With some setbacks and much grace and providence we held our first Pie Sale just in time for Thanksgiving. Knowing that pies may easily be bought at the grocery and some can be made without too much trouble, we planned to have a selection of homemade pies that are not so easily found in the local grocery. Our unique variety included Honey Pecan, Apple Cream, Georgia Peach, Apple Cranberry, Mixed Berry, Double Layer Pumpkin, and Caramel Chocolate Toffee. In addition to the pies we sold pumpkin rolls, those creamy deliciously sweet orange and white jelly-like rolls that are so popular during this season.
We asked parents to donate ingredients for our bakers to use to create unique and tasty desserts. They donated, quite a bit: 12 lbs of butter, 72 eggs, 17 lbs of brown sugar, 12 lbs of powder sugar, well you get the idea; they donated a ton (maybe even literally)!
Our bakers, Mrs. Joss, Mrs. Thoburn, Amberleigh Thoburn and Melissa Thoburn, all worked to make thirty pies and sixteen pumpkin rolls. For a small school like ours, that was quite an accomplishment, and who knew if all of them would sell.
Pies were priced at $10 each and the pumpkin rolls at $8. For convenience of transporting and sanitation and decoration, the pies and rolls were wrapped in plastic then packaged in cellophane, tied closed with twine and labeled as to name of delicacy and any ingredients which are known to be problematic allergens. They looked great! So many comments were given about how "professional" it all was.
Thankfully we did sell all of the pies and rolls! To offer the food while it was fresh, we only had the bake sale the last day of school before Thanksgiving break. At 8:00 a.m. we began selling pies while parents dropped off their children for school. We set up again after school. In the morning, we sold 20 pies and 10 rolls. By the end of the afternoon we sold all!
This was a tremendous success. Many of the parents asked if we were doing this for Christmas, too. We raised over $400 for our school activities and are already planning another successful sale for Christmas.
Thank you to all who donated and bought; enjoy your treats!
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Saturday, November 22, 2008
This Thursday we celebrate Thanksgiving. But to whom are we giving thanks? Are we simply remembering the story of how the Indians helped the Pilgrims survive their first cold winter at Plymouth? While this is an important part of our history and worth remembering, we need to know whom the Pilgrims were really thanking when they celebrated that first Thanksgiving Day. They were giving thanks to God for protecting them, for sending Squanto and the other Indians to befriend and teach them.
In the same way, let us remember to thank the one true God from whom ALL blessings flow. Let us thank Him even in the midst of challenging and difficult times. Let us thank Him for the many blessings He gives to us each and every day – our family, our friends, our school, etc. And most of all, let us thank Him for the gift of His Son, Jesus Christ, whose death on the cross and resurrection, provided salvation for all of us who believe.
Have a blessed Thanksgiving!
Assistant in Mrs. Key’s K-4 class
Thursday, November 20, 2008
As a teacher of very young children, I am always looking for activities that will enhance my students’ educational experience. I also try to include events in my monthly lesson plans which are related to the current season. As a result our class has been completing art projects and crafts related to Thanksgiving Day, so the children can remember the meaning of such an important day. The projects also have enhanced different aspects of their developmental process. The children have been creative with their work (using cognitive skills); they have been busy coloring, cutting, and pasting which requires them to manipulate their small figures (fine motor skills); they have helped their classmates to complete their projects (social skills).
I have called this month’s unit “Thank You, God, For My Family.” To help the students think about why they should be thankful for their families, I asked my students and their parents to prepare a poster titled “My Family.” The poster would show pictures of the child's family taken during any family events which are important to them. I also requested that a brief caption be included to explain a little bit about who the people in the photos are and what is taking place.
The results have been remarkable. The children with the help of their parents have done an excellent job showing their families and giving each poster a personal touch. Moreover, the children have been sharing their pictures with their peers with great enthusiasm and delight.
I have placed the posters on the walls outside our classroom for other children and parents to enjoy. Some of the comments I received are very uplifting. Many parents who have come to see the posters expressed joy to see at seeing them. The mother of Naren, a student in Mrs. Murphy’s class, said, “This is really nice!” Sonith Sunku’s father also commented: “This is a great idea!” Taylor Yi, a fifth grade student, excitedly shared details of Hannah Shin’s (her cousin) poster with many of her classmates. She said she had also helped prepare this assignment.
