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Mother Damien Academy
The ASPIRE (Achieving Student Potential through Inspiring and enRiching Experiences) Programme for students in the Mother Damien Academy is a progressive and developmental programme from Secondary 1 to 3. At the Lower Secondary, it integrates knowledge and skills acquired in content areas in the core curriculum with character development. This is done through Project Caritas, a community outreach programme with the Care Corners in the Toa Payoh Community.
Secondary 1 students will have the opportunity to experience the art of pastry making in a cooking studio. They will apply their learning within school and out-of-school to creating a menu which will be served to the elderly on the day of Project Caritas, a signature programme of the Academy. Similarly, knowledge and skills acquired from Design & Technology lessons will be put to good use when they guide the elderly in creating a functional household item. Project Caritas aims to inculcate in students respect, empathy and care for the elderly as well as compassion for those who are not quite mentally active. It facilitates interaction with the elderly at a more personal level so that students will have a better understanding of the needs of the elderly. The experience will equip and enable the students to live out the character education lessons on strengthening family relationships.
At Secondary 2, the programme harnesses student knowledge in Science and their oral and written competence in the Mother Tongue Languages to give them an authentic experience in being tour guides to another group of elderly in Toa Payoh when they visit River Safari for the first time in May. The preparatory work will engage students in writing expository essays, doing research, making oral presentations and working out a schedule to optimise sight-seeing. They will be given ICT training in publishing so that a personalised album which captures the highlights of the outing can be made and given as a memorabilia to each elderly. Project Caritas at Secondary 2 is experiential learning for students to discover that happiness comes from adopting a positive outlook to life, being appreciative of what they have, and making a difference to the lives of others.
The ASPIRE Programme at Secondary 3 takes students to a deeper level of learning and experiences in the five Polytechnics based on their personal preferences. They will participate in at least one Advanced Elective Module (AEM) so that they are more aware of the options available to them for post-secondary progression. The exposure in a practice-oriented learning environment will inspire them to set goals in their studies and work hard to achieve them. The overseas learning journey to Bali is organised to provide students with the opportunity to embrace cultural diversity and develop a respect for our natural environment.
The ASPIRE Programme is an approach to learning in a fun and non-threatening environment. It aims to develop in every student self-confidence, poise and effective communication skills. It is a journey of building relationships, exploring interests and connecting with themselves so that they find meaning and fulfilment in what they learn and do.