To be allowed to witness the opening ceremony of the Lutheran Bilingual High School was a great privilege. It was especially exciting because the presence of all those students was due to the efforts of so many people—and those efforts were then crowned by our Lord.
Two new classrooms were opened for the many new students on the first day of school. Right from the start, the young people were very friendly with each other. Some would say they were uncommonly kind and happy! There didn’t appear to be any stress or jitteriness that day. How was that possible?
The reason for the easy camaraderie was because the 1st year students knew each other from the high school camp that was held during the summer. It was such a blessed time! The theme of the camp was “Who am I?”. Students were challenged to think about their own personalities during the six-day camp. Many different activities were planned to accomplish three main goals – to detect students’ learning styles, to improve in English, and to connect with new people. At the beginning of camp, participants had a testing called “Learning Styles Inventories”. The tests results were a big help with properly guiding the learning process of each student. The students seemed to really enjoy this. They also appreciated the many practical ways of learning English.
The most popular activity in the camp was “Facebook Wall.” Paper was placed on a wall on which students wrote their ‘status updates,’ just like the online Facebook. Conversation on the facebook wall had to be in English. Facebook Wall was on the wall of the hostel where the students lived. Communication between students and leaders of the camp (their teachers-to-be) was encouraged with funny colorful bracelets called ‘jelly talks.’ Students could win them by speaking in English, and because they liked them so much, the ‘jelly talks’ were soon the hit of high school camp!
Not foreigners but friends
The different activities and entertaining ways of learning English added real enthusiasm to the learning process. Students were also involved in competitions, sports, games, cheese tasting, and swimming in the pool. They milked cows – yes that is correct . They also enjoyed organized night games at the camp and jumping in the big pile of hay. All of them went home exhausted but happy. A big part of the happiness was the fact that the students would meet each other again soon – not like foreigners but like friends.
The things that we gave to the care of God, we now thank Him for with psalm, praise and blessing. The new freshmen at the Lutheran Bilingual High School are the first graduates of Lutheran Elementary School. We believe that the high school students will continue growing in their English usage but also in the real fear of the Lord, which they will use in school and also in their further ministry.
Lutheran Academy – a Mirror of God’s Mercy
Lutheran Bilingual High School started its first year in September. All nine grades of Lutheran Elementary school were also filled. If we add in the students from the Lutheran Preschool, we can clearly see God´s blessings on Christian education in Martin, Slovakia. We are all joyful and thankful that the Lutheran Academy, which includes all three schools, is growing so well. The original idea—to build a school which would not only provide quality education but would also lead students in the love of Christ—is fulfilled.