Final Post

 

Principal’s Messageprincipals-message-1

Well its Friday, July 8th.  The office is now closed for the summer.  We will be returning in late August.  Ms. Peters will be in Monday, August 29th.  Students do not return until Tuesday, September 6th.  They will be here from 9:00 – 10:00 am to check in and confirm their attendance at Maple Grove for the 2016-2017 school year.

In parting: May the sun warm you and keep you and may the joys and delights of the summer season shine upon you and your family.  Enjoy!  Peter

Just a couple of final notes:

Thank you to the PAC exec for their amazing leadership all year.  We acknowledged them in front of the children on Wednesday morning.  Thank you also to Mr. Tim Luu and Ms. Susan Lin for all their years of leadership in the school.  They are leaving us as their youngest children are moving on to high school.

Thank you to Susan Kong and the Grad Committee for a wonderful afternoon/evening.  Susan and the committee spent hours upon hours getting ready to host a beautiful Grad.

Grad Committee Members:
Susan Kong
Susan Lin
Tim Luu
Helen Yee
Patrick Roberge
Sandra Roberge
Heejung Jang
Anne Lee
Jenny Kuan
David Fouts
Sarah Wall-Lobo
Jennifer Ashby
Maxine Wolodko

Grad Committee Parent Volunteers:
Elsie Chan
Patricia Lowe
Emily Ng
Estelle Dufresne
Elise Greaves
Sarah Ching
Tiffany Zhang
Joy West
Selena Ip
Joyce Fan
Janie Pang
Sanfy Lam
Shad Ma
Marcia
Michelle Kang
Serena Zheng
Otis Ashby Sr
Michael Mong
Monica Tang
Andrew Tang
Jasmine Chang
Dorothy Lin and Matthew Mong (Maple Grove Alumni)
Gr.6 Student Helpers: 
Vicky, Alex, Karen, Katherine

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized

June 29th- End of Year Post

principals-message-1

Principal’s Message

Dear Parents,
Well folks, we made it!  It is amazing how quickly the end of the school year has come. Thank you to all of our teachers, support staff, students and parents for the effort and support you have given to help make Maple Grove a great place to be.  Ten months have gone by very quickly.  As I look at the calendar, I find it hard to believe that the end of June has arrived.  So let’s celebrate all that we’ve done and accomplished this year.  We have had many special presentations, successes, acknowledgements and recognitions- too many to list individually.  This morning we acknowledged all of our students for a wonderful year.  Our students have learned, laughed and made many memories during the past year.  Each year, Maple Grove creates a Learning Improvement Plan.  As a staff we set goals for learning improvement and come up with strategies to meet our goals.  This year we focused on improving reading fluency and accuracy.  We also investigated Social Emotional Learning and charted a course for continued work in this area for September.   These skills are important building blocks for learning for all students.  Behind all of this are not only dedicated, energetic teachers and support staff, but also a wonderful PAC.  We said Goodbye to our Chair and Vice-Chair today, as well as our Treasurer.  We also acknowledged two parents who’ve tirelessly dedicated themselves to school-wide events at Maple Grove.  They have given countless hours of their free time to help out our school. Sincere thanks to each of you – you are true gift to us, and without you, much of this would not be possible!

To the staff, Ms Sleep and I want to express our sincere admiration and appreciation for your marvelous cooperation and support.  Together we have offered the best education for each student entrusted to us. Great things happen when we work together. I congratulate all of you, and your students, on a successful school year.  I particularly want to acknowledge our grads who will be starting high school.  It will be sad to see you leave, but we wish you the very best as you venture forth into this new phase of your life

BYOi (Bring Your Own i-device) next year Survey Results

Here are the results encapsulated…

capture 1 population

 

Capture 2 population mf mt

 

Capture graph

 

Capture graph 2

Essentially, if we exclude primary grade parent responses saying their children are too young, we have a pretty clear majority supporting the notion of BYOi.  I think what we’ll do is leave this for now, and begin the roll out of protocols, expectations, user agreements, etc in the fall.

