WCS Blog

800 Juliana Drive, Woodstock, Ontario

Phone: 519-539-1492

     

Community Prayers

Community Prayers
 
For many years, staff and Board representatives of WCS have attended the Mayor's Prayer Breakfast for the City of Woodstock. This event provides an opportunity for the Christian community -- pastoral teams, ministry leaders, Christian business people -- to seek the well-being of the community and to pray for our leaders, as Scripture commends. It is an opportunity to build stronger bridges between City Hall and the faith community. It has been a blessing to meet and pray with community leaders and to see their heart for families throughout the city, for students, for those who struggle. Our WCS Forward Drive campaign booklet this year focuses on prayer and includes a prayer for community written by Trevor Birtch, Woodstock's Mayor.
1 John 4:12 "No one has seen God. If we love each other, God lives in us, and His love is perfected in us." The City of Woodstock and its citizens belong to You, God. Endow our mayor, and city council with your wisdom in decisions they make. Fill them with compassion, with discernement to listen as they lead their constituents. Give them courage to speak and live Your love and truth to those they serve. Hold the families of the city leaders as they support their loved ones. Protect them, enfold them with Your Spirit even as the enemy continues to attack. We know Jesus Christ already has the victory! In His name we pray, Amen.
C. Verbeek, Principal
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A Mindset

    As someone thinks within himself, so he is.  Proverbs 23:7

            A mindset is a belief about yourself and your basic traits relating to your intelligence, talents and personality.  An individual may hold a fixed mindset or a growth mindset.  A fixed mindset is a belief that traits are fixed and cannot be influenced nor increased.  A growth mindset is a belief that traits can be cultivated through attention and effort.  Believing that your qualities are fixed, or can be cultivated, leads to a host of thoughts and actions that carry an individual down entirely different paths of growth and development (Dweck, 10).

                The students of grade 7 began their year learning about mindset. Angela Watson is a Christian, wife and educator.  She has created a 10 lesson unit on Growth Mindset.  Grade 7 began the year in this curriculum.  We explored the terms, definitions and practical applications of mindset.  We learned the difference between a fixed, and a growth mindset.  We identified our responsibilities in our own learning and contributions at WCS.  We became aware of, and put to use, language that develops and supports a growth mindset.

                The following visual is helpful in distinguishing between how a fixed, and a growth mindset, responds in a learning environment (www.quora.com).

Most importantly, we learned what God’s word instructs us about how he created us and how he desires us to think in order to grow and flourish in his will.

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.  Psalm 139:14

So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. Genesis 1:27

I can do all this through him who gives me strength.  Phil 4:13

Those who live according to the sinful nature have their minds set on what that nature desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace. Rom 8:5–6

God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.  2 Tim 1:7

We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.  2 Cor 10:5

Whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable — if anything is excellent or praiseworthy — think about such things.  Phil 4:8   

                                                                                                                      Lesa Racicot- Gr. 7

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Measures of Academic Progress (MAP)

Measures of Academic Progress (MAP)
 
One of the ways that we measure student learning at WCS is through the use of the MAP test. MAP is an acronym for Measures of Academic Progress. Several years ago, we were using the Canadian Test of Basic Skills to measure how we, as a school, were doing in terms of educating our students as compared to provincial and national norms. The CTBS no longer suited our needs and was somewhat outdated, so the search was on for a more reliable and current test.
  We are now into our fourth year of testing using Northwest Evaluation Association's (NWEA) Measures of Academic Progress (MAP). Edvance (formerly The Ontario Association of Christian Schools) has highly recommended this test for participating Christian Schools. The test is designed not only to compare students' scores to norms but also to measure individual student progress over time in reading,  language usage, and math. The MAP on-line test adapts the level and complexity of the questions to be appropriate for each student's level of learning. As a result, each student will have the same opportunity to succeed and maintain a positive attitude toward testing. Another advantage of MAP tests is that we receive detailed, accurate information about student growth. Over the past two years, NWEA has done some terrific work in building in assistive technology supports. We are excited about the new features for this year's test.
Students will start the testing this week. Testing will occur three times this year, once during each of the fall, winter, and spring terms. If you are interested in learning more about MAP, here is a link to further information:  nwea.org/assessments/map/  and/or  nwea.org/content/uploads/2017/08/Parent-Guide.pdf.
During parent-teacher conferences, there will be opportunity to ask questions about  MAP testing and results as well. If you have questions, please don't hesitate to speak to staff.
 
C. Verbeek, Principal
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Terry Fox Run

Terry Fox National School Run
 
What a privilege it is to be able to participate in the Terry Fox Run. This is a way that we can show others we care and that giving is a way to show God’s love to those around us. It is a great example of “Walking with God.” Students in grades 2-8 will be joining approximately 4,300 schools across Canada in the Terry Fox National School Run. To date an outstanding $750 million has been raised for cancer research - a sum that has transformed the lives of people living with cancer today. We are inspired to continue the Marathon of Hope that started 38 years ago at St. John's, Nfld. on a cold April 12 day. 
This is our 10th year of participating in the Terry Fox Run. We have raised a total of $16,829 for cancer research! Everyone knows someone who has had to deal with cancer. There is hope! Students will once again be thinking of someone touched by cancer to write on their "I'm Running For..." sticker. WCS will be raising funds again this year and we will participate in the run on Wednesday, Sept. 26. Your continued support ensures that research teams are able to explore innovative approaches that result in improved outcomes for patients with cancer. Students in grades 3-8 have taken a pledge sheet home with them last week. Here is the link for online fundraising: http://www.terryfox.ca/WoodstockCSWoodstock.
If you have any questions just contact me.
Mrs. Hickey
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Why?

Why?
 
If you have a preschooler, or if you know about or remember that stage, you will know that one of the more frequent questions asked during this period of development is 'why'? With their intense curiosity and increased awareness of the world around them, it is a natural question to ask to help them frame and understand the world. From time to time, it is good for all of us to step back, reflect, and ask 'why' questions. As part of our strategic planning process last year, we reviewed the mission and vision statements for Woodstock Christian School. Going through this process caused us to ask some big and fundamental questions. "Why are we here?" "What is it that we, as a school, seek to do?" "As an organization/institution, what is God calling us to do?" Various groups of people explored these questions, examined our founding documents, reflected, and came forward with a number of statements. Out of those ideas, the mission statement was produced.
Woodstock Christian School exists to nurture faith, engage learning and grow in community … to the glory of God. 
It is good to consider the big questions and to reflect on the 'why'. From this point, we can move to the 'what' and the 'how'. As we go through this school year together, may we at WCS bring God glory as we grow together in faith, learning, and community.
C. Verbeek
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Forward Drive

On October 8, we will be rolling out the Forward Drive. This year, our focus is on the theme of prayer. Our key passage is from Colossians 4:3a, "Pray for us too... that God will give us many opportunities to speak about his mysterious plan concerning Christ." We will pray together through a 5 day prayer booklet. Each day will focus on a different part of our community - local, global, classrooms, parent and our school body itself.
As you enter the school in October you will see our prayer tree. Take a moment to write a prayer for our school, or a prayer that is on your heart and add it to our tree. Please pray with us as we go through this school year.
 
Joleen Mulder
Director of Advancement and Communications
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A Brand New Year

It’s a brand new year! Welcome to our new students and staff. Welcome back previous students, teachers and support staff and drivers. A special welcome to parents, relatives, friends, neighbours. We are happy to have your support and share your excitement for another school year. We are welcoming many new students and several new educational assistants this year. Welcome to Mrs. Megan Dawson, Mrs. Wendy deVries, Mrs. Bonnie Bohner, Mrs. Cara Renkema, and Mrs. Janet Scheele. At our opening assembly this morning, we welcomed 22 new families to Woodstock Christian School! This is so amazing. We hope you will soon feel ‘at home’ in this community.
This summer, due to an abundant increase in enrolment, we converted the computer lab to a classroom. Take a stroll through the school and check out it out, along with the other classrooms. We are so blessed to have three kindergarten classes this year. The excitement and energy in our kindergarten/primary wing is tremendous! We praise God for a new year and new beginnings! I am excited to explore our new theme: WALK WITH GOD. TALK WITH GOD. Stay tuned for future chapels, assemblies, and editorials exploring how  we can live for God and respond to his great love for us. Blessings for the new school year.
 
Carol Verbeek
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Farewell to Our Grads

 

As we worked through our theme this year, Faith in Action: Heroes for God, we learned about many godly traits exhibited by Bible heroes. We learned about what these stories of faith tell us about God. As a connection to the theme, one of the assignments for the eighth grade art class early in the year was to illustrate their art folder with their name and with five character traits that students thought described themselves well. Choosing traits was difficult, and many students consulted with friends and classmates to complete their five. Students described themselves as bold, creative, athletic, caring, awesome, and in many more ways. We have known some of our grade eight students for 10 years, and some for just a short time. Staff and students at WCS have been blessed by our bold, creative, athletic, sincere, godly, caring and awesome (and more!) grads. We will miss you, but we also know it’s time for you to move on to new challenges. Walk with God and He will continue to guide and bless you. Fare well & God bless you, Alyvia, Sarah, Ian, Brayden, Kayla, Ellie, Grace, Christi, Emma, Caleb, Kailyn, GraceAnn, Sophie, Joseph, Matthew, Jesse, Wesley, Samantha, Max, Amber, Avery, and Josh.

