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ACA Column

Column 09-27-18

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Ecumenical?

The title above is a word we use to describe our approach to orthodox Christianity at ACA. I quoted Oxford Dictionary’s definition this morning in Assembly.
Ecumenical: Adjective. (1)Representing a number of different Christian Churches. (2) Promoting or relating to unity among the world’s Christian Churches.
Our unifying beliefs are articulated in “The Apostles’ Creed.”
I believe in God, the Father Almighty,
the Maker of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord:
Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, dead and buried;

The third day He arose from the dead; He ascended into heaven,
and sitteth at the right hand of God the Father Almighty;
from thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Ghost;
the holy catholic church;
the communion of saints;
the forgiveness of sins;
the resurrection of the body;
and the life everlasting.

I am so very thankful for the genuine mutual respect I see among our students and faculty as to the practice of our Christian faith. Celebrate with me by thanking God personally!

Faculty Focus: Mrs. Tracy Kirk, 4th Grade Lead Teacher

Tell us about yourself. Family? Hometown? Pets?
I grew up in Montgomery, but now live in a small community called Little Texas in Macon County.  I am married to Mark Kirk, and we have three daughters. Our oldest graduated from Auburn University in May, and is currently living in Hanover, Germany teaching English as part of The Fulbright Program. My 19 year old twins attend Southern Union, and we are enjoying those last moments of having them at home! Our youngest girl is a 14 year old chocolate lab named Hershey.

How did you come to learn about ACA and decide to work here?
When I first learned about this school eleven years ago, I was homeschooling my daughters and looking for a writing class for my oldest. At that time, ACA was a group of homeschool families with an interest in classical education.  I signed my daughter up for a language arts class. By the next year, I was teaching here. Except for a year off when my children’s schedules needed me to be somewhere else, I have been at ACA since then!

What are you enjoying most about being part of ACA?
I love spending time with children! I enjoy their honesty, their delight in the world, and watching those little light bulbs go off over their heads when they grasp a concept. At ACA, we have the added benefit of parents who are amazingly supportive. I never intended to be a teacher, but this environment with other caring teachers and parents who want the best for their children makes teaching rewarding.

What is your favorite book/author?
Impossible question! I read all the time. I read fiction, nonfiction, historical fiction, children’s books, biographies, and anything that sounds interesting! I have a bit of a drive to get to school, and I use that time to listen to books so that time isn’t wasted. I love books, and I enjoy getting to know students so I can recommend books they will enjoy. One advantage of homeschooling for fifteen years is that I have a nice library to share with my students.

What is something the Lord is teaching you today?
Having one child who just left the country and two more that may not be home much longer, my prayers are frequently about the safety and happiness of my children. The Lord is teaching me a lot about letting go of my fears and trusting Him!

Art Class

Our 1st grade class made these incredible art pieces in Mrs. Goodenough’s art class! The title is LIONS and they are influenced by American artist Dean Russo who says “My greatest inspirations are animals.” Stop in to see them sometime soon!

Book It!

Coming home Monday are Pizza Hut’s Book It reading log pages. This is a program created for students Kindergarten-5th grade to help them fall in love with reading and take time to do so every day! Every student who completes a reading log each month will win a coupon for a free personal pan pizza from Pizza Hut. Please encourage this reading at home not only for the free pizza, but also for your child’s enjoyment, growth, and discipline in reading!

Old Alabama Town

Last week, Mrs. Nichols’s 3rd grade class took a field trip to Old Alabama Town in Montgomery. They were able to learn all about what life was like in the 1800s! They were able to see a printing press, visit an old schoolhouse, learn how to make cotton into wool, and what a blacksmith does.

Reminders

Don’t forget about School Picture Day on Wednesday, October 3rd! Students are asked to wear their Chapel attire as normal.

Meal Orders for November need to be placed by October 15th! You can place them at www.mymealorder.com

Yearbook orders are due October 16th! Turn them into Mrs. Richburg in the office.

 

View the photos attached to the Column here: https://mailchi.mp/9a480a4f37e0/column-09-27-18

09/20/18

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Ready to Give an Answer

When friends or family members ask me about our school, most of them have an understanding of a Christian education.  I long for them to know the philosophy of classical education as well, because it is from this perspective that our students are able to gain wisdom and knowledge. I specify that we are language intensive (we read, listen, write), history intensive (as opposed to “social studies”), and that we model the style of education practiced by the ancient Greeks and Romans. I add that we train our students to develop self-discipline in order to analyze and draw conclusions. From an academic perspective, we want our students to read, write, calculate, think, and understand.

Perhaps you, too, need resources to help you better understand classical education and to be able and ready to give an answer when you are asked about ACA.  An excellent thinker and author, Martin Cothran, has helped me express my understanding of classical education.  He is Director of the Classical Latin School Association and Editor of The Classical Teacher, a publication of Memoria Press.  I encourage you to read Mr. Cothran’s article, “What is Classical Education?” at the link below to help you be “ready to give an answer” when you need to!

https://www.memoriapress.com/articles/what-classical-education-1/

Another thing I want to say is THANK YOU to everyone who came to our Sprit Night at Laredo on Monday! It was so good to see many of our students and families and because of your support, we earned an extra $125 for our school! We will be doing these Spirit Nights periodically throughout the year and we hope to see you and your family at each one.

