MONTHLY UPDATE - December
Posted on December 2nd, 2016
The sights and sounds of the Holiday Season are upon us. The stores and malls are full of music and sales are capturing our gift giving imaginations. Staff and students are balancing concert preparations as well as sing a longs celebrating the season while also concluding units of study. It is a particular challenge for little ones to focus at this often exciting time of year. Thank you for helping with student learning at this very busy time. The weather outdoors, while chilly, is certainly lacking some of the white stuff on the ground. As we prepare for the hustle and bustle of Christmas concerts, we wish to thank you, our students and parents, for your support in concert preparations. We look forward to celebrating with you!
This time of year offers much excitement to students as they look forward to holidays and adventures with family and friends. For some of our students, the holidays are a time of terrible stress, unfulfilled expectations and family loss. Our staff recognize that each of our students and families experience the holidays in a unique way and we strive to remain sensitive to the differing hopes, dreams and expectations that the season may bring. We thank you, our students and parents, for continuing to demonstrate a deep appreciation within our school community for the needs of each other. Our students, your children, demonstrate a commitment to learning as well as being kind and caring citizens - a tribute to your dedication and understanding in the home. It is a privilege to serve Ardrossan students and families and to learn with you the challenges, opportunities and gifts that together we share that also enrich our collective lives.
On behalf of our staff, we wish you and your family the rest, relaxation and opportunity to enjoy the moments that the holiday season offers.
Table of Contents
- The Giving Tree
- Christmas Concert Information
- Kindergarten Registration Starts Soon
- View Report Cards and Complete the Report Card Survey - Don't Delay ...Take it Today!
- Pick up tickets for Galaxyland (Great stocking stuffer!)
- Raising Children: PG Connect Group - Free 10-Week Parent Course
- School Council and Canadian Parents for French Meeting - January 17, 2017 (Save the Date!)
- Playground Pals
- Parents Make the Difference!
- Happy Holidays from the Board of Trustees
- Boundary Exemption Process
- Winter Break - Hours of Operation
- Healthy Tips and Treats for the Holiday Season
- Leader in Me Ledger - Building Citizens through Caring and Sharing
- Lost and Found
- Inclement Weather
- Parent Involvement In Decisions About Their Child's Education
The Giving Tree
In keeping with the gift of giving, for the 6th year, we would like to decorate the Christmas tree with useful items that will be donated to the Strathcona Christmas Bureau. The Giving Tree runs from November 28 to December 6th. Each grade has been assigned an item to bring to school on a specific date. The items will be collected to decorate the tree. Click on the online calendar for the details.
Christmas Concert Information
Tickets will be sent home on Wednesday, December 7th. We are delighted to once again offer the online video streaming of the Christmas concerts. Click Christmas Letter 2016 for the details! Please note the time change for the day rehearsal at the Dow. Our Kindergarten friends will celebrate the season on Wednesday, December 21st in the gym at 9:30 a.m. Please contact Mrs. Reimer or Mme Banerjee for details.
Kindergarten Registration Starts Soon!
Is your child turning five on or before December 31, 2017? If so, it is almost time to register for Kindergarten.
Kindergarten registration opens for the 2017–2018 school year on January 16, 2017. To register, bring your completed Student Registration Form to the school you’re enrolling your child in along with proof of your child’s name, residence, date of birth and citizenship. If you’re planning to register for Kindergarten at SouthPointe School, the new school in Fort Saskatchewan opening in the 2017–2018 school year, you can submit a registration form to any elementary school in Fort Saskatchewan. The school will make sure your registration package is delivered to the principal at SouthPointe School.
To help families prepare, Elk Island Public Schools has put together an online toolkit to make the transition as smooth as possible. The kit includes information on registration, important dates, programming options, what to expect, eligibility, how to find your designated school, transportation and more. Find it by visiting www.eips.ca/programs-services/kindergarten.
Additional information regarding Ecole Ardrossan Elementary’s Kindergarten program, can be found on our school website at www.ardrossanelementary.ca.
NOTE: To be eligible for Kindergarten in the 2017–2018 school year, children must be five years old on, or before, December 31, 2017.
View Your Child's Report Card - Tuesday, December 6th After 3:00 p.m.
Click on the Parent Portal to view your child's report card and take the survey. Don't have a parental portal access? See the link. Contact Sandy Shackleton at 780.922.2066 if you need your access code.
Share Your Thoughts: Report Card Survey
Elk Island Public Schools is asking all of our families to complete a brief survey regarding the new CSL (Communicating Student Learning) elementary report cards currently being piloted at our school. The Division wants to fully understand:
- how well the achievement-level categories are defined in the report card;
- if users find the digital report card easy to access and navigate;
- what aspects of the report card users like; and
- what aspects of the report card can be improved.
