301 S. Oak St. • Kendallville, IN 46755

The Banner

St. John's weekly newsletter to parents, faculty and staff

Banner #20, January 21, 2019

Cathy Thiem
WRITTEN BY Cathy Thiem - 21 January 2019


St. John Lutheran School

January 21, 2019 Number 20

Principal’s Pen

What are you a genius at? ‘Nothing’ might be your first response, but I encourage you to think a little longer. This is a question I’ve posed to the teachers. Some of their answers include antiques, playing trumpet, making beer, painting, and cooking. In reality, each of us is a genius, or an expert at something. We all have hidden interests, talents, skills, or hobbies that we are well-versed in and may even be considered an expert in. Each of is an expert, a genius, at something, and I would say that the same is true for our kids.

When we returned from Christmas Break our 6th, 7th, and 8th graders began Genius Hour every Friday afternoon. The idea is simple: the students get to study a topic of their choice, eventually creating a product or presentation and sharing it with the class. The students have the chance to study something they are interested in and become an expert in that area. Mr. Neuman and Mrs. Pillers are joining in as well. Some of the topics selected by the students are: coding, bird houses, tree houses, musical instruments, King David, paper flowers, movie making, comic book drawing, football defenses, tiny houses, goat toys, sewing, and bench-making. I wish I had room to share all the topics!

You might be thinking that this sounds like a time to goof off instead of learning and focusing on the curriculum. But, looking at it a little differently, these students are researching, writing, solving problems, creating, learning time management, and presenting in public, all while engaged in a topic of their choice.

I’m excited to see where this leads and what the kids discover, both in terms of their chosen topic and about themselves.

St. John Open House

St. John will be hosting an Open House for the 2019-2020 school year on Sunday, Jan. 27, from 12:00 – 3:00 P.M. We are asking all families to invite a friend, neighbor, relative, or co-worker to visit St. John and learn more about our school. Invitation fliers came home last next week. It is true that word of mouth advertising is our best form of advertising and we appreciate your help in spreading the word about St. John!

Parent-Teacher Conferences and Progress Reports This Week

Progress Reports will be given to parents at Parent-Teacher Conferences this Tuesday, January 22. School will dismiss at 1:55 to allow a little extra time for conferences. Bus riders will be able to stay after school and ride the bus as normal. Parents should have received a notification of their scheduled time to meet with their child’s teacher(s). Please be on time for your conference, and please respect the 15-minute time limit as other parents will be waiting to meet the teacher after you have completed your visit. If a longer conference is needed, please arrange another time with the teacher. As we did during the 1st Trimester conferences, we also invite parents to stop at one of the tables around the building after their conferences to fill our short surveys for the teacher and Principal Walz. We appreciate this feedback and the opportunity to grow. Thanks!

Re-enrollment for 2019-2020

Re-enrollment for 2019-2020 begins today! You will receive a letter from the principal, directions for re-enrolling (completed online through ParentsWeb), and a 2019-2020 calendar. We look forward to re-enrolling our current students for another great year and welcoming new students into our family! We encourage all of our families to begin the re-enrollment process promptly as applications for new students will begin to be accepted on Monday, Jan. 28, following our first Open House.

Did you know that St. John is one of almost 2,100 Lutheran preschool, elementary, and high schools across the nation? Did you know that these schools contain around 250,000 students? Did you know that the Lutheran schools are the second largest parochial school system in the United States (only the Catholic system is larger)? We have much to be thankful for as a part of this school system!

National Lutheran Schools Week is coming up on January 27th – February 3rd. We are celebrating our wonderful Lutheran School.

The week’s fun activities are:

MONDAY - School Spirit Day/ Blue & White Day (wear

St. John colors or t-shirts)

TUESDAY – Disney Day

WEDNESDAY – Mismatch/Crazy Hair Day


FRIDAY – Pajama Day (wear your pajamas and bring slippers, blankets, stuffed animals – per teacher’s instructions)

SUNDAY (Feb. 3) – Choir sings at both 8:00 and 10:30 services

St. John Students Get Set to Serve

Last year, many Lutheran schools in the Fort Wayne area joined together in an offering challenge. St. John was the winner, with the highest per-student average offerings collected! This year, schools are joining together in a new competition, one which involves service hours completed at school! We are making plans for all of our students to participate in various service projects throughout this month. Some may be done in individual classrooms while others may involve classes coming together. Our main project will be packing Cancer Care Kits (information was sent home last week and is below) and we hope many of you will participate in this project by sending in supplies. We also have classes making cards, bookmarks, and visiting Lutheran Life Villages.