Have a great weekend,

Robin Durbin

Faculty Focus: Mrs. Hannah Nichols, 3rd Grade Lead Teacher

Tell us about yourself. Family? Hometown? Pets?
I was born in Natchez, Mississippi.   I attended an amazing Catholic school, Cathedral, for 12 years.  After graduation, I attended Delta State University in Cleveland, MS, where I obtained two degrees . I lived in Cleveland and called the Delta home for 6 years; I married and moved to Auburn last fall.  I am married to an amazing Godly man, and we have one fur baby, Dak, a chocolate lab.  My parents, three younger brothers, and my grandparents all live in Natchez, MS.

How did you come to learn about ACA and decide to work here?
Social media has its benefits!  I learned about ACA when I connected with Jenni Hunt through a mutual friend on Facebook. After attending assembly and meeting with Robin Durbin, I felt at peace and encouraged for my future.

What are you enjoying most about being a part of ACA?
I enjoy the feeling of being a part of a large family; ACA is a true family.  Since I have lived in Auburn , the ACA family has helped lead my husband and me to finding a church home, multiple small groups, new friends, and so much more.

What is your favorite book and who is your favorite author?
Choosing a favorite book and author is a tough one.  I am currently reading “The  7 Habits of Highly Effective People” by  Stephen Covey.  I choose to read books for self-development and books to further my knowledge of early childhood development.

What is something the Lord is teaching you today?
The Lord is teaching me new things each day.  I feel His presence in teaching me to slow down and live in the moment.  I am such a planner and thrive on a strict schedule, but I am learning how much I am missing by not living in the moment.  I know this is His hand guiding me.

Logic School 4H Trip

Last week, our 4th through 6th grade students went to the 4H Center in Columbiana, AL. As you can see, fun was had by all! The 4th graders did a class called “What’s Bugging You?” to supplement their study of insects, while the 5th graders did “Friends of a Feather” to go along with their study of birds later this year. The highlights though, were a giant swing, archery, a raptor trek, and canoeing to help the students grow in team building.  These students enjoy being together and exploring and enjoying God’s creation!

Auburn Reads

Don’t forget Auburn READS Spirit Nights will be next week (the 25th-27th) at the Auburn Mall! This is a great way to encourage reading with your child, while also supporting our school. For every child or teacher that goes and turns in a voucher, our school will receive $1 towards its library. Vouchers will be sent home on Monday, the 24th in your child’s folder, so be looking for it. Pick which night of the week works for your family and have fun!

Hurricane Florence Supplies

Thank you to everyone who brought supplies to send to the victims of Hurricane Florence. We can’t imagine what they are going through, but having supplies to begin restoration will be helpful to them. Our school collected: 11 packs of latex gloves, 13 bottles of dish soap, 5 bottles of laundry detergent, 19 sponges, and much much more!

Chapel Speaker

This week we had Aaron Wine, Youth Pastor at Lakeview Baptist, speak at Chapel! Aaron has been teaching us different characteristics about God so that we all have a better understanding of who we were created to worship. This week Aaron taught us 2 characteristics about who God is. Ask your child tonight if they can remember what those characteristics are and what they mean! (Hint: The characteristics are “infinite” and “omnipresent.”)

 

 

 

 

 

 

09/13/18

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Your Perspective Matters

One of my most memorable biology experiments in college involved a frog, actually a frog’s leg (poor guy) and an electrical stimulation device.  We had to count the number of times the leg muscles would contract when being stimulated.  The experiment demonstrated muscle fatigue, and I have never forgotten it.

We teachers at ACA sometimes experience visual/sensory fatigue when it comes to going about our daily responsibilities at school.  For example, when I first saw dirty the smudges on the door facing by the girls’ bathroom I thought, “I must clean those!”  However, another more pressing task took precedence and I did not get to the cleaning task.  My awareness of the smudges has now faded so much that I do not even notice them anymore.  I have “door facing smudge fatigue!”

This week several of you helped us notice important issues that we may have noticed at some point but were not able to address — insufficient soap in the bathrooms and bothersome mosquitoes on the playground.  Not only did you point out the problems, but you gave us ideas to solve the problems AND you investigated reasonable solutions.  Thank you!

Friends, please continue to help us at ACA by making us aware of issues that are obvious to you but that we may not have seen (or that we have seen so much that we do not see anymore).  Your perspective matters!

