TGS Introduces Julia Ingler – New Girls Basketball Coach

Julia Ingler started playing basketball at the age of five in Coral Springs, Florida. Upon moving to St. Cloud, Florida, she attended a basketball camp and was asked to join the Central Florida Blazers’ AAU Team. At Narcoossee Middle School, Julia played multiple sports including track, soccer, and basketball (where she was the leading scorer and MVP in consecutive seasons). Entering Harmony High School, her passion was basketball, but she also excelled at flag football. During her senior year of high school, thanks to amazing teammates and great teamwork, Julia’s flag football and basketball teams both finished second place in the Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) State Championship and Julia received the MVP award. Julia received several other athletic awards throughout high school, including two-time All-District Basketball Player of the Year, Osceola County Brighthouse Basketball Player of the Year, and Osceola Gazette Basketball Co-Player of the Year.

Julia received multiple scholarship offers to play college basketball and ultimately decided to attend and play for Rollins College in Winter Park. The atmosphere and small class sizes were the best fit academically, and it also had a top-notch basketball program. While at college, Julia developed strong leadership skills as a starting guard and captain. The team made great strides and was the NCAA South Region All-Tournament Team in 2017. Throughout college, Julia continued to rack up the awards and achievements, including All Newcomer Team as a freshman and NCAA Sunshine State Conference Honor Roll, while also scoring over 1,200 points throughout her college career (which was limited by a broken foot during her senior season). Julia is also proud to hold the record for the most career three-pointers (224) in Rollins’ basketball history.

Each summer while at Rollins, Julia enjoyed being fully engaged with multiple basketball camps where she made great lifelong friends. After graduating with a degree in communications and a minor in business, Julia accepted a contract to play professional basketball in Ireland while also pursuing her master’s degree in international business management at Griffith College. Being in Dublin from August 2018–May 2019 was a wonderful international experience that sparked Julia’s vision and drive to become a coach. Shortly after returning to Florida, Julia realized that coaching and helping others was her passion and calling, just like the great coaches that had helped her succeed in the sport and imparted valuable life lessons through the game. Basketball and other team sports teach you to learn from and listen to others and also require you to be accountable to others.

Julia is beyond excited to share her passion for basketball and athletics with the students at Geneva. She firmly believes that dedication, hard work, and having an excitement for a sport can take you to some amazing places!

TGS Introduces Bill Cashman (New Track & Field Coach)

Coach Cash, as a lot of kids call him, joins Geneva’s coaching staff as the varsity track and field coach. He started his career in coaching while still in high school, coaching baseball and football, and adopted the role of pole vault coach for his track team when they didn’t have a coach. His mentor and coach, Ron Evans, recruited him to coach a few years later, and together they won ten state championships. Since that time, Coach Cashman has coached over 70 state champions, 11 state record holders, 7 national champions, and well over 100 All American athletes. Prior to coming to TGS, he spent five years at Lake Mary High School where his Rams set 30 school records, won 3 straight conference and district titles, and were runners up twice at regionals.

Coach Cashman is a Level I and II certified coach through USA Track and Field. He also went back to school, earning a BS in Exercise Physiology and Sport Science at UCF. He studied strength and conditioning under Frank Costello while coaching at the University of Maryland, as well as biomechanics under Roger Eckard, formerly of Arkansas State University.

A couple of key phrases that set Coach Cashman apart as a coach:

▪ “I love you enough to tell you the truth … even if it hurts a little.”
▪ “Are you better today than you were yesterday, and did you do enough to be better tomorrow?”
▪ “Let the height of your desire and the depth of your resolve be the measure of your success.”

Coach Cashman, along with his wife, Lisa, and stepson, Griffin, live in Casselberry and attend St. Luke’s Lutheran Church in Oviedo.

Find out more about Geneva’s Track and Field program HERE.

Introducing New Faculty Members

for the 2020–2021 school year

 

After a hiatus of five years (teaching in Uganda, Tennessee, and Hawaii), Mary Chris Rowe returns to the community of faith and learning at TGS in 2020 as a part of the fourth grade team. Mary Chris has welcomed students into her classroom for over twenty years. She delights in coming alongside families in the spiritual nurture of their children and treasures getting to know each student individually. Observing the transformation as students develop necessary skills and discover new interests fascinates her. Playing games and making music are favorite ways of teaching critical thinking skills, creating happy memories, and building a culture of belonging.

