Science & Creation Studies Learning: Means by Which We Know God
On Friday, February 17th, the teaching staff met to discuss science learning at Woodstock Christian School. We enjoyed time spent in devotions, reading relevant articles, discussing current curriculum and Ministry guidelines. In the afternoon, one of the science teachers from London District Christian School led us through an interactive workshop of science learning, providing more ideas to make science come alive in our classrooms.
God makes himself known to humanity through his general revelation - creation. General revelation does not reveal Jesus Christ or His work of redemption for sinners. Thus there is a need for what is called "special revelation." Article 2 of an old but 'rich' document written in 1561, the Belgic Confession (on the means by which we know God), states the distinction in the following words:
We know Him by two means: First, by the creation, preservation, and government of the universe; which is before our eyes as a most elegant book, wherein all creatures, great and small, are as so many characters leading us to see clearly the invisible things of God, even his everlasting power and divinity, as the apostle Paul says in Romans 1:20. All which things are sufficient to convince men and leave them without excuse. Second, He makes Himself more clearly and fully known to us by His holy and divine Word, that is to say, as far as is necessary for us to know in this life, to His glory and our salvation.
As educators, we are grateful for the many means by which we can share the wonders of God's creation with our students. Brian Doerksen's song "Creation Calls" speaks into the beauty and majesty of what God has created.
Lying down beneath the stars, I feel your presence there
I love to stand at ocean shore and feel the thundering breakers roar
How could I say there is no God when all around creation calls…
C. Verbeek, Principal
Libraries - one of my favourite topics to discuss!
Libraries were once somber quiet places where books were warehoused and librarians kept them in order. Have you ever thought of how a library is different today than when you were a child? Have you ever wondered what the “modern” library of the future may look like? At the recent Ontario Library Association conference, attendees were shown what a futuristic library might look like and the role it has for its community. I could hardly imagine some scenarios that were presented of what you could do at your local library in fifty years! Some existing libraries already bring more accessible use of technology to the next level with their “Maker Spaces” and the use of 3-D printers. Here the library’s role is not only to have the information about something but also equipment to produce it and share it! But the one common thread which runs through the past library, the present library and the future library is the availability of knowledge and understanding and also the need for space for community. There is a lot of “community” being shared at the WCS Library as well. I have said this before but I am always so grateful that the WCS board has always prioritized budgeting to develop the best possible library for its students with the funds available. And I am privileged to work in it!
This week we will begin our winter electives program for students in grades four through eight. The electives experience runs for five consecutive Wednesdays and gives students opportunity to work and play with other students from different grade levels in a place or activity beyond the classroom.
It also allows parents and friends of Woodstock Christian School to be a part of student learning and show students a new and deeper way to use their abilities to bless others. It is good to share our role as educators, giving others the opportunity to bring lessons and learning to life for students and to model to the students how their learning can also influence their future.
Stay tuned for photos and updates about the learning and community being experienced through this mid-winter program.
England, Haiti, South Korea, India, Germany, Holland, Lithuania...and the list goes on. Last Thursday we celebrated the many cultures represented by our students. It was great fun to see, touch, taste, and learn a little more about some of the countries around the world that our families have originated from. This diversity in cultures and backgrounds strengthens our school as it helps our students become more inclusive, accepting, and loving towards others. This diversity helps us learn about other countries, appreciate the differences in others, and recognize how God is working through His people here and around the world.
I am thankful that our school not only embraces diversity in cultures but also welcomes diversity in our learners. We have students with a variety of learning profiles with distinct strengths and needs. We believe that God created each student in His image exactly how He intended them to be. God does not make mistakes! God needs his children to have a variety of gifts as he has unique plans for each one in His kingdom. This diversity in our students strengthens our student body. As teachers, it is our job to partner with parents to help each student accept and embrace how God how created them and others. We strive to meet the needs of our learners and pray that they will all grow and flourish.
Yes, we are a school that is strengthened by a diverse population. We are also a community that is bound together by our love for God. Our God is a great God. Our God loves everyone and calls us to do the same. Our God is above all, through all, and in all!
There is a beautiful picture book in my collection called The Matchbox Diary.
