private middle school
Welcome back to our homework helper blog on writing practice! In our first blog, we covered some of the basics for the littlest writers. Until about first and the beginning of second grade, the biggest concerns for writing are simply knowing how to physically do it.
Later elementary, middle, and high school students are all working on the same things — they’re just getting increasingly more challenging and building on the same foundations. These writing tips from our private school will help your child be prepared for all sorts of writing formats down the road. Find out how you can help your child’s writing grow at home, and contact RCS to learn more about enrollment for preschool, kindergarten, elementary, middle, and high school!
Why Is Writing Practice Important?
Writing and math have two things in common: People think they’re either good or bad at it, and they plan on using it or never using it for the rest of their lives. But with both math and writing, we use these subjects all the time, which is why it’s important to learn the foundations and to feel confident in some of the basics.
Writing, in particular, is something that your child will do all throughout their life. Essays for classes that impact their GPA, college applications, cover letters, work reports — the list goes on. Our private middle school encourages writing practice now so that your child can be well prepared and knowledgeable for their future encounters with writing.
Ways to Help Your Child at Home
Whether they come home with a big assignment or you’ve noticed they haven’t gotten as good of grades in their writing report cards or assessments, there are plenty of ways to help your kiddo practice their writing skills outside of school.
Look Over Prompts
Nearly all writing assignments — even those in the professional setting — have some type of prompt. One of the most important parts of writing boils down to understanding exactly a prompt is looking for.
If your child has a paper to write for homework, look over the prompt with them and help them dissect it. Have them rewrite the prompt in their own words, so that they understand what it’s asking for. This is trickier than it seems, and requires a good deal of practice. Identify verbs and important keywords in each prompt, and practice on multiple occasions. Here’s an example:
“In Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, the author talks a lot about storms. Write a three-paragraph essay that points out at least two examples of storms taking place, and explains what these storms symbolize.”
Important keywords from the prompt:
- Three-paragraph essay
- Two examples of evidence
By dissecting the prompt, your child (and you) will have a clearer idea of what to base their writing off of.
Understand Writing Structure
Most essays are looking for an introductory paragraph that includes a thesis statement, a few body paragraphs (usually three for elementary and middle school grades) that provide evidence to support the thesis, and a closing paragraph that brings it back to the original thesis.
Looking over samples of essays in this format is a great way to get an idea of what works and doesn’t. Usually, your child’s teacher will include a rubric so you can also get an idea of what the final product should look like — feel free to ask for one if you don’t have access. By knowing what a paper or essay should look like, you can help your child format something similar.
On that note, it should be added that learning how to write thesis statements, find evidence, and connect it back to your writing in a cohesive manner is pretty challenging. Don’t let one bad grade knock your child (or yourself) down — use it as a learning tool and grow from there.
Understand Writing Types
Essays are one of the more formal types of writing, but at our private elementary, middle, and high school, your child will gain experience with many different types of writing. Poetry, limericks, haikus, song lyrics, fictional stories, and reports are just a few examples they’ll encounter.
By exposing your child to many different types of writing, they’ll become a more well-rounded writer. Switch up the books you read together at a young age — try poetry (“Inside Out And Back Again” is a great one), nonfiction books, fantasy stories, and everything in between. When your child can provide context to the writing task at hand, they’ll have a starting place and will be more ready to dive in.
Talk About Different Writers
If your child plays basketball, they undoubtedly know and talk about Stephen Curry and James Harden. If your child plays guitar, they know all about some of the great musicians of classic rock. We look to others for inspiration and motivation, and the same can and should be done for authors.
Talk with your kids about writers that they enjoy — has there ever been an author they’ve continued to be drawn to, or a series that they love? If so, what have they liked about the writing? By revealing the man or woman behind the curtain, your child can get a sense for writers that they love and aspire to emulate.
Handwritten essays are going to one day be a thing of the past. It’s important for your child to know how to write clearly and concisely by hand, but it’s just as important — if not more — to practice typing skills.
There are countless programs available that can work to improve your child’s typing. From games online to software, it’s a good idea to start your elementary schooler out strong so that their typing skills are developed by the time they get to our private middle school and high school.
