The Christian Education Café

Grab your favorite beverage and join us the 4th Monday of the month at 7 pm for the Christian Education Café podcast. We are equipping Christian educators and leaders with Biblical principles and research proven practices that enable your students to reach their full potential. Dr. Penn enjoys sharing resources that support spiritual formation, faith development, and professional growth. ...grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen. 2 Peter 3:18 The postings on this site are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of ACSI.

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Monday Mar 25, 2024

Join Dr. Penn as she interviews Erica Knowles of Civitas Strategies and DECAL's Thriving Childcare Business Academy. They discuss the importance of financial literacy in enabling students to reach their full potential and programs to attain the highest quality. Financial literacy helps administrators create and stick to budgets, allocate resources appropriately, and plan for both day-to-day expenses and long-term sustainability. Managing staff salaries, benefits, and other financial aspects is essential. Financial literacy enables administrators to make informed decisions about staffing levels and compensation. Civitas offers tax coaching and training in the following topics: Financial Foundations,  Recruitment & Staff Retention, Mitigating Risk, Sales & Marketing, and Tapping into Revenue & Growth. 
Visit to learn more at:

Thursday Mar 14, 2024

The U.S. child care market has been experiencing significant growth. As of 2022, its value stands at USD 60.4 billion, and it is projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.18% from 2023 to 2030. As more parents return to working in offices, there is a rising need for reliable childcare options. Barna Group research indicated a person’s moral foundations are generally in place by the time they reach age nine. So faith based education during this critical stage of development is important. Dr. Penn and Frank Toral of Neighborhood Kids discuss opportunities for church leaders to establish Christ-centered universal preschools.  Learn more about Neighborhood Kids opportunities at:

Thursday Mar 07, 2024

Welcome to this episode of the 'Christian Education Podcast' hosted by Dr. Althea Penn. Today's enlightening conversation features guest-speaker Dr. Merle Skinner, who discusses the founding of Champion School in 1981 and his work in mental health and Christian education. The dialogue proves insightful for any education professional, emphasizing child development, family roles, and cultural values in today's Christian educational landscape.
During the discussion, Dr. Skinner and Dr. Penn highlight mental health concerns concerning the COVID-19 pandemic. They stress the importance of social-emotional learning and trauma-informed practice in Christian schools, tackling mental health challenges head-on. Within the conversation, professionals will discover practical solutions for anxiety, depression, and suicidal ideation among students and educators.
Addressing some of the significant challenges in Christian education today, they touch upon the 'great resignation,' teacher shortages, burnout, and liability in child handling. The duo explores how Christian educators can better advocate for funds and programs that benefit their school communities, encouraging Christian educators, parents, and stakeholders to stay resilient and actively shape the future direction of Christian education.
The episode concludes with a call to action. Despite the contemporary challenges, Christian educators are encouraged to stay strong, supportive, and continue their excellent work. With the transformative power of Christian education, future generations can significantly benefit. Tune in to this invaluable episode for anyone involved in or interested in Christian education.

Wednesday Feb 21, 2024

🌟🎙️ Tune in to the latest episode of the Christian Education Cafe podcast hosted by Dr. Althea Penn, featuring Coach Kadie Seweryn, as our special guest! 🎙️🌟 Join us as we explore the fascinating world of brain-based learning and its integration into faith-based classrooms. Kadie Seweryn, a devoted wife, mother, and an expert in early education, brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to the table. Coach Kadie brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her role. With a Bachelor’s degree in Human Development and Family Sciences, a Master’s degree in Child Development, and a passion to help children build social-emotional skills through brain-based learning, In this enlightening episode, Kadie unveils the secrets of brain-based learning, sharing the "Big 5" practical strategies to seamlessly incorporate it into your teaching toolbox. Discover the transformative power of anchoring educational practices in the timeless wisdom of God's word, and learn how to foster holistic growth and faith development in your students. Don't miss out on Kadie's invaluable insights and actionable tips that are sure to revolutionize your classroom dynamics. Plus, she recommends the must-read book "Brain-Based Learning: Teaching the Way Students Really Learn" by Eric Jensen and Liesl McConchie as an indispensable resource for further exploration. Grab your favorite hot beverage and tune into this episode of the Christian Education Cafe podcast. We are equipping and empowering Christian educators to embark on a journey towards creating impactful, faith-infused learning environments that empower young minds to thrive! 🌱📚 The Christian Education Mandate Althea Penn #christianeducation #BrainBasedLearning #FaithDevelopment #podcastlisteners

Friday Feb 02, 2024

Welcome to a special edition of our podcast for February, Black History Month, and the month of love. In this episode, we delve into an exploration of love, taking inspiration from the scriptures in Ephesians 3:17-19. We hear the call to be 'rooted and grounded in love', a profound prayer from Paul to the struggling church of Ephesus.Inspired by this, we challenge ourselves and our listeners to comprehend and reflect the boundless love of God. This is a love that transcends human knowledge, a love that we are encouraged to pour out indiscriminately to our neighbors, mirroring the love we give to God with all our hearts, minds, and souls.We emphasize the importance of loving actions—forgiving, blessing, praying, giving, fasting, and spending devoted time with our God. We also highlight the call to love our neighbours, to selflessly serve others, especially those who find it difficult to love us back. And importantly, we shed light on the need for self-care, an essential part of love.Lastly, we discuss the importance of teaching children to express unconditional 'agape' love, reflecting it in our celebration of God's diverse creation. We hope to inspire educators to incorporate multicultural materials in their classrooms. Children should learn to appreciate different cultures, ethnicities, and backgrounds, truly reflecting the essence of God’s love for all.Celebrating love interwoven with our diversity, after all, God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son. Blessings await as we embrace the ethos of love in our lives. Join us on this journey within the Christian Education Cafe podcast.

