J. Solomon Collins

Story by Salena Featherstone

Carnegie Hall (N.Y.) is known for its history of extraordinary music and musicians. Its standard is beyond measure, including acts from around the world. Legends such as Tchaikovsky, Billie Holiday, Mahler and The Beatles have filled Carnegie Hall throughout the years, making Takoma Academy’s (TA) news extra special.

This academic year, TA was ecstatic to hear that, under the direction of renowned conductor Jeffrey Redding, the 2020 High School Honors Performance Series at Carnegie Hall selected TA’s very own J. Solomon Collins (’20) as a finalist. Collins auditioned in May of 2019 and was selected in late 2019. In early February 2020, he met musicians from around the world.


Story by V. Michelle Bernard / Images Courtesy FOX

Corey Samuels, a member of Allegheny East Conference’s (AEC) Metropolitan church in Plainfield, N.J., received his first LEGO set when he was six years old. Once his brother Travis was born, he introduced the hobby to him.

Now Corey, a LEGO engineer instructor, teaches children engineering terms and STEM curriculums through LEGO.

The duo recently helped even more people across the country get excited about LEGO when they were contestants on FOX’s LEGO Masters.


Story by Heidi Shoemaker

What is ReCharge, and why did 85 high school students, along with their chaperones, commute to the Kettering (Ohio) church in January?

"ReCharge is a day set in the middle of school year, just for high school-aged students,” shares Edward Marton, Ohio Conference youth director. “Sometimes it’s in the middle that we need the presence of Christ, and sometimes it’s in the middle that we get discouraged,” he says.

Story by Valerie Morikone

With the support of its school board and church family, Mountain View Conference's Parkersburg Academy has made a bold move in their school program this year. They are offering a non-conventional kindergarten through second-grade education called “Forest Classroom”—a classroom in the woods with no walls or artificial lights.

Under the leadership of principal/teacher Monica Zill, who implemented this program, Julie Henson teaches this classroom out in nature.

The Forest Classroom offers students an opportunity to be children, to play, explore and take risks. Being outdoors in the richness of God’s nature offers support for health, emotional, physical, social and cognitive development that an indoor environment cannot reach, says Henson.