Please take a moment to complete the five-minute survey. Your feedback will help the Division as it moves forward with the implementation of the new CLS elementary report card. The survey closes January 8, 2017.
AEL Family Galaxyland
Great choice for a stocking stuffer! Don't forget to order and pickup your tickets to the January 28, 2017 West Edmonton Mall Galaxyland event sponsored by our parent fundraising group AEPSA (Ardrossan Elementary Parent Support Association). Please click here for information.
PG Connect Parent Group: An Attachment- Based Program to Support Parents & Caregivers
Do you ever feel that your pre-teen doesn’t listen to you? Do you sometimes even feel pushed away? Do parents matter? Actually, there is very good evidence that strong relationships with parents protect youth from risk during adolescence and help them thrive! We call that ATTACHMENT!! Find out more information about this Family and Community Service offering of this 10-week FREE parenting program (kids aged 8-12) beginning January 18 – March 22, 2017.
We know parents hear a lot about Maker Mondays or Tinker Tuesdays from their very excited children. What is it all about?
According to Martinez and Stager in their 2013 book Invent to Learn making is about: the act of creation with new and familiar materials (as) a powerful and personal expression of intellect. Tinkering is a mindset - a playful way to approach and solve problems through direct experience, experimentation, and discovery. Engineering extracts principles from direct experience. It builds a bridge between intuition and the formal aspects of science by being able to better explain, measure, and predict the world around us.
In January, we will be adding a new activity to our makerspace called Makedo where students use plastic tools and plastic screws to build with cardboard. To that end we will need cardboard! Please consider sending us any boxes or other cardboard from the gift giving season that you might otherwise recycle so that we can use it for our amazing inventions!
To follow our experiences with makerspace, please click on Mme Hewitt's Adventures in Makerland blog to find out more!
November 21 through December 23, the Playground Pals Club for Grades 1 and 2 will be running. Three students from our Grade 4/5/6 Playcore 2 Team will be facilitating 10 boys and girls from Grades 1-2 during Monday and Wednesday lunch recesses. The Playcore 2 team has had training sessions throughout October and November, and have been developing their synergizing skills in order to facilitate games and activities outside with the younger students. These leadership members are dedicated to providing social problem solving practice and ideas for games to play on the playground using the four missions of Playground Pals:
- We begin with the end in mind
- We think Win-Win
- We seek first to understand
- We synergize
Club training and supervision is facilitated by Ms. Mitchell.
Parents Make the Difference
The online magazine, Parents Make the Difference, provides parents with advice and suggestions regarding supporting children at home and within the school environment to be capable learners and caring citizens. Please check out December topics that may be of interest to you:
Happy Holidays from the Board of Trustees
With 2016 now winding down and the winter break just around the corner, I want to take this time to extend warm holiday wishes to all our students, staff and families. On behalf of the Elk Island Public Schools Board of Trustees, we hope you and your loved ones have a wonderful holiday season with happiness that follows you throughout the New Year.
We look forward to seeing everyone back at school on Monday, January 9, 2017.
Thank you and best wishes,
EIPS Board Chair
Boundary Exemption Request Process
Elk Island Public Schools (EIPS) boundary exemption request process for the 2017–2018 school year takes place from February 1 to April 7. The boundary exemption request process is the only time of year EIPS students—in Kindergarten to Grade 12—wishing to attend a non-designated school in the upcoming school year can apply to do so. Interested families must fill out a Boundary Exemption Request Form and submit it directly to their requested school.
The Boundary Exemption Request Form—available as of January 9, 2017—and additional information about the boundary exemption request process, schools with closed boundaries and frequently asked questions can be found by visiting www.eips.ca/schools/boundaries.
NOTE: Students already accepted into a non-designated school do not need to reapply.
Final decisions will be made by April 12, 2017.
Ecole Ardrossan Elementary will close for the winter break at the end of the day on December 23, 2016 and will reopen on January 9, 2017.
Elk Island Public Schools (EIPS) Central Office will be open January 3-6. If you have any school-related questions or concerns, please feel free to contact Central Office during the below office hours.
EIPS Central Office Winter Break Hours
Closed December 26 to January 2
Open January 3-6 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
*for location and contact information, please visit www.eips.ca.
From everyone at Elk Island Public Schools, we wish all of you a Joyful Holiday Season and a Happy New Year.