Thursday Jan 25, 2024

In this illuminating episode of Christian Education Cafe, Dr. Althea Penn opens a thoughtful dialogue about language, an essential tool for communication. We delve deep into the crucial subject of children's language development, reflecting on the pandemic's effects and how language carries the gospel's power. We are joined by Lillian and Michael from Time to Sign, recounting their personal and shared journeys on implementing American Sign Language (ASL) in early childhood education. The duo’s accomplishments in ASL curriculums are celebrated across state schools for the deaf, reinforcing the impact of their enduring dedication to improving child communication. The conversation reveals the immense benefits of introducing sign language to children in their early years. It is proven to enhance cognitive development, IQ levels, and memory retention. We explore how signing aids in classroom management, builds robust teacher-student relationships, and can support spiritual formation. The episode provides an array of resources for educators keen to integrate sign language into their curriculum, across various areas of study. It also introduces Time to Sign’s extensive portfolio of sign language resources and how they cater to all students, fostering a more inclusive learning environment. Finally, we end with a prayer for the Lord's blessing on sign language as a critical educational tool. This episode acts as a comprehensive exploration of sign language's transformative role in early education, highlighting its fundamental importance for successful learning.

Saturday Oct 28, 2023

Dr. Penn interviewed Ms. Josephs, soon to be Dr. Josephs, A Licensed Professional Counselor- Supervisor and traumatologist with numerous certifications in psychotherapy. She studied Clinical Mental Health Counseling at Regent University School of Psychology & Counseling. She has 20 years of behavioral health and leadership experience but also 32 years of experience in community service to underserved populations. She has been in private practice for 6+ years. She has been a Disruptive Event Consultant to multiple Fortune 500 companies in the Hampton Roads area since 2015. She has multiple workshop presentations. She and her daughter, Dr. Monica Riffey treat ADHD, Depression, PTSD, Anxiety Disorder, Bipolar Disorder, and a variety of other diagnoses for patients ages 6 & up at Ascend Comprehensive healthcare in VA also known as Ascend 757. Their goal is to help you learn better ways of living, loving, and working well by engaging in safe and collaborative psychological support services. She shared the importance of working from a place of sabbath rest. We talked about labeling emotions and casting cares upon the Lord as well as catching and releasing negative thoughts and emotions. She shared a resource that holds wise nuggets: A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23 by W. Phillip Keller.

Tuesday Oct 24, 2023

Social and emotional health enables us to:
Build and maintain healthy relationships with God and others (fulfilling the great commandment)
Develop assertive skills and become comfortable with who you are in social situations
Surround yourself with a positive social network, which increases your self-esteem
Interact and communicate with a range of diverse people
Have a sense of belonging
Kathy has published a workbook for adults called "Social Emotional Health: 21-Day Challenge: A Step-by-Step Guide to Improving Your Social & Emotional Health." It helps us all to see clearly how the 5 core competencies or skills align with the fruit of the Holy Spirit and suggests practical ways of growing in these areas. We discuss how social emotional health influences communication and leadership styles that impact student outcomes. There is a pre- and post- assessment in her book so that you can check your progress. It is available on Amazon at: Kathy also publishes Monthly Myrrh, a newsletter for parents and educators. Check it out at  You can learn more about her high school curriculum at
Join me on the 21 Day Social and Emotional Health Challenge October 26-November 15.  If you’d like to receive daily texts for 21 days text @cecseh21 to the number 81010. You’ll receive a welcome text and daily affirmations or activities from Remind. If you have trouble with 81010, you can text @cecseh21 to (774) 353-0907. Kathy and I will also provide professional development at the ACSI Early Education Designed to Flourish: Reignite virtual conference February 16 and 24. Her session will focus on this topic and mine allows participants to evaluate their authentic leadership style. Learn more at 

Wednesday Aug 30, 2023

Join Dr. Althea Penn and her guest Colleen Mullendore as they discuss Back to School Essential traits for Christian educators and leaders.
Dr. Althea Penn is an educational consultant, professional development specialist, author, conference speaker, and entrepreneur. She serves as the Director of the Early Education for the Association of Christian Schools International and has co-labored with Children's Ministry pastors and program directors such as Colleen for more than 30 years. 
Colleen is an exceptional leader and shared encouraging principles that lead to Biblical success in leadership and instruction. She shared how her team will ROAR this school year! The purpose of the Christian Education Cafe' is to equip and empower emerging Christian educators and leaders with the information and tools needed to foster developmental competence in their students, colleagues, families and themselves...
Check out the episode and visit the podcast on these channels. Be sure to like, share, and subscribe to join us the next time we're live.

Thursday Aug 03, 2023

Take a listen as I discuss Bible Engagement and Young Children with Anne Marie Gosnell of Future Flying Saucers. She uses object lessons to capture the next generations' hearts for Jesus. Visit her site to learn more about how you can use bible object lesson to make truth stick. 


Christian Education Café

Welcome to the Christian Education Cafe' I'm your host, Dr. Althea Penn, Early Education Professional Development Specialist and Educational Consultant and my goal is to equip and empower kingdom educators to flourish in these challenging times. We will discuss all things pertaining to Christian Education including Child Development, Leadership Development, Professional Development, and Organization Development. Our purpose is to connect... educate... empower... inform... inspire... garner laughs...and gather tears..

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