Here’s the tricky thing about writing — no piece of writing will ever feel perfect. It will never feel done, and even if you’re proud of it now, chances are you’ll look back on it months and years later and find so many mistakes. You’ll wonder why you ever thought it was even good (and that’s when you become a writer!).
Setting goals for writing is essential for helping your child at home. Even if they get a great grade on a paper, there’s always something that can be improved. Take the time to set some intentional goals with your child, and reflect back on them consistently. Here are a few goal ideas for you both to consider:
- Improving my handwriting or typing (writing neater or typing faster/more efficiently).
- Using a new word I’ve researched for every paper.
- Raising my grade from a C to a B on my next writing assignment.
- Reading more from different writers, and trying out different writing voices.
Not only should your child set goals, but you all should celebrate when those goals are met! This is a great way to continue developing writing skills, and to help children feel motivated to continue growing as a writer.
Enroll Your Child With RCS
One of the ultimate best ways to help your child succeed in writing is by enrolling them with our private school in Loveland. We are the academic path your child needs to thrive and flourish in their future. See why parents and kids love RCS, and contact us to begin the enrollment process today.
The first week of the holidays, your family is likely rushing around trying to get everything set for Christmas. You’re cooking all the foods, meeting up with all the family, wrapping all the presents, and come Christmas Day, you just want to relax.
After the blur that is the Christmas season, however, you want your kids to do something engaging. You don’t want them spending the rest of their break on the iPad or on their phones or playing the XBox. Not only does this feel like a waste of time off, it makes getting back into school and routines more challenging. Our Christian school has some educational activities that your family to enjoy that are both enriching and fun, while still making time for relaxation.
Connecting as a family, resting, having fun, learning — that’s what break should be all about! Learn more from Resurrection Christian School, and look into preschool, elementary school, middle, and high school enrollment options for your child!
Visit a Museum
A day off makes for a delightful trip to a museum. In Colorado, we have so many amazing options for everyone in the family to enjoy. If you haven’t taken your family to the Denver Art Museum, it’s well worth a trip — they have countless kid-friendly activities that can be found around the museum. There’s also going to be a free day on January 5th!
The Fort Collins Museum of Discovery is an even closer option. While it’s a bit more catered to younger children (think fifth grade and below), there’s still something for everyone to enjoy. And don’t forget to check out the Loveland Museum website to find special events and exhibits that are happening close to home!
Check Out the Library
Getting some new books is an obvious perk of visiting the library. But the Loveland Public Library has tons going on, and all their events are free! There’s a Messy Arts event happening on December 22nd, and a science event on the 28th — ideal for some hands-on and enriching activities for your young ones! Check out their calendar to find more opportunities for your family. And back to our book comment, is there anything better than curling up with a good read in the middle of the day? We think not.
Go on a Literary Scavenger Hunt
Children learning their sight words and elementary-aged kids working on spelling and vocabulary can benefit from this one. Create a list of words that your kids need to find (completely fine to make different lists for each child), then walk around downtown Loveland or Fort Collins to try to find each word. Each time a word is found, kids should write down where they found it (good writing practice!) and can take a picture of it as well. This is a fun and unique way to grow literacy concepts, and a great way to get outside and explore over the holidays.
Have a Board Game Day
Board games are educational? You bet! There are so many educational benefits that come from playing a board game. Strategizing, critical thinking, logic and reasoning, these are just a few skills that are honed through board games. But to add onto that, essential math and literacy skills can be developed through specific board games. Bananagrams, Scrabble, and Boggle are great for word play. Yahtzee and Monopoly are excellent for working on addition and subtraction. You can never go wrong with a game of cards, either!
Get a new board game for the family for the holidays, and spend one of your days off playing. It beats everyone being on their phones or devices for a day, and it’s such a fun way to connect with your family.
If you’re worried about your competitive children getting upset and the game turning from a fun event to a hostile, tear-filled situation, find a collaborative game for everyone to play instead, try playing on teams, or have the classic rule: whoever wins has to clean everything up. It’s always a great opportunity to talk about being a good sport, regardless of if you win or lose.