Faculty Focus: Jennie Lombardo, Aide, Kindergarten Enrichment Teacher

1.Tell us about yourself. Family? Hometown? Pets?
I grew up in Macon, GA with my parents and my older brother.  I attended undergraduate and graduate school at Auburn University receiving my Master’s in Speech Language Pathology.  For 23 years, I fulfilled my passion as a speech-language pathologist with a specialty in pediatric feeding (premature and medically fragile infants).  This career has taken me from Macon, GA to Atlanta, then to Wilmington, DE.  While in DE, I met my husband Eric.  We married and moved to Las Vegas to be close to his parents.  We lived there for 9 years and during that time we had two amazing girls:  Lillee is currently in 8th grade, Ava is in 6th grade, both enrolled at ACA.  6 years ago, Eric and I decided that our responsibility as parents was to provide the best ‘village’ to raise our girls, and that led us to Auburn.  Under our roof is our family of 4, my mother “MIMI”, 2 dogs and 5 cats.  Four of the cats are ‘foster fails’ from the first kittens we fostered for Lee County Humane Society. So 24/7 we have our home open to fostering tiny kittens, helping them grow and prepare for adoption.  All of this makes up who we are as a family, and completes us!

2. How did you come to learn about ACA and decide to work here?
I have known about ACA for about 8 years.  My mother was neighbors (here in Auburn) with Hilary Tucker, one of the founding masterminds of ACA.  I enjoyed hearing about the beginnings of the school and the passion that went into developing ACA.  Our family decided to add ACA to our village 4 years ago.  I wanted to be a part ACA, a place that clearly embodied the spirit of Christ through every academic lesson, friendship, and activity.  I immediately applied.  3 years ago, Mrs. Durbin called and offered me the opportunity to join the staff at ACA.  God has always had plans for me, and I continue to be blessed to see where he leads me, even when the turns in the road are different than the ones I would take!

3. What are you enjoying most about being a part of ACA? 
Seeing the minds of the students learn and grow academically and socially is fantastic.  One of my first days at ACA, I was waiting with a student in carline.  He looked around and said “no one is standing with us…no wait, we are NEVER alone…we always have Jesus.”  It is beautiful to watch God’s hand in their lives.

4. What is your favorite book and who is your favorite author? 
As a child, one author captured my mind and I spent hours wanting to read more about Mary, Laura, Ma and Pa by Laura Ingalls Wilder.

5. What is something the Lord is teaching you today?
Letting go of the things which I can not control.

Chapel

This week we had Taylor Teel, the Children’s Pastor at FBC Opelika, as our chapel speaker. Taylor always does a wonderful job of teaching the truths of Scripture while also getting numerous giggles from the students (and teachers!) Today, he talked about sin and how it grows bigger and bigger as we continue in it and we become a slave to it, yet Jesus comes in and removes the chains of slavery to sin and we can live in freedom! Ask your child what they learned from the chapel speaker each week and let that open up a conversation about Jesus between you and your children. We are praying for you, parents, as you daily teach your children what it looks like to live and love like Jesus!

If you want the children’s pastor from your church to speak at chapel one week, let Mrs. Durbin know!

ACA Spirit Night at Laredo

Join us at Laredo Mexican Restaurant on Monday, September 17th between 4-9pm for a Spirit Night! This is a great way for families to meet one another and to support our school. When you are finished with your meal, write ACA on the back of your receipt and drop it in the bucket by the register on the way out for us to receive the proceeds. We look forward to seeing you there!

Auburn READS

Please join us any evening September 25-27 from 5-7pm at the Auburn Mall for the Auburn READS Spirit Night! There will be reading games, prizes, and a book raffle. Choose which night works best for your family to join. For every voucher that is returned to the mall during the event, the mall will donate $1 to our school’s library! Vouchers will be sent home on the 25th.

Reminders

09/06/18

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Another Good Week!

We have had another good week at ACA. But… we have had a couple of students who have been plagued with stomach viruses, so you may want to be on the watch for symptoms in your children as we approach the weekend.  We are working to wash hands and clean door knobs where viruses may be easily transferred.

Remember that we DO have school tomorrow!  Students (and teachers) will have an additional t-shirt day, and we will be on a “Monday” schedule.  There are no extra-curricular activities scheduled for Mondays.  ALSO, remember to send lunch with your student tomorrow!  There are no scheduled catered lunches.

Parents, please do remember that part of our uniform code here at ACA is for hair to be neat and out of the way so students are not distracted by caring for it during class time.  For girls, hair accessories should be kept to a minimum and in keeping with our uniform colors. For boys, hair should be cut above the collar and browline.  Thank you, parents, for partnering with us in helping your student abide by our dress code.

Faculty Focus: Garrett Walden- Logic School Teacher, Chapel Speaker

Tell us about yourself. Family? Hometown? Pets?
I grew up in a little town near Birmingham called Oneonta, but I live in Opelika now with my wife and two kids. My wife, Katherine, and I have been married a little over four years. My son Henry is almost three, and our daughter Eleanor is one and a half. We have loved living in the Auburn-Opelika community, and, Lord willing, we don’t plan on going anywhere else anytime soon. If you ever meet my kids, you’ll understand why we don’t have any pets: the kids are very high-energy (and destructive) all by themselves. Our two toddlers have a tendency to keep us pretty busy! When I’m not working on ACA-related things, I’m usually serving in some way at my church, roasting my own coffee beans, reading a good old book, or picking on my mandolin.

