"Love the LORD your God with all your heart and all your soul and with all your strength."  Deuteronomy 6:5

As parents, there are times when it would be extremely helpful if God provided an owner's manual for each child that He entrusts into our care. On occasion, it would be so convenient and helpful to look up such things as "Why does my child cry when he/she wakes up from a nap?", "Why does she fight with her brother so much?", "How do I stop my child from rolling his/her eyes when I tell them to put his/her cell phone away?", or "How can I make them go to sleep at night?"

As we are preparing for the 2023/2024 school year, one question that is frequently asked of Preschool teachers and school administrators is "How do I know if my child is ready for Kindergarten?"

To help us learn a little more about each incoming Kindergarten student at St. Matthew, we frequently administer a few screening tests that assist in this process and provide us with some insightful information.

However, many years ago, one of our test administrators asked a student to draw a picture of herself, which is the exact picture placed at the top of this article. When the test administrator asked her if she was happy or sad in this picture, the little girl responded, "I'm happy because Jesus is in my heart!" 

As a parent, isn't that the most important piece of information you want to know... that Jesus lives in your child's heart? 

As I look at my calendar, I am shocked at how quickly we are approaching the conclusion of this school year! I am also very aware that we only have a limited amount of time remaining with our current 8th graders before they will graduate and progress on to various high schools. As I reflect upon their journey at St. Matthew, I am amazed at how many of them have been here since Preschool and early elementary grades, and what a joy it has been watching them grow academically, physically, socially, and emotionally. However, the greatest joy has been watching their spiritual growth and development. It is our prayer that throughout the remainder of their entire lives they will always keep Jesus in their hearts!

Have a wonderful conclusion to this school year as you show others that Jesus lives in you!

In His Love,

Mrs. Palka

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