Thursday, December 20, 2012

Cookies for the Mission

Is Justin going to eat them himself?
 Patrons served by the Arkansas Valley Christian Mission will enjoy some Christmas-cookie treats again this year thanks to the kids and parents of DPCA's 1st - 6th grades.  In a combined effort between the classrooms, the students enjoyed crafting cookie canisters and loading them with cookies to deliver to the Mission last week.

We asked the students why they made the cookie containers:  "We made the cookies because a lot of kids like cookies, and so they can have a good Christmas," Royal Lundy said, while classmate Klayt Staudt added: "It's fun for them to have good things, and they like it."

"We wanted to help out, and help people celebrate God's gift to us,"  Miss Davidson's students said. "I had fun doing it," Marshall Swarny added, "because it is nice to do something for others."  The students in Miss Davidson's class have been working on Haiku poetry this week, so they wrote the following Haiku while reflecting on their cookie mission:

The cookies are sweet.
We give to people we meet
A nice Christmas treat.

Reid adds a cookie to Jake's canister
Royal is all smiles...

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Varsity Boys Repeat at Home

From the beginning of the first quarter it looked like the DPCA Eagles could capture a victory over the Denver Eagles, and except for a brief portion of the third quarter, the DPCA home team held a commanding lead throughout the game and brought home a 42-24 victory, their second in a row in the DPCA gym. The Denver team managed to close within nine points in the third quarter in FRCAA league play Tuesday night, but the DPCA Eagles bounced back in the fourth and then ran away with the game.  Several of the boys had a good night at the bucket. Hawk White capitalized on a memorable fast break and ended up scoring five for the evening, while Noah and Micah Ritschard tied with fourteen each.  Sophomore Joel Parker was close behind with nine points scored. 

Strong supporting roles were played by Jase Staudt, Levi Jelinek, and Seth Turner.  The team will miss Levi after the break, bidding him farewell as he returns to the Bahamas for the spring semester.

The Eagles will be taking a break in the season for Christmas, with the next contest scheduled for January 10 at home against Love Christian.  Following that game, the Eagles Varsity will have a series of away games, returning to their home gym at the end of next month. 

For the current schedule for the varsity and junior high teams, please go to and click on "Programs" followed by "Athletics."

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Varisty Boys Open Season

The Eagles played consistent defense against the Falcons
Noah drives in for one of his two-point buckets.
Hawk looks for Joel coming up the middle.
Micah goes for the jumper just inside the three-point line.
Following a pre-season tournament in Leadville during which the boys tested their skills against some challenging public-school opponents, Front Range Christian Athletic Association season play for the Eagles Varsity opened on December 4th at home against Front Range Baptist from Fort Collins.

With the Eagles capturing just a one-point lead at the end of the first quarter, it looked like the game  would be close - and indeed the Falcons did manage to stay within a few points until the 4th quarter, when the home team came on strong and pulled away to a 41-35 victory. 

Scoring for the Eagles was led by Hawk White, with 15 points, and Joel Parker, with 9.

The Varsity Boys are scheduled to play again at home on Tuesday, December 18th, at 6:00 PM. 

Athletic schedules are posted at click on "Programs," then "Athletics," and select the sport.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Fall Family Night -- Fun!

Following Parent/Teacher Conferences, on November 2, the DPCA school community was invited to Fall Family Fun Night -- an evening of food, family games, and dancing to celebrate the end of the first quarter and God's goodness to our community.

A chili supper prepared by Kathy Akers and helpers began the evening.  Following supper the family game began, with four teams completing five stations:  Bible Brains; Presidential, Patriotic Puzzles; Music Masters; Artists in Residence, and Math Minds.  Competition was strong among the Pot-Bellied Unicorns, the Smarties, the Incredible Hornets, and Team Lewis and Clark, but in the end the Smarties prevailed with a final score of 80 out of a possible 100. 

Artwork from the Artists in Residence table

Which brother gets the favor of the rose?

"Music Masters" debut their original song

Our esteemed judges deciding their favorites...

Game play led into the dessert judging contest, won by Marla Pranger and Cindy Lewis, and then into some folk dancing called by Mr. Barnes.  As usual, "The Favor of the Rose" proved a favorite, and the evening wound down with "Keeping the Main Thing the Main Thing."

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Volleyball Awards Night

by Tom Navarrette, Athletic Director

Parents, siblings, fans, and volleyball players came together in the Eagle Cafetorium Monday night, October 29, to celebrate the achievements of the girls over the course of the 2012 season.