How did you come to learn about ACA and decide to work here?
I believe I learned about ACA through my sister, Haleigh. After she finished college, studying Elementary Education, she had several conversations with Mrs. Durbin about classical education. Even though the Lord had plans for my sister to teach in a different city, Haleigh encouraged me to contact Mrs. Durbin about an opportunity to come on board. This past summer I did just that, and by God’s grace, there was an opening for me! I am so grateful to be on the faculty here at ACA.

What are you enjoying most about being a part of ACA?
Fundamentally, I love the educational philosophy here! I sincerely believe that the classical model is a brilliant thing. It’s challenging me as a teacher to learn (and re-learn) many subjects in ways that are different from how I was instructed when I was a young student. Since I believe the best teachers are genuinely interested in and engaged with the material that they teach, I’m working at deepening my own education as I teach my students. I also love how engaged our students are and how invested our parents are in raising their children to become men and women of virtue.

What is your favorite book and who is your favorite author?
Favorite book? Anyone who knows me knows I am the epitome of a bibliophile. I’m not sure I can pin down just one book as my all-time favorite, but here are a few (other than the Bible, of course) that have had a deep and lasting impact on me: Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan, City of God by Augustine, 1776 by David McCullough, Institutes of Christian Religion by John Calvin, The Man Who Was Thursday by G. K. Chesterton, and George Whitefield: America’s Spiritual Founding Father by Thomas Kidd.

What is something the Lord is teaching you today?

Lately, I’ve been teaching a study at my church on the crucifixion of Christ, and the Lord has used the preparation for that to help me remember the significance that the cross of Christ should have. If the cross is central to the storyline of Scripture (and it is!), and if it was central in the perspective of Jesus (and it was!), then it ought to be central in my own life (in my actions), in my own theology (in my thoughts about God), and in the way I interact with others (in my relationships).

Sheep Dissection

Mrs. Walker had our 5th Grade Class dissect sheep hearts this week! Check out some of their responses:

“It was really cool! It didn’t smell too bad; you just kinda had to hold your nose. It was really cool to see the left and right ventricles and squeeze it.”

“What was really cool is that there were a lot of different parts that we got to feel. We got to feel the different tubes that carry the blood to the right and left atrium, which is where your heart holds the blood and pumps it throughout the body, so you could actually put your finger up it and feel where all of it would go. If you look on the back there were lines and it kind of looked like play doh. My favorite part was when we took the scissors and cut around it and we could open up and cut it in half. We were able to see all the parts on the inside like the veins and the atriums and all the things like that.”

School Picture Day

School Picture Day will be on Wednesday, October 3rd! We need a few parent volunteers to help us make this process go smoothly. If you are interested in helping with this, please call Mrs. Richburg in the office to let her know. This would last for a couple of hours after chapel. Thank you!!

Afterschool Art Class

There are still a few spots left in Mrs. Goodenough’s Tuesday afternoon painting class! If you would like for your child to participate, please send a check made out to Smart At Art to the office on Monday! She has reduced the price since the first week has already begun and it is now $70 for 4 weeks of painting beginning 09/11. We love the art that Mrs. Goodenough helps our students create!

 

08/30/18

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It’s been a wonderful week here at ACA! 

Assembly has been particularly sweet this week.  It seems that all of our students know a large portion of the “Fencepost Verses” upon which ACA is built.  (This is my new term for the ACA Rules.)  They also know the prayers, songs, and the first half of Psalm 98 that we have been repeating for the four weeks we have been in school.  This is such a testament to how God created children.  They have a phenomenal capacity to memorize with minimum effort.  The Classical Method of education accentuates this gift from our Lord; I am so glad for the opportunity to partner with you in the implementation of the method for God’s glory and for our students’ good.

Faculty Focus: Laura Lee Logan- 5th Grade Teacher

Tell us about yourself. Family? Hometown? Pets?
I grew up in Benton, Alabama, a small community between Montgomery and Selma. I enjoyed living in the country growing up and taking advantage of fishing and hunting opportunities there. I still love going home to visit my parents whenever I can. I have one dog, Addie, who my family has enjoyed since I was 14. She is a pretty, black lab mix, and enjoys the perk of coming inside to sleep now that she is older.

How did you come to learn about ACA and decide to work here? 
For the past four years, I have enjoyed teaching within the Auburn area. This past year, I developed a desire to work with elementary age students in a private, Christian setting. I was excited to hear about ACA from a friend of mine and checked out the school more online. It seemed like a neat place! I was thrilled when I heard of an opportunity to teach at ACA for the upcoming year. I am so enjoying my fifth and sixth grade students and am finding what a neat place ACA truly is to work!

What are you enjoying most about being a part of ACA? 
I love the gospel focus of our assemblies, chapel times, and curriculum.  As a Christian teacher, I want to
provide great instruction in my subject matter and, whenever possible, in the life-changing truths of God and His Son, Jesus. Here at ACA, these opportunities to talk about the Lord come up regularly as the truths of God are built into our school rules and even the curriculum itself. I love that we are preparing our students for life and for eternity. Secondly, I love the structured, yet nurturing environment. Students know that they are known and loved here while being held to a high standard.

