Dear Village Family,
Jesus said, Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Matthew 11:28
In our constantly connected world, rest seems like a fleeting idea or, even worse, something against our cultural ethos. As Dr. Alex Soojung-Kim Pang writes, Rest has a bad rap in our culture. Most of us think about rest as merely the absence of work—not something valuable in its own right. But nothing could be further from the truth. Rest is an essential component of working well and working smart.
As an International Baccalaureate World School®, developing the whole child is core to our educational approach. Interwoven into the Learner Profile is the attribute Balanced, where we learn the importance of intellectual, physical, and emotional balance to achieve personal well-being for oneself and others.
With the arrival of the autumn equinox last week, we welcome fall, the starting of rest in nature. And the more we study the model God formed in creation, we find He instilled a rhythm of rest. From the cadence of ocean waves to the metamorphosis of caterpillars to butterflies, to the soli-lunar cycle, to the structure of our week for work and rest.
Rest is the second principle of CREATION Life®, our philosophy of how to live a whole life. Rest is incredibly powerful. It refreshes, rejuvenates, regenerates and rebuilds the mind, body and soul. Rest takes many forms, from sleep to meditation to prayer to days of rest. As we get ready to enjoy an extended weekend, let's take this challenge as a learning community:
- Take a break from technology for a day: In her book 24/6: The Power of Unplugging One Day a Week, Webby Award founder, Emmy-nominated filmmaker, and mother of two Tiffany Shlain explores how turning off screens for 24 hours each week can work wonders on your brain, body, and soul. Spending time away from your screens will lead you to deeper connections with those around you and more presence to the wonders and joys of your everyday life.
- Reduce screen time for our children: Managing their screen time has immense health benefits. The American Academy of Pediatrics has guidelines for how many hours a day can be on screens. Whenever possible, substitute screen time for face-to-face social interactions such as unstructured play time and other healthy activities.
- Prioritize getting enough sleep each night to stay happy and healthy. The Sleep Foundation provides a great resource on recommended sleep for each age group. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends children 6 to 12 years of age should sleep 9 to 12 hours for optimal health. Let's work with our families to establish healthy nighttime routines and habits to meet the recommended sleep goals.
And when rest alludes you and your world seems like a never-ending cycle of non-stop activity, remember Jesus' promise: walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you'll learn to live freely and lightly, and I'll show you how to take a real rest.
Seeking His Rest,
Head of School