Dear family and friends,
Greetings to you from sunny Florida! Even though it is early in the month of September, school has been in session for 4 weeks now. In fact I worked on mid term progress reports on Friday afternoon. The grades were due in at the school office on Monday morning. I have a light teaching load this year. I am teaching math to first grade students and math to second grade students each morning. This gives the first and second grade teacher opportunity to teach reading to the other half of her class. This seems to be working out well. I know that I am enjoying the students and am hoping to give them a good math foundation that will set them up for success in math for years to come. The basics are so very important. I am teaching both concepts and procedures which keeps us busy. We are having so much fun!
I am also teaching fifth grade students this year. This is a new one for me. We are studying history and geography of the Eastern Hemisphere. We are using a Christian curriculum so the Bible is interwoven into many of the lessons. My students have been making entries into their “Discovery Journals”. They are archeologists and are keeping a journal of their archeological discoveries. The articles include finding a Sumarian sword, a piece of clay with cuneiform writing on it, a Phoenician oil lamp, millstones, and an altar at the top of a zuggurat (temple). They are doing the research on the classroom computers and writing up their discoveries in their journals. They are also to include a drawings or a photos of their find at the dig . Finding articles from around 2300 B.C. has caused them to be excited about this time period of history. Learning about the city of Ur where Abram came from as well as the area of Mesopotamia where human civilization bagan, has all been quite fascinating. I have included a photo of my fifth grade students finding different seas and oceans on the large wall map and transferring the information onto their smaller maps. Learning is taking place.
On Monday evenings I attend class at a local college. As many of you know, I have been taking college courses every furlough (home assignment) since 1997. It has taken me a long time, but I now have accumulated 69 college credits. I only need 3 math credits to complete the graduation requirements for my degree in early childhood education. I had thought that I would have to take college algebra and was not really looking forward to that. Seminole State College (which is located just 8 miles from where we live) offers a course on teaching mathematics in the elementary school. After checking with the college in Maryland, they have agreed to transfer this 4 credit hour math class to meet my general mathematics requirement. I have now been to two classes so far, and it has been fantastic! I have already tried several new things with my young math students. I attend class from 6:00 to 9:30 every Monday evening and have homework assignments to complete during the week as well. This is going to keep me busy, but I am excited about the things that I am going to learn in the process. Of course I am also looking forward to being able to graduate soon. The end is in sight.
Brad keeps busy in the finance office here at NTM Homes. Volunteers from up north have already started arriving. They are such a blessing and accomplish so many things while they are here. The new chapel and offices will soon be finished and ready for the final inspection. This has been a huge building project and was started not long before we moved here in March of 2011. I will include some photos at a later date. The walls are painted, carpet installed, tiled floors laid, and light fixtures are hung. It is looking great! Brad keeps the bills paid for all the building supplies and building permits, as well as the normal things like water, sewer, lights, phones, etc. I am impressed at how he keeps it all organized on his computer. It’s a big job.
One of the blessings here at NTM Homes is the small library of books, videos, and DVDs that are available for staff and residents to check out. I just completed reading the biography Oswald Chambers, Abandoned To God written by David McCasland. The book My Utmost for His Highest has been one of my favorite devotional books over the years. When I discovered this life story of Oswald Chambers, I knew that I needed to take the time to read it. It has been well worth the time and I would highly recommend it. I will include just one short quote. “I am finding that an eminently assisting way to pray is to ask God to give me His wisdom for the day, so that I might remember all the practical actual matters in accordance with His astute wisdom, instead of my own human cunning. This by no means implies that everything I do will be right, but it does mean that if I keep in the light as He is in the light, I need not do any unwise thing at all.”
o Brad needs God’s wisdom as he works in the finance office and interacts with staff members and residents here. He has reached a point with some of his responsibilities, that he should soon be able to establish a written procedure so backup personnel can be utilized. Currently – he has no backup and is the only one who knows how to do his job.
o Pray for me as I interact with 7 year olds, 8 year olds, 11 year olds, and college students as well as the retired missionaries who live here. I need to use my time wisely as I divide it between all of these different responsibilities.
o Brad is planning a ministry trip to Maryland later this month. He plans be gone just over a week.
In need of His wisdom,
Wanda (and Brad) Hull