These are a Few of My Favorite Things Brina Osborne, 3rd Grade Teacher Last year, I walked into the Great Room and was applauded by several students. The applause wasn’t just for me. It was for whomever walked through those doors. I even left the room and entered a second time, but the students did not cheer again. Logan Turner explained to me that he thought of doing that to encourage our ACA family. What a lovely picture of Hebrews 12:1: “We are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses.” I felt cheered to run the race set before me.
Each Monday during Grammar School chapel, the precious little children lifting their hands and sincerely singing praises to our great God moves me emotionally. A few of the little girls hold onto each other, their arms around each others’ necks, during worship. I have to work to hold back the tears and can only imagine how happy our Father is to experience the praises and sweet voices of the children.
One of our snack machines has fun pictures of students and teachers for sale. Seniors Nik Stophel and David Ahrens came up with the idea to generate funds by placing their pictures in the empty slots. They sold wildly! Then, pictures of a few high school teachers showed up, even one of Mr. Post dressed as a pirate. Katie Osborne came up with the idea of making a trading card game where each teacher has a special power and is worth a certain number of points. Mr. Post’s card is, of course, the trump card. I love being surrounded by students with such ingenuity and creativity!
At the beginning of this year, some of the music and drama classes were held in the Great Room. I had the awesome privilege of hearing lovely Show Choir voices and other singing. Even now, after school, Anthony Conroy practices his cello while Joe Bates practices his violin. Whether they play simple scales or rich classical melodies from the past, their music lifts my spirits.
I’ve been taking the Grammar School children outside in the mornings to play before school starts to stimulate their brains with movement. One of my parents, Jens Quilitzsch, sat with me and asked how he could pray for me or for my family. Wow! I’ve been hired to serve him by teaching his child, and he wants to pray for me! Amazing. This year, I am learning Latin. I teach at a classical school, so, of course, I should know Latin! I am really enjoying it. Where else can you have the opportunity to audit a class and better yourself? Now I can keep up with my two children who are also studying Latin. I’ll tell you a funny story about Latin at home. Katie had just received her iPad to use on her advanced classical diploma track. She needed help from her dad, the family computer expert, just after we had turned out the light in our bedroom. She dramatically marched into our dark room by the light of her iPad, singing, “Pater noster!” which is “our father” in Latin. We cracked up! Only in a classical school do you get to experience fun like that!
I hear stories from the high school students about their desire never to let a student sit alone. One student says, “I love him because he is one of God’s children. It doesn’t matter that he isn’t cool. He’s part of God’s family.” A female student was frustrated by the way some upper classmen were treating her and her friends. She and her friends discussed what they could do to stop that type of behavior and made plans to treat those younger than they are the way they would like to be treated.
Why do David Ahrens and Nik Stophel play with the third-graders? There are no perks for playing with them. It’s certainly not the popular thing to do. But they do it. They’ve eaten lunch with the younger kids for quite a while now, and regularly interact with them before school starts. No one has asked them to do this — at least not anyone we can see. This excites me. There are young adults who are not self-centered, who give of themselves, who let the little children come unto them. Wow — and I get to rub shoulders with students like this! It’s almost too much. I am overwhelmed by the joys and creativity that surround me.