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9 days!

        As I was doing my end of the day bus supervision duty on Friday I noticed a student stop to write “9 days of school left” on the dirty back door window of a bus. Yikes, was he serious? Where did the time go? Time flies when you are having fun is the age old saying. I know we are near the end of a school year when we wrap up track and field. Last Wednesday WCS sent 50 students to compete at the Woodstock District Track and Field Meet in Strathroy. Christian school athletes from Aylmer, Clinton, London, Stratford, Strathroy, St. Thomas, and Woodstock joined together in a variety of running, jumping, and throwing events. It was a joy to see students use their talents and celebrate one another’s achievements.  I saw students encouraging one another and show good sportsmanship. There were a lot of parents and grandparents that came along to support the students. The competition was great and in the end Aylmer took home the championship banner. Woodstock placed 4th overall.

   This is an exciting time of the year. Lots of students are looking forward to class trips, project based learning and other displays of learning are going on in many classes. Grade 8 is getting ready for graduation and the rest of the school is getting ready for the grade 8 tribute assembly. There is a librarian visit from WPL sharing about summer reading programs, and the list goes on. Of course teachers are trying to get the last of the curriculum covered before it is time to say goodbye to the students.

    I am reminded that every day is a blessing and gift from God. He is in control and he uses each one of us to live out his plan. I am so thankful that we at WCS can share this news with each other and our students. Enjoy the last 9 days of the school year!

Mrs. J. Hickey- Grade 3

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Awe. Marvel. Wonder.

 

In this spring (almost summer!) season, when everything is green and growing, seeds are sprouting in the fields and gardens, flowers and shrubs are blooming, we thank God for His creative power and for the rhythm of the seasons. Recently our staff devotions have highlighted the precision and detail of the created world and the amazing opportunity we have, as educators at WCS, to show students God’s glory. We want for them to experience awe and wonder as they explore and see the world around them. I was blessed this past weekend to enjoy a little bit of Canada’s west coast. From oceanside to mountain top views, from sunshine to sudden snow showers, from soaring eagles to diving seals - the beauty and majesty of God continues to be revealed.

In his song, Creation Calls, Brian Doerksen writes:

“I have felt the wind blow,

Whispering your name

I have seen your tears fall,

When I watch the rain.

How could I say there is no God?

When all around creation calls!!

A singing bird, a mighty tree,

The vast expanse of open sea…”

Our God has created an amazing world for us to care for and enjoy. See it. Share it. Praise God for it.

-Carol Verbeek, Principal

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Oliver Twist Production

Please, go back in time to 5 weeks ago when the older students performed the play Oliver Twist.  What a blessing the play was to our school, our school community, the students, and myself.  As the co-director with Mrs. Martin, I had the enjoyable privilege of watching the students develop their acting skills.  It is so interesting and exciting to watch them come to an understanding of how their character moves, talks, reacts, and thinks in each situation their character find themselves in. What an awesome experience it is to observe children as they grapple and struggle with the not so nice things their characters do.  It is so fun to see them become the character and be free to act.  WCS is so blessed to be able to put on a major production every other year!  I am grateful for the learning opportunities these productions give our students.

         I want to thank each student who acted in Oliver Twist.  I am so proud of you!  You were always eager and dedicated in practices. Thank you to all the teachers who helped behind the scenes with props, costumes, and set. Without your assistance, the play would not have been successful.  Our stage crew was willing and eager to tackle every job given them.  Thanks guys!  A very huge thanks to the parents who encouraged, helped memorizing lines, found costumes, and picked up their children from practices (and more).  Without all your dedication and prayers the play would not have been a success.  Thank you, God, for all the talents and abilities you have given these children and how they overcame fears and gave an amazing performance.

                                                                                    N. Van Andel

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Running the Race

Running the Race
 
Hebrews 12:1-2 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
The Race Analogy: We all want our kids to press on toward the goal as they make their way through life. When preparing your kids for this most important race, be sure to keep a few things in mind:
Training is essential - Paul reminds all of us to train yourself to be godly. Training needs to take place every day in every way. Look for opportunities to teach, model, and reinforce Gods incredible grace 24/7.
Cheer one another on - It's no accident that Scripture repeatedly implores us to encourage one another, build each other up (1 Thess 5:11), to carry one another's burdens (Galatians 6:2). No one  is meant to run this race alone.
Stay focused - Run with perseverance the race marked out for us
Finish strong - "Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him" (James 1:12).
Pass the baton - The greatest legacy we can pass onto the next generation is the Good News of Jesus Christ. Be sure to practice your handoff, over and over again!
(source: christianliferesources.com)
C. Verbeek
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