Create a Lego Challenge
Who doesn’t love Legos? Legos, like board games, have a lot of intrinsic educational value. They require critical thinking, imagination, creativity, and a pretty solid understanding of structural engineering. However, you can create challenges that incorporate STEM activities for something different for your child to try. Here are just a few ideas:
- Tallest Tower: With an unlimited number of Legos, encourage your children to make the tallest tower they can — with the rule that their tower must be able to withstand an earthquake (shaking the table). After they’re finished, talk with them about how this rule impacted their design.
- Identical Housing: With an unlimited number of Legos, the challenge is to create identical housing for two Lego families (though the colors of the blocks can be different). It’s more challenging than you might think! An added layer would be giving a limited number of Legos, which makes it more tricky to figure out.
- Road Runners: Create a vehicle (with wheels) with the goal of having it travel as far as it possibly can. Looking for something more imaginative? Encourage your children to create a mode of transportation that has yet to exist. Hover cars, rocket boats, the sky’s the limit!
Grow Some Plants
A sunny winter home is an excellent place for plants to blossom and grow. Taking a trip to your local gardening store can get your family set up with some seeds, soil, and planters. An afternoon spent preparing your potential garden is an exciting and invigorating activity that everyone will love. It’s also a gift that keeps on giving — tracking plant progress is an ongoing learning activity!
You can go for a flower garden, or if you’d like to create a fruit and vegetable garden in the summer, this is a great time to start seeding your plants. Talk with gardening experts at a store about what they recommend, and happy planting!
Revisit the Story of Christmas
Learning about the birth of Jesus is why this season exists in the first place, and it’s absolutely an educational activity. While at our Christian school, your child will spend time learning about this miraculous time, but it’s an excellent lesson to reinforce at home as well.
Leading up to Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, spend some time with your family talking about Jesus’ birth, revisit the relevant scripture, and think about some takeaway lessons for your family to practice in the coming holidays and new year — as one example, think about how Mary did not have a place to go, and find volunteer opportunities to help those who are also in need.
The holidays are a spectacular time, and when you can bring in some educational activities for your family, you will not only strengthen your connections by spending time together, but you’ll have a break that’s happier and more fulfilling. Resurrection Christian School is all about having learning opportunities wherever you are, but we’re also about family time and getting to relax. With these activities, you’ll get all three. Have an amazing holiday season, and contact our Christian school in Loveland to schedule a tour!
Communication is such an important aspect of life. It can be hard to deduce how best to communicate with your child about the importance of being able to express themselves and talk to other people. As the saying goes “it takes a village to raise a child.” Don’t think that the responsibility of showing your child how to express themselves falls entirely on you. RCS is here to help you teach them healthy ways to communicate and why to develop important communication skills. In our previous blog, we explored the risk of not developing communication skills and some ways you might show them how to communicate better. In this entry, we’ll discuss the various aspects of good communication and how it affects all of us in our day-to-day lives.
Benefits of Communication:
Expression is a key benefit of speaking out. While this isn’t always a matter of verbal communication, it’s about being comfortable in your own skin. If your teen loves Doc Martens but feels like they’ll be interpreted in a certain way if they wear those, let them know it’s a sign of expression and they shouldn’t care what people think. Expression is an important part of feeling stable and able to talk about what you feel is important to you. This ensures that your child won’t feel the need to express themselves by dying their hair pink down the road because they don’t feel heard. Instead, they’ll dye their hair pink cause they like pink, or they’ll dye it a flattering color because it promotes their professional goals in life.
Another major benefit of regular communication skills is being able to describe your feelings and understand yourself on a deeper level. If you can describe an experience you can fully understand it. It’s like a reading comprehension question, but in regard to day-to-day life and how they need to be able to handle different situations. By regularly being able to describe a situation, they’ll get better at viewing it objectively and acting rationally rather than based on what their feelings dictate. That goes hand-in-hand with the ability to explain yourself. If you can talk about your values, beliefs and perceptions comfortable you’ll be able to build more open relationships with the people around you. If those surrounding your teen don’t understand your teen, they’ll feel isolated because they are isolated. But that all starts with them. They need to feel confident enough in their communication skills to address their issues in a room and make it so that other people can understand where they’re coming from. That’s the very basis of healthy conflict resolution.
