At Zeeland Christian, we use a relational style of teaching that creates a safe learning environment. Our students know it's okay to try new things even if it means failing along the way. Children learn through failure and success. So, our job isn't to make sure they succeed. Our job is to provide them with many opportunities to fail and learn from their failures. After all, students who never fail are not pushing their academic boundaries hard enough.
We believe that the days of teachers standing at the front of the classroom and giving monologues are over. Today's classrooms must be exploratory, interactive, challenging, relevant and project-oriented.
Relationship-based teaching - Teachers focus on developing a trusted relationship with students so that the children feel comfortable trying new things.
The concept of teachers as facilitators - Teachers point students toward the information they need but do not often provide it to them.
Differentiated teaching - Teachers meet each student where he or she is academically.
Relevance to the real world - Teachers strive to show students real world applications in everything they teach.
A global perspective - Teachers show students the amazing world God has created.
Inquiry based learning - Teachers pose questions to students and give them the chance to discover the answers.
Exploration - Students are encouraged to explore subject matter as opposed to being led through it by the teacher.
Integrated projects - A project on Egypt (social studies) will involve the amazing geometry of the pyramids (math) while reading a fiction book on the life of slave girl in ancient times (language arts).
Passing the Baton
Each of us has been given the responsibility to pass on our faith to those around us. At Zeeland Christian, one of the ways we do that is by physically passing a baton back and forth. Each student receives a baton when they start at ZCS. Inside the baton is a piece of paper. Each year, the student's teacher will write a note of spiritual encouragement. The batons travel with the student the entire time they are at Zeeland Christian. By Eighth Grade, students will have 8-9 years of notes from teachers about how the teachers have seen God working in the child's life.
2013-2014 ZCS Theme: GO!
The 2013-2014 theme, "GO!" comes from Matt. 28:19, "Therefore go and make disciples of all nations..." We pray for God's leading this year to make disciples everywhere we go!