A native Floridian, Mary Chris grew up in a Christian home where music and reading played an integral part of family, church, and community life. She graduated from Florida State University in 1991 and joined The Geneva School faculty as a second grade teacher in 2004. Over the next eleven years, she taught piano lessons, led fun summer camps, and occasionally performed with the school orchestra. Mary Chris was the grammar school recipient of The Geneva School Paideia Award in 2012, its inaugural year.

She is active in Bible Study Fellowship and enjoys going to the beach with her family.

 

Erin Goranson joins the upper school math faculty in 2020. She began her teaching career in 2007 at Boone High School in Orlando, teaching algebra and geometry. Since 2010, when her first daughter was born, Erin has been an algebra teacher with the Florida Virtual School, allowing her to stay home and raise her family. She is delighted to be back in the classroom instilling her love of mathematics in her students.

Erin received her bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Tampa and, after discovering a passion for mathematics, went on to earn a master’s degree in secondary mathematics education. As a certified math instructor, she has helped teach at homeschool co-ops and tutored many students over the years.

Erin and her husband, Glenn, grew up in Vero Beach, Florida, and moved to Orlando in 2005. They have four beautiful children, Madison (class of 2028), Sarah (class of 2030), Liam (class of 2032) and Katherine (future class of 2035). They are both very passionate about classical education and have been an active part of the Geneva community since Madison enrolled in K4. Erin and her family love camping, going to the beach, and spending time in the mountains of North Carolina during the summer. They are members of One Church Markham Woods in Longwood where Erin and Glenn teach/volunteer with the preschool-aged children.

 

Ryan Fraser is joining the upper school faculty this fall as a history and rhetoric & Christian thought teacher. He grew up in Central Florida and is very excited to settle back in the area with his wife, Heidi, and their son, Ezra (2). For the past several years, they have been involved in Bible translation work, which kept them frequently on the move, both domestically and internationally. Ryan attended the University of South Florida, where he graduated with a BA in Classics. He went on to earn master’s degrees in Biblical Studies (Reformed Theological Seminary, Orlando) and Applied Linguistics (Dallas International University). Following his studies, Ryan’s work focused on the biblical languages—teaching them at the college and seminary levels and implementing them in Bible translation. For as long as he can remember, he has been utterly fascinated by different languages and cultures, together with the history that both shapes and is shaped by them. He looks forward to exploring these and other subjects with students from a distinctively Christian perspective. Ryan loves spending time with his family. He also enjoys reading, studying languages, cooking (and eating), and playing guitar. He and his wife are members of St. Paul’s Presbyterian Church in Orlando.

 

Jamie Dudreck is thrilled to join the kindergarten team at The Geneva School this coming fall. Since she was five years old, Jamie has known that she wanted to teach kindergarten. She loves to teach young children about God’s beautiful world and is always excited to see her students learn. Jamie earned her BA in Elementary Education from The Master’s University and her MA in Teaching in Elementary Education from National Louis University. She previously taught kindergarten at Naperville Christian Academy, a Christian classical school in the suburbs of Chicago. Jamie, her husband, Matt, and their two children, Hannah (7) and Andrew (3), moved to Winter Park in June 2019 from the Philadelphia area so that Matt could begin his current position as associate professor of New Testament at Reformation Bible College in Sanford. Hannah began attending Geneva as a first grader in the fall of 2019. Jamie and her family are members of Saint Andrew’s Chapel in Sanford. Born and raised a proud native Texan, Jamie has lived in several major cities throughout the United States and so enjoys traveling to visit her family and friends. In her typical spare time, Jamie loves to cook, practice her calligraphy, and work on other various art and craft projects. Now that she and her family are local, she also loves to spend time with them visiting Walt Disney World.

 

Leslie Coggins will be joining the lower school faculty teaching fifth grade. She brings a broad range of experience in a variety of school settings in Florida, Kentucky, and Georgia. Her most rewarding teaching experience was helping to start The Habersham School, a classical academy in Savannah, Georgia. While there, she taught literature, history, and theology in fifth through seventh grade and later served as the dean of the lower school. Most recently, she has been working as an exceptional student education support facilitator in the Volusia County school system. She is excited to return to the classroom in a classical setting. Leslie was born in San Antonio, Texas, but grew up in Volusia County. She graduated from Stetson University with a BA in Elementary and Early Childhood Education. While at Stetson, she was a member of the Delta Delta Delta sorority. Leslie has three grown children: Emily, Allie, and Chase, and a soon-to-be daughter-in-law, Sammie. She loves to travel and has taken students on trips to Washington DC and Europe. She also enjoys reading, playing Scrabble, going to the beach, and cheering for the Florida State Seminoles! Leslie lives in DeLand and is a member of Christ Community Church in Daytona Beach.

