“One of the questions raised by those who cannot yet see the need for Christian schools is whether it is not possible for a God-fearing child to know and hold the Truth even though the child attends a school where the Truth is not taught. After all, the child has the church and the home. The answer is that this is possible; indeed, it has often been the case, especially where Christian schools were impossible. But it is also the case that many children are weakened, and some even destroyed, spiritually. We must not underestimate the power of education, whether for good or for bad.
Although it is possible for covenant children to know the Truth and embrace it apart from Christian schools, we Christian parents cannot be content that our children receive instruction five days a week, seven hours a day, for some twelve or fifteen years, that opposes and undermines our teaching at home and at church. We are desirous that all the teaching be harmonious and complementary. We are convinced, with the wise Preacher, that a threefold cord of home, school, and church is not quickly broken (Eccl. 4:12).”
Excerpt from”The Necessity of good Christian schools” by Rev. David J. Engelsma.
Time flies… Three weeks of teaching and assisting are behind us. How we enjoyed our placement at Sunrise Christian School! Rianne Meerkerk, who was at the school last year, told us about her placement. We became enthusiastic and contacted the school. We are grateful to everyone who helped us with the organisation of our placement. The purpose of our placement was to gain experience at a school in another country and to look into similarities and differences between education in The Netherlands and education in Scotland.
What a great experience it was! There was a lot to do at the school, but that’s why we felt we could be very useful. We also felt accepted and appreciated by the teachers and children. In the morning we did a lot of activities with the children during the maths and language lessons. We also helped to teach some PE lessons on Friday. The infants learned a beautiful song about the Netherlands. In the afternoon we were busy making educational materials and assisting with some activities.
Even though our English was not very strong, we had many conversations with the pupils and teachers. We learned a lot of new words during our stay in Scotland. And the children learned a few Dutch words. For example: goedemorgen (good morning) en dankuwel (thank you).
Norris family, we are so grateful to you for our stay during weekdays. Nothing was too much.. And Mrs Stewart and Mrs Campbell, thank you so very much for our stay with you at weekends. You were all so hospitable!
To everybody who made our placement possible and educational: thank you so very much! It was an unforgettable period of our training. It was hard to say goodbye to everybody after three weeks. We wish you all every blessing. We hope that God will bless the Christian education to the teachers, assistants, parents and children.
Margreet den Hartog and Petrine Vermeer
Sunrise is planning to have our annual Winter Café to mark the closing of this year. It will be held at the school on Friday the 22nd of December between 12 and 2.30 pm. The tickets are £3 each, for which you will get a lunch including soup and a roll, home baking, tea/coffee, juice. And of course the children are preparing a wee performance for friends, family or visitors to enjoy! If you missed our Open day, this is the chance to come and see our school and have a lovely lunch with us.
Any enquiries or questions, please, email at email@example.com.
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In topic we have been learning about Ancient Egypt. It is where Moses and Joseph lived for a long time. The kings of Egypt were called pharaohs. Pharaohs and other important people were buried in pyramids. There was a river called The Nile. It was famous. The Nile ran into the Mediterranean Sea. In Ancient Egypt dead people were wrapped in cloth and ointments. They were called mummies. Once a year the Nile flooded its banks, and this made the soil soft for the farmers to grow their crops. I love this topic because it helps me understand the past and places like Egypt.
The Early Church and The Middle Ages
This term we have been learning that in the Early church there were martyrs. The first one martyred was Stephen. He was martyred in 35 AD. There was Early church fathers too and they wrote a lot of books.
We have also been finding out about the Middle Ages. In the Middle Ages people were put in prison and tied up and chained. The prison was usually in the knights’ castle. The Knights wore armour.
The visible church in Scotland just before the Reformation was one of the most corrupt and degenerate in Europe. The prevailing vices of the clergy, their worldliness, covetousness, idleness, immorality and oppression of the poor merited the biting scorn of the court poet, Sir David Lyndsay of the Mount in his Ane Satyre of the Thrie Estates. The people shared in the almost universal dissatisfaction with the Roman Church throughout Europe. Furthermore, ever since the reign of David I, “ane sair sanct to the crown” – as one of his successors described him, Rome had amassed not less than a third of the richest and most productive estates and lands for its abbeys, monasteries and bishoprics through pious bequests for soul masses, indulgences and penances. In addition there were the tithes levied on all kinds of produce (including fish!) and even funeral exactions such as the priest taking away the cow of a poor widow (vividly described by Sir David Lyndsay)! At the same time the numerous clergy, both secular (bishops and parish priests) and regular (abbots, abbesses, priors, prioresses, monks, nuns) and mendicant friars of various orders, were exempt from state taxation! Along with this enormous wealth we find the malign influence of great power, both civil and religious, enslaving with superstitious fears of maledictions and eternal torments the minds and souls of the people. Clerical dominance of society was ensured by the fact that the hierarchy formed the educated class in society, filling the financial, legal and administrative posts in government and the highest offices in the state. Continue reading The Scottish Reformation. Its Origin and Background.
