuss and work on college applications in Journey during ﬁrst semester, and learn about and prepare for college life, Catalina end of the year festivities, and senior privileges during second semester. Journey class is a great change of pace at the end of the week and a sanctioned time to reﬂect on my Catalina career and plan for the future.
Though challenging, the material we cover in AP Biology is engaging, and our teacher Dr. Williams frequently relates the topics and organism systems that we study to current events and phenomena that can be observed everyday. This really helps me absorb the concepts and makes me eager to learn more.
AP English Language is my favorite class this year, and on Fridays the class period often revolves around a long, semi-spontaneous discussion of a topic that has been in the news recently, or an age old philosophical question. One of my favorite memories of this class is a forty minute Friday discussion about animal rights. This discourse started as a round of complaints about coyotes and mountain lions that prey on small pets, then morphed into an analysis of the accidental hunting of Cecil the Lion, and ended with a debate as to whether or not animals have "souls".
AP French is my last class of the day on Fridays. Like in AP English Lang, my teacher Madame Odowd often uses the Friday class period as an opportunity to discuss interesting topics- en français, bien sûr! During ﬁrst semester, each student was assigned a region of the francophone world, and shared a news article about that region with the class on Fridays.
As I said before, my Friday afternoons are usually free of after school commitment, however, depending on the semester, Monday-Thursday after school I will either be working in the Performing Arts Center building and painting sets for musicals as part of the tech crew, or in the dance studio taking a ballet, jazz, or contemporary class.