Biblical studies at William of Orange Christian School are done for two distinct and interrelated reasons. First, they are taught so that the student can better know his God and, second, so that the student can better know his neighbour. In other words, the student is trained to reflect his Maker and is equipped for every good work. These studies are designed to enable the student to explore the Biblical motifs of creation, fall, exodus, redemption and consummation.
Together with Biblical Studies, Church History is the study of the great and wonderful deeds of the Lord throughout history. The old but good adage “History is His story” gives focus to Church History and urges the teacher to look at the events in the world and in the church from the perspective of Psalm 2 (Book of Praise):
“Why do the restless heathen madly rage?
What haughty schemes are they in vain contriving?
The kings and rulers of the earth engage
In rash attempts to plot their empty striving.”
Church History, therefore, is the study of God’s mighty acts as He marches history toward its final consummation. Although the church may be few in number, it will always remain. The LORD will not allow anyone to snatch His chosen ones from His hand.
The study of humankind is a study in relationships. From the time that man and woman walked in the Garden with the Creator, conversing with Him and each other until the present time, relationships have defined, described and divided humankind. Social Studies is the study of these relationships – the interaction of man with his fellow man and his interaction with the environment within an historical and geographical context.
The historical aspect to Social Studies introduces the student to God’s plan for the nations, man’s task within the community, and man’s response to the community around him. Man makes cultural choices based on his beliefs and values. Exposure to these cultures, and acknowledging and understanding their worth, enables the student to make responsible decisions and more fully appreciate the diversity of cultures that God has given.
The geography component of the Social Studies strand deals with the interaction of man with his environment. This component emphasizes that the earth is the Lord’s and that man is to be a responsible steward of all the resources that God has given in His creation.
Therefore, students are encouraged to:
- See the role they play in shaping society, understanding and preparing to exercise their rights and responsibilities within the family, the community, Canada and the world.
- Search out, describe, understand, and explain the order that God has set in creation, thereby learning to think critically, evaluate information, and practice effective communication.
- Read, graph and interpret data.
- Develop an appreciation and understanding of the democratic system and how this can assist them to be a Canadian.
Relationship between God and man is built on communication between the Creator and the creature. The first task that man did after his creation was to name the animals. Using language to describe and name is a gift from the Creator. It is primarily a means of communicating heartfelt adoration for the Creator and unspeakable love for the creature.
Language is a reflection of the attitude of the heart. It is language that defines the relationship between the Creator and the creature. Learning the skills, as necessary as they are, must be predicated on an attitude of the heart. Through reading, writing, speaking, listening experiences, and examples, the student is introduced to the potential of the use of language. To function effectively within a Christian environment, students need to learn to communicate clearly, to express themselves effectively, and to gain access to and make sense of information. Students, who read, write, speak and listen with intelligence, discernment, empathy, respect, and discrimination will develop skills in thinking and communication, as well as attitudes, and the knowledge that will prepare them for active participation in their community.
Reading, and the study of literature, enhances the aesthetic, imaginative, creative and affective aspects of a person’s development. It allows students to explore imaginatively and provides them with an understanding of cultural heritage and historical perspective. The study of literature also provides models of effective and varied language use for students to draw upon in their own compositions.
Through writing and speaking, students learn to clarify thought, emotions, and experiences, and learn to share these things with others in constructive and edifying ways. Writing provides the opportunity for careful organization of one’s picture of reality and stimulates development of precision, clarity and imagination required for effective communication.
Through listening, students learn to show increasing interest and awareness of another person and his/her point of view. Students learn to increase their sensitivity to detail in content as they show increasing attentiveness and less distractibility.
Language Arts emphasizes the whole continuum of skills and process included in Bloom’s taxonomy – knowledge, comprehension, application, analysis, synthesis, and evaluation, together with critical thinking, creativity, problem-solving, decision making, and organizing.
Man’s perfect personal communion with his Creator, with others, and with creation was broken when the man and woman disobeyed God; when they chose the way of self-dependency and self. The brokenness that resulted is as evident in language as it is in all other aspects of life. This brokenness becomes apparent in the verbal misunderstandings that create broken relationships. The healing power of Jesus Christ extends to the use of languages as well as to all other aspects of life. Effective use of language enhances the ability to serve God and man in a loving, God-honouring manner.
Through the study of French, students will develop a greater awareness of Canada. The student will also develop a better ability to communicate with his/her fellow Canadians, thereby enhancing the possibility of mutual understanding. By teaching French, we hope to provide a feeling of satisfaction and accomplishment from the ability to speak, understand, read, and write Canada’s other language.