The Ability to Question is Gift
It’s more than being anti-establishment, it’s actually the secret to personal growth. Asking questions doesn’t mean you’re insubordinate to your superiors, it means you seek understanding and you gain a better understanding. If your teen knows why they’re doing something, then they’ll feel happier doing it. People want to know the why behind things so they can rationalize why they have to do it. For example, your teen needs to go to a good school, get a good education and learn how to become a lifelong learner so that they can succeed in the career path they choose. Giving your child the opportunity to communicate first with you equips them to be able to communicate with other people, ask questions and express themselves in a healthy manner so that they feel happier on a regular basis.
Having an amazing, private school education that gives you the classical background to communicate concisely and eloquently is the first step any child should take toward success. Whatever path your child chooses for their future career, they need to be equipped to communicate with authority. A classical education can give them the base to explore their world with open eyes and the freedom to speak their minds tactfully. Reach out to RCS, the top rated private school in Northern Colorado to find out more about giving your child the proper building blocks to excel at whatever they try at.
We know that sometimes it certainly seems easier to just not talk to your teens. They’re combative and nearly always on edge and all those hormones racing through their blood make them into a person that’s not really them. Of course, you want your teenager to be able to talk to when they need you, as you’re their guardian, but establishing that dynamic isn’t always easy. Especially when they’re under layers of stress from feeling unmoored in a world that seems new and unfamiliar every day. Of course, that is an extreme and your teen is hardly a volatile little bottle of poisonous words, hormones and unchecked expectations for the world, they are tumultuous. Understanding how to not let that phase you is part of being a good parent and modeling how to be a good adult to them.
Staying Accessible Is Staying in Their Life
When your teen goes out in the world, you don’t know what they’re doing. You have some idea, certainly, but you don’t know how their studies are going in the sense that you don’t know if they’re actually learning or if they’re developing passions for any of the subjects. You know they’re at school and their extracurriculars, but you don’t know if they’re getting anything out of it unless they’re talking to you. In the worst scenario, not knowing how your child is doing in school and if they’re finding passions in their academics and social activities could put you at a disadvantage when your teen starts displaying any sort of unhappiness or when they need help because you don’t know anything about their life. The key to fostering a relationship like this is avoiding criticism. If your child wants to talk to you about something that happened that day they might have messed up, the answer is not to respond with critique. They won’t see it as you helping them, they’ll see it as you not approving of them and shutting them down immediately.
Communication Is Valuable.
If you have any experience in the workplace, you know that communication is of the utmost importance. Since they are your child, they seek your approval in a way you’ve never sought the approval of your co-workers which makes this communication so much more important. They need a sounding board for everything they’re thinking, feeling, experiencing, wanting and not wanting in their life. At times, they just need to feel like they’re not talking to themselves. In fact, there is some evidence that supports the idea that when teens talk to their parents they develop the skills to speak up for themselves. They become less afraid of presenting their own actual opinions and ideas and more functional adults because of it. People who can communicate well with anyone they come across are noticeably more successful than the people who feel stunted by what others will think of their opinions and how they feel about things. This is a skill that will help your child benefit throughout their life in their social and professional lives.
Developing the Wrong Communication Skills
If your child does not develop these skills, they’ll start to develop a form of communicating that is actually the opposite of verbal communication. They’ll expect people to be able to guess at their emotional state and they will become awkward in social situations, prone to shyness and social invisibility which promotes general isolation in life. This is a hardly a healthy way to communicate. The best way to teach a teenager is to lead by example and talk about how there are benefits to speaking up for yourself. Teenagers are inherently filled with a desire to go against the status quo, so if you tell them to speak up more, they’ll view that as criticism, but if you admire the trait in something like a fictional character that you both like, they might associate that as a role model’s trait and try to emulate it. Try casually pointing out a few of these benefits of speaking out in your everyday lives.
Enrolling your child in private schooling equips them with the eloquence they need to feel comfortable articulating their thoughts openly and tactfully. With experience communicating in class with their peers in an educated and civil way, they’ll be able to learn about communication with you, the parent, as well as with other people in their life. Teach your child the meaning of a classical education. Enroll them in the best private school in Loveland today.