So come by and see our posters. They have captured our wonderful schools rich diversity. Join us as we say, “Thank you, God, for your creation and our families!”
Here is a display of another beautiful project Mrs. Salar's JK3 students completed with fall leaves.
Thursday, November 13, 2008
On a day that may have seemed dreary due to the cold rain, the high school students had a bit of sunshine. A visit to the National Gallery of Art would gladden the hearts of many; it certainly did mine.
This was not just a trip to brighten a gloomy day. No, today the students practiced their skills at analyzing art and learned more about how every picture tells a story.
Our docent was a congenial lady who seemed to thoroughly enjoy art and sharing her knowledge with our group. She engaged the students with questions and activities, showing them what to look for within a picture to decipher it.
Beginning with two pictures by Copley (The Copley Family and Watson and the Shark), she asked each of them to study elements of the pictures and be ready to share what they could discern from them. She was impressed with their understanding of symbolism within the works as well as their descriptions of how the artist used form to reinforce emotions he wanted to convey. She was conversant about the works and told a history of each, helping the students to learn more about a time period they are studying in history in addition to the art.
In the next gallery we viewed Thomas Cole’s series The Voyage of Life. After viewing the art for a few minutes, she divided the students into three groups and had each group write a story about one of the pictures in the series. The students studied the pictures and exchanged their ideas about what was portrayed, how the artist used colors and images symbolically, and then how to put their ideas in writing. She, again, was impressed, and Miss Stone (their writing teacher who also attended) was proud. The docent thought they had done such an admirable job with their writing that she asked to keep the stories and share them with the other docents.
In addition to viewing and enjoying and learning about the pictures in the gallery, we were able to delight in the wonderful indoor courtyards and various architectural elements which surrounded us as we walked. Our day was a bit brighter from our trip as was, in my opinion, our docent’s. The activities of the day helped the students to slow down and really think about how a picture tells a story.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Today we honor the heroism of those living and dead who served in our wars, and we show gratitude for the victories they won. Not only in America, but across Europe and around the world the end of World War I is solemnly marked. But it is not celebrated as a victory of peace, as was originally envisioned.
The eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month in 1918 marked an armistice between the sides fighting the first World War. Woodrow Wilson proclaimed that day to be Armistice Day. Congress in 1938 proclaimed the day to be one “dedicated to the cause of world peace.”
World War I had come as a shock to many. According to Clarence Carson, at the beginning of the 20th century the belief in progress had become widespread and many thought war had become a thing of the past:
“…civilization was expanding and barbarism on the retreat. As men became more and more civilized many believed that bloodshed and war would be relegated to the brute past. An undergirding utopianism gave support to this view. Nations would settle their disputes by mediation…” (A Basic History of the United States, Volume 4, p. 180)
Yet the losses in the century’s first war were unprecedented. Ten million died on the battlefield. Sixteen percent of the male populations of Germany and France were wiped out. The costs were astounding. (Carson, p. 180.)
In spite of the horror, President Wilson remained utopian. He called it the “war to end all wars.” What a lofty goal! To end armed conflict! At the end of hostilities, he became the first president to leave the United States during his term of office. And, he left on a mission to Versailles to negotiate the founding of the League of Nations. “It will now be our fortunate duty to assist…the establishment of just democracy throughout the world.” (Carson, p. 202)
But the horror of World War I was just the beginning. In fact it only helped set the stage for a larger world war. The twentieth century became the bloodiest century ever. In this modern period the concept of “total war” was introduced to mankind.
According to the BBC, Australia’s Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, said this morning, “We have all endured a most bloody century. Let us resolve afresh at the dawn of this new century…that this might be a truly pacific peaceful century.”
Surely, today we should thank our veterans and remember the service of those living and departed. And we can share Prime Minister Rudd’s call for peace. However, peace cannot come merely through a renewed effort by man or nations to build a treaty. Peace will not come because of modern scientific progress. This author believes lasting peace will only come from the news of a savior who died for our sins. That same savior can send his Holy Spirit to give grace to man. Man cannot build a utopia apart from this.