Thank you to everyone who took the time to complete the survey.  Thank you also to the parents who wrote to me and spoke to me privately.  We will move slowly and purposefully through these waters as we endeavour to provide all the benefits and advantages of a Maple Grove education.  Thank you.

Cultus Lake – Fantastic Year end trip for our Grade 7’s

Cultus Lake

Grade 7 Grad

Year end Assembly

Have you seen our signs?????

2015-11-04 08.46.162015-11-04 08.47.132015-11-04 08.47.34Hey Everyone!  Our parent parking signs have gone missing.  We’re sure someone was trying to be helpful, and has forgotten to put them back up… but, we need them for ensuring the safety and security of students walking to and from school.  Since the signs were removed without permission from the school, we have contacted our policing partners to inform them of their disappearance.  We expect them returned ASAP.

 

Upcoming Eventsupcoming event

 

September 6 – First day back for students after summer holidays –

One hour only from 9:00 am to 10:00 am on Sept 6.

Please be sure the school knows if you will be returning later than September 6.

 

Posted in Uncategorized

June 24th Update

principals-message-1  Principal’s Message

Dear Parents,
Wow another Sports Day completed!  The rain held off and we had a perfect day for students to enjoy some year-end sports and play.

Please feel free to join us Wednesday, June 29th at 9:00 am for our Certificate & Leaving Ceremony.  Parents are welcome to share in the year-end acknowledgements.   We will be saying goodbye to our PAC Chair, Monica Tang, our Vice-Chair Allison Arato, our Treasurer, Gurprit Mann, and our long-time Parent Volunteer who has done so much for the school it would take a whole blog post to acknowledge him, Mr. Tim Luu.

I mentioned that I would have more school information this week.  We’ve had a softening of our numbers- primarily in the upper Montessori and lower primary traditional program sections of the school.  Not enough to cause any grief yet, but enough to make me wonder why.  There seems to be a variety of reasons… moving countries, cities, speciality schools, etc.  Therefore, I’m not investing all my energy in the organization as it stands… I’m interested to see where we’re sitting in late August and what the distribution of students will be.  At that point in time, we’ll assess where things stand and we’ll move forward accordingly.

This is the last week to take a few moments to take our Technology Survey (it takes less than two minutes).  Essentially we’re trying to figure out if you’d support a BYOi (Bring Your Own i-device) to school.   What we need from you:  We want to garner some sense how this idea sits with you.  How do you feel about it?  We know we have to offer and use technology with the new curriculum… how can we get technology in the hands of students?  What to do next?  Please click the link and complete our short survey.  We’ll use the feedback to help guide our decision making.  Results will be made available in next week’s blog.  The survey is anonymous.
CLICK ON THE LINK

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/MapleGroveBYOiSurvey

Sports Day

IMG_1399

Well the weather held off and we had a terrific day for Sports Day!  Staff, student and parents had tons of fun!  Thank you to the Sports Day Committee for organising such a wonderful event.

report card

Report Cards

Report cards will be distributed on Wednesday, June 29, the last day of class.  If you are leaving early, please supply the office with a self-addressed, stamped envelope and we will mail the report card to you.  You may also write us a note to allow someone else to pick up the report card for you.  Any report cards that are not picked up or mailed will be kept in the office for you to collect in September.

ATTENTION ALL PARENTS OF FUTURE GRADE 7 STUDENTS

Please have a look at the special VSB brochure that highlights programs that are available for grade 7 grads next year.  It will be included in your child’s report card envelope.  Here is a copy in pdf format:  Secondary-Program-June16-2016 (003)

Lost and Found

Our Lost + Found is overflowing.  All items in the lost and found will be donated to a charity before the end of next week. Please have your child check and see if any of their possessions are “found”.

Lost and Found

Upcoming Eventsupcoming event

June 27- Grad
June 28 – Primary Picnic – 51st and Yew (not 41st and Yew as indicated on the field trip form)
June 29- Last day of school – Reports go home
June 30- Admin Day

September 6 – First day back for students after summer holidays – Please be sure the school knows if you will be returning later than September 6.