The current political environment is rather tumultuous. There’s plenty of he said she saids and a variety of other arguments that have proven more and more problematic as time goes by. One of those many controversies includes whether or not video games contribute to the aggressiveness in children. Many people are pointing to the quote from Jay Hull, the Dartmouth University professor who proclaimed in the press release for his newest findings on the matter that: “If your kids are playing these games, these games are having a warping effect on right and wrong or they have a warped sense of right and wrong and that’s why they are attracted to these games.” However, the quote and most of the contents of the study are often taken out of the proper perspective to support this narrative of “games are bad for kids.” In fact, Psychology Today claimed that most of the discussions surrounding the piece have been in regard to the press release for the study, rather than the study itself. They mention specifically that “It turns out that this is just another example of how social science is often oversold to a public without the statistical knowledge to evaluate problematic claims.” So, are video games really bad for your children? How will they affect their future emotional stability, their success and what sort of effect does it have on the work you’ve been doing to help them earn their classical education from a high ranking private school? The proper question is actually probably does it have any sort of effect at all? In short, no.
The Actual Research
Learning to read research papers is something that people spend quite a bit of time on, as in they can get a good portion of a college degree merely learning how to properly read research papers and draw conclusions from data. Thus, hoping to be able to grasp these larger concepts as a layman might prove difficult. We’re here to help you slog through the strange terms and redefine some previous misconceptions you might have when glancing over a study similar to the one Dartmouth produced. In the Dartmouth study, in particular, conducted something called a “meta-analysis of studies of youth to see to what degree violent video games contributed to physical aggression.” First, that means, they were basing most of their data off of other people’s data which is not the best way to conduct the scientific method, as you know if you’re familiar with it. Additionally, they certainly make you believe that they’re measuring these youths over physical aggression, like serious acts of violence like homicides, fights and aggravated assaults. However, they only used teen’s self-analysis and confession of feelings rather than actual evidence of aggression. They specifically mention asking how they would respond to “If I have to resort to violence to protect my rights, I will” as a statement that indicated elevated aggression. If you were asked that question, would you say that you weren’t willing to protect your rights with violence? Probably not. Does that mean you’re an aggressive individual? Also, probably not.
The Actual Study
For that big claim Dartmouth’s leading professor made, it’s rather shocking in comparison to the data he managed to collect. The study itself even mentions that only 1% of youths self-reported in an increase in feelings of aggression, let alone physical representations of actual aggression. This is actually an example of a quite common phenomenon among social science research. For example, if you ask people if they play “violent video games” and then you proceed to ask them how angrily they’ve broken things, those points of data tend to drift toward each other, but that doesn’t mean that’s an accurate way of pulling this sort of data. It’s like asking someone you’ve never seen if they’re white, if they’ve been around people of another race and then asking them how they feel about that race and assuming that that’s an accurate metric of how is racist and how isn’t. The first set of questions creates a bias toward the response of the second question. Psychologists and other scientists alike have expressed that most of these studies, including this one, does not include any more useful information than a Buzzfeed article which is why they have similar headlines.
RCS is dedicated to getting to the bottom of things and seeking new knowledge together. With an emphasis on community values, Christian sense of ethics and a classical well-rounded education, we’ve created an exceptional private school experience for you and your child. Check out our carefully crafted curriculum and enroll now to join us in our collective pursuit of knowledge and ways to make our children’s lives better.
Being a parent is stressful. You have quite a bit on your plate, but most importantly you need to concern yourself with the most important investment of your life: your child. Your child’s well-being is one of the most important parts of your everyday life and once you have their basic needs covered, your mind will start to wander toward your child’s emotional development. With so many folks online talking about their abusive childhoods and how easy it is to make a small mistake in regard to rearing your child. So how do you ensure you’re raising a child that will be as resilient as they need to be? Start off with always having their success in mind. If they’re enrolled at RCS, you’re probably already on the right track.
They Feel in Control
We’re sure you’ve seen the various Facebook posts about how controlling parents can damage a child’s long-term emotional development. There are some studies to back up this assertion, but they mostly come in the form of encouraging a successful child. The leading parenting expert in the UK, Sue Atkins, claims that adults who are successful felt in control in their childhood. There are also several strong examples of children succeeding based off of strong, close relationships with their close relatives and people they love. If they feel valued and have control over their lives and the direction they’re going in, they’re far more likely to succeed than children who are constantly urged in the opposite direction of the way they want to go. According to the same leading parenting expert extrapolated that children who won’t have much in the way of emotional stability as adults don’t feel connected to others, don’t feel like they count, and don’t feel capable of taking care of themselves. Most importantly, however, is that children have to feel courageous and brave in order to accomplish their goals and be stable as adults.