 

Joseph Tipton is actually returning to The Geneva School after spending two years in Idaho. Although the Pacific Northwest proved to be full of blessings for Joseph and his family, they simply missed the mission, the people, and the caliber of education that is found at The Geneva School too much to stay gone for very long. After teaching Latin at Campbell University in North Carolina, Joseph resumed his studies and earned his PhD in Greek and Latin Languages & Literatures at the University of Pittsburgh, where he also did a good bit of teaching. After teaching at UMass Boston and Winthrop University in South Carolina, Joseph felt God was directing him to teach his subjects in an expressly Christian context. This resulted in two wonderful years at The Geneva School (2016–2018) and in another two years at New Saint Andrews College, Moscow, Idaho. Joseph will be teaching upper school Greek and Latin. He has a deep passion for Greco-Roman antiquity, both in its own right as well as for the ways the classical heritage has in countless periods of Western history influenced successive generations of Christian thinkers, writers, teachers, and students, the Christian classical movement being the latest example of this influence. Joseph is active as a translator, having worked on Chrysostom and Vermigli as well as currently working on the Dutch theologian Gisbertus Voetius. He presents and publishes in the field of Reformation literature and offers periodic workshops on teaching Greek and Latin in the modern classroom. Joseph has been married to his college sweetheart, Michelle, for twenty years. Nearly two years ago they celebrated the birth of their first and only son, whom they named Watts because of their shared love for the poet/hymn-writer Isaac Watts. Joseph spends his downtime either enjoying long walks with his family, teaching Wattsy a little Greek, or reading There’s a Wocket in My Pocket to him what seems like twenty times in a row. Both Joseph and Michelle are thrilled to be returning to Florida and the TGS community!

 

Originally from Kansas City, Missouri, Colby Painter comes to The Geneva School after having taught humanities, history, literature, composition, logic, and physical education in the beautiful Rocky Mountains of Colorado. He will be teaching history and rhetoric & Christian thought in the upper school. Colby graduated from William Jewell College in Liberty, Missouri, where he majored in history in the college’s honors program and minored in Christian tradition and thought and classical humanities. As part of his honors program, he spent his junior year studying in the UK at Homerton College, Cambridge University. Colby went on to graduate from Westminster Seminary California (MDiv) and complete a pastoral internship at Faith Orthodox Presbyterian Church in Elmer, New Jersey. Before he started teaching, Colby provided long-term pulpit supply at Park Woods Presbyterian Church and Strasburg Union Church and also spent three years working with state welfare programs for the Missouri Family Support Division. Colby is licensed to preach in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church and continues to preach and teach in churches regularly. In his free time, Colby enjoys reading, watching football, watching movies, playing video games, choral singing, and building computers. As a choral singer, Colby has traveled all around the world with choirs since high school. While in seminary, he founded and directed the Westminster Seminary Chorale, and most recently he co-founded and co-directed the Winter Park Christian Church Choir, in Winter Park, Colorado. In addition, this past Christmas, Colby performed “But Thou didst not leave his soul in hell” as part of the Mountain Messiah Choir in Granby, Colorado. Colby’s greatest ambition is to someday win the prestigious First Annual Montgomery Burns Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Excellence.

 

Jennifer Coggins joins the Geneva faculty this fall. She is relocating with her family back to Florida after living in Charlotte, NC, for the past ten years. Jennifer grew up in Florida and graduated from Stetson University in 1995 with a degree in business management. After homeschooling her children for two years, she realized God was leading her to a future in education. In Charlotte, Jennifer has served as a part of the faculty of Covenant Day School for nine years. She began her career working as a teaching assistant while earning her Master of Arts in Education from Wingate University. She has been an elementary school teacher for four years. During her time at CDS, Jennifer has served as a member of the Social Studies Curriculum Cabinet and the Math Curriculum Outcomes Team. She was a designated representative at the Lucy Calkins Units of Study Institute at The Teachers College Reading and Writing Project in New York in 2019. Jennifer was also privileged to serve as an education advisor through The Christian and Missionary Alliance at the Middle East Field Forum in 2017 (Greece) and 2019 (Austria) where she assisted missionary families and their children with academic testing and advising. Jennifer and her husband, Lonnie, have three children: Madeline, who is a rising senior at Palm Beach Atlantic University; Olivia, who will be an incoming freshman at Palm Beach Atlantic University; and Landon, who will be joining The Geneva School as a junior. In her free time, Jennifer enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, running, cooking, and singing.