Posted in Uncategorized

Special Announcement from the VSB

 

Dear Parents,
Given yesterday’s announcement regarding proposed school closures and the consideration and consultation process involved in this exercise, please know that the following link is enclosed as a means to be informative and helpful.
http://engage.vsb.bc.ca

Posted in Uncategorized

June 17th Update

principals-message-1  Principal’s Message

Dear Parents,
We’re nearing the finish line!  There will be some school information and announcements coming next week.  You will receive an email to catch your attention.

Please take this moment to Read last week’s blog on Technology and complete our short survey (it takes less than two minutes).  Essentially we’re trying to figure out if you’d support a BYOi (Bring Your Own i-device) to school.   What we need from you:  We want to garner some sense how this idea sits with you.  How do you feel about it?  We know we have to offer and use technology with the new curriculum… how can we get technology in the hands of students?  What to do next?  Please click the link and complete our short survey.  We’ll use the feedback to help guide our decision making.  We’ll share the feedback with you.  The survey is anonymous.
CLICK ON THE LINK

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/MapleGroveBYOiSurvey

Kilometre Club June Pizza Party

Kilometer club PartyKilometre Club holds running sessions every Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday mornings from September to June.  We have 149 runners, 8 siblings and a number of parent runners, 20 student volunteers, and 15 patent volunteers this school year.

We held a pizza party on Tuesday June 14 for those runners who ran minimum of 45 kilometres and for student volunteers who helped out a minimum of 15 sessions.  Ribbons were given out to students who ran over 25, 50, 75 and 100 kilometres.  Overall top runner, ten top intermediate runners , ten top primary runners and top student volunteer for each session day were given a prize.

Up to June 10, they ran 4436 kilometres, about a driving distance from Vancouver to Toronto via Trans-Canada Highway.

Kilometre Club has running sessions until the last week of June.  Please come and run with us now and remember to join the club in September.

PAC

Please remember to visit our PAC blog and Montessori Blog, as well as individual clasrrom blogs.  Links are off the school website.

 

Congratulations to Jensen and Parissa

Jensen & Parissa

Periodically parents send us information regarding their children and wonderful achievements they’ve accomplished in the community.  In an effort to support our school community, we have included one such item here.  Jensen & Parissa showing their medals at the BC Conservatory of Music May Festival awards ceremony. Jensen won two Gold Medals in Gr. 7 Piano while Parissa won one Gold Medal in Gr. 5 Piano. Many thanks to their teacher, Krystyna Tucka at the Vancouver Academy of Music, and all others who kindly helped them in their endeavours to make this possible!

Upcoming Eventsupcoming event

June 24- Sports Day and year end celebration
June 27- Grad
June 28 – Primary Picnic – 51st and Yew (not 41st and Yew as indicated on the field trip form)
June 29- Last day of school – Reports go home

September 6 – First day back for students after summer holidays – Please be sure the school knows if you will be returning later than September 6.

Posted in Uncategorized

June 10th Update

principals-message-1  Principal’s Message

Dear Parents,
Over the past year, Maple Grove has been engaged in conversations around Learning Environments

DEARprimary2

Last year I had the opportunity to visit two unique learning/ working environments– Norma Rose Point School and Hootsuite in Vancouver.  I had a tour of both facilities and they were unique and wonderful in their own ways.  My session at Hootsuite was for a technology sharing night, but the spatial layout and organization was wonderful in its collaborative nature and set up.  Norma Rose Point, a K-8 school that is designed with the BC curriculum in mind, is all about providing collaborative space for teaching and learning- I was there on several occasions this year for various admin functions.

What was interesting was that both places exemplified “flexible learning spaces”.  As Maple Grove is heading into the seismic upgrading process over the next few years, it begs the question, “How do students and adults work in these teaching and learning spaces”?  “Is there really value in sharing space, or, is it a quick fix to a larger issue of underfunding building projects?”  It certainly struck me that while the spatial construct is beautiful, unique and interesting, I’m not sure it would be ideal for all teaching and learning situations- so why do it?  I don’t know the answers… I just wondered to myself.