A little girl visits her great grandfather and happens across an old wooden cigar box that holds several smaller matchboxes. Inside each matchbox is an unlikely object with no meaning to the little girl, until her great grandfather shares its story. Together the little girl and the old man recount his emigration from Italy, his first tough years in America, and his yearning to record his life in some fashion because he could not read and write. I highly recommend this book, not just for the story, but also for the fabulous illustrations. An amazing book!
As we celebrate our heritage this week and appreciate each others’ stories and backgrounds, may we also celebrate how God has created differences. Ask questions this week. Tell your stories and discover also what God has done and how He is working in the lives of people past and present.
FOG DAY. WCS BUSES CANCELLED FOR MORNING ONLY DUE TO FOG & BLACK ICE. BRING YOUR CHILD TO SCHOOL WHEN IT IS SAFE TO DO SO. LDCSS BUS WILL LEAVE AT 830AM OR WHEN IT IS SAFE TO DO SO. BUSES WILL RUN AT END-OF-DAY. SEE PARENT HANDBOOK FOR FOG DAY PROCEDURES.
TUESDAY JANUARY 17: WOODSTOCK CHRISTIAN SCHOOL BUSES ARE CANCELLED DUE TO ICY CONDITIONS. THE SCHOOL IS CLOSED.
Let's talk about practice. That word can bring on a stomach ache in students and parents alike. However, many different things in our lives need practice, not just musical instruments! I recently read a book by Philip Johnston called "Not Until You've Done Your Practice!" Johnston writes, "In almost every piece you play there will be some parts that you find easy and some that you find hard. Despite this, most students have a strange tendency to practise all of the piece equally, devoting as much time and effort to the easy bits as they do to the hard bits. When you are practising, work on the hard bits." Johnston continues to give several examples of why we should practice the "hard bits" first. A correlation can be drawn between practising a piece of music and practising kindness, or gentleness or joy or.... (you fill in the blank). Next time you are up against one the “hard bits" of the Christian life, get to practising. The reward will be very great.
Elizabeth Martin, Music Teacher
IT'S A SNOW DAY. BUSES ARE CANCELLED DUE TO ANTICIPATED SNOW AND HIGH WINDS. THE SCHOOL IS CLOSED.
Blessings for the New Year
It's a brand new year. A new month. A new week. A new day!
This year, 2017 A.D., which refers to anno Domini (Latin), or the year of the Lord, will have
which is 8760 hours
which is 525,600 minutes
which is 31 and a half million seconds…
and you only get to live each of them once.
At the start of a new year, people often make promises to themselves to change things in their lives. Sometimes those promises work out, but often they don't. What we could focus on in 2017 is the question: How is God calling us to live this year?
Our lives will be full of blessings in the New Year as we trust God, share His love with those around us, and walk into each new day with great confidence of God's faithfulness. Our lives will also be filled with challenges which will cause us to rely on His strength and goodness and grace, because He is a God who keeps His promises.
Lamentations 3:23 reads: "Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin new and fresh each morning." Our heavenly Father wants to do new things in the lives of His children. He desires to teach us new truths about Himself, provide new opportunities for ministering to others, take us to higher levels of worship and deeper levels of trust.
So, as you go about your lives, work in your classrooms at Woodstock Christian School, play in the playground, or participate in intramurals, basketball, music class, and so many other opportunities ... As you ride the bus, eat your lunch, read stories and write paragraphs and poems, during all the minutes and hours and days that you spend with us at WCS, and in your lives away from here, may you know that God is in all things in 2017, over all things in 2017, and through all things in 2017. Go through this year with Him.
As we become engulfed in the busyness of Christmas it can quickly become a stressful and overwhelming event. Amidst the commercialism of this sacred holiday we lose sight of the true meaning of Christmas. In Kindergarten we have been looking at various symbols that we see at Christmas and are reminded of how we can use them to have our eyes and thoughts on Christ this Christmas season. Here are a few…
The Tree - points us to heaven and reminds us that God is love
The Wreath - is a circle reminding us that God's love for us never ends
The Candle - shines brightly, showing us that Jesus is the light of the world
The Candy Cane - is shaped like a shepherd's staff reminding us that Jesus is our shepherd
The Presents - remind us of God's gift to the world.
As we journey through this Christmas season may we remember to keep focussed on the Christ child and the precious gift that was given to us in a manger.