What is your favorite book and who is your favorite author? 
A few years ago, someone introduced me to a short book called A Gospel Primer for Christians by Milton Vincent. Although the title seems very formal, it is such a practical book that has been a grounding and encouraging read in my walk with the Lord. I would like to re-read it again soon. The author’s goal is to help you “preach the gospel to yourself” on a daily basis so as to keep your focus on all Jesus has done for you while helping you rest in His work in the process. This was such a neat concept to me and something that has impacted the way I think during the day.

What is something the Lord is teaching you today? 
It sounds cliche, but the Lord is teaching me more about His love. It’s something I have known about all of my life, but have realized recently that it is even better than I once understood. As a perfectionist, I sometimes get caught up FEELING the need to earn the Lord’s favor and love, feeling that on my not so great days, I may have lost it somehow.  What a blessing to realize that the love of the Lord is constant in our ups and downs and that we can anchor our life in His love.

Labor Day Week Schedule Change

Please remember that next week’s school schedule begins on Tuesday and ends on Friday.  Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday will be exactly as every other week.  Friday will run on Monday’s schedule.  In terms of uniforms, all will remain the same, except Friday will be an extra t-shirt day.  (So we will have two t-shirt days next week, Thursday and Friday.  Chapel will remain on Wednesday.)

Lunchtime Ease 

When I see the delicious lunches you send with your students I sometimes wish I were living at your house!  The fresh vegetables and fruits especially catch my eye, as do the cookies and sweet desserts. Most of you are sending lunches that students are able to open, eat, and clean up independently.  However, we have had a bit of an issue with “make your own pizza” lunches.  While they seem like a great idea, much of the pizza cheese and sauce end up on the table and floor.  Since we have students clean up their places at the end of lunch, these pizzas require extra time and effort for the student.  Ultimately, the “clean up” keeps students from having as much outside play time after lunch as they would like.  Would you all please help your students by sending lunches that require minimal clean up?  Thank you, in advance.

Fourth Grade Readers’ Theatre

Mrs. Kirk’s fourth grade students rewrite fables as a part of their composition work.  This week they re-wrote The Grasshopper and the Ant, after which they performed it for the kindergarten class.  Much fun was had by all.

Fifth Grade Students “Visit” Green Gables, Prince Edward Island, Canada

Miss Logan’s fifth grade students came to school today dressed as various characters from Anne of Green Gables, their current literature book.  It was great fun for us all to see the students’ attention to detail in creating their costumes.

Which House am I in?

After lunch today, students learned of their House placement.  Please join us in encouraging the fun that is intended in this new program at ACA.  Students were given a copy of the points system as we have established them thus far.  Other opportunities to earn points will most likely become available as the year progresses.  Join me in thanking Mrs. Cox for all her extra effort to get our House System off to a terrific start!

Zoe’s Artwork

If your child has artwork on display at Zoe’s Kitchen, you should expect to receive that back early October.

New Afterschool Art Class

Because of the interest shown in the Wednesday class, Mrs. Goodenough has decided to open up another class on Tuesday afternoons for painting. It will run from 2:45-4:00 and the cost is $90.00 If you wish for your child to participate, please make a check out to Smart at Art. Maximum 8 children. Begins 09/04/18.

08/23/18

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Week 3 is Complete!

Hello friends,

I hope you are enjoying the Faculty Focus we have begun including in the weekly Column.  In an effort to garner interest in our school through social media, we will soon begin sharing these highlights on our Facebook page.  Please take the opportunity to go to our page and then share our page via your page.  We would love to be as visible as possible in our community in order to attract more like-minded families to our ranks.

Also, would any of you be interested in answering several questions as part of a “Family Focus” to be shared in various places for marketing purposes?  Basically, we would ask you to share your story of discovering ACA, greatest reservations/apprehensions about coming, and current impressions. Please email me directly if you are willing to help us promote ACA in this way.  Thank you!
robingdurbin.aca@gmail.com

Family Focus
1. How did you discover ACA for your child’s education?
2. What were your greatest reservations or apprehensions prior to enrolling your student here?
3. Have those reservations/apprehensions become more apparent or have they diminished since your family has been a part of the ACA family?
4. What are your thoughts about ACA now?  Would you recommend it to friends looking for a place to educate their children?

Faculty Focus: Amy Wells- Logic School Math Teacher

Tell us about yourself. Family? Hometown? Pets? 

I was born in Quitman, GA, but consider Donalsonville, GA to be my hometown. We relocated 2 years ago to Auburn from Bainbridge, GA, where most of my teaching experience was obtained. My husband, Kevin, and I have a brood of children, which I affectionally call the “mine, yours, ours and somebody else’s” group. My oldest, Rachel, is 30 and lives in Atlanta. Next is Ben, 29, who lives in Birmingham with his wife, and is the father of our only grandchild. Sara is 25 and lives in Dallas, TX. Our nephew, Reid, is 17 and is a senior at AHS. And finally, there is Lily, 8, a third grader at ACA. Currently, we have only 1 rescue dog, whom we saved from our community theater parking lot. I have had as many as 3 dogs, and 2 cats, much to my husband’s chagrin.