I also wondered about furniture.  Hootsuite is all wood.  It was stellar, organic and calming.  I’m not sure if that would (no pun intended) be practical in a 21st Century school.  And, while NRP is gorgeous, any school moving to that spatial design would likely have to discard most of its existing furniture and purchase new furniture to fit the space and shared-purpose: this would be a huge expense!  I get all the arguments that through collaborative teaching and learning and the value of choice that innovative learning spaces allows for the growth of ideas- but I’m just cautioning:

  1. One size does not fit all. Spaces at both facilities were created for specific and individual needs.2. No dead space allowed. In both Norma Rose Point and Hootsuite, there was no dead space meaning every corner or alcove was used for some type of learning or working opportunity. Benches were placed down corridors or backs of couches were used as desks. By having ‘Flexible Learning Spaces’ those sparks of creativity, curiosity and innovation can happen anywhere.
  1. Noise is a good thing. What struck me at both places was the amount of noise. It was positive, animated, engaged and controlled. Noise can be an indication of learning, conversation, sharing ideas and listening to each other.
  1. Everyone is an equal.  In both facilities it was hard to tell who was admin/management and who was a student/employee.  What I appreciate about this philosophy was that it creates an environment of openness and removed boundaries.  But I’m not sure its appropriate in all situations.
  2. Community Engagement.  The space created in both facilities, seemingly creates positive learning interactions, collaboration, creativity and a sense of community.

There will be more to come on this when Maple Grove reaches a place of consultation in the seismic process and timeline.  You can anticipate that we’ll be having conversations on what options are available to the school, whether or not we’ll be a retrofit, or a rebuild (no options have been decided upon that I’m aware of).  At this time, I have no further details or updates, but you can expect that in the fall we’ll be talking more about this.

School-Wide Initiative: Social Emotional Learning

Staff at Maple Grove have spent several Pro D days this year examining and learning about Social Emotional Learning (SEL).  We’ve been investigating topics such as educational programming, character education, restorative justice, peer mediation, bullying prevention, anger management, violence prevention, school climate, school culture, ethical-decision making, harassment prevention, positive behavior supports.  This past Pro D Day, we agreed that we would approach next year with INSERT HERE

SEL teaches mental skills that lead to understanding and managing emotions, setting positive and realistic goals, building long-lasting relationships, showing empathy for others, and problem-solving constructively and ethically.  The following 15 skills listed are involved and promoted in SEL:

  1. “Recognizing emotions in self and others”
  2. “Regulating and managing strong emotions (positive and negative)”
  3. “Recognizing strengths and areas of need”
  4. “Listening and communicating accurately and clearly”
  5. “Taking others’ perspectives and sensing their emotions”
  6. “Respecting others and self and appreciating differences”
  7. “Identifying problems correctly”
  8. “Setting positive and realistic goals”
  9. “Problem solving, decision making, and planning”
  10. “Approaching others and building positive relationships”
  11. “Resisting negative peer pressure”
  12. “Cooperating, negotiating, and managing conflict nonviolently”
  13. “Working effectively in groups”
  14. “Help-seeking and help-giving”
  15. “Showing ethical and social responsibility”

The Maple Grove staff view these as appropriate and positive behaviours and attributes that make our school special.

Enjoy your weekend,
Mr. Evans

Technology Initiative:  We Want to Hear From You!!!!

Dear Parents,
Our Need:  We want to hear from you regarding students bringing their own iPad, mini, touch device to school next year (in September).

