Reflections From an Episcopalian pilgrimage on the Appalachian Trail

Our assistant head of school, Lisa Work, recently participated in an Episcopalian pilgrimage on the Appalachian Trail inspired by Spain’s Camino de Santiago, a 500-mile pilgrimage across northern Spain. Read her reflections below.

During the last week of June, I participated in the Appalachian Camino, a week-long hike created to reflect the Camino de Santiago in Spain by the Episcopal Diocese of Central Pennsylvania. The only person I knew as we began the hike through sections of the Appalachian Trail in southern Pennsylvania was our Bishop Audrey Scanlan. The rest of the hikers were strangers to me. Loading our things into the trailer, waiting to be transported to the trailhead, I met three other ladies- Kay, Meridith, and Amanda. Little did I know that the four of us would become a “hiking sisterhood” before the week was over. 

Equipped with my trusty multi-day backpack filled with all my essentials, we started the day with a worship service at Calvary Chapel in Waynesboro, PA. We prayed for our pilgrimage and had our feet blessed. After reaching the halfway point of our day’s hike and stopping for lunch, we embarked on what felt like a never-ending stretch up to a hill leading to Chimney Rock. Having just recovered from a respiratory infection the previous week, and not having taken my inhaler that morning, I found it difficult to catch my breath. But one of my new hiking sisters, Kay, stayed with me and was an affirming and patient companion as we slowly progressed up the hill. 

After a day and a half of hiking, I realized I didn’t need to have a large backpack.  My husband was able to send my smaller day pack with our rector who would be joining us to hike for the day on Tuesday. Even though my pack was smaller, I still had everything I needed.  

During our pilgrimage, my “hiking sisters” and I had moments of questioning our choice to take this week-long journey. It was so very hot, the hills were sometimes so very difficult, and our feet were sore. However, we supported each other up the hill by being present in the moment.

I knew that although I wasn’t going to be the fastest hiker on our Appalachian Camino, I would be persistent. Some days, though, I struggled, thinking, “I am slowing our group down. I wish I was faster.” One evening during our worship time, as we were sharing our experiences, I discovered my hiking companions thought my pace was a good one. They were grateful when I would state, “Time to take a break and drink some water.” They, too, desired these breaks. I discovered that even though I was not always the fastest, nor the strongest, I was seen as my group’s leader. I also came to appreciate that each woman in our group brought her own unique leadership qualities that our group needed: Kay was affirming and compassionate, Amanda was our encourager and always shared a positive outlook, and Meridith provided wise insight and authenticity as we journeyed through the week.  

Although I was extremely tired as the week progressed, I learned that if I was willing to try and begin hiking up the hill, God would provide me with everything I needed to finish the hike. I also learned that as I trusted God during my weakness and doubts, the mercy and grace I received would flow out to the people hiking with me.  My Appalachian Camino experience has provided me with a clear reminder that God has created us to live in community, which is one of Logos Academy’s core values. 

Isaiah 58:11: “The LORD will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail.”

 

Click here to learn more about this pilgrimage

5th Grade Mystery Painting Reveal

Every year, our 5th-grade class participates in a mystery painting coordinated by Mrs. Shank, our art teacher. In conjunction with the 5th-grade study of American History, Mrs. Shank chooses an American artist and painting and works through extensive preparations. Students are then invited to paint 4″ x 4″ wooden squares without knowing which painting they are collectively reproducing. As the students assemble the pieces in front of the entire school community, the painting is revealed. This is a beautiful illustration for our students to see how they are part of God’s great design through their own unique contributions.

Just last week, our entire school gathered for the placement of the tiles and reveal of this year’s painting entitled “Golden Rule” by Norman Rockwell. Rockwell originally painted this in 1961 with oil on canvas, as a cover illustration for the Saturday Evening Post. It was presented to the United Nations in 1985 by former First Lady Nancy Reagan, and it now hangs in the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, MA. A group of people of different religions, races, and ethnicity served as the backdrop for the inscription “Do Unto Others as You Would Have Them Do Unto You.” Rockwell was a compassionate and liberal man, and this simple phrase reflected his philosophy.

