Laying a Foundation for Faithful Caretaking
Martha Okayasu - Home Economics Instructor, Creative Arts Department Chair
Exploratory classes provide CAJ middle school students the opportunity to develop their understanding, calling and gifting in becoming faithful caretakers of God’s world. Much as a gardener develops abilities to prepare the soil, plant, nourish, weed and reap, exploratory classes lay a foundation of practical service skills that help students reach out beyond our school and community to ultimately have national and global impact.
Through cooking skills enabling us to become servant workers, artistic skills to become beauty creators, carpentry skills to build projects that bless and serve the community or in developing fluency with digital tools to help us reflect the image of God in our world, the exploration of these real life skills plays a significant role in helping each child grow and fulfill the plans and hopes that God has planted in each of their hearts.
As students progress to high school, our aim is to seek to help students reach greater levels of service by moving toward self-selected opportunities. Despite limitations caused by COVID-19 restrictions, Design Technology students devote Friday class blocks to building projects that bless and serve others. Culinary and Textile Arts students have had opportunities to use cooking skills to make play-doh for the elementary students and recently made bean bags for the elementary school. A current project is making “I Spy”quilt blocks that will be used by a local non-profit ministry teaching English to children in orphanages.
By giving the students both the Biblical mindset of becoming faithful caretakers, scaffolded with guided opportunities to practice real life examples of service, we aim to help students become independent lifelong learners, who use their talents to bless others with the blessings we ourselves have received in Christ.