Touchstone: Thriving in Middle School

There’s a lot of new faces at Denver Christian Middle School this year.  In addition to the usual crop of incoming 6th graders, we’ve welcomed an additional 44 new middle schoolers this year!  We’re loving being back IN school, reconnecting with familiar faces, and getting to know our new students

We are SO glad you’re here!

Touchstone = Shared Values

As we’ve been welcoming more and more new students to our middle school these last few years, we’ve been challenged to ask ourselves this:  What values define us as a community?  How do we live those out?  

These are really important questions, and the process of answering those led us to develop a touchstone, which is a statement of shared values that is used to create an environment in which all of our students can thrive academically, socially, and spiritually.

Middle school teacher Mr. Ben Dirksen and principal Tyler Amidon started the touchstone process by listening to the Denver Christian community. Students, parents, and staff were asked what characteristics they value in Denver Christian students (academically, socially, and spiritually) and classrooms. 

They spent months poring over the responses, synthesizing them and identifying themes, and ultimately formulated the core values for Denver Christian’s touchstone.

Denver Christian Middle School’s Touchstone

The Denver Christian Middle School community fosters a safe environment where we intentionally:

  1. Seek to know and love God
  2. Pursue learning and growth both in and out of the classroom
  3. Embrace responsibility for our actions and attitudes
  4. Honor people and places”

Living Out Our Touchstone

We believe that as individuals and as a community we are always growing, learning, and emerging.  Our touchstone allows us to continue to intentionally build and develop the climate and culture of our middle school in tangible ways:

  • Gives students, teachers, and families a common language and expectations.
  • Provides definition for what we desire for our climate and culture. 
  • Promotes consistency, and consistency helps students thrive. 

Last year we introduced touchstone to our middle schoolers (see the Touchstone Video some students made last year!), and now that we’re back together this year we’re eager to continue using this to shape our classrooms and culture.

Over the coming weeks and months, we will be developing norms with the students, asking questions about what it means to live out our core values collectively and individually in and beyond the classroom, and also spending time reflecting on how well we are living them out.

It is our deep hope that students flourish here at Denver Christian and that this is a place where they feel comfortable to take risks, that they feel supported and support others, and that they come to understand their identity as beloved sons and daughters of the King and live it out as agents of restoration. 

Along with your continuing support and prayers, our touchstone will be helping to guide us along the way.

Interested in becoming part of the Denver Christian community?  Our students are back in class, safely learning, and we have limited availability in classrooms preK-12.  Learn more, and contact us to schedule a tour!

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