Secondary Spiritual Emphasis Week

“Refresh” was the theme this year for Spiritual Emphasis Week as students sought to refresh themselves in the Word of God and His presence. Secondary students had six services over the course of four days in which they were able to spend extended periods of time in praise and worship. Additionally, all six services featured dynamic speakers communicating God’s truth on the topics of: renewing your mind, renewing your perception of God, abiding with Him, engaging the different seasons of spiritual growth in life, and sustaining growth in God over the long haul. The students were incredibly blessed to have pastors come from all over Long Island and share God’s word. Three of the pastors were actually SCS alumni!  After each of the last four sermons, our students broke into small discussion groups, guided by a faculty sponsor, where the young men and women of God were able to tackle the personal application of each message and share with each other what they learned individually. We have seen great spiritual growth in the student body through the leveraging of the small group discussion format. This interpersonal, active, and engaging form of ministry corresponds closely to the mission of SCS, which is to not only teach with excellence in the classroom, but also to provide life-on-life influence that produces exceptional young Christian leaders with a heart for God, a mind for Truth, and a passion to change the World.

Elementary Spiritual Emphasis Week 2016

Excitement was high and God was “on the move” in our elementary students during spiritual emphasis week! A group of fifth graders taught the entire elementary motions to the “Power Shuffle” praise song that began every chapel with great energy and anticipation. Students looked forward to the “foot races” at the start of each chapel talk in which students were invited to the front to compete with each other and reminded of our “step by step” theme. We were blessed to be taught by Pastor and Mrs. Kistler at our three chapels. They taught us about how to walk with God, delight in Him, and make good choices in daily lives. The Kistlers love to involve students, tell funny stories, and are gifted at clearly teaching God’s truth to students. It was a great week and the concepts learned naturally connect to our continuing chapel topic this year of how we can “be like a tree” and grow strong in our faith. What a privilege to be actively involved in cultivating a dynamic walk with Christ in the lives of young people!

Ways to Develop Your Child’s Creative Writing Skills

The development of good writing skills is critical for children not only because it greatly fosters their success in school, but also because it will provide them with a valuable tool that will help them excel professionally as an adult. Additionally, it provides children with a way to communicate their thoughts and feelings and also provides them with a way to be creative.

Here are a few ways you can help your child develop or improve upon his or her creative writing skills…

Make Time

Writing takes time. So, ensure your child has the time to relax, unwind and contemplate his/her writing.

Make Space

Make sure your child has an adequate writing surface (e.g. table, desk) in an area that is free from distractions, along with the necessary tools (e.g. pencil, notebook).

Provide Inspiration

Good readers make better writers, as reading introduces children to different topics and writing styles. Therefore, one of the best ways to provide inspiration for writing is by reading with your child. Asking your child questions about what was read allows him/her to develop a better understanding of writing structure and also gets the creative juices flowing!

Encourage Creativity

Encourage your child to “think outside of the box”. Don’t focus too much on grammar and spelling, but instead, encourage the creative process. While editing is certainly necessary to develop good writing skills, it’s important to first lay the groundwork for a supportive environment that encourages creativity.

Connect Writing with Your Child’s Interests

If your child is interested in baseball, encourage him/her to write a story about a favorite player. Or if your child is interested in a particular television show, suggest that he/she write about a favorite episode or even make one up.

Being a Good Role Model

Finally, demonstrating the importance of both reading and writing by doing both in front of your child on a regular basis will serve as powerful way to develop his/her creative writing skills.

References: Schlauch, K. (2016, March 19). 5 Ways to Improve Your Child’s Creative Writing Skills. [Blog post]. Retrieved from: