Examples of Parent Involvement and Engagement

-by Tanya Stogre, Grade 5 Humanities In the preceding blog, #2 in my 4-part series on parental and community engagement, I discussed the differences between involvement and engagement. However, the distinction was not made to suggest that if a parent is ‘involved’, their actions, care and personal investment in their child’s education is any less than one who is ‘engaged’. In order to create a meaningful and healthy school community, I would suggest that both involvement and engagement are necessary. In this blog, I would like to share with you some of the specific ways parents and the Lakeview Community … Continue reading Examples of Parent Involvement and Engagement

Thinking and Acting like Mathematicians

-by Candice Shaw, Grade 6 Math/Science Since my beginning year of teaching, my science program has focused on having students think and act like scientists. Often, the year has begun with discussions and research about: What do scientists do? What types of characteristics do scientists possess? What processes do scientists follow in order to arrive at strong conclusions? Scientific skills and concepts are reinforced throughout the year, especially during student-led projects, such as science fair. But then I began to wonder, what about math? Why haven’t I focused on having students think and act like mathematicians? Don’t mathematicians possess many … Continue reading Thinking and Acting like Mathematicians

Using ShowMe for Math Communication

-by Lisa Nelson, Grade 7 Math/Science Communication is an important part of mathematics. As a math team in our school, along with others involved with mathematical education, we have discussed what Strong Work in Math looks like. We discussed many different components including Mathematical Inquiry, Demonstration of Knowledge, and Work Habits. One component of this discussion was Mathematical Communication. Students are strong mathematical communicators if they can a) Show their work using writing, charts, diagrams, etcb) Use appropriate mathematical terminology and notationc) Organize complex ideasd) Use metacognition to help explain the process they undergo during problem solving. Weekly, I present … Continue reading Using ShowMe for Math Communication

Real Time Settlement

-By Dan McWilliam and Jody Pereverzoff, Grade 7 HumanitiesWe were looking for a way for our students to make a connection with life in early Canada. After reading the Real time WWII Twitter, we realized this would be an effective way to bridge modern communication with the Canadian immigrant experiences Pre Confederation. Students would assume the role of an immigrant from a historically accurate home country and create a social networking profile where their updates would describe their journey to Canada as well as their life after arrival. Life in Early Canada Assignment You will create status updates or tweets … Continue reading Real Time Settlement

Implementing iPads @ CSS

– by Scott Petronech BACKGROUND During the 2010-2011 school year, we discussed the idea of implementing an iPad project. We were having problems finding school-based evaluations on mobile devices and decided to implement a pilot project where staff could apply to receive an iPad to integrate into their classroom routines and lessons. This group of teachers met regularly to discuss their findings and reflect on the advantages and drawbacks of the device. This was a departure for us because we had implemented a school-wide 1:1 project with MacBooks four years earlier. We had been extremely pleased with the educational advantages … Continue reading Implementing iPads @ CSS

Using Video for Term-End PE Assessment

-By Dean Schmeichel, PE Teacher Why this project? For the past few years I have been recording conversations (audio versions) at one of the term ends; whether it was term 1 or term 2 depended on the time commitment and how much procrastination I had done prior to November. These conversations were valuable, but not very efficient. Each conversation took about 5 minutes, plus set-up of the software (Garageband) and organization of each student. I teach 300 students and this process took approximately 2000 minutes of school time. This equates to roughly 33.5 hours of instructional time. Through the support … Continue reading Using Video for Term-End PE Assessment


Amy Park Inquiry takes time.  This has been a recurring theme, and one we have discussed at length, in our math/science class over the past few months.  If we want students to become proficient in any aspect of their learning, or life for that matter, we must give them time.  Time to wrestle with challenging issues. Time to celebrate small successes. Time to learn from mistakes. Time to listen to each other and time to grow.  When we rush kids through the learning process we deny them the necessary foundational blocks needed to develop into successful, self-directed learners.  The curriculum is filled with content and at times can seem overwhelming.  … Continue reading Time…

Parent Involvement vs. Engagement

-by Tanya Stogre, Grade 5 HumanitiesIn my first blog in this 4-part series on parental engagement, I gave a brief outline of what the research says about why having parent and community involvement is significant. In this blog, I will discuss the difference between parental involvement and engagement, the importance of the distinction and the research behind it. Involvement: comes from the Latin, ‘involvere’, which means ‘to roll into’ and by extension implies wrapping up or enveloping parents somehow into the system (Benson, 1999, p. 48). The implication in the word is that the person ‘involved’ is co-opted, brought into … Continue reading Parent Involvement vs. Engagement

Learning Off the Grid! The beginning…

-by Greg Neil, Grade 5 Math/Science Editors note: Greg’s classroom was just featured on Canadian Geographic’s the Energy Diet Challenge. One of Greg’s students recently wrote a letter to the editor of the Calgary Herald. To read that letter, click here. As a science teacher at the Calgary Science School, I am always looking for ways to engage my students in rich, authentic learning experiences. When planning for the Grade 5 Electricity Unit, I was looking for ways to move beyond the basic outcomes associated with this unit and to tie our learning to a more meaningful project that promotes … Continue reading Learning Off the Grid! The beginning…

Parent Engagement: What does the research say?

-by Tanya Stogre, Grade 5 Humanities I have been encouraged to write a series on parent engagement and the implications for the Calgary Science School. As a grade 5 Humanities teacher in my 5th year at CSS, I have had the great pleasure of working with many parents, as well as Lakeview Community residents. In this four-part series in intend to: 1) Outline what the research says about why school, parent and community connections are important; 2) Describe the difference between ‘involvement’ and ‘engagement’; 3) Illustrate what is currently happening at CSS as it relates to both parental and community … Continue reading Parent Engagement: What does the research say?