Members of the junior high girls volleyball team were recognized by Coach Navarrette, who talked about each of his players, pointing out the strengths of each young lady.  The Eagles JH competed in the A division of all games and tournaments; the 8th grade A team lost 3 contests all season, and the 7th grade A team lost only 2.  The Eagles were a very young team, with only four 8th graders and one 7th grader; the remainder of the players were in 6th grade. This season the 7A Most Improved Player was Caitlin Locket, and Most Valuable Player was Shelby Storms.  In 8A, the Most Improved Player was Sydney McManamay, and the Most Valuable Player was Heather Burdges.

Following the junior high players, the Varsity volleyball team was also recognized for their efforts and good sportsmanship during the fall season. Coach Campbell had each girl tell a story or two about the season; it was great fun for the audience to hear some "inside" stories that didn't always have to do with the game itself.  Coach praised the girls for their tough play throughout the season, and also mentioned that other schools took notice of the skill improvement of the Eagle Ladies.  The Eagle varsity girls are also a young team, with Carly Romnes the only senior .  Coach is looking forward to a great season next year.    Even though she would love to give all the girls special awards, Coach Campbell was limited to one in each category.  The Varsity Most Improved Player was Heather Burdges, and the Most Valuable Player for the 2012 season was Rebecca Pranger.
Congratulations, girls, on a great season of play, sportsmanship, and representing your school so well.  We are proud of you!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Coming This Week: Fall Family Night

All DPCA families are invited this coming Friday, November 2 to join in celebrating the end of the first quarter and God’s goodness to our school community through the fall. We’re having a simple chili supper beginning at 5:30 PM (right after P/T conferences wrap up), and then we have some family games and a dance with Mr. Randy Barnes planned.

Chili Supper and Games: 5:30 – 7:00
Dance and Dessert Contest: 7:00 – 8:00

We do need some help getting the meal together:  Could we have families bring supplies for the meal as follows?
1)            Last names A – B, 1 lb of ground beef, 1 box saltines
2)           Last names C-D, 2 large cans tomato sauce, 1 pkg small paper plates
3)           Last names G-L, 2 large cans diced tomatoes, 1 box saltines
4)           Last names M-O, 2 large cans chili beans, 1 bag Fritos
5)           Last names P-R, 2 large cans kidney beans, 1 bag Fritos
6)           Last names S, 1 pkg heavy paper plates, 1 pkg shredded cheese, 1 onion
7)           Last names T, 1 pkg paper bowls (that will hold chili), 1 pkg shredded cheese.
8)           Last names W-Z – 1 pkg paper/plastic cups, 1 pkg plastic silverware
9)           Everyone: Your favorite pie or cake to share.  We’re going to have the Best for Miles Around pie and cake contest, so if you have a special pie or cake you’d like to enter, be sure to let us know when you bring it in.

Please bring food items to school by the end of the school day Thursday, November 1.  Pies and cakes can be brought with you on Friday the 2nd. 

We're looking forward to a fun evening together with our school community, and hope everyone can come!

So that we can plan the food, please RSVP to the school office by Friday noon, November 2.  Thank you! 

Friday, October 26, 2012

Of Beavers and Pumpkins

What do beavers and pumpkins have in common?  Well, on the surface probably not too much, but the kindergarten class learned from Pastor Stanton Sikes in chapel today that beavers have unique roles in the ecosystem.  Did you know beaver dams enable about half of all the endangered species in North America to survive?  And that was just one of  many interesting facts about beavers that Pastor Stanton shared.  Why share about beavers in chapel?  Because Pastor Stanton was reminding us that God's "invisible qualities -- his eternal power and divine nature -- have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made..." (Romans 1:20) And, the God who made and gave beavers their purpose has also made and given us purpose: to love God and to love our neighbor. (Matthew 22:37-39)

And what does this have to do with pumpkins?  Beavers and pumpkins have this in common: God made them as He chose, according to the design He had for them, and in accordance with His purpose for them.  After chapel, the kindergarten class had fun estimating how many seeds would be in a pumpkin, and then opening some up to compare their estimates to reality.  Wow!  There are a lot of seeds in a pumpkin!

Whether it is beavers or pumpkins, (or the smiles on these faces)  God's divine nature and power can be clearly seen...

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Current Events: October 24 to November 2

Several events are taking place at school over the next few days:

1) The 1st quarter ends Friday the 26th, so all work is due that day. Report cards will be sent out via Jupiter Grades for students in grades 7-12 on Wednesday the 31st, and via Thursday folders for grades K-6 on Thursday the 1st.

2) This coming Saturday and Sunday, October 27th and 28th, DPCA hosts the High Country Fine Arts Association's children's musical production Go West! Several DPCA students are in the cast.  For a delightful live show for the whole family, readers can take in the Saturday evening performance at 7:00 PM, or the Sunday matinee at 2:00 PM.

3) Volleyball Awards night will be Monday, October 29 in the school cafetorium.  Please note this is a date change.  The evening will begin at 7:00 PM following the first junior high basketball practice of the season. (Practice to begin right after school.)

4) Parent/Teacher Conferences are now being scheduled for Thursday and Friday, November 1 and 2. Parents are asked to please call the office to make an appointment.

5) Fall Family Night is November 2, after Parent/Teacher Conferences wrap up.  All parents and students are invited to join together for a chili supper, pie and cake contest, some fun friendly family competition, and a dance hosted by our own Randy Barnes!  Please watch for more information from the office...

ACSI Convention Encourages, Teaches

While students were out of school on Thursday and Friday the 18th and 19th, nearly all of the faculty and staff at DPCA attended the annual Association of Christian School International's Educator's Convention.  ACSI has changed the format of the convention in recent years; this year's convention was hosted in Ohio and simulcast to about 11,300 attendees at 81 sites around the country.  DPCA attended the satellite site at Colorado Springs Christian School.

The convention is designed to encourage and equip Christian school educators.  Sessions included thoughts on the vision and purpose of Christian schooling from Dr. Brian Simmons, president of ACSI; the characteristics and importance of effective teachers from Drs. Charlotte Danielson and James Stronge; and  a remarkable session with Dr. Barry Black, two-star U.S. admiral and now chaplain of the United States Senate, on the importance of his own Christian education, and his encouragement to parents to continue to invest in Christian education for their children.  Annette Breaux presented tips and pointers for effective classroom management, while Dr. Jeff Myers, president of Summit Ministries, presented on cultivating mentoring relationships. More inspirational sessions included Elisa Morgan, former president of MOPS International, presenting "She Did What She Could," an encouragement to follow Christ and walk with Him; Dr. Samson Makhado speaking of the explosive growth of Christian schooling in Africa and the exciting work that the Lord is doing on that continent; and finally, Dr. Wes Stafford, president of Compassion International, on the importance of one minute -- just a minute -- in a child's life.

Though the experience at Convention is a bit like trying to drink from a fire hose (there is so much to take in!), it proved again this year to be a refreshing and inspiring gathering for DPCA faculty and staff.  During Wednesday morning devotions this week we reflected on and shared some of our personal highlights from the two days, and agreed that each of us had learned much and been refreshed in our work with our students.  We also were reminded again what a blessing a Christ-centered education can be to students, and that though DPCA is remotely located, we are not alone - the Lord is working through literally hundreds of thousands of Christian educators, in millions of students' and families' lives around the world, through Christian schooling.  We were blessed to be able to attend the convention, and are blessed to have the privilege of "doing school" in a framework of Truth.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Junior High Copper Art

 Junior High students have been making copper tiles in art class the last couple of weeks.  Copper sheet is placed over a pattern and the student then uses a stylus to transfer the image to the copper.  Students can choose to leave the copper bright or "antique" it with steel wool.

The copper art project is a tradition in Mrs. Tritz's junior high art class.

Edible Plants Field Trip

Mr. Curro's Biology Class enjoyed a field trip to learn about edible plants in our local area Thursday, September 13.  Mr. Randy Barnes provided the instruction as the students learned a variety of plants whose berries, leaves, or roots are safe to eat.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Varsity Girls off to a Strong Start

Becca goes for a BIG block at the net...
by Tom Navarrette

The Lady Eagles Varsity Volleyball squad got off to a strong start September 4th with their opener against league rival Denver Eagles. The match was played on the road in Aurora. The Eagles opened strong against the Denver team and never looked back, winning in three decisive sets. The enrire team played good volleyball, with Rebecca Wade and Rebecca Pranger leading the way.  Keely Campbell and Kate Lundy, along with Heather Burdges and Carly Romnes, had shining moments as well.

