Rising to the Challenge

Every day at Journey Academy,  you can depend on our heroes to rise to the challenge. Our early learner love challenging themselves when they are given the freedom to choose what to do for core skills time. When choosing a book, they are not afraid to pick a book at a higher reading level. When doing math work, they thrive on learning new and advanced concepts and mastering skills no matter how many tries it might take. They consistently demonstrate their willingness to take risks and support each other to achieve their goals. Their freedom in learning empowers them to be resourceful in finding answers to their questions, be inventive in finding solutions to problems, and creative in finding ways to learn.

Time flies when you are having fun. So when our heroes are focused on their reading using Lexia, Kids a-z, Starfall, or Epic,  they understandably lose track of time and sometimes do not realize it is already time for play-based learning, a much anticipated time of the day. Some heroes even opt out of play-based learning materials and prefer to continue reading, which to them is much more fun!

Our heroes are learning so much about our oceans so they made a book for each ocean during writer’s workshop. Each hero contributes at least one page to add to the book. They picked their favorite marine animal from each ocean to illustrate and write about. They created detailed illustrations describing their marine animals to friends while doing their writing. They helped each other construct and spell their sentences. Their conversations around the writing table while making their ocean books demonstrated their joy in learning about marine science and all they have learned about the ocean creatures. Our young readers love reading these ocean books to each other and they applaud each friend for every page they authored. They are so excited to read their books to their families during the exhibition!


Our young marine scientists had fun making their ocean dioramas. They challenged each other when identifying the correct habitats for their ocean creatures. They discussed amongst one another if each specific marine animal would like the warm waters of the Pacific ocean or have the adaptations to survive the cold waters of the Arctic ocean. They also made sure the animals have food to eat in their habitats.  They researched in their Chromebooks when they were not sure.It was quite a sight to see how our young marine biologists apply all that they have been learning about marine science in creating their dioramas.

Likewise, our inventors got busy adding finishing touches to their submarines and submersibles, adding more gadgets that would make them effective in cleaning the ocean and saving our beloved marine animals. They were so passionate about making a difference and changing the world. When they watched some videos during our discussions, they were genuinely concerned and so heartbroken to see all the trash in the ocean. Thus, our young world-changers resolved to keep looking for litter and they were more than eager to pick them up and put them where they should go, keeping in mind the 3R’s, Reduce-Recycle-Reuse. They have even made it a game as they all challenge each other to find the most litter every time we go outside for recess. Despite the bleak reports from marine scientists on the current conditions of our oceans, we were filled with hope that our future marine scientists would truly care for our oceans.

During our discussions, as we continue reading Galatians with a focus on the fruits of the Spirit, our heroes have devised several strategies to help each other practice self-control. One hero shared that using kind words helps him practice self-control. Another hero suggested that if asking nicely does not work, 3B4G worked for her when she asked a friend to help her. They also agreed that walking away and taking deep breaths were the most effective strategies to practice self-control. Most heroes share about practicing self-control not only at school but especially at home with their siblings. And you may have heard many of our heroes singing our little self-control song, “Stop, take a breath and make the right choice.” ♬ At the end of the week, they faced the challenge of our self-control test and proved that they had what it takes to resist eating a giant marshmallow in front of each of them, even when Ms. Elsie had to go to the “bathroom” (but she was actually just standing outside the door listening), with the hope of another marshmallow when she gets back if they still have their first marshmallow. The heroes could be heard encouraging each other to imagine it was something else or sing our self-control song. The challenge seemed too easy for them that they even begged to do the challenge again.

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