Overnight, grade-level retreats begin in grade 5 and continue through grade 12, the capstone of the program. Retreats are an important, an highly-anticipated part of the student experience creating a fun, safe and rewarding passage for each class to come together in unique opportunities for character education, service learning, leadership, teambuilding, personal challenge and reflection, and foster social interaction, friendship and community among the classes and within advisory groups.
St. Margaret’s carefully plans retreats, including areas of focus, learning objectives, activities and locales to reflect student age, readiness for increasing responsibility and independence, as well as grade-level studies and areas of focus. Retreats typically occur in the fall, in camp settings, destination locations, and onsite at service organizations to kick-off the school year, and to allow bonding time for the class after several months apart. Retreats also allow for students, faculty and staff to work together in unique environments and contexts, often as an entire class and within advisory groups. These multi-day, outside-the-classroom experiences, facilitate applied and service learning experiences, in areas of ecology, sustainability, underserved communities, STEM and design thinking.
"The sixth grade class connected and learned, smiled and laughed, and sang and cheered. What is the connection between all of these? It's that we did them together, and enjoyed them together. We bonded together."
Grade Level Themes:
Grade 5: California History
Grade 6: Transition to Middle School and Ecology
Grade 7: Marine Biology
Grade 8: Fall: Team Building, Adventure Programming. Spring: U.S. History in Washington D.C. and Philadelphia
Grade 9: Transition to Upper School and Living Honorably
Grade 10 & 11: Problem-solving and Service Learning
Grade 12: Leadership and Transition to Adulthood
An independent preschool through grade 12 college-preparatory day school in Orange County, California