Cancer Care Kits

One of our service projects is assembling Cancer Care Kits for kids battling cancer. These kits have been researched by parents with kids battling cancer and contain a variety of items that have been shown to be helpful. Our kits will be going to Lutheran Hospital and maybe others. We would like your help in gathering the supplies. If you are able, please choose an item on the list below and send it in by Jan. 25. Thank you for partnering with us to be a blessing to kids with cancer!

• Tissues (travel size) • Mints • Lemon Drop/Lemonheads

• Gum • Ring pops • Fragrance-fee lotion (small size)

• Plastic spoon or fork (higher quality than disposable ones)

• Hand sanitizer (small size) • Lip balm • Antibacterial hand wipes

• Soft sock, slippers, hat • Small toy • Washable, cuddly item

• Blanket or pillow case • Simple craft • nail care kit (for teen girls)

• Coloring book and crayons or colored pencils • Fun, twisty straws

• Activity or joke book • Notepad and colored pens

• Travel-size games, card games, puzzles • Stickers and notebook

• Gift cards (Red Box, iTunes, Google Play Store)

Save the Date – Vacation Bible School

St. John’s Vacation Bible School will be held the week of July 22-26, from 6:00-8:00 P.M. Mark your calendar and plan now to attend!

Soccer Shots Coming to St. John!

Soccer Shots (www.soccershots.org/fortwayne) seeks to positively impact kids’ lives by provide age-appropriate soccer instruction. They have worked with many northern Indiana schools and day cares, including several area Lutheran schools. We are excited to welcome Soccer Shots to St. John for a 6-week session for Kindergarten-2nd graders. There will be a free preview day on Wednesday, Feb. 6, from 3:00-3:30. The session will begin on Wednesday, Feb. 13, and run through March 20. Sessions will be from 3:05-3:50. Watch for more information coming home this week and consider joining in this new after-school activity!

Science Fair

Inquiry, investigation, problem solving, research, time management, public speaking: all of these skills and more can be built through working on a Science Fair project! This is a great opportunity for children to explore an area that they are interested in. Information on the St. John Science Fair has been made available to students in grades 1-8. Your questions can be answered by your teacher or by our Science Fair chairperson, Don Schroeder. The projects will be due in February and the full schedule is available in the packet. We encourage all students to participate in this worthwhile event!

Projects are due on Monday, Feb. 11, and the Science Fair Night will be Wednesday, Feb. 13, from 6:00-7:00.

If you need a display board you can get one from the office. The boards are 32” high and 36” wide and are available first come-first served. You can make your check out to “St. John PTL”. Each board is $5.50.

Fitness Fact

If you, like many, made a resolution to increase your amount of exercise, you might be feeling a little sore. If you are, don’t stop now. Movement itself helps to flush the lactic acid buildup which can cause that soreness. You should also increase your water intake which aides in flushing out the acid and helps your body in numerous other ways. If you continue exercising consistently and the soreness does not diminish, you might need to consider decreasing the intensity of your workouts until your body adjusts.

Did You Know?

Three-quarters of the world’s alpaca population lives in Peru. The national animal is the vicuña, a small camelid similar to the alpaca. It comes in 22 natural colors and its wool is considered the world’s most luxurious fabric. Our chapel offerings for the 2nd Trimester will support mission work in Peru. We encourage all students to show their thankfulness to God by bringing in Chapel offering on Tuesdays!

SCRIP: New Year, New Habit

Would you like free money? Do you shop at any of the following stores?

Walmart Arby’s Dairy Queen Pizza Forum

BP Dietrich’s Walgreens CVS

Applebees Home Depot Wendy’s Peachey’s

These are just a few of the retailers for which we stock scrip. When you purchase a SCRIP card a percentage of the face value is credited back to you. It really is that simple!

As we begin a new year, why not start forming a new habit of using SCRIP? All you have to do is stop in the office any time, purchase your SCRIP cards, and start saving money. The more you use SCRIP, the more you’ll save.

For those of you who have been using SCRIP, your balances for the last half of 2018 have been applied to the account of your choice.

These students and their families will be prayed for this week:

Andrew McKinley, Carter McKinley, Grace Newcomer, Alex Ormiston, and Nathan Potts

SHINE Students of the Week

Congratulations to the following students for being recognized as a SHINE Student last week: Santiago Espinoza, The First Grade Class, Emma White, Savannah Sorg, and Max Harlan.

We give thanks to God for these students who let their light shine before others.


Remember that we have a Suggestion/Question box in the lobby area (with the soup label, Box Tops, pop tab and ink cartridge drop off boxes). Your feedback is welcome!

Track Helpers Needed

Even though we are in the midst of winter weather, we are thinking spring and the start of track season! Practices will begin early to mid-March and run through most of May. Mr. Wendt and Dr. Lutz will be leading the team again, but we are looking for some additional helpers. No experience is needed and training will be provided. Please contact Mrs. Kline, Athletic Director, for more information. jkline@stjohneagles.org or 349-2395.

