J-Term: Two Weeks of Fun and Impact
A martial arts class? A trip to Costa Rica? Serving the needy in the Miami Valley? The two weeks immediately after Christmas break is a time at Dayton Christian when our high school students (and starting this year, our junior high students) roll up their sleeves and get involved in hands-on learning experiences offered to them through the DC Distinctive known as J-term.
“While many high school students dread going back to school following the holiday break, ours cannot wait!” said DCS High School Principal James Holliday. “At Dayton Christian we have a two week period where students are able to live out curriculum through trips, extreme electives, and exclusive experiences.’
One-hundred sixty-three of our high school students were able to leave campus for J-Term where they interacted with people in our community and across the globe.
The eleven students on the Dominican Republic trip helped build a house for a single mom and remodeled the home of another. The local school in the area was in the process of being torn down and another rebuilt so the team helped with clean up around existing school to help ready the property for transition. They worked hard pouring concrete, tearing out a sidewalk, painting, and building relationships with the DR students.
The students on the Jamaica trip spent their time at the Caribbean Christian Center for the Deaf where they helped construct an addition for one of the workers at the deaf school. They also helped with daily chores at the school, improved their signing abilities, and worshiped and developed relationships with the students.
DCHS Bible teacher Reagan Wagoner led a group to India. A highlight of the trip was being present at the dedication of the well the group funded. The group visited orphanages, served food at a leper colony, and saw firsthand how God is working in Agra and Delhi.
Twelve students traveled to Costa Rica where they practiced their Spanish, dived into Costa Rican culture with painting, cooking, and dancing, and enjoyed the natural wonders of a rain forest, a cloud forest, volcanoes, waterfalls, and much more!
Looking ahead to selecting a future college, the twenty students involved in the College Road Trip visited eleven universities including Ohio State and University of Dayton as well as Mount Vernon Nazarene, Taylor, Indiana Wesleyan, Anderson, and Asbury.
The Washington, DC trip was affected by the government shut-down but students were still able to see the monuments and memorials, the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, the Botanical Gardens, the Supreme Court and the Capitol. They also stopped by Gettysburg battlefield on their way back to Dayton.
Although they didn’t leave the Miami Valley, the Urban Missions team prepared meals, cleaned, organized, recycled paint and in many other ways were the hands and feet of Christ at The Food Bank, Matthew 25
Ministries, The Gospel Mission and Hope House.
Thirty-nine students met each day at Ultimate Leadership Martial Arts in Springboro where they learned martial arts and self-defense skills (not to mention how to break a board with a single punch!) from DC parents Michael and Jennifer Mershad. At the end of the two weeks, students were able to test to earn their yellow belts.
Although there were fewer students on campus during J-term, that didn’t mean the hands-on fun and exploration was diminished. Students learned about art and community by designing art projects for DC facilities and studied World War I by re-encting the air and land battles. Classes were also offered on STEM careers, graphic design, astronomy, and film criticism.
J-Term – what an exciting way to spend your first two weeks in January!