At OCSI, we want students to communicate truthfully and effectively. What do I mean?
  • “Communicate” includes how we receive (listening, reading) and send (speaking, writing) communication.
  • “Truthfully” includes integrity, accuracy, and alignment with what God has revealed about Himself, His creation, and how He intended for us to relate to Him and to His creation.
  • “Effectively” includes clarity, beauty, and persuasiveness, accomplishing the goal.
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Here are some ways middle school students are growing toward this goal:
  • Woodworkers are not allowed to advance on their projects without using woodshop vocabulary to describe what they are doing and why.
  • 6th grade Bible students created and performed a skit based on one of 12 resurrection appearances of Jesus. 
  • 7th grade scientists are practicing using data as a method of truthful communication as they learn how tables of numerical data convey information.
  • 7th grade geographers discussed in small groups the question “How does geography influence the way of life for people?” Students were able to communicate their ideas in a safe environment.
  • 7th grade mathematicians wrote journals using academic vocabulary (discounts, retain, wholesale, etc.) answering the prompt “Do stores lose money when they have a sale? Explain with details and examples.” 
  • 8th grade Bible students read scripture and look for (1) the speaker, (2) the audience, (3) the main characters, (4) the big idea, (5) the enduring truth. 
  • 8th grade readers debated human nature with information from The Pearl and the Bible, focusing on listening to understand and on responding rather than reacting.
  • Middle school readers participated in our Drop Everything and Read Program on Thursdays.
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Here are some ways high school students are growing toward this goal:
  • 9th grade writers composed news articles incorporating multiple perspectives and avoiding bias.
  • 10th grade Bible students submitted anonymous questions, then dialogued these openly within the classroom. This was done in a respectful, helpful way.
  • 11th grade historians worked in teams to research and create a documentary.
  • High school mathematicians worked on projects in partners and then presented those projects to the class. They prepared their presentation according to a rubric of communication expectations.
  • High school PE students have learned to communicate effectively on the field during games of ultimate frisbee. They’ve experienced that communication helps them score, referee themselves, and encourage each other.
  • High school artists give verbal critiques of one another’s artwork on a regular basis. They discuss in advance how to construct thoughtful, helpful, meaningful critique comments, and the students are required to make a minimum number of verbal comments and encouraged to make additional comments.
  • High school computer scientists worked in peer programing teams.
  • High school readers participated in our Drop Everything and Read Program on Thursdays.
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Kim Essenburg, curriculum coordinator
Equipping students to walk with God and impact the world for Him
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