The Acorn's Perspective

A student publication of The Oaks.

Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him, and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

- Philippians 2:5-11

Upcoming Events At The Oaks

May 3, 2024: History Emphasis Day #1

May 10, 2024: History Emphasis Day #2

May 16-18, 23-25, 2024: Spring Musical

May 27, 2024: Memorial Day

May 28-31, 2024: Junior Thesis Presentations

May 28-31, 2024: Oregon Coast Trip [5th Grade]

Teacher Quotes

"That is so bogus.” -Mr Kimball

“Nobody needs to get any fussiness. I have decided.” -Miss Hartke

“Oh good. She’s gone.” -Miss Nolan



By Charlie Dimeler and Teige Koerper

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Sixth Grade Cowboy Day
By Charlie Dimeler

On March 28, the sixth graders engaged in an event for their study of cowboys in American history. Throughout the day, they participated in many activities. They started off the day like normal, and towards lunch, they began their activities. First, they gave themselves cowboy names like “Cowhand Gracie Adams” or “Buffalo Abigail West”. The sixth graders also learned a cowboy version of the Ten Commandments and some cowboy songs, such as “Home on the Range'' and “My Home is in Montana''. Randy James came in and taught the sixth graders about guns from the cowboy’s era along with jokes, legends, and “Cowboy talk”. After this, they had a lunch of chili, hotdogs, and cornbread from the “Chuckwagon”. After the delicious meal, they began the main objective of Cowboy Day, performing their skits they had practiced for the grammar school. These skits taught the grammar school about cowboys in a short entertaining dialogue between characters. And after all this, they finished it all with a game of capture the flag.

Varsity Mock Trial Places Fifth at State Competition

By Colin Alvis

After taking first place in the Eastern Washington District Competition, the Oaks Varsity Mock Trial Team moved on to participate in the state competition on March 22-24 in Tacoma, WA, instead of previous years’ Olympia. After four exciting rounds, the Varsity team won three rounds, losing only to the state champion, and placed 5th out of 24 teams in the state tournament. This was the Oaks highest placing since it began participating in Mock Trial. In addition, four Oaks attorneys and three witnesses were nominated for Best Overall. Congratulations, Mock Trial!

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Physics Trip

By Ellie Choi

Molten metal, plasma jets, and the eye of a tick—these are just a few of the sights Oaks junior and seniors experienced during their “Good Science” Physics field trips on March 19-20 and 26. Mr. Mattson organized three days of field trips for his Oaks Physics students, providing opportunities for them to observe science in action. Students enjoyed witnessing science come alive through business and industry demonstrations as well as higher education presentations and exhibitions.

 The first day of “Good Science” took place at local businesses in Spokane, Airway Heights, and Post Falls. Locations included Wagstaff, The Truss Company and a Metal lab presentation at the Metal lab. Students were treated to a Longhorn BBQ lunch sponsored by the Lundberg family. After lunch, the students visited Moody Aviation and participated in the Alternative Energy/Electricity presentation. On March 20, the students traveled to the Intelligent Design Day at Great Northern University and "good science" at Travis Pattern & Foundry. 

On March 26, the students traveled to "Good science" at Washington State University & University of Idaho. Faculty of WSU provided exciting and explosive Chemistry demonstrations. Students also toured the Franceschi Electron Microscopy Center and had the opportunity to use Electron microscopes. They next viewed  a Planetarium show, and attended a Physics demonstration. After Washington State University, the students traveled to the University of Idaho in Moscow. Following lunch  in the Student Union, they attended faculty presentations including a Physics demonstration with a Rubens flame tube (pictured below); a presentation on genetics research; and a review of recent Black Hole mathematical modeling. Students and parents concluded the day with a pizza dinner at Gambino before their drive home.

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Speech Meet

By Lillian Brumbaugh and Elizaveta Durka

Oaks grammar students competed in classroom Speech Meets on March 19 and 20, presenting a variety of Bible, History, and Literature/Historical recitations.  First through fourth grades competed on Tuesday, while fifth and sixth grades competed on Wednesday the 20th. First grade students chose between Bible or History speeches and second through fourth could choose between Fables, Bible or History recitations. Fifth and sixth grades chose between Poetry, Bible and Literature/Historical.

Acorn’s Perspective staff attended a portion of the 6th grade recitations, to report on the speeches. Sophia Brumbaugh began the Bible presentations for 6th grade. She was the first to appear on the mini stage, reciting Proverbs 1:1-12. Evie Jones was next and recited Acts 2:17-32. Malakai Jones came next with Philippians 3:1-16. Caleb Schurter recited Psalm 41. Ellie Singer recited John 15:5-17. Next came the Literature passages and Historical speeches. Vasiliki “Vasi” Arger recited “The Speech to the Troops at Tilbury” which was  originally delivered by Queen Elizabeth I of England. Olivia Dimeler recited an excerpt from “The Phantom Tollbooth”.  Bella Hoyt recited excerpts from "Remarks at a Ceremony Commemorating the 40th Anniversary of the Normandy Invasion" by Ronald Reagan. Andrew James recited an excerpt from "Unbroken" by Laura Hillenbrand. The finalists from Speech Meet are as follows:

1ST GRADE- Bible–Camden Lange & Reya Thompson; Poetry–Wrenly Mollahan & Rowan Osborne

2ND GRADE- Bible–Caleb Kimball & Elliot Leenknecht; Fable–Ryan Dodson; Poetry–Rose DesRoches & Samantha Schrag

3RD GRADE- Bible–Kaydam Michaud & Dominic Escalera-Alton; Fable–Adelaide Topp & Felicity Doster; Poetry–Lucy Eichner & Rogue McGuffin

