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Coram Deo Academy


Spring 2014, Vol. 2, issue 3

“ The process of getting to know something or someone


Coram Deo Academy

Welcome to the second year of Cognitio. Cognitio is Latin for “the process of getting to know someone or something”. Each seasonal edition over the next few years will feature members of our faculty and student leaders for the purpose of acquainting the reader with the many excellent people at CDA. The student leaders represented in Cognitio are elected by their peers and are either House Presidents or Senior Class Officers. A classical Christian education utilizes the Trivium of Grammar, Logic and Rhetoric to provide students with the tools of lifelong learning and instill in them a love of wisdom. The reason this type of education is so effective is that these three tools also cooperate with the God-authored design of the mind and are suited to support each level of a child’s formative academic years. The first tool, Grammar, is the learning of people, places and things. This naturally appeals to young children who eagerly look for these in their Bible, phonics, math, history and language lessons. The second tool, Logic, is the understanding of the rules that govern those things previously learned. Middle-school students are typically attracted to this style as they learn to associate things and connect ideas in their classes. Rhetoric is the art of persuasion. High school students easily learn to apply sophisticated reasoning and strive for excellence in their studies and in the totality of their lives.

Bill Rector

Polly Dwyer

Charlotte Cambell

Angela Bell

Ellen Perry

Laura Neibert


Administrative Assistant for Grammar School, FM Admissions Coordinator

Campus Administrator

Administrative Assistant for Logic and High School, Registrar

Grammar School Director

Administrative Assistant for Logic and High School, Communication Assistant

Beth Brake

Administrative Assistant for Logic and High School, Record Keeping

Kathy Schaefer

District Testing and Guidance Coordinator

Table of Content s page 3-4

Letters from the Directors

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Grammar School Instructor- Lynn Costigan

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Logic School Instructor- Rebecca Kendall

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Logic & High School Instructor- Tyson Guthrie

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High School Instructor Traci Heitschmidt

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Student Leader- Natalie Mackie

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Student Leader- Maxwell Whitney

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Mission Statement

Letters from the Directors Grammar School

by Charlotte Campbell

I read A Hive of Busy Bees by Effie M. Williams to the third and fourth graders this year. The small book is about a farm family learning to obey their conscience rather than suffering the “sting of the bee” consequences of disobedience. Literature is the doorway to a child’s heart, and classical literature is usually the best choice when trying to avoid the convoluted lessons often associated with modern stories. A good story teller leads readers to deeper revelations about themselves by stimulating a deeper appreciation of God’s purpose for mankind. The summer break is the perfect time to read good books. Reading to a child reinforces reading skills, but just as importantly, the stories should provide instruction in morality. Good stories foster a desire for knowledge, and the excitement and adventures of the story will capture the child’s imagination and encourage reading.

Logic School

by Polly Dwyer

“Teach us to pray!” Oh, would that our children demand that as much as they demand video games and fellowship with friends! But teaching our children at the Logic school age to pray is one of the most important things we can do as parents and teachers. Ezekiel Hopkins wrote, “Nothing is so desirable in this world as a faithful friend, to whom we may at all times unburden ourselves, and make all our secrets and grievances known...(God) is our most faithful friend who can best counsel and help us. ...All spiritual blessings of faith, love, patience, humility, and strength are gifts from the throne of grace. Our prayers and God’s mercy are like two buckets in a well. One ascends, and one descends. Our prayers ascend to God in heaven, and his mercies and blessings descend upon us.” There is no better gift or training that we can provide for our children to allow them to live fruitful and fulfilled lives that to teach them the power and wonder of prayer.


High School

by Polly Dwyer

At the high school level, Mr. Jordan and Mrs. Dwyer have been discussing common prayer and scripture readings for the 4th quarter. Desiring that we all learn from the scriptures and apply it to our lives without changing the scriptures to fit our culture or our own desires, we have asked students to contemplate on the scriptures and tie our prayers to it for the purpose of the continued formation of our CDA Christian community. For as we grow independently to be more like Christ, we also wish to grow as a group. This quarter’s common prayer and scripture is: Opening Prayer: Prepare my heart, O God, to accept Your Word. Silence in me any voices but Your own, that, in hearing, I may also obey Your will, through Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen. Read and Reflect: Phil 2:1-8 Christ’s Example of Humility So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Closing Prayer: O God, You have bound us together in a common life. Help us, in the midst of our struggles for justice and truth, to confront one another without hatred and bitterness, and to work together with mutual forbearance and respect, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen


Lynne Costigan Grammar School, 1st Grade Lynn teaches first grade at CDA. She loves seeing the children grow throughout the year. Her favorite thing about teaching First Grade is encouraging students to love learning and reading.

