During the launch of the new IOS platform from Mac, my students were buzzing about all the cool new features. I find the students’ enthusiasm for all things technology related contagious.
Enthusiasm is one of the major reasons I enjoy teaching middle and high school students, but I find that their enthusiasm often needs a lot of guidance. The students are really a lot like the computers, iPads, and iPhones they love so much. They are a product of the software that runs them. Their brains’ pathways have been and are being molded by their experiences, education, electronics, and hopefully their engagement with Christ.
As a teacher it is my goal to install them with software that will ready them to meet a world full of challenges biblically. Every day, I hope that my classroom works to upgrade their brains’ software a bit. Whether it’s working with a student or a small group to deal with a problem they are having with a friend or having an entire class analyze the works of Edgar Allen Poe for faulty philosophy, it’s my job to guide them through the process of using a biblical framework to solve life’s problems and answer it’s great questions. By doing this, I am equipping them to think through these issues on their own.
Students spend so much time downloading media into their brains things such as music, movies, and even the nightly news make their way into the students’ ever plastic pathways. One major goal is teaching them how to evaluate what they are putting into their minds. I don’t subscribe to the idea of giving them a yes or no check list or rules to follow on their media use. Not only are list, like rules, unhelpful and Pharisaical, but they are often not applied. Encouraging students to develop their own software or worldview by thinking biblically and focusing on their relationship with Christ will result in standards that come from the student as an outflow of the Holy Spirit’s work in them.
I suppose the “old fashioned” term for all of this is discipleship. Sadly, discipleship is often ignored in our world today. It is assumed that young people can’t be mature and they of course rise to the lowest expectation set for them. As a teacher and more importantly a Christian, I want my students to know that I don’t despise their youth, and that they can grow to be great biblical thinkers even at their young age. Let’s all raise the bar and work toward having young people with a biblical worldview so that the students here at TBCA can go out and do what the Lord intends for them, which is to turn the world upside down by uploading their faith into the godless culture around them.
--Whitney Anderson, English/Literature Instructor