Leaving Home

I have handed in my keys and said most of my good-byes.  I am sad to be leaving this amazing place that I have called home for many years.  Okay so it isn’t my home, but it sure feels like it.  I have spent most of my waking hours in this room, in these hallways and in this school.  This school is a special place filled with passion and caring and loving intentions.  It is a place where people care about one another and support each other and work together in the most amazing ways.  Children, families and teachers working together to make our school a place that meets the needs of our learners.  I was priviledged  to have had time with this community.   Change is hard, but good.  I have a solid foundation, thanks partially to the experiences that I have had at our school, so I move on with confidence and gratitude.  Thank you.

Classroom Champions – Perseverance

Grade 1 and 2 is all about hard work.  When we are learning to read and write it can sometimes be so hard, but we keep trying and retrying and sooner or later we get it.  We were very excited to hear how +Ryan has to be persistent when he is training.  We are learning to be persistent  so that we can be successful.  Different things are hard for different people and we all have people who can help us.  The people who help us when we need it are on our team.  We each have lots of people on our teams.

We are lucky kids to have so many people caring about us.


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2016 Yukon Quest

We are going to be following the 2016 Yukon Quest. The Yukon Quest is a 1600km dog sled race from Whitehorse, Yukon to Fairbanks, Alaska. The race follows historical Gold Rush and mail routes.

We will be learning about Canada’s North, dogs, mushers and dog sledding. Come into the school to check out our Aurora Borealis art in the hallway. You can also learn about the different mushers in the race from our bulletin board in the hallway.

New Year, New Look and Renewed Learning Intentions

The new calendar year comes in the middle of the school year and it has always a struggle between starting new and continuing what works.  I haven’t done too much with this blog this year.  It has mostly been a housing of links and a small window into what happens in our classroom.  During the break I have had some time to revisit a few things, look around and tidy some things and think about how I want to continue using this site.  I hope to post more frequently in 2016 and that you become a more frequent visitor.  The primary audience for this site has been my students and families and that will continue; this is a jumping off place for the students in my class to explore new learning using the internet.   The focus of this site will continue to be to share our learning with you.

As I look through the site, I reread the Learning Intentions page create in 2013 and those words still ring true.

Learning Intentions

I have struggled to find a way to communicate my learning intentions for your children this year without making them too specific and having to uploaded too often. Many of you may have heard about the Maple Ridge School Districts new report cards because they have been in the news lately. Maple Ridge has decided that they will not give intermediate students letter grades on their written report cards. This decision has caused much discussion around the province.

I have looked at the primary report card and like many things about it, most of all I like that their goals for inquiry learning. As I read these goals I find that they describe my goals for your children in our classroom. They are broad and general but they are ultimately what I hope for your children as they move through this year of learning.  In our class we talk about learning to learn and these goals describe what that process looks like.  I would love your comments and feedback on how you feel about these goals as a way to communicate your child’s progress.

These are our learning intentions for your child this year will be for them to;

Plan ahead and implement ideas
Describe and reflect on experiences
Make connection to extend knowledge
Use a variety of information and resources to solve problems, investigate ideas and answer questions
Use materials in imaginative and creative ways

These goals fit perfectly with our new curriculum being implemented in British Columbia and continue to clearly communicate my goals for your child.   I hope that you see these traits begin to develop in your child as they move through the Primary Years in school.  If you ever have questions or concerns about things that are happening in our school please contact me.  2016 is going to be an amazing year!

We made another video!

This week our Classroom Champions Athlete Mentor Ryan Cochrane won the Canadian Male Swimmer of the Year. We read about this award and learned a few things. We learned;

  • Ryan has won this award 8 times in a row.
  • The award was an Inuit seal sculpture.
  • Ryan’s coach also won an award (Canadian Male Swimming Coach of the Year)

Many students thought about how hard Ryan must have worked to earn this award.  We are very proud of Ryan and we decided to write a congratulatory movie for him.  We also made some personal connections to Ryan.  We read that Ryan’s coach had died this year.  A student in our class had just lost her grandma and she thought about how sad Ryan must have been and how hard it was for him to keep training.

We also wanted to say Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Congratulations Ryan! on PhotoPeach

We Skyped with Ryan Cochrane

Classroom Champions is a program that helps teach students about important life themes through an athlete mentor. We are lucky to have a Ryan Cochrane as our athlete mentor.  On November 26, 2015 we had to opportunity to Skype with Ryan. He answered our questions.  During the the Skype sessions we recorded his answers to our questions and we wrote about what we learned about him.  Some students chose to write in their books and some wrote using Explain Everything.  This is a short video to share what we learned.
Ryan Cochran on PhotoPeach

Honestly, October was So Busy!

We have been working hard in Grade 1 & 2. Learning how to learn is hard work, but it is fun. We have been talking a lot about honesty this month in our Classroom Champions unit.  Sometimes telling the truth is hard and we don’t want to do it. We have read several different versions of The Boy Who Cried Wolf, including The Wolf Who Cried Boy.
We discussed how and why being honest is important.

To sum up the month of October it was busy!! Check out this short slideshow to see some of the things we are doing in our class.

Our Busy October on PhotoPeach