Creating Learning

"When once we are linked to our students in the heart, the old familiar things will seem new to us."
-St. Augustine, De Catechizandis Rudibus, XII, 17

What is Thematic Learning?

Thematic Learning is when all or many parts of a given curriculum all center around one specific topic. It is an exciting opportunity for students to learn and helps them see the connection between all aspects of learning. We've tied Thematic Learning and Project-Based Learning, thus creating a curriculum around a specific topic that is further enhanced by students' ability to explore and solve real-world problems.

Benefits of Thematic Learning

Higher Level Learning:
How We Are Doing Thematic Learning

Students work to seek out real understanding, meaningful connections and lasting outcomes. They also move beyond the mastery of information to thinking in terms of analysis, application and creation.

Bloom's Taxonomy

Bloom's Taxonomy, created in 1948 by psychologist Benjamin Bloom, is a classification system that categorizes intellectual skills and behavior that are important to learning. This taxonomy can also be applied to education and the learning process. It divides educational objectives into three "domains" - cognitive, affective and psychomotor. Within each of these domains, learning at the higher levels is dependent on having attained the prerequisite knowledge from the lower levels. The goal: to focus on all three domains, creating a more holistic type of education. Read more on Bloom's Taxonomy.

Design Thinking

Design Thinking is an innovative approach to learning that combines creative and analytical approaches to problem solving. Students learn by doing and they aren't simply asked to solve a problem, but to define what the problem is and come up with a creative solution. For more information on Design Thinking, visit Standford's

Our students have participated in five monthly Design Challenges that push them to define problems and come up with creative solutions - using information they have learned in and out of the classroom. The Design Challenges are:

  • October:Newspaper Table Challenge
  • November: Bobsled Challenge
  • December: Airplane Challenge
  • January: Flotilla Challenge
  • February: Electric Car or Bridge Challenge

The Approach

  • Sharing learning experiences with the tools of design thinking with clear outcomes.
  • Continually evolving approaches; the curriculum is not static.
  • Using some techniques that have long defined great teaching, but with a greater awareness and research validation.

Our Mission

An Augustinian School,
Catholic and Independent,
Living the Augustinian spirit of
Veritas, Unitas and Caritas.

Malvern Preparatory School

418 S. Warren Avenue
Malvern, PA 19355
(484) 595-1100
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