How did you come to learn about ACA and decide to work here?

My husband travels for work, and we thought at one time about homeschooling Lily to enable us to travel more readily with him. The style of homeschool that I most felt led to was the classical style, so imagine my joy to find that Auburn/Opelika had a classical school in place!  My working here was God’s handiwork, and I am extremely grateful to Mrs. Durbin for believing in me.

What are you enjoying most about being a part of ACA?

First, I LOVE the kids. The respect, discipline, manners and general attitude are so refreshing following my time teaching in SW Georgia. And the trust that the administration has in the faculty is so appreciated.

What is your favorite book and who is your favorite author?

I like all literature, with a special affinity for mysteries.

What is something the Lord is teaching you today?

Patience.

House System

This week the House System banners appeared in the Assembly Room.  Students (3rd-8th grades) are really excited to learn their placement!  That will be announced next week during lunch on Thursday.  In an effort to promote sibling harmony, we will be placing family members in the same house unless you request a different placement.  (Please do not give away this info to students.)  Also, Mrs. Cox, the other teachers, and I want to be sure students are in a House with at least one current “friend,” no matter the grade of the friend.  You are welcome to specify a request for your student.  We will make every attempt to honor your request given the numbers of students and numbers of siblings, but we cannot guarantee for it to be done so.  Please email me at robingdurbin.aca@gmail.com with those requests.

Reminders

08/09/18

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Welcome back to ACA!

It has begun – learning and growing for the 2018-2019 school year.  Some students have transitioned to new teachers and subjects with little hesitation.  A few have run into a bump or two, but I am thankful to see that most of those students are settling in to their new “normal”.  Mrs. Roarke and I were talking earlier today about the additional responsibility for students that comes with every grade.  She took photos of the stacks of books on each grade’s desks just prior to Orientation last week.  As expected, the kindergarten stack was short, and the stacks grew incrementally with each grade.  As the grade increases, the stacks of books grow, so the work load grows.

We teachers very much want to be pro-active in helping students who may still feel unsettled a bit learn to bear the increased load that comes with a new year.  Please help us do that by letting your student’s teacher and me know particular areas of struggle for your student.  We want to do our part to help students have their best school year yet.  Chances are, if your student is struggling with an element in class, other students are, too.  Help us be aware of issues that we can potentially resolve with a bit to tweaking of the schedule or homework load.  We want to figure out a way to help all our students be successful while being challenged, and we can do that best when we know specific concerns.

On another note, I found the article at the link below that was quite encouraging to me in terms of our educational methods.  J. R. R. Tolkien’s education looks a lot like an ACA education.  I hope you will read it.

How to Replicate J.R.R. Tolkien’s Education for Your Child:

https://www.intellectualtakeout.org/article/how-replicate-jrr-tolkiens-education-your-child – via @intellectualTO

Enjoy your family time over the weekend.

Blessings,

Mrs. Durbin

Faculty Focus: Nicole Richburg

Tell us about yourself.  Family?  Hometown? Pets?

I am from Wetumpka, AL, but have been in Auburn since 2012. I graduated from Auburn University in 2016 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work and worked on staff with the College Ministry at FBC Opelika for the 2 years following that. My husband, Chase, and I were married on August 6, 2017 and we have a blue dragon-scale beta fish named Finley. Chase is still in school at AU working on his Master’s in Chemistry.

How did you come to learn about ACA and decide to work here?

Over the last few years, I had a few friends work at ACA (Ms. McNabb, Ms. Muller, and Ms. Sullivan) and I had heard great things about the school. I was nearing the end of my time on staff at FBCO, when I received a call from a friend asking if I would be interested in an administration job at ACA and I talked to Mrs. Durbin about 20 minutes later. A few weeks earlier, I had told my husband that my dream job for this next season would be an administration job with a school. The Lord is KIND to His children and gives His children good gifts, because after talking with Mrs. Durbin, I felt right at home at ACA and felt like this was the place the Lord wanted me to be for this next year!

What are you enjoying most about being a part of ACA?

One of my favorite things is how Jesus-centered everything is at ACA. Starting our day with praise and prayer to Him with our students is a sweet moment of rest and a moment to set our eyes on Jesus before we even begin our work. I have also been so thankful for how easy it has been to feel so welcomed, loved, and cared for here. I feel like I have been quickly accepted into the ACA family. Thank you for that!!

What is your favorite book and who is your favorite author?