Context:  One of the substantial hurdles we’re wrestling with is managing the new curriculum next year and the dependency on internet access, access to information, technology in the classroom, and presentation of material and student learning.  Last week I wrote of a number of educational initiatives that are underway at Maple Grove.  There is a thirst to get more technology at the school and in the hands of Maple Grove students.  While we have a computer lab; and it serves its purpose brilliantly, we are in agreement that mobile technology within the school is both necessary and important.  We have many circumstances throughout a school day when students need access to technology in the classroom, library, activity room, gym, and learning hub but there is not enough to go around.  Staff have agreed that the iPads provide a portable, fool-proof, relatively inexpensive manner to provide such a resource for our students.  With the required implementation of BC’s new curriculum and the emphasis on online resources and learning, we are anticipating a growth in the need for iPads at the school.  Further, with 5 more Maple Grove classes moving on to FreshGrade reporting next year, we see an additional need to have portable devices handy for students.  Half our school will be involved in the pilot project in one way or another.

What we’ve done:  At this point, we have investigated the notion of leasing; school purchasing; and BYoi (Bring Your Own idevice).  We have had the Western Canada rep for Apple at Maple Grove twice since Easter.  We’ve had the Director of LIT for the VSB, and the District Principal for LIT at Maple Grove numerous times this year.  And we believe we’ve reached a place where we need to ask for parent input before we embark on any one path.

Where we are:  We want to share with you where we believe we are regarding Technology at Maple Grove.  For the past 3 years Maple Grove has been using iPads in the school.  Maple Grove currently has 30 iPads on loan from the VSB (these are due to be returned sometime next school year).  We purchased 30 iPads last year and a rolling charging cart.  In addition, we’ve purchased 10 laptops and have a learning commons HUB in the library.  We still have our computer lab, which is used for prep coverage and many classes utilize it for writing and composition periods- and therefore is considered by staff to be a necessity at the school.

This year, Maple Grove had four teachers who piloted a new reporting software for the district.  In addition to the four teachers, another five teachers have agreed to join in and begin using the software which would comply and work in tandem with the new BC curriculum due to start in September.  This would mean that approximately ½ the teachers at Maple Grove would be using new reporting software as a way to communicate student success and progress electronically to the student’s home.  Many parents have provided feedback to us that they feel they know their child better and have a clearer understanding of what’s happening at school, because of the software and access to technology.

Maple Grove has been investigating ways to engage students in their learning and to work with the re-designed curriculum expectations that are in place for September.  To this end, we see the need for 180 iPads for September.  We have been investigating costs with the VSB purchasing department, Accounting, Apple and their authorized leasing agent.

This is what we’ve found:

Option 1: School buys 180 ipads

180 iPads x $329 = $59,220
180 cases x $15/case = $2,700
Licensing + Apps = $5,000
Charging Tubs = $4,000
Sub-Total $70,920
Total w Taxes $80,140

While the school owns the devices, students would not take them home.  Ultimately the school would be on the hook for any damages, lost or stolen equipment.  Devices are out of date in 3 years.  While we would benefit from the VSB controlling the roll out of Apps and service, but long wait times and delays in service (sometimes weeks).  Besides, if we register ipads with the VSB, they can push out apps to devices.  And, finally, the actually doesn’t have $80,000 to spend on iPads.

Option 2: Parents lease or lease-to-own

180 iPads x $17/month = $3,060/month
$3,060/month x 36 months = $110,160.00
180 cases x $15/case = $2,700
Licensing + Apps = $5,000
Charging Tubs = $4,000
Total w Taxes $128,903.40
Recoup Rate 12% ~ $13,000

The school must buy the lease.  The school is on the hook for a minimum of $110,160.00.  We simply can’t do that- it’s not fiscally responsible to tie the hands of the school and tie up all our financial resources for 3 years.  Even though we would charge families a lease rate, we simply can’t fathom being on the hook for a block lease.  We also worry about a lost, default, move, or non-collectable rate of 12%, the school would lose ~ $13,000 just offering the program.  We can’t, in good conscience do that- it’s not fiscally responsible for us.

Option 3: Bring Your Own iPad (BYOi)

We like this option the best.  It offers the most flexibility to families and relieves the school from trying to be everything to everybody.  We see this as a good option because it allows families to set their own rules for the iPad device.   While students would still be required to sign an acceptable use agreement with the school, the management of the device would belong to families.  The device goes to and from school.  It becomes like a binder, textbook or agenda.