Keely is just about to pound that ball!
DPCA's varsity team consists largely of very young athletes that work well together and have a great friendship and camaraderie with one another.  The girls have been on the road for their first three games, and have accumulated a 2-1 record to date. The Lady Eagles face another tough challenge on Friday, September 14th for the home opener -- come out and support these young ladies!

For a current volleyball schedule, please click here. 
Kaitlynn digs it out.
Did we have fun?  Yes we did!  Becca seems pretty happy!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Turning 30!

We had some fun at school this week helping Miss Davidson celebrate her 30th birthday.  School staff got together and gave Miss D a new car!  See if you can spot it in the pictures...

Happy birthday, Miss D, and thanks for all your commitment and dedication to all of us at DPCA!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Parent Coffee September 12

Parents, remember you are all invited to our first Parent Coffee of the year: September 12, 10:30 AM.  Topics for this first coffee will include a brief update on general school matters (upcoming events, plans, finances, etc.), an overview of technology teaching and curriculum at our school,  and time for any questions parents may have.  The best part is just renewing or strengthening the connection with fellow travelers on the schooling and parenting journey.  We promise to wrap up by 11:15, though if parents need additional time for questions, that will be fine for those who wish to stay.  We hope you can make it!

We will schedule future parent coffees at different times and on different days - so if the morning time on the 12th does not work for some, we'll hope to catch you at a better time later on.

BTSN: PFU's Sweep Family Pentathlon

DPCA, August 23, 2012

Though the competition was stiff (which was probably part of their secret), the Team PFU (Potbellied Fluffy Unicorns) came out on top in the DPCA Back-to-School Night Family Pentathlon.  Showing their impossible-to-beat skills at Moon Ball, Birthday Shuffle, Computer De-bugging, Bball Blast, and Toxic Transfer, the PFU's dominated, posting best times in all but one event.  Though the Question Marks, Team Unknown, Destroyer Fireballs, The Shufflins, and Team Incredibles worked hard, the PFU's just couldn't be stopped. 

With a new school record total time of just 4:93, the PFU's clearly came out ahead of second-place squad Team Incredibles, who posted a very respectable 5:87. 

Highlights of the Pentathlon included seeing Jason  lift all the members of his team who were under 4 ft tall over his head for a better shot at the hoop, watching the teams cope with silence at the Birthday Shuffle,  enjoying a wide variety of team strategies for Moon Ball, and just soaking in all the laughter, fun, and camaraderie as the teams worked together at each event station.

Back-to-School night began with hot-dogs, beans, and chips served up by the staff kitchen crew, potluck desserts brought in by parents, and a brief information meeting in the Eagle cafetorium. A few announcements and reminders followed faculty and staff introductions, and together our school community considered for a few moments our 2012-2013 theme: Running to Win... Eyes Fixed on Jesus.  Mr. Ritschard read the accompanying verses, and briefly commented on the ways in which students and staff would be exploring the theme during the year.  The family Pentathlon in the gym, and a brief time to meet teachers and see classrooms rounded out the evening.

A big thank you to all our staff, parents, and students who came together for a fun evening! 

First Day Smiles

First days of school in the fall are almost always a collection of mixed feelings...  A bit of sadness that summer has wound down, some excitement about the new school year, gladness at reconnecting with friends, and perhaps a little nervousness at a new school year or being away from Mom for the first time.

Wednesday, August 22nd, staff at DPCA welcomed the 2012-2013 student body and parents back to school.  What a joy to see the students coming in -- from the class of 2013 who will graduate in just nine months, to the class of 2025 who are leaving home in a new way to join the kindergarten class, it was a blessing to see how much children had grown, hear of some of their summer adventures, commiserate over summer coming to a close, or just watch as they reconnected with friends at school.

From preschool through the 12th grade, DPCA has enrolled about 115 students for the year, and we're excited about the prospect of another year filled with learning, growth, teamwork, mentoring, discipleship, community service, blessings, challenges, and all the joy that comes from being part of a school community where Christ is honored. 

So welcome back to school!  It's going to be a great year...

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Our Graduates' Vision

by Erik Ritschard, Administrator

Juniors and seniors in our Philosophy and Culture class are assigned each spring to complete a project that answers the following question: "Discuss the most crucial life qualities a Christian must cultivate if he or she is to be an effective culture and kingdom builder in the next 30 years."  The choice of these qualities is left up to the student, but each must discuss at least four.  What results from the assignment is a powerful, inspiring, personalized window into the hearts and minds of our oldest students, revealing what each believes to be critical issues for their lives and others if they (and we) are to have an impact in our culture for Christ.  I'd like to share a brief summary of those projects, and give our readers a little glimpse of our graduates' thoughts.

Our graduates' included the following topics in their lists of the "most important life qualities":

  • Knowing what it means to be human
  • Valuing the importance of stewardship
  • Understanding the importance of family
  • Appreciating and valuing the importance of marriage
  • Investing in raising children well
  • Being personally responsible
  • Pursuing spiritual growth
  • Developing strong personal character
  • Having a sense of purpose and mission in vocation
  • Developing a Biblical world view
  • Engaging with the culture
  • Maintaining biblical morals and refuting moral relativisim
  • Cultivating one's ability to be a leader through service and example
  • Seriously investing in the Bible's call to justice
  • Believing that God works in power through His Spirit
It's a powerful list, and our students expressed powerful thoughts as they wrote about these subjects that were important to them.  For example,

"According to Dr. Meyers [of Summit Ministries -- we watched a presentation of his during class - ER], 'a leader is a person who views the world from God's perspective, exercises his gifts and talents with excellence and perseverance, and strategically plans to serve others.' It is thus first important that the foundation for being a strong leader is Jesus Christ.  Next is how we decide to apply ourselves to the life that God has given us to live.  With those two in mind, it is important to remember that we exist to serve others -- that is our calling..."

Another graduate writes,

"In order for someone to form a [Biblical] worldview, they must be educated about profound issues.  Issues like: "What does it mean to be human?" and "Who or what is God?" are very important to contemplate, and forms one's opinion about.  A person's worldview forms the foundation for their priorities, beliefs, and practice. Thus, education about relevant cultural and spiritual issues is a necessity for a Christian to obtain."
 Other selections from our graduate's vision projects include...
"Marriage isn't always the happily-ever-after fairy-tale. It is a road that will challenge anyone.  It will take dedication and perseverance as well as a choice to love the [other] at all times.  Love isn't that lovey-dovey feeling, it is a choice."
 "If we expect youths to be able to stand for what is right, parents first should give them a foundation in Christ..."
"God created the family to have a father and a mother because each parent offers different things that the other parent can't offer. Family is also where the mother and father raise their children in a way that is honoring to God."

"Our culture has also been struggling with abortion.  This is when we really need to know what a human is.  Is it still a human even if it only looks like a glob of tissue that is five weeks old? Being human means God created us in his own image.  He created us in our mother's wombs... A human is a human from the time when the egg is fertilized..."

"We are supposed to actively seek His face because we were not created to be complacent. So in order to be effective kingdom builders one should be observant of the plateaus in one's spiritual walk, and seek God actively."

"Christ is a man of integrity; he is blameless, free of sin.  I believe we should put our selfish desires aside and serve others in the same way that Christ did."

"Micah 6:8 says that we are " love mercy, do justly, and to walk humbly with our God." I believe God has called me specifically to fight against injustice -- to do justly."

"Christ served without expecting anything in return. This is a very important aspect in our culture today.  It is easy for our minds to be influenced by our culture.  Today's culture often views a person as a means to get something, not as an image of Christ. For a Christian to develop strong character, it is important that they view others as images of Christ and serve them without an expectation of return."

"Just as Jesus is the foundation for being a strong leader, He is also the foundation for all aspects of my life. I think too often Christians trivialize the spirituality of our faith, when in reality that spirituality is the foundation of everything we believe in.  By this I mean that God works in power through His Spirit, and He is an active part of our everyday lives."
 Powerful ideas - and, as we learned in class, "Ideas have consequences."  Think of the consequences of the ideas expressed here for these young adults in their own lives if they continue to live out these ideals, and then those positive consequences multiplied out to the others around them.  I'm very proud of our graduates, in what I hope is a good way -- that they have each committed themselves to being a follower of Christ and striving to understand and pursue the application of their faith in a challenging culture.

Would you join us at school in praying for Elle, Ethan, Abbie, and Jess as they continue forward with the next stage of their journey?  Elle will be at Dordt College in Iowa this fall, Ethan at USMC Boot Camp from August 20 - November 16, Abbie at Colorado Christian University, and Jess in Tacoma, Washington. Pray for steadfastness, perseverance, and the continued commitment to live out their faith with integrity.  They each have a strong vision for a godly future: pray for their ability to hold fast to the vision they have expressed. 

Ideas have consequences -- and these student's worlds will be better places as the consequences of their ideals bear fruit.