Introduce us to your family My husband, Jim, and I have been married for 24 years. We have three children: Cole-16, Kayla-14, and Caden -12. Cole enjoys Taekwondo and teaches twice a week at his school. Kayla enjoys volleyball, and Caden loves football. We attend the Village Church in Flower Mound

Do you have any pets? We have two dogs. Ruby is a Bichon, and Boomer is a Boxer. The kids adore them, but are trying to talk us into getting another dog. I think two dogs are enough.

What interest do you have outside of school? I enjoy spending time with family and friends. In the fall, we cheer at lots of volleyball and football games. List your colleges attended and degrees I also enjoy training for Sprint Triathlons and half I attended the University of Northern Iowa for my marathons. When I sign up to participate, I’m comundergraduate studies. I attended Kansas State Uni- mitted to train. versity for my Masters. My BA is in Elementary Education and Special Education. My MS is in Early What Bible verse(s) is foundational in your life? Childhood Special Education. “So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” 1 Corinthians 10:31. I have the Share with us some of your accomplishments and opportunity to honor God in every aspect of my life. accolades. Jim and I are blessed to have three children and are Describe a favorite moment in life? striving to teach them about the promises of God. I One of my favorite moments is when Jim and I went have worked with the Chin Ministry, the Advocacy to Innsbruck, Austria to ski for my birthday. He surand Pregnancy Center, and helped Jim lead a Young prised me with the trip. I had never skied before and Marrieds class. we thought we could ride the lift to the top of the mountain for the view. We actually had to ski across Are there committees you serve on at school, the Olympic moguls to get to a different lift to ride church and in the community? to the top. I ended up walking after getting halfway Our family is praying about how to serve our com- through the moguls. Jim retrieved my skis, and we munity. For several years we mentored a Chin family rode the lift to see an incredible view. I took skiing with the Chin Refugee Ministry. Many Chin fami- lessons the next day. lies have moved to Lewisville and need help adjusting What is your favorite attribute of God? to life in the US. My favorite attribute of God is His sovereignty. Knowing God is in complete control gives me peace because He is wise and loving in all His ways. 5

Rebecca Kendall Logic School, Art Our talented Logic School Art Instructor has a humorous side as noted by her dog’s name and her life’s motto from Eleanor Roosevelt, “Learn from the mistakes of others. You can’t live long enough to make them all yourself.” She is a member of the Village Church and serves in the college ministry. Introduce us to your family. I have been married to my husband, Andrew, for 18 years. We have two wonderful children: Grace (12) and Ethan (10). I also have a long-haired Dachshund mix named, Onya (She likes to sit “on ya”). List some of your accomplishments. I graduated with a BFA (Bachelor of Fine Arts) in Communication Design at the University of North Texas. I graduated from an extremely competitive design program. My intention was to go work somewhere doing cutting edge graphic design so that my name might eventually be listed in highly acclaimed design annuals. The Lord had other plans. While working full-time as a publication designer and art director, God humbled me in many ways over the years. I walked away from that career to stay home with my kids. Later, He led me back to my classical art training roots by way of art education, a plan that I would have never dreamed of (His ways are not my ways.) I am so very glad I listened! Teaching art in the Logic School is such a joy for me. What interest do you have outside of school? I love spending time with my family and catching up with friends at Starbucks. Beautiful things in scripture, nature or art museums inspire me to draw and write when I have down time. Good nutrition is important to me, but I need to be more passionate about exercise (I do really enjoy tennis and yoga.)


