The March 1976 edition of Perspectives in Covenant Education is a trove of timeless treasures.
You don’t want to miss Dr. Dwight Monsma’s article “Parental Education” as he builds on what Rev. Engelsma wrote in the October 1975 issue for parents. Biblically based and thoroughly reformed, the heart of this article is its practical implications that were true back in 1976 and still true today. How is your child doing in their teacher’s classroom, don’t wait for the 15-minute parent-teacher conferences; instead stop in some time and enjoy 45 minutes of discussion with your child’s teacher. Have a disagreement with the teacher; don’t run to the board but rather go to the teacher. Get to know your child’s teacher personally; invite them over for dinner and evening of fellowship. Dr. Monsma drives home the importance of godly, reformed teachers by reminding the reader, “The teacher or staff of teachers is, in fact, the school; because they are called by a parent to rear and educate their children. All the other entities related to our schools simply means to implement this primary relationship between parents and teachers. Thus the society is not the school, the pupils are not the school, the board is not the school, nor is the building the school; only when parents have hired teachers can they say that they have a school.”
Beverly Hoekstra does a marvelous job in her piece, “What Geography For the Covenant Child Is”. Patterns, interrelationships, arrangements, interactions, and organization. Through the study of geography, students can be shown the marvelous connections found on the earth in every item and person we interact with each day. All of it is governed by God. This article would be good for every teacher of geography and social studies to review a week or two before the school year started as a reminder of how our God is sovereign in all things. “The covenant child must be brought to see that many patterns, with pattern within a pattern, and organization within the organization, of many items and means contribute to the life of one person. He must also be brought to know what the patterns and organizations are and how they interrelate. Then in a special way, he must understand that the patterns sometimes contribute to the life of one child of God and that he may be one of them. Following that, he must understand the many children of God pass through this world with many similar experiences. In it God will refine them to make them fit objects for glory.”
Potpourri for this edition is written by Mr. Peter Vander Schaaf titled “What Do We Gotta Learn This For?” A student in 1976 asked this question and still, it is asked today. His answer is just as timeless.
Sue Looyenga contributes the poem “Slow Learner” based on her work with a struggling student that she had been tutoring. So just who really is the one that needs to learn a lesson. The poem awaits.
“The Intermediate Teacher and Astronomy” is an essay that Mr. Roland Peterson had delivered at the 1975 PRTI Teacher’s Convention. He reminisces of his father, who could walk the fields and woods and put most learned men to shame with knowledge of living and non-living objects he would come across. How so? “A lifetime of observation has given an understanding of nature which is, without doubt, one of my father’s most prized and most enjoyed earthly possessions.” After a necessary history lesson on the development of the understanding of the heavens, Mr. Peterson, encourages his teaching colleagues to become familiar with the night skies so that they too may stand in awe of their creator.
A short by poignant piece by Fred Hanko closes out this edition. The US was celebrating its bicentennial at the time of publication. He reminds us of our duty to instruct our children to be godly citizens of this kingdom on earth below while preparing for eventually taking up our places as citizens of the kingdom of Heaven.