I recently finished the Chronicles of Narnia series and was blown away by how much it made me love the Lord so much more than I already did. Through reading, I understood more the great lengths to which He will go to save His people, the sovereignty that He holds, and the intensity combined with deep compassion that He has for His children to walk in holiness and obedience to Him. C.S. Lewis has such a unique and gifted way of combining descriptive and beautiful imagination with deeply rooted spiritual themes that enthralled me as I read. Another favorite of mine is Hinds Feet on High Places by Hannah Hurnard. It’s an allegory of a girl named “Much-Afraid” who asks the Great Shepherd to lead her to the High Places because she doesn’t want to live in the ‘Valley of Humiliation” anymore. He says He will take her there, but she must give Him her heart and it will be painful and difficult in ways. The book follows her journey to the High Places through mountains and valleys, often questioning the Great Shepherd, but when she reaches the High Places, the Great Shepherd gives her a new name.

What is something the Lord is teaching you today?

I feel like the Lord has been showing me so much over the last year or so stepping out of a full time ministry job, being in the first year of marriage, and trusting Him with things for the future. Through all of this, the Lord has shown me how faithful He is to guide me into every decision and every step of obedience He wants me to take even when I can’t see the very end. I sometimes think of it as a boardwalk. The Lord isn’t often going to show us where the boardwalk ends, but He will be faithful to light the street lamps as we go. When I follow Him and walk as far as I can see Him leading me (or as far as I can see in the light), then He is faithful to turn on the next streetlamp to light my path for the next few steps. And He is faithful to the end. He is the Father who guides His child IN JOY to the plans He has for her and walks with her every step of the way. What a joy it is and what peace it brings to be led by the Father and trust where He leads.

PE Volunteers

If you would like to volunteer to help with PE this month, please fill out this link! This is such a fun way to get to know our children and teachers! https://www.signupgenius.com/go/30e084da4ac2fabf49-acapevolunteers

Gymnastics Info Session

If your child is interested in doing Gymnastics after school, please feel free to come to a drop-in information session with Matt Bullard from FlipzKidz on Thursday, August 16th from 2-3pm in the Assembly Room. He will be there to show his equipment, talk through what the class may be like, and answer any questions you may have. Questions? Talk to Mrs. Durbin.

New Fundraiser Opportunity

We’ve got some exciting news. Auburn Classical Academy has been added to the Planet Fundraiser app, which means you can start earning cash for our school today!

Here are some things YOU can do immediately to start growing our campaign:

  • Search and load the appon your phone right now:  Planet Fundraiser
  • Invite 10 friendsto get the app using the ‘Invite Others to Join’ feature in the app. Here’s a video tutorial that shows you how: https://vimeo.com/276093024.
  • Copy and share the line below on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter:
    • Auburn Classical Academy is now on Planet Fundraiser! Download the app to support our campaign with your everyday purchases!  https://link-to.app/VZNwak
    • You will have to type in “Auburn Classical Academy” as your group to support.
  • Join the Auburn Classical Academy campaign on Planet Fundraiser just by sending a text?  Here’s how: 
    • From within the app
    • 1) Head over to ‘More’
    • 2) Select ‘Invite Others to Join’
    • 3) Text 10 friendsand watch your campaign grow right before your eyes!
    • Watch a Video Tutorial Here
  • Be sure to start using the app the next time you make a purchase – check the app for participating local restaurants and retailers!  To give you an idea, here are just a few:
    • Publix
    • Walgreens
    • Taco Mama
    • Coffee Cat
    • CVS
    • Target
    • Ulta Beauty

 

 

May 4, 2018

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Please complete the survey found at the link below

This survey will be used to collect feedback on key areas which will assist in determining a strategic plan for the school.  The survey will take about 5 minutes to complete. Because we are a small group, we are aiming for 100% participation for statistical significance.  The survey will be open until Thursday, May 17th.  Take the survey only once for your entire household.  If you have no comments for the last question, please enter “N/A”,  Be sure to click “DONE” at the bottom of the survey page to submit your responses. You will see a “thank you” screen confirming your survey has been submitted.

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/F3D5TDT 

An Excellent Grandparents’ Day

Last Thursday, our students and teachers outdid themselves with their Grandparents’ Day performances.  I am so very pleased with the maturity and poise that students displayed in their poems and songs.  They were patient as they enjoyed performances by every class.  Mr. Cunningham again gave a poignant speech lauding the value of good books and the classical method of education.  Families then spent time in classrooms celebrating the evidences of learning — insect collections, solar system models, a Stonehenge scale model replica, artwork displays, and lots of hand written letters.  I am especially pleased that folks visited classrooms beyond their own children’s.  To top off the day, parents provided a delicious and beautiful reception in the lunchroom.

To all of you who contributed to make Grandparents’ Day a success, thank you.

Friday Enrichment Program – 2018-2019

Please be reminded that families wanting their children enrolled in the Friday Enrichment Program for next year should return enrollment forms.  They were due May 1, but we will extend the deadline to our last day of school, May 10.  Monthly payments will begin in August.  Please contact Mrs. Durbin with any questions regarding this new Friday option.

Uniform Exchange

Thursday, May 17th between the hours of 9:00 am and 1:00 pm. 

– Donate uniform items that you no longer need – please be sure they are in good used condition, and freshly laundered (no significant stains, tears, holes, etc…).

– In exchange for each item you donate, use your voucher and choose an item in the size you need (based on availability)

– Don’t have items to donate, but would like to buy?  Suggested donation is $1 per item (all proceeds go to ACA).