You pay for the apps your child uses.  Teachers would provide an app list (not too outside the conventional) and families can use their iTunes account to get them.  Teachers will outline the Apps necessary for the term/ year.  Students download them to their device.  It becomes just another school supply/ agenda.  It’s a student tool.  They’re responsible for charging it, and taking it to and from school.  If cased properly, they can be quite durable.  Other schools in Vancouver are using this format with great degrees of success.  We’ve visited these schools and like what we see.  Students use their own iPad, therefore their work is proprietary to the machine… no sharing, no mixed or damaged files, etc.

Our stipulation would be:
1.  This is not mandatory.  The school will supply a small supply of devices for families who cannot afford to supply one, or for those families who choose not to.

  1. We require all devices to be i-devices.  (iphone 4s, 5, 5s, iTouch, iPad, iPad mini 2, iPad mini 4, iPad Air, iPad 5, all the way up to an iPad Pro if you want.)
  2. The school, with support from our PAC, will purchase a small cache of iPad mini’s for each classroom so that there are iPads available for students who do not have one.

What we need from you:  We want to garner some sense how this idea sits with you.  How do you feel about it?  We know we have to offer and use technology with the new curriculum… how can we get technology in the hands of students?

What to do next?  Please click the link and complete our short survey.  It takes 3 minutes.  We’ll use the feedback to help guide our decision making and future decisions.  We’ll share the feedback with you.  The survey is anonymous.
CLICK ON THE LINK

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/MapleGroveBYOiSurvey

Child Run- last weekend

It was a beautiful warm spring day last weekend when a number of families gathered together at Queen Elizabeth Park and participated in the annual Children’s Hospital Fun Run.  Thank you to Ms. Belliveau and all the staff who supported students and parents.  It’s such a worthwhile cause and a great venue for a run.  Parents, we couldn’t have done it without your wonderful support.

Free the Children – Global Citizenship Club

Free the Children has recognized our school for our contributions to making the world a better place through youth action initiatives. The Global Citizenship Club has worked very hard this year to help local and global organizations through service, donations of goods and fundraising for various charities. We appreciate all of the support we have received from our Maple Grove community in our fundraising efforts.  

The members of the Global Citizenship Club truly understand what it means to give your time, energy and talents to the global community. It is not about what you receive in return, but about what you can do to make the world a better place. We are very proud of our very caring students.

“Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much” ~ Helen Keller

Check Out related blogs!

Parents, please make sure you check out our classroom blogs as well as our PAC and Montessori blogs too.  There’s lots of information available to you.  Use our website as a springboard.

One to One Readers

Maple Grove has been blessed to have 3 dedicated volunteers who read weekly with children.  This year, volunteers provided support and encouragement to 16 children who are learning to read.   All volunteers are trained in reading development and instruction.  One to One Literacy volunteers develop positive relationships with their students over the weeks.  Their time and commitment to the program helps to achieve reading success for all Maple Grove students.

Magee gr. 12 Student Leaders

This month Maple Grove and Magee Secondary School embarked on a peer helper/ student leadership program.  Gr. 12 students come to Maple Grove and read to some of our gr. 1/ 2 students.  All the kids love it!  Even the gr. 12’s are tickled pink as they help our younger students read.  Nothing is more funny than watching gr. 12’s mentoring our younger students as they fondly remember being in gr. 1 and learning to read.  It’s actually a rather special sight to see!

newPAC

REMINDER: PAC AGM next Wednesday, June 15th at 7pm in the Library!

Parents, now’s your chance to take part in the continued improvement of Maple Grove, providing an excellent place for your children to learn and grow. Volunteers are urgently needed for the following positions:

Chairperson – Organize and chair meetings, oversee budget

Vice Chairperson – assist the Chair

Treasurer – maintain the budget and chequebook

Secretary – Record meeting minutes

Please consider putting your name forward for one of these vital positions either at the AGM or by contacting Monica Tang (monicaktang@gmail.com) or Allison Arato (Allison.arato@shaw.ca).

