Blog Posts

Good things are happening at OCSI

Good things are happening at OCSI, including:

  • 1st grade artists exploring the concept of symmetry through portrait drawing.
  • 4th and 5th grade students thinking deeply about purpose and values in Bible class.
  • 7th grade scientists considering the question, “How are these molecules the same and different?”
  • 11th grade AP English students constructing argument essays, having researched both sides of their chosen issue.
To learn more, check out these blogs:
Please continue to pray for God’s work in Japan:
  • Ask God to help each student to think from a Biblical perspective.
  • Ask God for increased student involvement in church.
  • Ask God to provide a full staff for next school year.

201710.3_OCSI_Job_Posting ELEMENTARY

Michael B. Essenburg, head of school
Equipping students to walk with God and impact the world for Him
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We want our students to collaborate

At OCSI, we want our students to collaborate. We want our students to collaborate effectively, respecting others as God’s image bearers. So, we want our students to…stick-people-2324013_640
  1. Work productively in groups to focus ideas and create artworks that address genuine local and global community needs.
  2. Discuss course content with honesty and kindness.
  3. Establish and sustain positive relationships and build Christ-centered community.
  4. Work with others to solve problems and help each other learn.
  5. Follow discussion guidelines.
  6. Respect other languages and cultures.
  7. Work in groups to serve their audience in performance and to build Christ-centered community.
  8. Demonstrate good sportsmanship that encourages both their own team and opponents to appreciate and develop their skills.
  9. Work productively in groups to design and carry out explorations and experiments.
  10. Follow debate guidelines.
  11. Use digital tools appropriately to enhance collaboration.
  12. Make purposeful suggestions to the group, as they build Christ-centered community.
To help students grow as collaborators, we use a variety of strategies, including:
  • Encouraging active listening.
  • Assigning roles within a group.
  • Debriefing how group work went.


SuperintendentSays Michael Essenburg, head of school: “Our world needs effective, respectful collaborators. Our world needs collaborators who can serve in different cultures and make an impact for Jesus. I’m glad our students are growing as collaborators.”

Another great view from OCSI

Poster contest, Holiday Market, and more!

PTF Connections:

Poster Contest: Thank you for encouraging your children to join the second annual Christmas poster contest.  The titles of the posters this year are “It’s Christmastime!” (for PreK through grade 2) and “The Meaning of Christmas”  (for grades 3 to 5). All of the posters will be posted on the wall in the gym for Holiday Market and will be returned to the students later. Raffle tickets will also be given to the students who turn in the posters. The winner from each grade will receive a prize at the Holiday Market. If your child hasn’t submitted theirs yet, don’t worry. Please turn it in at the office by Wednesday, November 8.

Holiday Market: Thank you to all the parents who have already been helping with preparations and for signing up to be a PTF vendor staff at the Holiday Market.  We still have flyers at the reception table at OCSI. Please give one to your friends and invite them to join us at the Holiday Market.

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We are still collecting prizes for our raffle table. Please ask your favorite restaurant or bakery if they would be willing to donate a gift certificate. Please email to ptf@ocsi.org if you have any questions and visit our Facebook page. You can also find out more about events that are going on in the OCSI PTF Facebook page.

Yumi Horii
PTF Director
Equipping students to walk with God and impact the world for Him
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We want students to think critically

Information is important, and thinking critically with and about information is also important. We want our students at OCSI to think critically.


What, exactly, is critical thinking? The authors of Making Thinking Visible identify activities that make up the thinking we want to happen:

  1. brain-1294854_640Observing closely and describing what’s there.
  2. Building explanations and interpretations.
  3. Reasoning with evidence.
  4. Making connections.
  5. Considering different viewpoints and perspectives.
  6. Capturing the heart and forming conclusions.
  7. Wondering and asking questions.
  8. Uncovering complexity and going beneath the surface of things.
  9. Identifying patterns and making generalizations.
  10. Generating possibilities and alternatives.
  11. Evaluating evidence arguments, and actions.
  12. Formulating plans and monitoring actions.
  13. Identifying claims, assumptions, and bias.
  14. Clarifying priorities, conditions, and what is known.
OCSI secondary students did this recently, for example when…
  • 6th grade historians observed how apple slices they packed in salt were preserved and considered connections to why and how the ancient Egyptians preserved the bodies of their dead.
  • 7th grade scientists considered the question, “How are these molecules the same, and how are they different?”
  • 8th grade mathematicians were asked to explain why they wrote the problem they did, what the parts mean, and what kind of answer would make sense.
  • 9th grade historians learning about Hammurabi’s code came up with examples of modern civil and criminal law cases
  • 10th grade Honors English students made connections between themes in the novel and issues in modern life or current events.
  • 11th grade AP English students constructing argument essays, researched both sides of their chosen issue.
  • 12th grade Bible scholars gave presentations on a Biblical perspective of an issue, including ways the Bible can be misused regarding the issue.
  • High school woodworkers, completing technical drawings and beginning construction of their scroll saw puzzles, learned to problem solve when issues arrive on a project or in life. Often, projects run longer than expected or errors occur. Students (woodworkers) then have to think critically to solve these issues. With strong critical thinking skills, students (woodworkers) can use their planned details with logic to not only solve problems, but even to foresee them before they occur, and avoid them.
Kim Essenburg, curriculum coordinator
Equipping students to walk with God and impact the world for Him
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P.S. Check out the elementary’s new T-shirts which feature our 5 expected student outcomes!