Remember Your Deep Hope
Remember Your Deep Hope

Bulletin 17   |   April 21, 2021

This past week I received an email with a pumped opening line: “We wrapped up TfT module 8 today. What a rich time!” It was from Mitch Menning, Head of School at Intermountain Christian School (ICS) in Salt Lake City, Utah. In Year One of the ICS’s TfT implementation journey, Mitch shared this word cloud created from the Deep Hope statements that the staff scripted during this final module:

As Mitch closed his message with “I kinda LOVE it,” his response echoed in me. The word cloud now hangs in my workspace–an encouraging reminder of the Deep Hope of Teaching for Transformation.

We continuously invite teachers and administrators to post their Deep Hope in a prominent place as an ongoing encouragement and reminder. As you bring your school year to a close over the coming months, I encourage you and your students to revisit your Deep Hope; one can never be reminded enough.

TfT Masterclasses: A New Initiative for Professional Development

We are very excited to launch our TfT Masterclasses—a facilitated opportunity for teachers to come together in a concentrated timeframe for the purpose of creating their TfT implementation plan for the next school year. In addition to leaving with a TfT plan, your sessions will be facilitated by an experienced TfT teacher within your curricular and/or grade level. You will also form a professional network with TfT teachers beyond your school walls who specialize in the same areas of teaching responsibility. The deadline to register is May 28. Masterclass information and registration links can be found here. Please contact me (Darryl DeBoer) with any questions.

Practicing Faith Survey: Assessing Our Impact on Faith Formation

CACE is excited to launch the Practicing Faith Survey (PFS), a tool that aims to help faith-based schools assess their impact on students’ faith formation. PFS was developed jointly by the educational research organization Cardus and the Kuyer’s Institute for Faith and Learning at Calvin University. Schools are encouraged to use the PFS as a benchmarking tool with students in their faith journey. A website has been developed to provide support tools for survey implementation. Learn more about the PFS from this recent CACE blogpost or by contacting CACE Senior Fellows Dan Beerens or Steven Levy.

Teaching for Transformation Graduate Course: Dordt University

After a highly successful launch year, we are pleased to announce that Dordt University will again offer a graduate-level course in Teaching for Transformation. This course closely follows the learning plans of the eight-day TfT implementation schedule and is designed for teachers or administrators that are new(ish) to a TfT school or for veteran TfT teachers desiring to sharpen their design skills while earning credit. Based on feedback from our TfT network, next year’s course can be taken either for three graduate credits or for licensure renewal credits. As before, this course is offered to the TfT network at 50% of the regular tuition rate for Dordt’s graduate courses. Further information, including registration links, can be found here.

First Grade Deep Hope: Legacy Christian School

The concept of Deep Hope can be an abstract idea even for experienced teachers. But Sandra Vroon, a first-grade teacher at Legacy Christian School, found words to make her classroom’s Deep Hope clear to her and her students: the first graders would KNOW God’s story, GROW in their love and knowledge of that story, and GO tell others His Story. Sandra introduced her Deep Hope as her prayer for her students: prayer was a concrete concept they were familiar with and could more easily grasp. Sandra and her students explored her Deep Hope further by creating a classroom book that unpacked the concept. She then invited her students’ parents to share their Deep Hopes for their children and place those Deep Hopes on children’s clipboards so they could see them often. Finally, Sandra had her students wrote their own Deep Hopes, which were compiled into another classroom book. These first graders demonstrated concretely that they were able to KNOW, GROW and GO in God’s story! Artifacts that capture this story can be seen here.

Playing Our Part: Middle School English

Challenge and trust releases grace through a commitment to try. . . . It is the first year for early adopter June Bond, middle school English teacher at San Marcos Academy, to experience TfT. June designed a TfT story that brought together their Language Arts novels exploring empathy with their Bible curriculum focused on the gospel of Mark. These studies inspired her class to support people standing in line for hours to receive their COVID-19 vaccine. It was an experience that involved a Real Need, Real Work, and Real People. After asking God for help, the class decided to provide water bottles to the many people standing in line for hours for a Covid-19 shot. Both teacher and students observed how God could help them use their voices to express God’s heart and character during challenging times by providing “Water for the Soul.”

Eighth Grade Science: Manhattan Christian

“Slow down to discover . . . God’s creation,” is the first part of Mrs. Doucette’s deep hope for her science students. In Manhattan Christian’s 8th grade science class, students slowed down to discover more about the periodic table and atoms in their first chemistry unit. Students were introduced to three main concepts by meeting each learning target with an activity and applying the vocabulary. Students were also invited to “slow down to discover God’s creation” via time exploring outside the classroom.

Getting to know our TfT Network: Denver Christian School

The staff of Denver Christian are in Year 2 of their TfT implementation journey. An important part of the second year is the sharing of learning stories designed by the early adopters. Denver Christian uses their blog as an effective way to communicate and celebrate their inspiring work. Browse this blog to get a taste of what happens when staff and students are invited to “See the Story, Live the Story.”
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