 

Upcoming Eventsupcoming event

June 14- Kilometre Club Celebration
June 15 – PAC AGM 7:00 pm
June 16-17- Talent Show (Ms Hales is organizing)
June 24- Sports Day and year end celebration
June 27- Grad
June 28 – Primary Picnic
June 29- Last day of school – Reports go home

September 6 – First day back for students after summer holidays

Posted in Uncategorized

June 3rd Update

 

principals-message-1  Principal’s Message

Dear Parents,
My apologies for the breakdown of my piece of the blog last week.  I was very disappointed after posting-> leaving the blog program-> and then signing back in to check on the post-> only to see that none of the work I’d done had made it through to the post.  Lesson learned… that’s the last time I work live on a blog… they’re so clunky and unreliable.   Anyway (thanks Ellen D)….

I’m going to try to recount what I’d written… There has been a lot going on at Maple Grove all year.  Many of these initiatives we advertise and mention in the blog… others we don’t (for a variety of reasons).  Today, I wanted to share with you some of the courageous and bold steps some staff are taking, and I wanted to acknowledge the Maple Grove team for their dedication, conscientiousness, and willingness to go the extra mile for students.  All of the staff do this on a consistent basis, and I’m only mentioning some of the initiatives here.  So, my apologies up front, to the staff, I’ll try to mention more over time.  Here are a few examples of major initiatives that have been taking place at the school.

Appreciative Inquiry:  There are several appreciative inquiry projects that have been running all year.  These are projects that involve staff reflecting on their practice, what’s working at the school, and how to improve results and programs for students- often our most vulnerable students.  Specifically, we have three inquiry projects taking place.  An Early Intervention project, an Early Literacy project, and a technology project.  The early intervention and early literacy projects are designed around solid reading research and how to engage young readers with their reading practice.  It’s the notion of teaching reading, not just assigning reading.  There’s a big difference.  We’re looking for ways to engage reluctant readers with high interest- low vocabulary books so that they want to read the books, experience success reading, and grow their interest and appreciation in reading.  We’re working on fluency, comprehension, expression and aptitude.  Children learn to read, when they’re experiencing success.  That means, they’re reading material at, or below, their ability level.  We have some struggling readers at Maple Grove and the staff have identified this as an area of concentration and interest.

Our Early Intervention project is designed around reaching struggling readers.  We’re looking for protocols to assess, diagnose and teach vulnerable readers so that the gap between their reading proficiency and that of their peers doesn’t widen too much.  There are expensive reading series that are designed specifically for these struggling vulnerable learners and we’re very interested to capture these students at a young age, and provide the literacy materials and teaching and learning strategies they need so that they can be successful readers quickly.  The alternative is problematic.  What we don’t want are struggling, reluctant students who are 3-4 grades levels behind their peers in grade 5 or 6.  The sooner we can identify and work with our vulnerable students- the better!

We have also been reflecting on how we do business, provide service and deliver instructional support to at risk students.  We are looking into changing our resource model so that it has a greater degree of flexibility and specifically targets vulnerable students in the areas of language and literacy.

The third project is a Technology Group that has been working with iPads and various software.  All in an effort to work within the mandate of the Ministry of Education and the new curriculum that’s coming for September.  Some of our staff will have students presenting at the digital fair on Wednesday at Science World.

Still another project is our district pilot project on reporting software (FreshGrade).  Did you know that Maple Grove is the only school in Vancouver that is an authorized pilot site?  Four of our staff have been diligently working through the ins and outs of new reporting software and how to share student progress with parents in a communicative and engaging manner.  FreshGrade looks similar to a FaceBook timeline and allows students, parents and teachers to communicate with one another through a secure server.  It gets rid of the old adage, “What did you learn at school today dear?”.  “Nothing”, replies the child.  FreshGrade allows students to post their progress throughout the year in any subject(s) or projects.  It allows for an easy online accounting and record that teachers, students and parents can refer to.  Presently we have four teachers working on the project.  Next year we’ll have 9 teachers in the pilot!!
There are, of course, numerous other initiatives taking place at Maple Grove.  Expect to hear more about those shortly.