Friday, November 7, 2008
Did you know you are assuming an author's existence as you read this page, and assuming that when I say "did" it means "did" and not "squid"? Did you know that you assume gravity will not suddenly reverse and that's why you're not protecting your head from the ceiling with a helmet? At night Mr. Shade turns into a werefrog with fangs. Are you assuming that you can trust me?
In logic class we are learning about making assumptions and seeing them when they occur. The fallacies of assumption are equivocations, loaded question, circular reasoning, part-to-whole, and false dichotomy. It is not always wrong to make an assumption, but consider the following equivocation: murder kills people, self-defense is murder! Assumptions that motive, cause, and purpose are the same can lead to erroneous conclusions. Try finding false assumptions in these equivocations:
Drugs affect your brain, coffee affects your brain, so coffee is a drug.
Dreams reflect truth, the Bible reflects truth, so dreams are as valid as the Bible as sources of truth.
Helping people is a good thing, so the government can take your money and give it to others to help them.
Video games develop hand-eye coordination, so I should play video games instead of exercising!
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Our school is a beautiful place to be. Not only due to the wonderful spirit of each teacher and staff member, but it is physically a beautiful place. The property already has many beautiful trees surrounding it as well as various types of grasses and mosses growing, and we were able to add more appeal with potted plants. Now, as we have all settled into the new school year, we can enjoy the change that our scenery is going through.
Look for yourself.
One of the first things I notice when I pull into school is the brilliant orange and yellow leaves that have fallen and contrast with the bright green grass they lay on.
My eyes are immediately drawn to the tree from which many of these leaves have fallen.
Many of us hurriedly rush into school or back out, thinking about where we need to be soon. But take a few moments to notice the small yet distinctive details of these leaves. Here is a stunning red leaf amongst the indistinct yellow ones.
Not only are the bright reds, oranges, and yellows captivating. Look at the ivy growing in the pots. The leaves of this climber are subtly changing as well. Notice the hint of red in the veins.
When you pick up your child from school today, take a few moments to walk around and enjoy the changing colors. Collect some leaves in all the different colors and sizes. Notice the small details. See how beautiful our school is!
Monday, November 3, 2008
Mrs. Joss' sixth and seventh grades Botany Class performed an experiment called "Sock Garden." The experiment mimics one of the ways seeds are dispersed; by attaching themselves to animals or humans. The students placed a sock over top of their shoe and walked in designated areas of the school's grounds. Some of the students were very successful in picking up seeds. They then planted the socks to see if their seeds germinated. The students were pleased that after only two weeks their seeds had germinated and could enjoy the various types of plants that grew from those seeds.
In Botany, the students are working very diligently on becoming experts in the Scientific Method as well as improving their observation skills. They are currently studying the nine categories of how to prove aliveness. They are becoming great thinkers as they learn the basics of Botany.
You may have noticed the center courtyard and its beautiful flowers planted by Mrs. Thoburn. The Botany students have had the opportunity to collect impatiens seeds from the seeding flowers, map the courtyard for future plantings, and plant bulbs to be enjoyed by all come spring.
An impatiens' seed pod.
A student's Laboratory Notebook.
A welcomed guest!
Please continue to observe the center courtyard to see what the Botany Students have planned.
On October 23 and 24, Oak Hill sponsored a Harvest Bake Sale. We want to thank everyone who participated with set-up, baked good donations, and monetary donations. We were able to raise $430.00 for the students future activities, the main one being the stage production the school is planning for the spring. Here is a peak at some of the goodies we sold.
OH! is one more way we at Oak Hill Christian School can show you the day to day happenings at our school. We can take you in the classroom and show you students reading, singing, debating the Great Books, and creating beautiful art. We will show you some of the special days that happen here at Oak Hill, such as Field Day, Concerts, our stage productions, and other individual programs that happen throughout the school year. We hope you will enjoy the brief glimpses into our classrooms. You may even see your own child here.
If you have any questions or comments please email Robert Thoburn at
headmaster [at] oakhillcs [dot] com. We always appreciate your feedback, support, and prayers.