Why Are These Attributes Important?
Having the above attributes in both children and adults gives us a positive attitude about life. Quite simply put, it gives the whole thing purpose. The idea is that these four basic building blocks that create a sense of security for the child will certainly promote a “Can Do” attitude later in life, which will render them capable of handling the things that life throws at them. The hope is that children with these advantages will become responsible, happy, and self-reliant. Naturally, as a parent, finding these attributes in your child will be a relief. As it means you’ve done your job fundamentally well.
The Stem Is Connection
In most cases, a human’s ability to both survive mentally and physically relies largely on the ability to connect to others. To put it simply, we move from being infants who are totally dependant on others to being interdependent on others, because that streak never quite leaves. With strong connections to the important people in the child’s life, they’ll be able to thrive and feel secure in their endeavors because there’s always something to fall back on.
The easiest way for you to foster a sense of connection between you and your child as well as help them build a support system of their own starts with creating a community for them. Wouldn’t you want the community to be more centered around Christian values and the love of education and the pursuit of knowledge? Enroll your child at RCS to receive the private school level of education while tapping into a community where your child can feel supported and safe and thrive throughout the rest of their emotional development.
A classical education is rooted in the idea of training the mind to think critically. This method is supposed to create lifelong learners. As we know, industries change at the speed of light nowadays. If you aren’t a lifelong learner and you’re rather set in your ways, it’s unlikely that you’ll do as well as you can in your career field. As a parent, we’re sure you’re invested in the future of your child and you want them to succeed. If you’re like most parents, you might even go so far as to take some time pondering how exactly you can give your child the right foundational education to ensure that they thrive throughout their whole life. In most cases, we urge you to invest in a well-rounded, classical education like the one we offer at Resurrection Christian School. Our private schooling education makes a difference in our alumni’s lives because we teach a curriculum that encourages a love of learning and knowledge and encourages rather than forces learning. Below, we’ll continue to explore what a classical education is, and how it can benefit your child in it’s teaching structure.
Training The Mind
Do you have a love of reading? How was it fostered? By forcing yourself to read anthologies regarding history and mathematics? Or did it start with something you learned to enjoy? Perhaps it was a piece of classical literature or something similar, but whatever it was, it had the proper effect. Your love of reading has followed you through life and rendered you a more capable individual in all of your interests regarding hobbies or your career. So how do we foster this similar love of learning and pursuit of knowledge in young minds? Through a tried and true three-part process called the trivium. Where traditional classical educations often begin with merely learning the facts a regurgitating it, more modern classical education studies center on creating a love for the learning while still improving the fact so that the child can have a solid foundational knowledge of simple mathematics and language operations before beginning to play with these pursuits.
Uncreative administrators of the classical education view the first portion of a classical education as the “grammar stage.” But if you compare it to the original idea of a classical education, it’s rather unrelated. The original version of a classical education included advanced studies of different languages which would bolster the child’s skills at learning languages later in life and easily and successfully turn them into lifelong learners. Interestingly enough though, one of the main basics of the original classical education, in the sort that kings and queens, as well as higher-ups in the various courts all over the world, learned first was philosophy. The notion was that the child would be able to learn how to apply philosophical ideas to everyday life and have a better handle on human behavior as well as language and interactions than otherwise.
The Grammar Foundation
As important as it is to create a strong foundation for your child’s learning is, the various ways to get there should be acknowledged and analyzed. Our curriculum leaves room for you to interpret how you want your child’s private education, that is in truth a classical education, to proceed. The grammar stage lays the foundation for the rest of your child’s learning, so ensuring that it’s starting out in the way you’d like it to is important. Check out our curriculums for early childhood learning development and feel free to ask RCS questions about our teaching methods and our philosophy surrounding the classical education you’re investing in for your child.