 

Before journeying to the land of alligators and palm trees, Sarah Crofutt grew up in the Pacific Northwest, surrounded by pine trees, her parents, and two sisters. After finishing high school at a Christian classical school, Sarah knew she wanted to be a lifelong learner. The Lord graciously fulfilled her desire. In 2012, she moved to Florida to attend Reformation Bible College in Sanford. Sarah served on the student events team and co-led the weekly student fellowship group throughout her four years of study before graduating cum laude with a BA in Theological Studies in 2016. During this time, Sarah also served on staff at her PCA church as the children’s ministry director, a job that continued to shape her love for teaching. After juggling this position and teaching part-time for two years, Sarah finally began teaching full-time in 2017. She has been blessed to teach Latin, rhetoric, ancient and Medieval literature, and musical theater at a Christian classical school in Ormond Beach, Florida, and is delighted to begin teaching seventh and eighth grade English at TGS this fall! Sarah’s greatest desire as a teacher is to pass on her love for literature: the beauty of its various genres and styles, the truth in the way it captures reality, and the goodness of our sovereign God on every page. Sarah will strive to pass on that love of literature in each and every class. After their wedding in June 2019, Sarah and her husband, Nathaniel, moved to Oviedo where Nathaniel is pursuing his MDiv at Reformed Theological Seminary. Amidst his studies, he always has time to discuss literature and lesson plans with Sarah. They are both members at Reformation Orthodox Presbyterian Church, Oviedo, where they serve in youth ministry. With great excitement, they are adding a golden retriever puppy to their family in June and plan to name him Odysseus (“Ody” for short). Sarah loves her family, the ocean, The Great British Bake Off, musical theater, swing dancing, frozen yogurt, Shakespeare, popcorn, and sitting on her porch with a cup of tea and a good book of poetry.

 

Shannon Chambley is excited to join the kindergarten teaching team at The Geneva School. As the oldest of five, she believes God’s call to work with young children came early in life. She earned a bachelor’s in elementary education from the University of Central Florida and began her teaching career with Seminole County Public Schools. Most recently, she served as the program administrator at First Years Preschool and Kindergarten, Oviedo, where she had the opportunity to impact hundreds of children and families with the love of Jesus and a high-quality early education. She was honored to represent faith-based providers on the board of the Early Learning Coalition and to visit preschool and kindergarten programs internationally to offer training. She is a contributing author to Distinctively Christian: A Christ-Centered Approach to Early Childhood Philosophy and Principles which will soon be released by Wheaton Press. Shannon is married to her husband, Mike, and together they have three children—Sarah, Will, and Kensey—and one granddaughter. Her son is currently serving in the United States Marine Corps, and she proudly wears the title of “Marine Mom.” Her best weekends are spent cheering for her youngest on the volleyball court and attending East Coast Believers Church. When she can carve out time for herself, she enjoys reading, running, and sitting on the beach.

 

Ruthie Andreacchi is enthusiastic, dedicated, and fun loving! She joins the TGS first grade team in 2020 with six years of prior teaching experience. Ruthie was born in New York and moved to Florida during high school, attending Altamonte Christian School. She earned a BA in Elementary Education from the University of Central Florida (UCF) in 2008 and is state certified with an English for speakers of other languages endorsement.

Ruthie taught at Choices in Learning Elementary Charter School for six years, three years in kindergarten and three years in second grade. During her time teaching kindergarten, Ruthie was able to incite a love for learning in her young students and support them as they transitioned into their first experience of school. From there, Ruthie made the jump to teaching second grade and was given the position of team lead. While leading her team and mentoring first-year teachers, Ruthie was also involved in the teacher mentorship program at UCF. Each semester, she welcomed interns into her classroom and found a passion for helping new teachers grow and thrive. While teaching and bringing out the best in students is always Ruthie’s top priority, mentoring others to be the best teachers they can be has become a close second. Ruthie is dedicated to being a lifelong learner, just as she inspires her students to be. She is always looking to strengthen her teaching abilities and is currently working towards earning her K-12 reading endorsement.

Ruthie and her husband, Doug, live in Oviedo with their two beautiful children, Anthony (TGS Class of ’29) and Giuliana (TGS Class of ’31). Together their family attends Oviedo City Church where Ruthie is active in the children’s ministry teaching Sunday school and attending the grade school small group. In her spare time, Ruthie enjoys tending to her succulent garden, crafting, and painting with friends.