The painting below is comprised of 156 squares with 50 different paint colors used!

 

Pen Pals with Country Meadows

This past September, at the turn of the school year, our 5th-grade class started a Pen Pal Letter exchange with Country Meadows Retirement Community. Since then, they have been writing and receiving letters from residents and staff on a monthly basis!

Through this program, our students have been exposed to different styles of handwriting, helping them to practice and improve on what they have learned over the past few years of reading and writing in cursive. This partnership has stretched our students to consider and identify topics about which to write and to ask and answer questions.

The letters written back and forth between the students and senior citizens have provided a window into the lives of our community members from other generations. Our students have learned about the residents’ childhoods, celebrated birthdays and holidays with them, and mourned losses with them as well. This week, they will have the opportunity to visit the residents at Country Meadows for the second time! Several students are excited to continue their communications with their pen pals after 5th grade is done.

Logos Academy Seniors Take on Chicago

A few weeks ago, our seniors spent a wonderful week in Chicago for their senior trip. They saw the play “Sweat”, the musical “Hamilton”, and the Blue Man Group performance; visited Shedd Aquarium; walked the Magnificent Mile; saw a Cubs game at Wrigley field; and, most importantly, they shared time and made memories with their friends! The following is a reflection on the trip, written by one of our teachers, Brandon Grunden.

Landing in Chicago after a smooth flight on an early Spring morning, I was excited about a lot of things that our 11 person group was about to experience. In the weeks leading up to the senior trip, Ms. Musser and I met a few times with our lead teacher, Mr. Hornbaker, to discuss the itinerary, which thanks to Mr. Hornbaker was filled with a lot of fun and educational things for our students to experience. One item we discussed in those meetings (that was for me a bit of a footnote) was the journey within Chicago.

Public transportation is not something that I am used to, as it is something I only use when in big cities such as Philadelphia, D.C., or NYC. When I reflect on my public transit experience in those cities, they are nothing more than utilitarian ways to get around the city. But there was something particularly special about the transit system experience in Chicago. Not only did it take us to all of our amazing destinations, it also allowed us time to grow with each other as we navigated the appropriately named Windy City. Being on the transit and learning to navigate the city was something that humbled us and ultimately brought us closer together.

There were many shared moments of laughter, such as Marquise awkwardly fumbling trying to get his transit ticket out while balancing a case of water, me clumsily trying to hold onto a railing while keeping track of my own case of water, and all of us almost getting wiped out as the very first train we got on departed from its stop. Even the eye contact that each of us needed to make before each stop to make sure whether or not that was our stop brought with it a feeling of unity and togetherness, or, “we all we got”.

There was a sense of comfort that settled inside of me as I watched the brown line train arrive at its stop from my suite room window every 5 or so minutes to head into the loop and back out again, carrying along its way passengers like us who were still green to the city of Chicago, along with the ripened Chicagoans who live that life every day. I was further comforted as the week wore on realizing that the journeys to the planned experiences were an experience in themselves and were not to be glossed over while on this trip.

Of course, there were speed bumps, hiccups, potholes, and other imperfect situations, such as our wet and stormy journey home from the friendly confines of Wrigley field nestled into a city block of north Chicago, but that’s okay. Isn’t that life? Aren’t we all on a journey filled with ups and downs leading to an Ultimate Destination along with other mini-destinations for us to learn from?

The senior trip is meant to give students an opportunity, at the end of their schooling here at Logos Academy, to experience, in a very real way, the gifts that can be provided to us by a great city such as Chicago, which it most definitely did. In life, there are many planned destinations that we look forward to, will experience, and will hopefully enjoy, but the lesson I learned on this trip (and a lesson that I think most of our scholarly seniors learned) is that life is about the journey, and not the destination, because in that journey is the potential to build and strengthen relationships with others. In that way, this trip was a huge success.