Don’t enlist your child in public school and roll the dice on their education. Enlist your child in a high-quality learning institute that will help you foster a love of knowledge and the desire to always seek more. Start on the right foot starting today. We provide Christian centered, well-rounded education that bolster your child’s chances of success and much more. We’re passionate about sharing knowledge with your child and ensuring that they don’t struggle, but thrive in their academics. Reach out to us now.
If you’re joining us late, be sure to go back and catch the intro to our ideas about the beneficial uses of a gap year between high school and college. As we mentioned in our previous entry, the gap year develops the child’s prefrontal cortex which develops their worldview as well as their personality and rounds them out their expectations of reality.
One of the major advantages for most kids and their parents alike is the financial hiatus. If you’ve been spending money to give them a classical education for the majority of their life, a financial break might be highly valued for you and also for your child if they’re preparing to go and support themselves at college, even if you’re prepared to pay for their tuition. As more people go to college and get worthless degrees the number of people who have only a pile of student debt to show for their 4-year college degree rises. Kids who feel the need to switch majors in the middle of their college career stretch the costs out, making the whole ordeal more pricey. Studies are finding that a gap year might reduce the number of folks who change their major in the middle of their college career. Gap years are praised for assisting people in deciding what they’d like to study and helping find their passions and what they’re best suited to in a way that unfiltered education cannot.
College is rigorous and while RCS does everything we can to prepare children academically there are a variety of challenges that nothing but real-life experiences can prepare them for. While there are a host of support systems and other channels that Christian private schools provide for children, there is still a cost for going to college too early and that is mainly the taxing nature it takes on a person’s mental health if they’re not prepared. The idea of the gap year is to take kids out of their safe zones and thus improve their self-confidence and help them gain a sense of self and adaptability which can be a powerful skill set to earn before entering college. College environments are full of lack of sleep, constant activity and high levels of stress that past experience in adaptability to a variety of situations will help kids tackle those things like pros so they can focus on the new chapter of their life and what obstacles will help them grow the most as people.
If you share our opinions about education and religious ethics you’d fit in perfectly at RCS. Enroll your student today to give them a well-rounded education that includes Christian values. Reach out to us with any questions or concerns. We’d be happy to talk to you about our private school curriculums and ideals.
Some people go so far as to criticize private schooling at times, mentioning that there is a limited pool of social growth that a child can acquire when they’re submerged in a controlled environment. For several reasons, Resurrection Christian School is careful to push back against those claims, but we can also see how, even through RCS provides a large environment for children to build many social skills with fellow Christians, we understand the need for real-world experience. If, as a parent, you’re more concerned about this valuable outside world experience being cultivated in your child, we have one suggestion that is earning more respect as the years go by: the gap year.
Europe Did It First
Sometimes, Europe is ahead of the curve with certain things and in this case, they certainly are. Germany, the UK, Denmark and even Australia and Israel encourage students who have just graduated to take a gap year in between their studies. This time can be used to travel, serve the church, serve in the military or work before moving on to their college studies. However, the current U.S. climate regards gap years with a collective panic. Surely, if your child takes a gap year, they’re destined to not do as well as others. The growing consensus is that it isn’t quite true anymore. The idea is that if children get a taste for the non-school life they’ll realize how important it is to go back and it will give the privilege of going to college and earning a degree a new glow. In fact, psychologists at large are not worried about kids not wanting to go back to school as many studies done on the subject found that around 90 percent of the kids that take a gap year return to their studies with new fervor. The studies concluded that a very important brain growth period between those two school periods allows for the person to grow socially and within their understanding of the world.
The Simple Science:
While a gap year isn’t for everyone, it has quite a bit of scientific data backing up the benefits for those it catches the fancy of. The prefrontal cortex is continually expanding in the late teen years and it is the section of the brain that develops the child into an adult with an adult personality. It controls your propensity for planning and draws complex conclusions from data. In other words, it’s the largest jump in growth in the form of maturity that your child will see in their lives. Thus, when the gap year comes to a close, they’ll nearly be a different person with a new understanding of themselves and college as a growth opportunity.
Share our opinions about classical education, child growth and ethics? Enroll in RCS this semester.
Catch the continuation of our argument for a gap year on our next blog.