Navigating Your Child's Education: Grades 9-12

3 min read

Summer "Assignments"

May 27, 2020 9:00 PM

I've recently taken on the following activities as "assignments" for myself.  This is in no way an exhaustive list of possible summer activities--you won't find day trips to the pool or beach, family vacations, or cookouts with friends on this list of "summer assignments" (though those may appear on a different list of summer fun!). And these are not necessarily measurable action items that can be checked off of a to-do list upon completion. You may want to practice some of these things once (or several!) times per day, while others may be more sporadic or peppered throughout your week.
Rather, these simple ideas are more for attuning ourselves to that still, small Voice and those on His heart. I hope they may serve as practical, tangible ways for high school students (and families!) to stay purposeful and engaged throughout the summer. 
Pray to start each day: "Make me a blessing to someone today."
Send a note, email, text to at least one person you know (but are separated from). Let them know you are thinking of them, care for them, and ask if there is any specific way you can pray for them.
Stop and have a joy/thanksgiving party at least once every day. That is, stop and intentionally think about the good you can currently see and give thanks for in your life in this moment.
Upper School Boy
Though it may be difficult, make time to get alone. And make sure the others with you have their alone time too. 
Do some physical labor.  
Listen to music you can sing along with.
Keep a journal of your thoughts for each day. 
Get rest. 
Read a psalm. 
Memorize one psalm a week with your family. 
Pray for your pastor.
Put your phones away for most of the day. 
Read a book or even just a poem out loud to someone (or to yourself if you have to).
Call your grandparents or your parents or an elderly person you know from your church at least once a week. And listen--don't talk.
Spend some moments alone with each of your children/parents. Again--listen, don't talk.
Embrace patience. Exude kindness. Celebrate love. Stoop down in gentleness. 
May we all experience the presence and power of God in a fresh way as we enjoy the warmer temperatures and longer days of summer ahead of us.
Al Iten
Written by Al Iten

Before passing away in January of 2021, Al had 40 years of classroom teaching experience. He also spent time writing textbooks. He loved teaching ideas, critical thinking and writing. He was passionate about encouraging his students to pursue God in all things.