What is a valuable life lesson you have learned? You cannot say “yes” to something without saying “no” to something else. I’m an overachiever and there have been many times I really thought I could do it all. For instance, if I say yes to staying up all night long to complete a project, I’m choosing the consequences of saying no to sleep, whether I realize it at the time or not. Maybe that just means I’m going to be an awful person to be around (still a selfish decision that does affect others.) Or worse, it could be like the time I totaled my car after staying up for 3 days and nights because I wanted to do really well on an assignment in college. That was a huge turning point for me. Don’t be afraid to fail. Strive for excellence, but be realistic about what you say “yes” to. Perfectionism is a trap. What Bible verse is foundational in your life? Rom. 8:38-39 “For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” My favorite attributes of God are His unfailing love and His matchless grace. “But, God shows His love for us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Rom. 5:8) It still blows my mind when I think about it. I could never do anything to deserve this gift, not even on my best day. I’m so grateful for the unmerited favor extended to me through the death and resurrection of Jesus.

Tyson Guthrie Logic School History, Latin, Theological Studies The 6th and 7th grade history and 5th grade Latin teacher is also an excellent disc golf player having thrown a -4 on the course at East Iowa Bible Camp. His specialty course offerings include Faith and Film, Applied Theology and Ancient Theological studies. He makes his own special BBQ! His favorite quote is, “But in proportion as we continue to contemplate God, so much do we love Him.” –Irenaeus of Lyons

Introduce us to your family. My wife of 12 years is Sarah. Sarah loves to organize things, decorate, and paint. Her idea of a good time is helping other people unpack. My daughter of 3 years is Olive Joy. Her five-year plan includes saving all of her stuffed animals from “alligagors” by safely loading them onto her “boat,” and making all of the alligagors “nice alligagors.” I am a father again to a new baby boy, Simeon James. We attend Providence Church in Plano.

If you were stranded on a deserted island and you only were able to have your Bible and one other item, what would you choose? My guitar. I’ll probably need some dry wood to get a fire going.

What would be one piece of advice to CDA students? Don’t exclude your mind from your spiritual life. God desires to be thought rightly about just as much as He desires to be adored, and these two cannot be List the Universities you attended and degrees you divorced. Your devotional life should be as intellectually engaging as your academic life, and the two hold. I have attended Emmaus Bible College and Dallas should inform each other. Theological Seminary. I currently hold a Bachelors of Science in Biblical Studies and a Master of Theol- What is your favorite attribute of God? ogy. I am currently working on a PhD in Theological His simplicity. It means all of His other attributes agree and cohere. I love the irony that God’s simplicStudies. ity is precisely what makes Him so hard for us compounded and divided people to understand. What interest do you have outside of school? I enjoy music (guitar, piano, song writing), disc golf, backpacking, running, and training “alligagors.” What Bible verse(s) is foundational in your life? Then God said “Let us make man in our image and after our likeness.” This verse tells me what I should be, and that’s it’s not achieved by looking at myself, but to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, in whose image we were created. What’s your favorite meal? Brisket, smoked beans, and fresh (August in Iowa) sweet corn. 7

Traci Heitschmidt A.P. 11th grade European History, A.P. 12th grade American History, and 12th grade American Literature Dr. Heitschmidt is a busy wife and mom, serves as her daughter’s assistant softball coach and volunteers in Kids Village at The Village Church. All while teaching and serving as the History Chair at CDA, and the Faculty Leader of the House of Lewis. Introduce us to your family. I have a wonderful husband, Jason, and two amazing children, Jarren and Kacey. We have a Rhodesian Ridgeback named Blaise Pascal Heitschmidt.

What is a favorite quote? In today’s world, I think C. S. Lewis’ quote is my favorite because it reminds me not to focus on this world but the next. “It would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”

List what universities you have attended and the degrees you hold. Texas Tech University(undergrad), University of Nevada, Las Vegas (Masters), University of California, Santa Barbara (PhD), Cambridge University (Study Abroad), Goethe Institute, Rothenburg, Germany (Language School). I have degrees in History (BA), Literature (BA), European History (MA), Modern What is one piece of advice for CDA students? European History (PhD). I have the distinct advantage of being able to teach seniors. One thing that happens every Fall, is the preWhat is a valuable life lesson? vious graduates come back to see us. All of them have We do not know how long we have here on earth, live the same story. “College is so easy and I am so thankeach day for Christ. I think Jonathan Edwards said it ful I went to CDA”. So my advice would be to stick best in his Resolutions, “Resolved, that I will live so it out. The best CDA students are not necessarily the as I shall wish I had done when I come to die.” most intelligent, rather they are the most diligent and the most organized. Those are the ones that perform What Bible verse is foundational? the best with the least amount of stress. “Be still and know that I am God.” I remind myself daily that God is in control. It helps me not to worry and to pray more. God’s grace is foundational to my life, because I need it! If you were stranded on a deserted island, what would you take? My husband (if I am allowed to choose another person) or a “Nuclear Powered Kindle” (a wise person would have chosen a fishing rod or a gun…this is why I would not survive very long!) 8

