Denver or Bust!
by Dave Loewen, Superintendent
” We are seeking to root our lives, our learning and our students in The Story.”
Just before Thanksgiving we sent about 25 teachers to Denver, Colorado under the leadership of our Director of Learning, Darryl deBoer. They visited a model school, Annunciation Catholic School. This group of teachers forms our second cohort, and have been given sustained time to dig deep into developing our Story Telling Tool. Our Story Telling Tool is what we use at SCS to design our units and lessons around God’s story. It is based on the fundamental assumption that we are seeking to root our lives, our learning and our students in The Story. We readily recognize that there are multiple competing stories vying for our attention and for the attention of our students (consumerism, financial success, body image, etc.). They are stories from our culture that call to our students in explicit and implicit ways. However, at SCS we desire for our students to define human flourishing, how they want to live as whole humans, in the story of God and His people.
Our vision statement at SCS is clear: we want our students “to become fully alive in Gods story.” We are working hard to embed this in the day-to-day learning at school. To reach that goal teachers meet every Friday morning to work on improving our pedagogy (how we teach), we go on one retreat each year where we hope to engage in what living in that story means for us as mentors and models for students, and we run a new cohort group each year. Running a cohort allows a smaller group of teachers more sustained and focused time to develop their planning and pedagogy around The Story and around best teaching practices. Cohort #2 kicked off their journey last June after school was out and then fired up again in late August. They will also meet on professional development days and on several days after school hours. At the end of each meeting every teacher makes several ‘commitments to try’ that they will implement in their classroom before the next cohort gathering. We’re excited by the learning and ‘trying’ that is happening in our cohort groups and ask you to pray for them as they dig deep into making Christian education more meaningful and intentional for our students. Pray also for Darryl deBoer as he leads this initiative.