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Presbyterian Church Schools' Resource Office Newsletter

February 2017

Nga mihi nui kia koutou katoa, warm greetings to you all from the Resource Office.
This newsletter will come to you in the midst of the busyness of starting up again for a new school year. I hope that you've enjoyed a relaxing and refreshing Summer break and that the 'jumping back in' goes smoothly for you all.

Congratulations to St Andrew's College who are celebrating their centenary this year. The centenary celebrations for St Andrew's were launched in September 2016 but the Centenary Gala Weekend in mid-March will be a key focus for the College.

A warm welcome to the Presbyterian Schools' network to Ms Roz Mexted, new Principal at St Cuthbert's College in Auckland. Roz comes to St Cuthberts from Westlake Girls' High School where she has been Principal since 2011. 

A reminder that this year's Presbyterian Church Schools' conference is being held on Thursday August 10 to Friday August 11 at Scots College in Wellington. More details and registration information will be sent at the beginning of Term Two. 

Ka kite ano
Sharon Ross Ensor

New on the web-site

The Presbyterian Schools' song Pioneers of Hope, created by Rev Malcolm Gordon, continues to be sung and enjoyed around our schools and now the wider church. The printed music for the song (including a four part arrangement) and recordings of the song in both the choral and the 'pop anthem' versions can be found here. These resources are on the Resource Office web-site under the Resources tab. 

Chaplaincy conference: Otago University organised a Chaplaincy conference in early December, which was attended by around 50 chaplains from various contexts in New Zealand.
Professor Chris Marshall was the keynote speaker and his paper Chaplains as Public Believers is well worth a read.
I presented a paper reflecting on service learning called Shaped for Service which reflects on a theology of Christian service as it relates to Presbyterian church schools.
David Jackson, Chaplain at Scots College presented a paper, rather intriguingly titled How I came to work with 880 Eunuchs, offering a personal reflection on his work as a Chaplain within an Independent school. Thanks to David for his willingness to share his story with the network.

Service Learning resources 
I have produced some resources which aim to assist our schools in service learning, particularly service learning opportunities which arise on overseas service/mission trips. The preparation manual and evening reflection/prayer booklet are in the Resources section of the web-site and can also be found here.

Curriculum Resources

Middle School Theology Three of our schools (St Andrew's College, Iona College and Rangi Ruru Girls' School along with eight or so Anglican schools) are taking part in the pilot programme for the Middle School Theology curriculum which is being developed by the Anglican and Presbyterian Schools' Offices in association with the Department of Theology at Otago University. . Professional Development days have been led by Rev Dr Anne van Gend, Director of the Anglican Schools' Office to orientate teachers to the programme. We look forward to seeing how the pilot works in our schools and continuing to develop the programme from the feedback received. 

Christian Contemplation Curriculum: We are putting some final touches to the 'look' of the Christian Contemplation Curriculum web-site before making it publicly available to the schools for their use. Rev Yvonne Smith has compiled much of the content, resources and curriculum, for the web-site which again is a collaborative project between the Anglican and Presbyterian Schools' offices.

Religious Studies Teachers' Association of Aotearoa New Zealand: This Association, which aims to promote, support and resource the study and teaching of Religious Studies at Secondary school level was officially launched at Auckland University (with a live stream to a group of us gathered at Victoria University), on 24th November last year. An Interim Committee has been established, including Susan Mudford, Head of CE at Saint Kentigern College who is the Secretary of the Association. An inaugural conference is being planned for 2018. If you would like to know more about the Association the web-site is: 
The Association's December newsletter can be read here.

Resources for the classroom and chapel

A Sanctified Art: This is a collective of young female artists and creatives based in the USA who aim to support and resource faith communities and encourage creative expression around faith. Their latest offering is a selection of resources for Lent including prayers for worship, short movies, art and a devotional booklet with daily reflections connected to a large colouring-in poster.

Worship Resources from Rev Malcolm Gordon: During the recent Presbyterian General Assembly Malcolm, the Worship, Music and Arts Enabler for the PCANZ, led morning worship and has made these  resources available to the wider church. They might be of use to Chaplains leading worship in their schools. The songbook called Hope for the World (the Assembly theme) has nine songs in it, including the Presbyterian Schools' song Pioneers of Hope. The worship resources include calls to worship, prayers of confession and reflective questions on the suggested Bible readings.
Illustrated Children's Ministry: Tapping into the current interest in colouring-in, this web-site offers large scale and beautifully designed colouring-in posters which can be worked on together by small groups of students. The latest resource is a series reflecting on the Stations of the Cross and Easter. Curriculum to accompany the posters are available.
There is also a good series on Caring for Creation.

The Worry Bug: Following on from the Canterbury earthquakes and with the support of Red Cross, this web-site offers books and other resources for school and home to support children who are experiencing anxiety 'in a low-intensity way in times of change and stress and to support the worries that come in navigating family and school life.'

Sexting movie: A good resource for a discussion about sexting and other related issues comes from Te Rau Matatini with this short movie.

Kids Friendly resources

The season of Lent starts with Shrove Tuesday on February 28th. This has traditionally been celebrated by eating pancakes...using up flour, butter and eggs in preparation for the time of fasting during the Lenten season. Kids Friendly has a great Shrove Tuesday resource which gives some of the history and traditions behind Shrove Tuesday along with ideas for holding a pancake event including games and ideas for worship. 

Godly Play core training is being offered in Auckland and Wellington during March. You can read more about the training events here  You can download a registration form here.

Message from the Presbyterian Moderator for Waitangi Day

At the 2016 General Assembly, the Rt Rev Richard Dawson was inducted into the role of Assembly Moderator which he will hold until the next General Assembly in 2018.
We look forward to welcoming Richard to the Presbyterian Schools' Conference this year.
Richard has sent a Waitangi Day message to the Presbyterian network which you can read here.

Contact list changes

Have you had changes to your Christian/Religious Education staff for this year? If there is someone who you think should be added to (or removed from) the newsletter mailing list, please advise the Resource Office .

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