This week, I had the pleasure of checking in on some of our Maple Grove students who were presenting at the District Technology Fair at Science World.  It was wonderful to see all the amazing tech projects from students throughout the school district.  Project ranged from K to 7.  Frankly, I was amazed with how digitally proficient students are.  I strongly encourage parents to visit this event next year!

Please be reminded that per the April 1 and April 24 blogs, if you are thinking of submitting a letter requesting a specific placement for your child, read those posts.  They contain guidelines and criteria that are required for request.  They also provide valuable suggestions.

We have completed our Ready Set Learn (RSL) events, our Choice Program information sessions, our Welcome To Kindergarten (WTK) and our New Student Welcome (NSW) sessions.  Each of these orientation session were well attended.  It illustrates to us that there is a thirst for knowledge and information regarding school operations and orientation here at Maple Grove.  It’s good to see that our school community is interested in the school and how things are shaping up for next year.

Thank you to our PAC for hosting a digital literacy evening two weeks ago.  It was very informative and well attended by parents who are interested in the challenges faced by students as they navigate an ageless, locationless, faceless, sexless online environment that demands a degree of awareness from all users of the internet.  Also, thanks to our PAC for providing our grades 6 and 7 students with class presentations on digital literacy last week and this week.  These are expensive workshops taught by experts and they are very beneficial to any student who spends time online doing work, research or browsing.  Thank you!!

Leaving before term ends on June 29th?

Reports cards can be mailed to you if you provide the office with a self-addressed, stamped envelope.  You may also have someone else pick up the report card for you, with your permission in writing.

Returning Late from Summer Holidays?

Important to know:  If a student is not back at school by September 7th and we have not been informed of their late return, the student will be withdrawn and a waitlisted student will take their place.   Places will not be held for students who plan to return after September 30th.

Here is a link to the letter you must complete to inform the school if you will be late retuning to school next year, you may also email this information to jpeters@vsb.bc.ca.  Notice of Late Return Form

Bike to School/Work Week

What a great week we had!  Thanks to Cathie Cleveland for making the lovely poster and to the Global Citizenship Club members who helped with the signing in.  Just think how much cleaner and fresher the air was last week due to all the cycling.  Keep it up, everyone!

Digital Fair

These students represented Maple Grove at the Digital Fair on June 1st at Science World.  They presented iMovie, book trailers, book creator, Fresh Grade and robotics.

Digital Fair

Lip Sync Battle

Last Friday at lunch we had our first round of Maple Grove’s Lip Sync Battle.  We were treated to performances to songs including “I’m a Gummy Bear”, “Fight Song”, “Five Nights at Freddy’s” and “Better When I’m Dancing”.  The competition will continue for the next three Friday’s beginning at 12:20 in the gym.  We have performances ranging from Kindergarten to Grade 7. Thank-you to Kevin from Division 1 for suggesting this great idea during one of our Student Council Meetings.

RBC Run for the kids

RBC run for the kids

Total Raised by Maple Grove Families/supporters as of today: $4816.00

Our Initial Team Fundraising Goal: $2,000.00

There are 100 members of the Maple Grove Community participating in the run on Sunday June 5.

See you there!!

All information can be found at the link below.

https://secure.bcchf.ca/SuperheroPages/teamLeaders.cfm?Event=RFTK

Curriculum Changes – Letter from the Ministry

Ministry letter to Parents May 2016

Maple Grove Ultimate Match on May 30th

May 31 – Track and Field

Upcoming Eventsupcoming event

June 6- Pro D day (no school for students)
June 8-10- Grade 6 Camp
June 14- Kilometre Club Celebration
June 16-17- Talent Show (Ms Hales is organizing)
June 24- Sports Day and year end BBQ(???)
June 27- Grad
June 28 – Primary Picnic
June 29- Last day of school

September 6 – First day back for students after summer holidays

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized