Transformational Icons

Transformational Icons

Thursday, 24 March 2016  | Jacqui - Director of Teaching, Learning & Innovation
This time last year we launched our new book, Transformational Education. This book explores 16 key characteristics of Christian education at MECS. It turns out that we are not the only ones who have found the focus of this book important; the book has been snapped up by schools both nationally and internationally. It has been exciting to see how other communities have resonated with our articulation of teaching and learning from a Christian perspective.

Throughout the book there are a number of icons that represent each one of the 16 understandings. These icons were created by Claire, a talented graphic designer who is also one of our school parents. In this editorial, I will focus on the first four facets and their icons: Transformative Christian Education, Rich Learning, Adventurous Methodologies, and Nurturing Diversity.

Transformative Christian Education
Learning at MECS has a clear purpose; the transformation of students and teachers so that they might have the mind, heart and life of Christ and to be his disciples. The Easter story is central to our story at MECS. The death and resurrection of the God-man, Jesus Christ, at a real time in human history, saw the beginning of the total renewal of creation. We are part of this renewal. As disciples, students and teachers will understand themselves to be participants in God’s redeeming work, which will be completed when Jesus returns in power.

The icon for Transformative Christian Education depicts the growth of a plant from a little bud to a flourishing tree. It highlights the transformation of our heart, mind, spirit and life through the work of the Holy Spirit. Our aim at MECS is to provide educational experiences and settings in openness to the direction and guidance of the Spirit who “guides us in all truth” (John 16:13).

Rich Learning
At MECS, we aim to nurture students as lifelong learners who are able to explore the world with the full depth and sophistication of their gifts and abilities. We believe that each student is made in the image of God, and they bring him glory as they live out their unique talents. It is our responsibility to cater for a wide range of learning styles while also challenging students to grow in areas of weakness.

The icon for Rich Learning features a treasure chest overflowing with the symbols and pictures that represent a diversity of learning experiences. It is our goal to provide authentic experiences of adventure, appreciation, celebration, challenge, community, curiosity, service and stewardship.

Adventurous Methodologies
Authentic learning can be great fun. To facilitate rich learning at MECS, we investigate a wide range of methods of exploring God’s diverse creation. There is no shortage of educational endeavours and new ideas. We engage with many of these ideas with enthusiasm and discernment. No methodology is neutral; each reflects understandings of human nature and knowledge. With the guidance of the Holy Spirit, and the truth of the Bible, we carefully choose and reflect on these innovative ideas and practices.

The icon for Adventurous Methodologies portrays a climber making his/her way up a mountain. It characterises the careful, determined, and guided approach to reaching new heights and views of education. MECS has long held a reputation for nurturing innovation and creativity. As a community of joyful learners, we continue to pursue new ideas while ensuring they are consistent with a Christian worldview.

Nurturing Diversity
Every day we are made aware of the diversity of creation. This is often most evident in the uniqueness of people. We are diverse in abilities, giftings, backgrounds, and interests, yet we are all loved and valued by our Creator God. This was especially shown on the cross when Christ came to restore all people to God through his death and resurrection. There is great unity in diversity. A biblical metaphor often used to describe this is ‘one body, many parts’. Each of us has a unique and important role to play in the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12).

The icon for Nurturing Diversity includes puzzle pieces fitting together to represent a whole. It highlights how, as individuals, we connect with others in community. We encourage the flourishing of diversity, while also providing opportunities for students to use their gifts to serve and be a blessing to others. 

In my next editorial, I will explore the next four facets: Scripturally Infused, Formation - Head, Heart & Hand, Overarching Story, and Relational Community. A reminder that if you would like your own copy of Transformational Education, they are available from the school office for $20.

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