Great Schools Encouraged by Student’s Love of Learning

Enriching Experiences to Prepare for Kindergarten

It’s easy to enrich your preschooler’s life and help them prepare to excel in Kindergarten at the same time. Many parents feel stress at the thought that their child might ‘not be ready’ to enter a great school at five years old. Relax and enjoy your children through these young years! The following article offers some practical ideas for enriching your soon-to-be Kindergartner’s life, reducing screen time and making some great memories together. You truly can introduce your preschooler to STEM concepts and keep their wonder of learning alive through your everyday interactions with them. Logos Academy values a child’s love of learning and we nurture this through our Christ-centered classical approach beginning in Kindergarten and continuing through twelfth grade. 

“Don’t get so hung up on feeling like you have to teach them. Just have an experience with them that’s tapping into the wonder of how math and science and engineering are all around us.”

READ MORE: Eight Ways to Introduce Kids to STEM at an Early Age

 

Schools Charter the Path to Leadership

Leaders Ignite Positive Change

Raising the next generation of children with an orientation to positive change can feel like a big challenge, especially for parents. We all want the best for our children, and we want them to make thoughtful choices in their lives. Ultimately, we hope that our sons and daughters will be the ones to bring positive change to the world. At Logos Academy, we believe that each person was created in the image of God and thus, each child has the ability to design and create. The arts (music, visual, and performing) are core courses in our classical curriculum. Our strong liberal arts experience nourishes minds well for the challenges of innovative design and making good choices.

Logos Academy is committed to equipping our students to be effective leaders and we begin these skills and attitudes as early as Kindergarten. It’s important to know how to serve others well and to use the abilities God has given to each of us for positive change in our communities.

This book identifies a new perspective of design-inspired leadership, described as “one of the most powerful ways to ignite positive change and address education challenges using the same design and innovation principles that have been so successful in private industry”. That concept is in sync with the Logos Academy mindset of equipping our young people with a focus on community and serving others well. When parents are considering great schools for their children, it’s important to identify the traits that actually result in lifelong learning and human formation.

Design Thinking for School Leaders explores the changing landscape of leadership and offers practical ways to reframe the role of school leader using Design Thinking, one step at a time.”

 

Welcome Lisa Work

We are excited to announce that Lisa Work is joining our team at Logos Academy as assistant head of school! Lisa has been in education for over 29 years serving in both private school and public schools in the roles of teacher and administrator.  She has a BA in Cross-Cultural Studies from Nyack College (Nyack, NY). She has a Masters of Education in Mathematics from North Georgia College (Dahlonega, GA) and received her Principal’s Certification from Drexel University (Philadelphia, PA).

She currently serves on the board of Keystone Kidspace and is a member of the Women’s Giving Circle of York. Lisa is also an alumnus of the first class of Leadership York’s Leadership for Diverse Schools and served on the education committee for 3 years following. Lisa and her husband Mark and their 2 dogs live in York.  They have 4 adult children Ellie, Madeline, Andrea, and Ben.

Lisa enjoys hiking, live music, cooking for her friends and family, and digging in her garden. Lisa and her husband enjoy going on adventures to discover new places.

As a visionary for the academic success and spiritual fruit of our school, Lisa will cultivate leadership and personal growth among faculty, support strategic initiatives for our K-12 curriculum, and lead Logos Academy in maintaining it’s Middle States Accreditation.

 

It’s Team Project Week!

What is Team Project Week?

Every year, our students in grades 6-12 take a week off from their traditional schedules to come together for Team Project Week – a week of experiential learning outside of the classroom. During Team Project Week, our students are mixed across grade level and assigned to teams. Each team shares a common challenge, which students must collaborate together to overcome. These projects are kept a secret until they are revealed immediately before Team Project Week kicks off.

What is this year’s project?

This year, eleven teams of students will compete to start a profitable coffee shop that operates with excellence here in York City. Teams must write a business plan, apply for needed licenses, brand and market their business, and finally, open for two days of sales. Students will fill roles from business owner to barista.

To support these new emerging businesses, two competing marketing firms with three students to each firm will offer their services to help each company get off the ground through advertisement.

Teams will compete for a variety of awards, including most profitable business, best brand design, and best space design. The business with the most award points will be recognized as the grand prize winner on February 20th.

Here is a glimpse into the start of their projects. Be sure to follow along on our Facebook page for updates as the week progresses!

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