RCS Student Vote 2015
The Grade 5 Students Go to the Polls this Federal Election!
On Wednesday morning, one grade 5 classroom was transformed into a polling station ready for 75 young voters to make their mark on Canada’s future. Student Vote 2015, organized by CIVIX (part of Elections Canada) is a parallel election for students under the voting age, coinciding with this year’s Federal Election. The purpose is “to provide young Canadians with an opportunity to experience the voting process firsthand and build the habits of informed and engaged citizenship” (studentvote.ca). Over 700,000 students in 338 ridings across Canada are expected to participate in this year’s election.
The grade 5 students prepared for this election by learning about the need for government, studying different government systems (including democracy), examining the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and researching the main political parties, their leaders, political platforms and stance on issues affecting Canadians.
Many students also had an opportunity to learn the ins and outs of running a polling station and the seriousness of the secrecy of the ballot. Although this is an exercise, the students discovered valuable insights into the complexity of running a country and the privilege of having a voice in our country and world. Hopefully, this will continue to impact each student as they take their place in future elections.
The Canada-wide Student Vote 2015 results will be available after the election on October 19th and posted on the CIVIX website: studentvote.ca. I know the students will be anxious to see how the student votes compare with the final election results.
Let us continue to hold our country’s leaders in our prayers.
Grade 5 Teacher
Pigs’ Lungs Visit the Grade 5 Classes
As part of our Human Body Unit, the Grade 5 students had the opportunity to examine two pig lungs with the assistance of our School Health Nurse, Laverne Fratar. The 2 lungs – one healthy, and one diseased – allowed students to see firsthand how the lung’s work and the effects of smoking on the respiratory system.
Before the students examined the lungs, the health nurse reviewed the main parts of the respiratory system (trachea, lungs, bronchi, alveoli) and their role in breathing and gas exchange with the blood. Students then discussed various respiratory issues – everything from the common cold, to asthma, pneumonia, and lung cancer. They then focused their discussion around the effects and addictive nature of smoking and its harmful effects on the body.
Although the students didn’t like the odour of the lungs, they loved touching them (with protective gloves on) and seeing how the lungs inflate and deflate as we breathe in and out. We truly are “fearfully and wonderfully made.” (Psalm 139:14)
Grade 5 Teacher
The Wonderful World of ESS
What does ESS stand for? Educational Support Services! Each campus has an ESS team of people to support teachers and students in their journey of education. This year, we have a “refresh” of our program and we are blessed to have a large group of professionals at the Elementary Campus on our ESS team.
Wendy Martens focuses on students who have a designation from the Ministry of Education. She ensures that each student with special needs has the appropriate amount of support from an Educational Assistant and a relevant Individual Education Plan (IEP). Her administrative role also includes supporting the ESS teams at the Middle and Secondary Campuses to ensure that reporting for Ministry funding is completed as required. This year, Wendy has 20 students at the Elementary Campus to focus on with a staff of 15 Educational Assistants.
Educational Assistants are trained professionals who support in the classroom. Most of our EA’s have two or three “friends” identified as needing a bit more help. The extra adult in the class allows the teacher to focus in on the wide spectrum of needs in a classroom. This year, RCS-Elementary has 15 EA’s. We love and appreciate every one of them.
The Learning Support Teacher Team – the “Team of Six”
Jill Schmidt, Lucy Lee-Bae, Asha Bjornson, Jenny Sanders, Jane Faszer, Jenn Goodall
This dynamic team works within the classes to assist teachers with students who either struggle with academics or who excel in some areas beyond the expectations for the grade they are in. With the classroom teacher, they will identify student needs and “push-in” to help the student in the classroom or in a small group in an alternate setting with classroom assignments. Sometimes, the LST will provide “pull-out” support for remedial help or accelerated work. Each LST has certain grade levels to work with.
Angela Laing is a welcome addition to our ESS team as a Literacy Coach (part-time). Her specialty is to identify how to support students who require strategic intervention for literacy within a classroom setting. As a position of support, she will be working with each grade level in some capacity and with a few students intentionally.
RCS Elementary is pleased to have a number of people who come alongside to support the work of our ESS team:
Kim Kirsch-Grapengieser is a Behavioural Consultant. She helps to identify behaviours of children that are not functional and gives staff strategies on how to support students to develop these skills. Kim also supports at the Middle Campus.
Tiffany Tong is a School Counselor. Mrs. Schneck and Ms. Tong will work with groups of students to develop social skills. As well, if needs arise, Ms. Tong has the skill set to help children with their emotional well-being.
Shari Linde is a Speech-Language Pathologist. Shari and her team may have private contracts with families in our community and work with students at the school. She can also support the ESS team if there is a need for assessment or therapy that the school will provide.
Dana Dmytro is a School Psychologist Intern from the University of British Columbia. She is here for one year and works with us one day a week. Her abilities include working with the school-based team on how to provide support for children, completing Psychological Educational Assessments, as well as some in-service to teachers and EA’s in regards to learning. She will support at all three campuses.
We also receive support from the Children’s Hearing and Speech Centre for BC, the Friend 2 Friend program, and a number of Occupational Therapists.
We are grateful to God for providing us with so many “people” resources!
Shake Out BC
At 10:15am on October 15, 2015, the sounds of an earthquake filled the hallways. Fortunately, the children knew what to do. They “dropped and covered” under their desks and, holding onto the desk legs, the classes started to count to 60. When finished, the classes determined if it was safe to move. Each class checked with their buddy class to see if there were any concerns. Here, a grade 5 class is helping our Little Eagles Preschool Three Year old class. Fortunately, no one was injured and everyone got out OK! RCS Elementary knows what to do if there is an earthquake. Do you?
Oct. 21 Bear Creek Run for Grade 4/5 participating students
Oct. 28 Open House for Preschool and Kindergarten openings in 2016
Nov. 2 Accepting Registrations for Preschool 3 and Kindergarten new families
Nov. 4-5 Parent-Teacher Conferences
Nov. 2-5 Book Fair