 

Stephanie Orndorff joins the upper school science faculty in 2020 and teaches physical science and chemistry. She returned to her hometown of Maitland in 2018 with her husband, Eric, and their three children, Sophie, Jackson, and Carson. Eric, a native of Pennsylvania, and Stephanie have spent most of their twenty years of marriage living in Pennsylvania, although they met while both attending the University of Florida. When they returned to Central Florida, they enrolled their children in The Geneva School.

Stephanie received her BS and MS in Wildlife Ecology & Conservation from the University of Florida and the University of Maine. She spent over fifteen years working on science and conservation projects for The Nature Conservancy, Audubon Society, and the Chesapeake Bay Program. When her oldest child was ready for school, she discovered and began pursuing a Christian classical education for her family. She was a tutor for Classical Conversations of Harrisburg and then helped start one of the first Schole Groups in the US, also in Harrisburg. Stephanie also taught a course in geographic information systems at Harrisburg University, aided the science department at Covenant Christian Academy, and taught science labs at the Whitaker Science Center in Harrisburg. When a new job opportunity for Eric took them to a rural part of Pennsylvania, she started and directed a new Schole Group in Williamsport.

Since moving to Florida, Stephanie has been a project development manager for a utility-scale solar developer. She is thrilled to be back in the classroom teaching science at The Geneva School where all the rich connections between history, literature, science, and the arts are intertwined in a beautiful manner that brings glory to God. Stephanie has a passion for teaching her students to love learning while introducing and advancing them in the sciences in a fun and hands-on manner.

In her free time, Stephanie enjoys hiking, paddling, bird watching, vegetable gardening, and just spending time outdoors with her family and two dogs. The entire family loves hiking on the Appalachian Trail and has made a goal to hike the entire length of it together (in sections). She also spends time learning about healthy lifestyles and natural medicine. Their family attends Grace Church, Orlando.

 

 

 

TGS Introduces New Boys Varsity Soccer Coach

Eddie Jimenez grew up in Miami, Florida, playing for Kendall Soccer Club where he won three state Florida Youth Soccer Association (FYSA) championships and the world-renowned youth international tournament The Dallas Cup in 2006. He was part of the Florida Olympic Development Program (ODP) from age twelve to fifteen, representing the state of Florida in the ODP regional and national tournaments. At fifteen, Eddie began his international career when he was invited to represent his country of Puerto Rico at the U-17 World Cup qualifiers held in Trinidad and Tobago. Upon graduation from high school, he was offered a soccer scholarship to Villanova University just outside of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. After one year at Villanova, Eddie decided he wanted to be closer to home and transferred to the University of Central Florida where he became a starter in the midfield for the Knights. As an integral part of the UCF squad, he was able to achieve great success, reaching two consecutive second round NCAA tournament appearances in 2010 and 2011.

After graduating from UCF with a degree in interpersonal communications, Eddie was offered a contract to begin his professional soccer career with the Ft. Lauderdale Strikers of the North American Soccer League. After about six months into his career, he was called up to the full senior Puerto Rican national team to compete in the Concacaf Gold Cup qualifiers.

After his playing career, Eddie came back to Orlando and began his coaching career at Florida Kraze Krush. He has a strong passion for developing players of all ages and really understands the work it takes to become an elite level soccer player. His philosophy on player development is simple: players who want to improve have to understand that only through hard work and dedication can one be successful in this sport. As a coach, he sees it is his job to create a performance environment where players feel challenged and are pushed to improve daily. Eddie is a strong advocate of developing a strong fundamental base of personal technique and skill so that as players mature and the game becomes faster, they are able to better adapt to any game situation thrown their way.

Eddie is excited to be a part of The Geneva School coaching team, to continue to mature as a coach, and to have the opportunity to work for a prestigious institution that shares his moral and religious values and virtues.

Message From TGS Class of 2020

The class of 2020 reached out to us, asking if they could send a message of encouragement to the younger students, and this was the result:

We love our seniors!

Surprised by Grace

A week or so ago, we emailed some of our wonderful teachers and asked them to reflect on the past few weeks of massive change. We asked them for some thoughts or an example of how God has sustained them by his grace for the path laid before them.

Please continue to pray for our teachers as they, along with all of us, weather this storm.

Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer (Romans 12:12).


Emily Fraser (Lower School Art)

“How can I elevate joy and decrease the fear that may be in some of my little students’ hearts during this time of uncertainty?” This was the question I prayed when we as teachers began to prep for virtual teaching.

