EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING AT ITS BEST
“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me
and I learn.” — Benjamin Franklin
Mr. Franklin knew a thing or two about the power of learning by doing. While not all learning can be experiential, we believe that it should play an important role in preparing high school students for college and beyond. At OLMA, we integrate hands-on, experiential-learning in nearly every course. To build upon the success we’ve seen, we recently introduced Mini-Mesters. These week-long courses represent experiential learning at its best. They give students the opportunity to delve deeper into subject areas that intrigue and interests them.
Along the way, students learn a variety of life lessons including managing their money, navigating tours and hikes. thinking on their feet, handling cultural and language differences, solving problems, following directions, being on time, as well as how to push themselves further than they ever thought they could.
The program begin in June 2018 when OLMA’s rising sophomores, juniors and seniors took to the wind as part of nine Mini-Mester courses. These included: Exploring Canada, Hiking the Grand Canyon, Learning to Sew, Watercolor Boot Camp, The History of Cape May, Digital Photography, Culinary Arts, The History of Broadway, and Service at St. John of God.
In 2019 a new lineup of courses was offered to students. These included Kings, Queens & Leprechauns (London and Dublin); Business of Sports and Entertainment; California Panorama; and Biodiversity in Cedar Key, FL. Back by popular demand were Service at St. John of God and Culinary Arts.
Also new in 2019 were two courses that took place at different points in the school year. The first was Spain Exchange, giving students the opportunity to live and attend school in a foreign country for three weeks. The second was Compassion Quest. Centered around service, the girls worked in small groups to research plan, propose, and implement service projects involving 25-30 students. Some of the projects included feeding the homeless in Philadelphia, making and delivering Smile Boxes, creating enrichment toys for cats and dogs and volunteering at the South Jersey Regional Animal Shelter, volunteering at an MS run, making blankets and hand delivering them to veterans at the Veterans Memorial Home, orchestrating a school and grounds clean up, collecting food for and volunteering at the South Jersey Food Bank, and working a Cancer run in Atlantic City.
These Mini-Mesters far exceeded the expectations of our students, parents and teachers. Students returned inspired and unafraid to step out of their comfort zones to try something new. On this page, you will find visual highlights from the 2019 and a video summary of the 2018 Mini-Mesters. covid-19 kept us from Mini-Mesters in 2020, but we are ready to roll in 2021. To find out more, contact our Admissions Director at (856) 697-2008, ext. 140.