“…in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”
1 Thessalonians 5:18
We are thankful for:
- Outdoor renovations with new monoblock
- Storage cabinet organised by Janneke Fraser
- Carpet cleaned by Simon Anderson with cleaner donated by Homebase
- Art (Janneke Fraser and Vera Wilson) and PE volunteers (Ian Gillies)
- Dedicated, skilled and enthusiastic volunteer teacher assistants
- School Vision Workshop organised by Simon and Syinyi that taught us to channel our efforts in order to achieve our dream for the school
- Harmony amongst staff and pupils
- Visit from Dutch Christians with an interest in supporting the school
- Anjali, who was one of the first pupils at our school, has come back from down south to join our school again!
We would like to focus our prayers on:
- The Lord’s help in organising an open day for the school
- A suitable school building to be provided to grow our school and fulfil our vision for Sunrise!
- The Lord’s provision of funds to either purchase land to build on/or purchase the new premises
- As grateful as we are to our Dutch Christian supporters, we would like to pray for an increased interest from local Christians and growth of kind donations from our homeland to help the school meet the running costs and follow its vision
- Continued interest in the school and more parents coming to realisation of importance of Christian education
- Continued favour within the community and from government agencies.
This term our topic is ‘Light’, based on Day One of Creation. We have been learning that the Lord is our light by singing Psalm 27 at morning assemblies. Children in the older class have been learning about how light travels in straight lines, how light reflects off flat and curved surfaces, how shadows change, about the visible spectrum, about coloured filters and about the human eye. In the younger class, pupils have been learning that the sun is God’s lamp, which never goes out. They have also learned about the difference between luminous and non-luminous objects and between God-made lights and man-made lights. After investigating which materials allow light to travel through them, they sorted them into groups of opaque, translucent and transparent materials. The children worked in pairs to examine the pupils of their eyes in the light and in the darkness and learned how they contract and expand to allow the right amount of light into the eye to see as much as possible. Pupils in the younger class enjoyed watching a slide show about animals glowing in the dark and had a lot of fun creating a shadow puppet theatre and playing in a dark tent with ‘big bear’ and ‘little bear’. All these topics have amazed the children and helped them to learn more about our wonderful Creator!
As last week was ‘Eye Health Week,’ we talked about guide dogs and pupils got to use a walking stick with a small tennis ball at the end to experience some of the obstacles encountered by people who are unable to see. Continue reading Pupils’ news!
“Christian school is not to be confused with a Sunday School, or with any other institution that exists to give children instruction in the Bible. The Christian school is an institution that has the function of instructing children in the various departments of knowledge that also constitute the curriculum of the public school: reading, history, science, math, and the other subjects. It does this seven hours a day, five days a week, throughout the school year. This raises the question: What is the distinctive feature of the Christian school that warrants its existence as a separate educational institution? The Christian school certainly does begin each day’s classes with prayer to God and with the reading of the Bible. It does this under the conviction that nothing that man does is profitable, unless God blesses it. Everything must be “sanctified by the word of God and prayer” (I Tim. 4:5). However, these activities of prayer and Bible-reading, although they are important, are not the main reasons for the existence of the Christian school. The distinctive feature of the Christian school is expressed in the word Christian. It is a school that is Christian throughout. It has a Christian foundation; it has Christian teacher; it gives Christian instruction; it provides a Christian moral environment; it has a Christian goal. All of this must be briefly explained.
The starting point is our firm faith that the Bible is the inspired Word of God. The Bible itself teaches this: “All scripture is given by inspiration of God…” (II Tim. 3:16). As the Word of God written, the Bible is the authority for our faith and our life. To believe and live according to God’s Word is the mark of a Christian. A Christian school, therefore, is a school that is founded upon and in every respect in harmony with the Scriptures, the written Word of God.”
Excerpt from “The Christian School: Why?” by David J. Engelsma.
“The Christian school is no new thing. It has a long and honorable tradition. What is new is the willingness of parents who confess Christ to have their children educated in schools from which God’s Word is rigorously banned. During the centuries before the birth of Jesus Christ, the Word of God was central in the instruction that the people of God gave to their children, a God Himself commanded in Deuteronomy 6:6-9. The education provided for the children of the church during the 1,400 years between the time of the apostles and the time of the Reformation of the church in A.D. 1517 was permeated with the Word of God. In this period, the schools were closely connected with the church. After 1517, the Reformers, notable among whom were Martin Luther and John Calvin, were agreed in their zeal for the establishment of schools in which all the children might receive an education. Their concern for schools was only surpassed by their concern for the church herself. But they were also one in their insistence that these schools be founded upon and ruled by the Word of God, the Bible. Those early citizens of our own country who set up schools and universities that were intended to be Christian continued the long tradition of the Christian school.”
(An excerpt from “The Christian School: Why?” by David J. Engelsma . Originally published in the 1960s by the Protestant Reformed Christian School Society in Loveland, Colorado.)