For children, joy often comes in the form of laughter. Laughter and silliness are both crucial and beneficial for children (and grown-ups too!), but especially in times of uncertainty; laughter can calm a child’s heart and make them feel safe.

Knowing joy and thus laughter was the medicine needed, I considered ways in which I could, as a teacher, bring laughter into the hearts and homes of my students. Cue “Lady Blue,” the spectacle-wearing, large, blue crayon with a silly high-pitched voice in an unidentifiable accent who just might bring a few smiles, giggles, and laughter through virtual art lessons. Little did I know, being silly and light-hearted would have an impact on my own heart and bring joy to my own family as well. It has filled me up to see pictures of your children enjoying art at home, and their smiles have been a gift to my soul! I pray joy triumphs over fear in your hearts, and that your home is filled with laughter!


Scott Forrester (Upper School English and Rhetoric)

In English class, the seniors read a sermon given by CS Lewis in which he discusses the value of “Learning in Wartime,” the importance of continuing in one’s education in the midst of “unfavorable” conditions. He suggests that World War II, in the midst of which he is speaking, “creates no absolutely new situation: it simply aggravates the permanent human situation so that we can no longer ignore it.” What my students and I are discovering is that he was absolutely right, that, surprising as it sounds, our current circumstances are not really new; it is just that we are more aware than before of what has always been the case. That is, that we are fallen, broken people, living in a fallen, broken world, and God’s sovereignty is both terrifying and comforting (Ecclesiastes 3:14), as indeed it should be if appropriately viewed. Being more than ever responsible for our own education, having to get along with our irritating family members, having to face our own impatience and tendency to grumble—these are lessons that have always needed to be learned. Now we know it. Now we must be about the business of enacting the virtues of temperance and prudence and faith and love that learning in “wartime” requires.


Alicia VanDerhoof (6th Grade)

This transition has not been easy because it has revealed some idols in my life—idols of security in a schedule, daily reassurance in face-to-face conversations, and successfully appearing to “have it all together.” Overnight, those securities were taken away from me, and I was forced to continue each day without them. Although still working on permanently removing these idols, I am overwhelmed by the way God has shown me that he is all I need. He has shown me that it’s his grace that allows me to finish each day, not my to-do lists. It’s by his strength, not mine, that I plan tomorrow’s lesson and keep up with emails. In learning these truths, God has whispered for me to watch him work in these uncertainties. With open eyes, I see 15 smiling faces greet me each morning to share prayer requests and start our class with devotions; I see pictures of new hobbies and books that have been picked up by each of them; and I still see each of my students’ faces when giving and receiving our usual blessing at the end of class: “The Lord be with you … and also with you.” Every day is filled with new mercies and overflowing grace that makes it such a joy to teach at The Geneva School.


Jill Lewis (First Grade)

The past few weeks have been hard … uncharted territory for all of us as we work together to do remote teaching and learning. The first week of remote learning brought late nights of creating lesson plans for my classroom parents, making instructional videos, learning new technology, and making time to daily check in personally with each of my first graders. I thought the long hours and loss of sleep would be the most difficult, but seeing the faces and hearing the voices of each of my students as I FaceTimed them was emotionally overwhelming. I miss them terribly.

But God. God knows about all of this and all the challenges each one of us is facing. I have experienced his grace and help in so many ways in the past several weeks. His grace has been sufficient. I am beyond grateful to be part of the Geneva community. Faculty have pitched in to help me navigate technology, our leaders have answered every text and email we’ve sent, they send a daily devotional just for the teachers to encourage them, parents have shared words of encouragement, and first graders have learned to Zoom! I initially planned for our remote learning Zoom lessons to last no more than 20 minutes. Guess what?!!! First graders can sit and attend and actively participate for an hour via Zoom! (The mute option has been a great assistance to keep the flow going for our lessons too.)

God has given us the creativity and stamina to do this. I’ve had this quote written in the front of my Bible since 1990. “Grace is the overflowing favor of God.” —Oswald Chambers. Our heavenly Father’s grace is sufficient for our need.


Elizabeth Smith (5th Grade)

Having to change and giving up control are two of the hardest things for people to do. Yet here we are in a world interrupted by change and totally out of our control. The ideas of change and control, although somewhat juxtapositions of one another, are so intertwined that when one is out of balance we see an effect in each. Almost no one likes a forced change, and we all, in our human nature, fall into the belief that we have control … until we realize that we don’t.