Natalie Mackie President of House of Wallace As TAPPS state champion in tennis for multiple years and a recipient of The Distinguished Student Award and Summa Cum Laude since the 5th grade, this student knows how to work hard and play well. Her bubbly personality and great smile endears her to everyone she meets. enrolled since 2005

Introduce us to your family and what University you want to attend. I have a mother named Sandy and a father named Mark. I also have two brothers; Alec, who attends Oral Roberts University and Aaron, who is a Freshman at CDA. My family attends St. Philip the Apostle. I have been accepted to Texas A&M-Honors College and will be studying engineering. Go Aggies! Are there committees or teams you serve/play on at school, church and in the community? I play competitive tennis and compete in tournaments in the USTA monthly. What does “ethical servant leadership” mean to you? To me it means leading people to help a community or individual persons towards a better future. It calls for selflessness and a servants heart to help those who need it. What was your best class at CDA? History with Dr. Heitschmidt was one of my favorite classes. What was the “secret” to success at CDA? One of the secrets to success at CDA is to take good notes and ask for help whenever you need it, whether it be from a teacher or a peer. There is always someone who will help you at CDA!


What are your hobbies? I love tennis, painting, drawing, making jewelry, and knitting. What kinds of pets do you have? I have a dog named Tucker and a cat named Ranger. What Bible verse is foundational in your life? “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13 What’s your favorite meal? My favorite meal is breakfast because it’s the most important meal of the day and I love pancakes.

Maxwell Whitney Vice President of House of Wallace Senior Class Secretary

Max presents a strong example of his favorite verse in showing others how to be full of forbearance and show love towards all. As the oldest of four boys, he enjoys his family life to the fullest. His mom teaches at CDA, his dad works as an IT Director and he attends Gateway Church in Southlake.

List the colleges to which you have applied. I have decided to attend LeTourneau and will be studying mechanical engineering.I was also accepted to Baylor, John Brown University, and Texas A&M. Share some of your accomplishments and accolades. I have maintained a Summa Cum Laude average for 9th, 10th, and 11th grade, and I managed to survive my junior year at Coram Deo. I’m a former minigolf champion (now retired), and I am currently the undisputed family champion of Wii Tennis. For the school, I played Varsity Tennis and served on the house worship team for two years. What does “ethical servant leadership” mean to you? To me, ethical servant leadership is stepping up to the plate to lead people in a way that devotes your time and self to others in accordance with your morals. What are your hobbies? I enjoy playing guitar and recording music on my laptop, as well as playing tennis. I like to build things and start new projects to keep me busy. I also have a pet albino hedgehog named Chauncey.


enrolled since 2010

What Bible verse is foundational in your life? “Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.” 1 Corinthians 13:4-6 If you were stranded on a deserted island and you were only able to have your Bible and one other item, what would you choose? A flying bison might be useful, but I suppose that doesn’t count. I’d go with my guitar so that I always have my music with me. What is your favorite attribute of God? His unending love, because I feel secure and at peace knowing that God will always love and watch over me.

Our mission is to train ethical servant leaders and wise thinkers who will shape culture for the glory of God.

Christ ian

CDA seeks to nurture children in an atmosphere consistent with historic Christian belief through a faithful and committed faculty while restoring the biblical priority of the family.


CDA educates youth in a historic Christian worldview through a rigorous Trivium-based curriculum. Knowledge, understanding, and wisdom of each subject are acquired with increasing sophistication as age, grade level and ability rise.

Collaborat ive

CDA is a genuine school-home collaboration, where students receive professional instruction on campus two to three days per week and work at home under the tutelage of their parents for the balance of the week allowing the family to be the primary influence on the child’s life.


Cognitio Vol. 2, Iss. 2  
Cognitio Vol. 2, Iss. 2