St. Brendan High School students experience democracy in action

St. Brendan High School students experience democracy in action

St. Brendan High School students in Close Up’s High School program are pictured on the steps of the U.S. Capitol in Wahsington, DC.

Most Floridians visit Key West for the sun and the fun, but 19 students from St. Brendan High School’s Champagnat Program visited to connect with Key West history, literature, maritime science, and biology.

President Harry Truman’s Little White House and Ernest Hemingway’s Home were two of the historical sites that the students studied.

They gained insight into the Key West life of the 33rd President of the United States and the Nobel Peace Prize winning author.

“I was amazed at all the history that Key West has. My favorite stop was Truman’s House,” said freshman Carolina Parets, who had never before been to Key West. “The tour guide was so knowledgeable and gave us information that we won’t find in our textbooks.”

The students also visited the Key West Aquarium where they learned about the vast creatures of the sea and marine life. It was followed by the Butterfly and Nature Conservatory where students were given the unique opportunity to observe the anatomy, physiology, lifecycle and feeding of the butterfly.

“I enjoyed being with my friends outside of the classroom, and truly felt very calm and at peace when touring the Butterfly Conservatory,” said sophomore Matthew Morales, who was very excited about the trip.

The all-around educational trip ended with a little rest and relaxation, posing at the historically famous Southernmost Point. The students also took a stroll through Mallory Square, where they were entertained by numerous street performers.

On the bus ride home, the students were invited to share personal experiences and examples showing interdisciplinary learning.

“This trip was a great cultural experience for the students and it was pleasing to see the students engaged in the learning process outside of the classroom,” said Daisy Cruz, Champagnat director. “We are looking forward to next year’s scholarly and cultural journey.”

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