Tax Reform and St. John Tuition

One of the provisions in the tax Reform Act passed a year ago is that families can use their 529 accounts to pay for K-12 education and not just college education. This could be great news for those of you who already have a 529 account started. It’s also another great reason to start one of these accounts if you haven’t. We will share more details as they become available.

Morning Drop-off Reminders

In order to have a smooth morning drop-off procedure, as well as a safe one for parents and students, we offer these reminders:

⁎ If you are parking and walking your child in, please park in the lot. Please do not park next to the building to bring your child in.

⁎ The exception to this is cars with handicap tags and they may park along the building, but should avoid parking right by the Worship Center doors.

⁎ If you are dropping off your child, please pull up next to the building and let him/her off. Do not stop in the alley as it blocks traffic from exiting the lot.

Thank you for your help in keeping our kids safe!

Apple Festival Help Needed

What???? Apple Festival? Apple Festival is in October!! Yes, we know, but we are getting a jump on two items:

1) We have lost our staple gun which is critical for the construction of our booth. Before we purchase another, we thought we’d inquire if someone has one laying around that they’d like to just be rid of. See Mrs. Thiem if you are that someone!

2) We will be raising our fritter price to $4.00 each. Therefore, all our signage needs to be updated. If you would like to take on that project, or would like more information about doing so, see Mrs. Thiem.

Geography Bee January 23

On Wednesday, January 23, don’t miss our school’s Geography Bee where students in grades 4-8 will compete for the opportunity to represent our school in the national Geography Bee. The Bee will begin at 1:15 p.m.in the Worship Center. Parents, please join us!

A message from Mrs. Thiem

Weird as this is, the second day after I came back from the month I was out of the office for Dave’s “heart adventure”, I received an envelope in the mail here at church/school from Parkview Heart Institute. It promotes the HeartSmart CT ($50) and a Total Vascular Screening ($79). Either of these screenings may have saved Dave significant issues, which he will deal with the remainder of his days.

I think it’s really odd that Parkview would send this information to a church, but the written sentiment on the letter says “May your congregation be full of health in 2019.” I am taking the receipt of this information as a sign that God wants someone in our midst to have this easy test. Maybe it’s YOU. And maybe it will save your life. See me and I will gladly share a copy of the information!

Items Up For Grabs

It is the hope to clear out the old youth area (upper side balcony of the sanctuary). It is, for some time, become an area where things were left to pile up and it’s time to move ‘em on out!! BEFORE February 1st, if you have any interest in the following, please let Kevin Wengert, or Cathy Thiem know:

2 couches – one is a teal color and seems to be in good shape, the other is a green brocade and looks to be quite old, but is in good shape none-the-less.

Well, Christmas has passed for another year, but just because the tree is down and all those cookies have been consumed, doesn’t mean it’s time to forget about Operation Christmas Child – the shoebox project! Don’t forget to watch for those after-Christmas sales and pick up some items for your box(es). November’s collection week will roll around quicker than we think!

The collection box remains

in the Gathering Area and I am passing along suggestions of what to put

in the box each month. Perhaps you would rather just donate an item here and there rather than assemble an entire box.

For January – soap and washcloths

For February – toothbrush, dental floss, NO TOOTHPASTE

For March – Winter hats, gloves, baseball hat, bandanas, scarves

Of course, anything can be placed in the box at any time, these are merely suggestions!

See me if you have any questions!!

Mrs. Thiem

21 – 27, 2019

Monday, January 21- No East Noble Bus Service

3:00 – 4:30 – Student Council Meeting

4:15 – JV Girls Basketball game @ HOME vs. St. Peter

5:30 – JV Boys Basketball game @ HOME vs. St. Peter

Tuesday, January 22

8:15 – Chapel

1:55 – Early dismissal for Parent/Teacher Conferences

2:15 – 7:00 – Parent/Teacher Conferences

3:00 – 4:30 – JV Girls Basketball Practice

Wednesday, January 23

1:15 – Geography Bee

3:00 – 4:15 – Math Bowl Practice

5:30 – JV Boys Basketball game @ HOME vs. LSU

Thursday, January 24

3:00 – 4:30 – Grow Tall – Stand Tall: Mighty Oaks

3:00 – 4:30 – JV Girls Basketball Practice

7:00 – Worship Service

Friday, January 25

2:30 – 3:00 – St. John Choir practice

4:30 – 6:00 – JV Boys Basketball practice

Saturday, January 26

Sunday, January 27

8:00 – Worship Service in the Sanctuary

9:15 – Christian Education Hour

10:30 –Worship Service in the Worship Center

12:00 – 3:00 – School Open House

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St. John Lutheran Church
301 South Oak St.
Kendallville, IN 46755
(260) 347-2444