The truth that God is in control is easy when times are good. As a Christian, when things are going well, it is easy for me to say that God is in control. However, the times in my life that have been hard, I have also had to lean on this. It is not easy to stop the wheels of anxiety and worry from spinning. In these moments of troubles and undesired or unwanted change, I try to control. However, when I stop and remember that God is who he says that he is and that he is in control, it is so much sweeter to relinquish my hold on control and give it to God.

One of my favorite verses is from Matthew 6: 26–27, “Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?” I have no more control over the things of this world than the birds of the air. God is in control.


Leonore Chamberlain (2nd Grade)

Ready, Get Set, ZOOOOOOM!!!!!!!

Just a few weeks ago, I did not know what this whole remote learning experience would be like, but today, I must admit, it is not as hard as I expected! I truly do miss teaching my students in the classroom and giving and getting real-life hugs, but this remote experience has a few wonderful perks. I love meeting with my students in our Zoom classes, and I also value our one-on-one Facetime sessions so very much. I do not just get to help my students individually but I also get to have so many meaningful life conversations that a regular school day might not allow for on a one-on-one level. The students and I tell jokes to each other, we share how our day was, and we show our pets or other things we have at home to each other. What a fun way to connect and build deeper relationships!

I am beyond grateful for my families, as well. Their kind and encouraging words and their unconditional love and grace towards me throughout this whole process are truly appreciated. God is so faithful to our Geneva community! He truly made this transition from teaching in the classroom to teaching remotely from home so much easier than I feared.

What a blessing to be able to see all of my students, teach them, and have fun with them, partnering with my students’ families daily, and at the same time being able to spend more time with my family at home and being able to help teach our daughter, too.

5 Tips to Stay Balanced during Quarantine

We are all out of our normal routines!  Some of us have more to do than usual and are feeling stressed due to steep learning curves to prepare for online learning, helping children with their learning at home, among other things.  Some of us are out of work and may be concerned about the lack of income.  We are all probably feeling a little disconnected and out of balance.  I’m sharing my top 5 tips to stay in balance during this unusual season:

 

Get Outside!
Whether you are crazy busy or not busy enough, you need to get yourself outside EVERY DAY!  A little fresh air and sunshine outside your 4 walls will keep you from feeling so cooped up and will help:
  • boost your immune system
  • improve your mood
  • keep your circadian rhythm on track to allow for better sleep
Aim for at least 15-30 minutes outdoors to exercise. Do yard work, walk the dog, play with your kids, or just deep breathe and soak up some Florida sunshine.  If you have children at home, they need to be outdoors too!

 

Move!
Whether you have extra time for exercise OR feel like there are not enough hours to do all that is asked of you right now, we ALL need a little movement to:
  • boost the immune system
  • improve mood
  • relieve stress
  • improve sleep
There are a lot of resources available to help you with “in home” workouts. YouTube and other internet sites (both free and subscription) provide an endless source of guidance.  This week my family has enjoyed the extra time at home to walk, run, bike, paddle board, explore a new nature trail, and do yoga together.  If you have children at home, they need you to set an example and have you engage with them to get them moving too!

 

Ask “What CAN I Do?”
During this time of uncertainty, we need to work extra hard to keep a positive mindset.  Negative thoughts lead to negative emotions, like anxiety, fear, and depression.  While there is a lot that we CAN NOT do right now, there are lots of unique opportunities and things we CAN do that we often lack time for in our busy schedules.  Let’s reframe our words and mindset and not miss these special opportunities to make good use of this unusual enforced time at home.  May I suggest a few:
  • Spend time reading something you enjoy alone, or aloud with others
  • A little yard work each day…just 15 minutes of weeding or trimming each day will create a sense of accomplishment, and will get you outside
  • Declutter closets, tackle “honey do” lists, and check off home repairs
  • Exercise and get outside every day
  • Look for ways to serve others (a family member, a neighbor…) to keep you focused outward and not inward
  • Break out the board games, card games, and puzzles
  • Meditate on Scriptures that remind you that God is sovereign
  • Each evening think of 5 things to be grateful for from the day
If you have children in the house, they will feed off of your mood and attitude, so staying positive yourself will have ripple effects.  Get them involved in the list above.