4TH GRADE- Bible–Eli Escalera-Alton & Lillian Brodersen; Fable–Noah Spencer & Dean Snook; Poetry–Hattie Heacock & Claire Dunn

5TH GRADE- Bible–Simeon Wiens & Jack Schaefer; Poetry–Hugh Dowers & Ardenne Johnson; Literature/Historical Speeches–Eden Mollahan & Abby Winn

6TH GRADE- Bible–Ellie Singer; Poetry–Xander Welch; Literature/Historical Speeches–Miller Stevens & Josiah Van Horn

Seventh Grade Competes in a Mock Trial

By Kate McMorris

On the morning of Friday, March 8, 2024, Mrs. Bursese held two mock trials for the seventh graders. These mock trials were based on a Greek play written by Sophocles, called Antigone. The class just finished reading and acting out this play. Antigone is the main character in the play. Her brother died, and a law was written saying that no one was permitted to bury him. Antigone chose to bury him, which is why Mrs. Bursese had the mock trial to determine if she was morally guilty. 

The first trial happened from 8:30 - 9:25. Reagan DeRuyter played the part of Antigone. The defense won this trial.

The next trial happened during the following period. In this trial, Trinity Brodersen played the part of Antigone The defense also won this trial. One of the funniest moments took place when Blind Tiresias was led to the witness stand.

Mrs. Bursese acted as judge. When referencing the trial, she remarked, “Jury members witnessed tough competitions between prosecution and defense. Antigone’s fate hung in the balance! The attorneys and witnesses were very well prepared and argued persuasively. In the end, Antigone was acquitted of all charges. . .until next year!” The juries of these exciting trials consisted of Mrs. Tallman, Mrs. Moss, Mr. Kimball, Mr. Langerak, Mr. Joel Dowers and Miss Emily Woodroof.

The 100th Day of School

By Ellie Choi

On Monday March 4, 2024 The Oaks kindergarteners and first graders celebrated the 100th day of school! Mrs. Holland encouraged the students to bring in 100 snacks of their choosing. For example, one family brought in 100 lollipops. Some of the food the students brought was donated to the food banks. Some families got very creative, like one student had her mother braid her hair into the number 100 hundred. It was a very impressive sight to see. Throughout the day the kindergarteners learned how to solve math problems and songs related to the number 100. It is such a blessing that the Oaks students have completed another 100 days of school. We are very blessed to have watched the kindergarteners grow from day one to day 100.

Teacher Feature: Miss Emily Woodroof

Where are you from?

I was born in Portland , OR, and have also lived in Arizona and Western Washington, but for the last 20 years, Spokane has been my home.

Where did you go to college and what did you study?

I went to Biola University to study the Great Books in the Torrey Honors College, and received a Humanities degree with an emphasis in Philosophy. I also had the privilege of studying vocal performance and biblical Greek under excellent professors.

What was your favorite subject?

That’s a tough question! I particularly enjoyed Metaphysics, Philosophy of Religion, and Chinese Philosophy, as well as the Legend of King Arthur.

What is your favorite genre of book?

Also a terribly difficult question, but if I had to choose, I would say poetry.

How did you become associated with the Oaks?

My parents went to college with Mr. Symanowski, who first told us about The Oaks.  I enrolled in 10th grade and went on to graduate in 2009. During my college years, I was gradually persuaded that teaching Literature and Philosophy, rather than practicing law, was my vocation. When I graduated from Biola, I was delighted and honored to return to my Oaks family as a faculty member.

Is there a reason why you are so interested in teaching Logic and Rhetoric Humanities?

Oh so many! I love the arts of sentence-craft and story-telling, as well as the noble and treacherous science we call philosophy–the love of wisdom and the study of what is. In short, books are the soil of souls and civilizations.

Which subject is your favorite to teach?

Truly, I have never taught a class I didn’t love to teach. I am humbled by the privilege of teaching what I hold most dear to my beloved students. I suspect my very favoritest thing to teach is Dante’s Comedy, but Plato’s dialogues are a close second.

Is teaching what you ultimately want to do as a career?

In a word, yes.

WoodroofEmily Scaled

From the Desk of Mr. Trotter

Consider the Ant

The Book of Proverbs, known as the wisdom literature of the Bible, is brimming with timeless truths and practical insights for leading a prosperous and good life. One of my favorite verses is Proverbs 6:6-8, which instructs, "Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise. It has no captain, overseer, or ruler, yet it provides its supplies in the summer and gathers its food at harvest."

Though small and often overlooked—except perhaps in the South where their bite can be quite painful—the ant offers us a valuable lesson about taking personal responsibility and seeking to be diligent. Unlike many animals, ants don’t have a captain, overseer, or ruler to instruct them on what to do. Yet, they work tirelessly in community, with a clear purpose, to accomplish their daily tasks.

The lack of an overseer in the life of an ant serves as a powerful reminder of our own responsibility. It causes us to reflect: Do we do what we know is right without needing to be told? The ant does the right thing for the right reasons, without being told to do so. How about us? Do we make our bed, help clear the table, take out the trash, complete our homework, practice our instrument, feed the animals, vacuum the family room, put away our clean clothes, play games with our siblings, walk the dog, sing with enthusiasm at Cantabile, arrive punctually and prepared for each class, speak when spoken to, listen attentively in church, and so on? And do we do these things to honor our parents and our Lord?

Let's commit together to embrace our daily responsibilities. Remember, no captain, overseer, or ruler is needed when we genuinely desire to honor and serve God and prefer others.


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