Healthy Tips and Treats for the Holiday Season
Breakfast for Learning, a grant sponsor of the Hot Lunch Program, has published some excellent ideas for healthy snacking during the holidays. Check out Healthy Tips and Treats for the Holiday Season.
Leader in Me Ledger
In November, students had an opportunity to attend a thematic presentation from the Power of One regarding standing up to bullying. As a Leader in Me school, our students stand up for belonging – that every student experiences a positive sense of belonging and inclusion. Each and every one of us chooses, every day, to make a positive difference in the life of those around us. When one makes a positive difference in the life of someone else, one experiences a deeply personal experience as well. Recently Grade Three students donated a number of Operation Christmas Child shoe boxes to benefit young people they do not know in another part of the world. Our Grade 5 and 6 students are collecting items for a Christmas Hamper for those in need. Parents, with their generous support, are providing items for their children to bring to school in support of these many charities. Merci beaucoup!
Lost and Found Items
Thank you for labelling your child’s hats, mitts, shoes, boots, crayon boxes, coats, sweaters, etc. It is much easier to make sure that lost items are returned to the owner when they are labeled. Please check Lost and Found by the Music Room. All items left after December 20th will be donated to a local charity.
With winter upon us, encourage your children to dress appropriately for the weather. Should inclement weather conditions occur, Elk Island Public Schools (EIPS) will advise parents of bus cancellations using various communications tools, including automated telephone messages, details posted on the division home page (www.eips.ca), in the Bus Status section of our division and school websites, on our main switchboard (780.464.3477) and community hotline (780.417.8122), on Twitter, and through local radio stations. We strive to share all information by 6:30 a.m.
EIPS Administrative Procedures 131, Inclement Weather states bus service may be suspended when the temperature reaches -40°C including wind chill factor as measured by Environment Canada at 5:00 a.m. and/or due to adverse weather or road conditions. Bus service may be suspended on a region-by-region or route-by-route basis. When school bus services are suspended, schools shall remain open to students.
EIPS believes parents have the right and responsibility to make choices for their children based on their beliefs and perceptions of safety during times of inclement weather. Parents must use discretion when sending children to school during inclement weather, even when buses are running and schools are open. For more information, please contact Student Transportation at 780.417.8151
Parent Involvement In Decisions About Their Child's Education
Ecole Ardrossan Elementary staff welcome parent involvement in decisions about their child's education in many ways. Our parents are positive advocates for their child as we recognize that academic, social, behavioral and citizenship learning is a learning journey. Our staff recognize that the home is the child's most influential teacher and the school works to support the home. Parents often stop by to visit with teachers and administration at the beginning of the school year to share important information regarding their child to help ensure the school year is off to a great start. Parental input and monitoring feedback for individual student learning plans is also regularly included for students who can benefit from additional learning goal supports.
We welcome parental sharing of their child's strengths, abilities and passions throughout the year as our staff work with families to support student learning both at home and school. The involvement of parents in monitoring student progress through regular use of student agendas, student-parent-teacher interviews, homework practice and communication with the home - initiated either by the parent or teacher - are important as together we can encourage students to achieve their personal best. Students bring different abilities and talents to learning and do not all learn in the same way and at the same pace. As well, students bring different experiences and skills to developing friendships and relationships within the classroom setting, the playground and the bus ride to and from school. Hence, developing friendship skills and social learning is an understandable learning challenge for young people as they develop the skills of empathy and shared accountability for themselves and others.
Parents are encouraged to attend and participate in classroom activities and to volunteer in the classroom to gain a greater understanding of their child's growth and development within the classroom setting. Parents often have unique skills and talents that can enrich the learning program that takes place within the classroom. Parents are also encouraged to attend and participate in school wide events such as Terry Fox, Halloween Safety, Remembrance Day, 7 Habits Assemblies, Christmas Concerts, Carnival, Sports Days, etc. and in that way help in celebration of the accepting, learning culture we strive to foster for all students and families.
Parent involvement and advocacy for children is important and sharing of information and advice for administration and staff is encouraged through School Council and Canadian Parents for French. Our school is fortunate to have amazing committed parent volunteers that enhance programs and events on a daily basis. We are always looking for volunteers. Do join us!
When parents are involved in what their child is learning or experiencing in the classroom, on the playground and on the bus ride it sends a positive message that daily learning and growing as a person is important. Parent involvement in their child's education sends a positive and caring message that no problem or challenge is impossible when people problem solve together, establish a plan and choose to celebrate successes along the way.
Thank you, parents, for being such caring, compassionate role models who are involved for the learning benefit of your child and all children in our community.
Working Together for Success for All