 

Eat Fresh Food!
Thankfully the grocery stores have stayed open, and thankfully fresh food has stayed readily available, unlike toilet paper!  Use this time of confinement to cook real food at home, and be thankful we weren’t limited to weeks of canned food.  Cooking at home will have many benefits:
  • A nourished body and soul
  • Budget friendly
  • Opportunities to be connected as a family around the table
You may want to stick to family favorite recipes for comfort, or you may want to use this time to try some new recipes and be a little adventurous.  Some of my favorite healthy and easy Tasty Friday recipes are archived on the health & weillness page of our school website.  If you have children at home, this is a great opportunity to get them involved in the kitchen learning to chop, prepare a dish, or prepare a whole meal for the family.

 

Connect!
While “social distance,” “lockdown,” and “shelter in place” are the battle cries of the day, we are really just trying to keep a physical distance from others to prevent transmission of COVID-19.  We need to work harder at staying socially connected to each other during this quarantine.
  • Stay connected to your family, friends, and colleagues via text, video chats, or an old-fashioned phone call.  Be especially mindful of your older family and friends that may be feeling isolated
  • Take the opportunity to write an old-fashioned letter
  • Phone neighbors to check on them
  • When you are out on necessary errands be intentional to be encouraging and show gratitude to those working hard to serve you
  • Meet a friend outside in a park or trail to walk and talk
I have loved seeing the faces of upper school colleagues on Zoom for Morning Devotions we are sharing together each day. If you have children at home, you can encourage them to be creative in connecting with their friends and relatives,  too.

 

This challenging time will pass and become a page in the history books.  Until then, a little time outside, movement, a positive mindset, fresh food, and connection with others each day can help keep your balance and even enjoy this change of pace.

by Lou Jones,
Geneva School Nurse, RN, Health & Wellness Coach

The Geneva School
The Geneva School
July 28, 2021
  • Volleyball Clinic (2nd–7th Grade)

    Date: July 28, 2021 - July 28, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 12:00 pm
    See more details

  • New Student Camp (4th–6th Grade)

    Date: July 28, 2021 - July 28, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 1:00 pm
    See more details

  • Tennis Camp (Luke Russo)

    Date: July 28, 2021 - July 28, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 12:00 pm
    See more details

  • Worship Band Summer Camp

    Date: July 28, 2021 - July 28, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 12:00 pm
    See more details

  • Volleyball Clinic (7th–12th Grade)

    Date: July 28, 2021 - July 28, 2021
    Time: 1:00 pm- 4:00 pm
    See more details

July 29, 2021
  • New Student Camp (4th–6th Grade)

    Date: July 29, 2021 - July 29, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 1:00 pm
    See more details

  • Tennis Camp (Luke Russo)

    Date: July 29, 2021 - July 29, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 12:00 pm
    See more details

  • Worship Band Summer Camp

    Date: July 29, 2021 - July 29, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 12:00 pm
    See more details

July 30, 2021
  • New Student Camp (4th–6th Grade)

    Date: July 30, 2021 - July 30, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 1:00 pm
    See more details

  • Tennis Camp (Luke Russo)

    Date: July 30, 2021 - July 30, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 12:00 pm
    See more details

  • Worship Band Summer Camp

    Date: July 30, 2021 - July 30, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 12:00 pm
    See more details

July 28, 2021
  • Volleyball Clinic (2nd–7th Grade)

    Date: July 28, 2021 - July 28, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 12:00 pm
    See more details

  • New Student Camp (4th–6th Grade)

    Date: July 28, 2021 - July 28, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 1:00 pm
    See more details

  • Tennis Camp (Luke Russo)

    Date: July 28, 2021 - July 28, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 12:00 pm
    See more details

  • Worship Band Summer Camp

    Date: July 28, 2021 - July 28, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 12:00 pm
    See more details

  • Volleyball Clinic (7th–12th Grade)

    Date: July 28, 2021 - July 28, 2021
    Time: 1:00 pm- 4:00 pm
    See more details

July 29, 2021
  • New Student Camp (4th–6th Grade)

    Date: July 29, 2021 - July 29, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 1:00 pm
    See more details

  • Tennis Camp (Luke Russo)

    Date: July 29, 2021 - July 29, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 12:00 pm
    See more details

  • Worship Band Summer Camp

    Date: July 29, 2021 - July 29, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 12:00 pm
    See more details

July 30, 2021
  • New Student Camp (4th–6th Grade)

    Date: July 30, 2021 - July 30, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 1:00 pm
    See more details

  • Tennis Camp (Luke Russo)

    Date: July 30, 2021 - July 30, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 12:00 pm
    See more details

  • Worship Band Summer Camp

    Date: July 30, 2021 - July 30, 2021
    Time: 9:00 am- 12:00 pm
    See more details

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