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Posts Tagged "critical thinking"

Successful Bible quiz competition!

December 06, 2023

Have you memorized the book of Mark? Which chapter of Deuteronomy features the Shema? What was the name of the demon-possessed man from the Gadarenes?

Some people would balk at these questions, but not 4th grader Simeon Gill. Simeon and two teammates combined forces to compete in their church network's nation-wide Bible quiz competition. And they did great!

Focusing on the two books of Deuteronomy and Mark, Simeon's team prepared for the competitions by studying consistently and practicing three times a week. Even though they would compete against teams of 4 (or even 6, including alternates), Simeon's three-person team did their best.

The team won the local Queens round, then the Northeastern Conference (composed of around 200 churches), which qualified them to compete in the national competition in Orlando, Florida, last month. With each round, Simeon was surprised how confident he could stay and how well his team did. Finally, in Orlando, the team won the national championship!

Simeon's mom reports that the team's success has made a major impact on the young people in the church. The team for next year will be larger and more motivated than this year's team. Perhaps they can repeat as champions?

Most importantly, we are so proud of the way Simeon is learning to study and treasure God's Word. He has benefited from the strong spiritual environment at FCS which enhances his personal studies, says his mom. Keep learning and succeeding, Simeon!

Our Greatest Joy

July 20, 2023
By Chantal Nelson

“I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.”
- 3 John 4

A young girl leans out of her stroller, straining for the shiny toy necklace in the store window. It may be plastic, and it may be relatively cheap, but to her it is valuable. Something that shiny must be valuable. We smile at the misguided earnestness of a sweet child. She is simple and naïve, though eager. But we may not be as amused if an adult acted the same way. Imagine the scene if the girl’s mother pays top dollar for the plastic necklace but completely overlooks the diamond pendant couched on a dark pillow under the counter. This would be ironic and ultimately tragic.

In a sense, our society has learned to value the wrong things, pursuing them at the expense of truth. We often seek entertainment over meaning, comfort over growth, experience over accomplishment, trifles over truth. And our children grow up learning to prioritize those same things. In a time when truth is rare, it becomes even more valuable. Truth is the one indispensable commodity, the key to seeing and living in light of reality. This way of living brings stability, even joy. So John expresses what every parent and teacher hope to say: that his children continue to walk in truth.

This, then, is the goal of a distinctly Christian education. We are convinced that the God of heaven has created us and designed us with true personhood as male and female. He has defined moral reality, ordaining truths and commands that will best equip us to live and enjoy His gift of life. And in His greatest of acts, He has sent His Son Jesus Christ, full of grace and truth, to model a truly godly life and to save His people from their sins. This grand understanding of reality, of truth, defines our mission as a Christian school.

Truth forms the foundation to the education that we provide at Flushing Christian School. More than informing children’s minds, we are forming their hearts and instincts to know, recognize, and love truth. In short, we long for them to value and walk in truth.

This happens in our opening assembly, when we recite the pledges, a core Scriptural verse, and rehearse our honor code. Truth appears in the Bible classes, both the instructional and the devotional aspects of the period. Truth forms the lesson plans for the day, orienting every subject to adhere to the realities revealed in Scripture. Truth underlies the experiences and exercises of our electives. Truth is present when the co-valedictorian of the Class of 2022 reminds his peers of the truths they have learned, or when his fellow co-valedictorian prays over her classmates.

Because we invest in truth, we are certain of a joyful outcome.

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Resources for Parents

December 16, 2022

Looking for resources to help you as your raise your child? Here's a great start!

Print Resources for Adults:

Print Resources for Young People:

Digital Resources for Raising Children:

Digital tools:

Our Highest Priority as a Thinking Christian School

December 09, 2022
By Chantal Nelson
“Do not be deceived: ‘Evil company corrupts good habits.’” (1 Corinthians 15:33)

You are an average of your five closest friends. Take the character traits of the five people with whom you spend the most time, mix them together, and you will begin to recognize yourself. Our relationships and, more broadly, our company greatly impact us.

The Latin root for company gives a helpful illustration. Combining the words for “together” and “bread,” it references the era of open-air markets where merchants would swap stories and conduct business over a shared meal. The pattern continues today.

As in ancient times, we tend to surround ourselves with the familiar, giving time and space to the people and practices with which we are most comfortable. Our routine company begins to grow more and more familiar, exerting more and more influence. This is a good thing; God designed us to function this way as social and impressionable beings. However, this includes more than just in-person interactions.

This school year, our staff has been reading and discussing The Wisdom Pyramid by Brett McCracken. This book study has caused me to evaluate my use of technology and assess whether I have been forming healthy habits or bad habits through its constant use. Whether I’m on social media or seeking entertainment, I’ve fallen into the trap of keeping company with my devices more than with face-to-face interactions, particularly when eating alone. This has caused me to ask the question, “Who is my closest company?”

That question must be asked of our society at large. I wonder if the expansive reach of social media and the barrage of perpetual “news” has caused us as a society to keep company with false ideologies.  Perhaps believers are influenced to act based on feeling, to make impulsive judgments and snap decisions without deep, critical thinking. We wouldn’t be the first believers to experience this pressure.

Paul warns the Corinthians against “evil company” in relation to false doctrine in the church that seriously affected their beliefs and behaviors. The warning was desperately needed; they were being deceived, after all. Paul follows this warning with an exhortation, urging them to wake up from their stupor, grow sober, and stop sinning through their poor choice of company. 

I am convinced that we at Flushing Christian School must continue to prioritize critical thinking. It is important for our students to know how to research, look up sources, recognize the underlying ideologies, then process the information with discernment. They must be able to distinguish fact from opinion and truth from error. What I desire for myself, and what we desire for them is that they delight in God’s Word, meditate on it and love Him with all their mind.  Then, they will be able not only to think for themselves but also to engage this world with the truth in a humble, loving manner.

- Chantal Nelson
Head of School

(Photo Credit: Duy Pham | unsplash)

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