Tapping Into Areas of Strength

Students with Language-based learning differences (LBLD) have spent years feeling and believing that they will not measure up to their peers. Because school is usually set up for regular-learning, left brain students, our smart students may not realize that they have amazing gifts.

  • Did you know that an astounding percentage of entrepreneurs have dyslexia?
  • Did you know  that students with LBLD have superior cognitive skills? Problem solving, critical thinking, and thinking outside the box are particular strengths of kids with dyslexia.
  • Do you have a child who thinks in 3-D? It’s amazing to see what these children with superior visual-spatial skills can create “out of their heads.”  They can design and build something without blueprints.

Encourage your child with dyslexia to dream big dreams, for a future engineer, a future architect, or even a future pilot is sitting right now at your dinner table.

Learning to Think Faster

At Sophia Academy, we understand that the brain is plastic. We can train our brains to think better, think faster, and make new connections. Research shows that certain activities actually lead to physical changes in the brain such as the growth of new brain cells and their connections in the very parts of the brain that are crucial to memory and typical learning activities.

Something as simple as positive self talk will cause the brain to grow. Students need to be trained to say: “I can do better.”  Rather than giving up in frustration when work is hard, we encourage students to embrace potential failure as an adventure.

What else works?

  • Trusting instincts–we encourage students to courageously speak out their first thoughts.
  • Focusing on comprehension over speed–our Strategic Reading class gives students a wide choice of interesting material to work with while shoring up reading strategies and skills.
  • Physical activity several hours after learning something new–walking fast, shooting hoops, races in PE class, skateboarding after school will all work to solidify the memory.
  • Active kinesthetic learning:  Whether they sing the math facts, act out the funeral scene from Julius Caesar or dance a poem, students at Sophia Academy are growing brain cells.

At Sophia Academy, we continue to search for new ways to fund research-driven strategies for brain growth. Whether using online websites based on Carol Dweck’s growth mindset or adaptive technology, we are pursuing brain growth for all our students.


Good Calories Supercharge Brains

ICHS and Sophia Academy are now offering both breakfast and lunch courtesy of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. Because of our school location, great food is provided free of charge for all students. Love hoagies? Pick one up on Thursday! How about Tuna Salad sandwich and an apple? No problem.

Why is our breakfast and lunch program so important? Studies show that student brains are sluggish and unable to process new material well unless students have sufficient calories. Every student that skips breakfast is hurting his chances of learning during the day. With fruit and a bagel in the morning, however, that whole slope-intercept formula will make more sense.

Gildart School of Arts Opening

We are pleased to announce the opening of the William Gildart School of the Arts in September 2017. Led by Mr. Joshua Stippich, the Gildart School of Arts provides the opportunity for self-expression while teaching problem-solving along with creative thinking. Our goal is to bridge the gap between academic classes and real life. All students will take Basic Drawing and Music. They will also be able to choose between classes as varied as video production, drama, and digital art.

Whether using hands or learning computer skills, student’s creativity will enable their right brains to assist their left brains.

Hands-on Learning Important for School Success

     Whether walking a labyrinth as medieval monks or digging up an ancient culture as archeologists, the students at Sophia Academy show their mastery of the past by stepping into the past.

All Math classes at Sophia Academy from Basic Math through Calculus use manipulatives.  This multi-sensory approach enables our students to comprehend concepts and learn math skills they had not been able to learn before.


Learning Ally Comes to ICHS and Sophia Academy

We are excited to announce that all our qualified students will be able to access Learning Ally to help with both academic and pleasure reading.  With over 80,000 books in audio format, our students will be able to have textbooks and novels read to them while they follow along.

Students with dyslexia often understand what they hear even when they cannot understand what they read. Now, they will have lots of help, whether reading Julius Caesar in English class or a chapter on the rock cycle in science class.