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December 2016

Healthy Communication

Linguist Deborah Tannen once wrote that male-female communication is like cross-cultural communication. She explained that boys and girls grow up in their same-sex groups communicating in ways that are fitting for their respective groups. However, when they venture out of these same-sex groups and attempt to communicate with someone of the opposite sex, they quickly […]

A Tribute to Gary Van Arragon, Editor

Editors are a lot like theatrical lighting designers—when they are really good at what they do, you don’t notice them. Gary Van Arragon has guided the Christian Educators Journal for just shy of a decade, and, because he is excellent at what he does, most of the time readers didn’t notice the good work he […]

What They Hear When We Speak

Among the teachers I remember gratefully is my history professor, Dr. Poland. No doubt I owe to him much of what I know about the French Revolution, but what remains with me as his most valuable teaching is his way of speaking. He gave every sentence full weight. He spoke with deliberation, a little more slowly […]

Speaking the Truth in Love

“They have healed the brokenness of my people superficially, saying, ‘Peace, peace,’ but there is no peace.”  Jeremiah 6:14 Have you ever avoided a person because of an uncomfortable conversation that you knew you needed to have? Have you ever told someone that things are OK when in fact they aren’t? Have you ever overreacted […]

Bad Language, Telling the Truth, and What the Commandments Say about Communicating

What Middle School Students Think I say to the middle school students, “So, what does the Bible say about language use?” “Don’t swear,” they say. “Where does it say that in the Bible?” “In the ten commandments.” “What is swearing?” I ask. “Using bad words.” “Hmm. What are bad words? Can you give me some […]

Voice Lessons

One of the more troubling details of international adoption is that young children brought to new countries often completely lose their native language. I can recall initially giving our adoption worker one of those wincing, doubtful kind of expressions when I was informed that my new Bulgarian daughter—even at nine years old—would likely meet this […]

Care-Full Words: Leveraging the Power to Deepen or Divide

Words. Words have power. Words echo in our ears and sink into our hearts. It doesn’t matter how hard the outer shell is—words penetrate deeply and have the ability to lift us up or tear us down. Saying certain things out loud has never been easy. Now, with electronic communications—from email to Twitter—words can be […]

Healthy Communication Among Teachers

To contribute to the theme of this issue of CEJ, our panel decided to tackle the issue of teacher-teacher communication. We began with the following prompt: As Christian educators, we interact with our colleagues daily. At times these interactions include discussions and conversations about difficult yet important issues in the life of the school. Undoubtedly, […]

The Words of My Mouth and the Meditations of My Heart

Mary Boerman Lagerway, an English and Bible Teacher at Illiana Christian High School in Lansing, Illinois, agreed to start us off with this examination of thoughts, actions, and spoken words that thread through her day—Eds. What time is it? 7:13 already? I’m later than usual, but I don’t even know why. My usual morning routine […]

A Word to the Wise Guy or “You say Tonto, I say Toronto . . .”

“So now we’re supposed to create a class website that gives daily updates on assignments, grades, and student behavior,” muttered math teacher Jane VanderAsch as she eyed the memo from Bedlam’s principal, Bentley VanderHaar, which contained exactly that directive. “And we are doing this on top of our electronic gradebook that is open to students […]