– Don’t need any items in exchange for those you donate?  ACA families will appreciate your giving back!

 

Calendar of Events:

May 7- 10th: ACA T-shirt Days (students may wear their ACA t-shirts)

May 8: Team Spirit Day

May 10: Last Day of School (noon dismissal)

May 14-15: Optional Testing, 8 am until noon

May 17: Report Card pick up, between 9 am and 1 pm

April 19, 2018

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GRANDPARENTS’ DAY

Brandi Long and Amy Wells are coordinating our Grandparents’ Day reception this year. Visit signup genius to find out how you can contribute to this time of fellowship. Brandi and Amy can be reached via email (Family Directory) with questions.
Due to limited parking, please consider carpooling to the event.

 

Teacher Appreciation Week

Teacher Appreciation week will be May 7th-10th. Each family is encouraged to show love and gratitude any way that works best for that family. As a student body, there is the option for families to pool resources together to present the teachers with personalized gifts, along with either breakfast or lunch during that week. This group effort may take the place of year end teacher gifts. You are welcome to contribute any amount that your budget allows; there is absolutely no obligation to contribute if you prefer to present gifts and sentiments to teachers on your own.
What do you need to do if you are interested in contributing and/or helping with Teacher Appreciation week?
1.) Make your contribution of any amount that works for you. Please send your contribution to the school no later than pickup the afternoon of Tuesday, April 24th. Cash or checks, made payable to Paula Deist, are accepted. Please submit contributions (clearly marked to Paula Deist) to the ACA office in a sealed envelope.
2.) There are many ways to help the week of Teacher Appreciation!  If you are interested in setting up a breakfast or lunch, or picking up a breakfast or lunch order, or assisting in the distribution of the gifts, please email Summer Vaughan (Family Directory).
Be on the lookout for further communication regarding specifics for the actual week of Teacher Appreciation.Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact either Paula (Family Directory) or Summer Vaughan.

Laredo Spirit Night

Make plans to join us next Monday, April 23rd for our last Spirit Night of the school year at Laredo Mexican Grill. Make sure to write “ACA” on your receipt and place in the basket at the cash register.

 

ACA Begins “House System” for 2018-2019

Do you think it’s possible to combine community service, scholarship, athletics, and friendly competition and still have fun? It is! And we are excited to introduce the house program to ACA this coming year.

The house program is built around 4 ” houses” (teams) to which students from 5th grade and above are “sorted” at an official ceremony. After the students are sorted into a house, this becomes their team for their time at ACA.  All events will be done with their house, and houses compete against each other each week in events ranging from kickball and relay races to the “sock game” and crab ball. Each competition will earn points for the winning houses and these points will be tallied at year end to determine who wins the coveted house cup. Points are also earned by participating in community service projects-helping others is a big part of the house experience. This program promotes teamwork, cooperation, and leadership and is also so much fun. We are excited to roll this out during the 2018-2019 school year.

Details will be shared at the Back to School Orientation, August 2, 2018 from 8:00-11:00 a.m.

 

Calendar of Events:

April 23: Laredo Spirit Night, 4 pm – 9 pm

April 26: Grandparents’ Day, 9 am until noon (early dismissal)

May 8: Team Spirit Day

May 10: Last Day of School (noon dismissal)

May 14-16: Optional Testing (3rd – 7th grades), 8 am until noon

May 17: Report Card pick up, between 9 am and 1 pm

April 12, 2018

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PEN PALS

Would you like for your student to have a Romanian pen pal?  Pastor Attilla Szasz, a friend of the Pittman family, shared an Assembly lesson with us a couple of weeks ago.  Afterwards we began to think of some way to encourage children in Pastor Attilla’s congregation in Romania.  Writing letters to a student of about the same age is one way to accomplish this.   We will be announcing this “pen pal”opportunity to students next week, but we want your student to have your approval prior to our sharing names, addresses, etc.  If your student would be interested in having a Romanian pen pal, please email Mrs. Durbin no later than this Monday, April 16th, and she will be in touch with Pastor Szasz.

Student Lunch Survey

One of our ACA parent’s company provides our lunch order service at mymealorder.com.  He has put together a very short 3 question survey to gather feedback from those who use it.  If you could take a moment and fill out any responses you have, it would be greatly appreciated. Your response is confidential.

Grandparents’ Day

Brandi Long and Amy Wells are coordinating our Grandparents’ Day reception this year. Visit http://www.signupgenius.com/go/20f0a4ea4af2ba7f58-2018 to find out how you can contribute to this time of fellowship. Brandi and Amy can be reached via email (Family Directory) with questions.

 

Calendar of Events:

April 23: Laredo Spirit Night, 4 pm – 9 pm

April 26: Grandparents’ Day, 9 am until noon (early dismissal)

May 8: Team Spirit Day

May 10: Last Day of School (noon dismissal)

May 14-16: Optional Testing (3rd – 7th grades), 8 am until noon

May 17: Report Card pick up, between 9 am and 1 pm