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Where do we go now?

In our fall surveys and school conversations, we noticed students are engaged in their learning. They are excited to explore science, develop numeracy skills, and expand their STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math) talents. Our staff continued to analyze our student surveys and class conversations to see how our Wolfpack learns best. Our Wolfpack endeavour to name their emotions and strive to develop better self-management skills. Collectively, we look for a wide range of strategies, tools, and skills that can help create learning environments that are conducive to academic, social, and emotional success. We have seen success with the introduction of calming corners, flexible seating, morning meetings, fidget tools, diverse learning opportunities, and even class walks. As our work with SEL (social-emotional learning) continues, our staff and students will refine these strategies and tools while investigating new approaches and resources that will support the social-emotional growth of our Wolfpack.


While our Wolfpack demonstrated exuberance for learning STEAM, they were unable to connect or share the importance of strong literacy skills. As a major part of our curriculum, literacy education was not mentioned or celebrated often in our surveys or class conversations. Our hunch is that literacy instruction is ever-present in our classrooms, but is not an explicit target of our school. This year, our staff have begun to be more intentional with our literacy education. Our primary classrooms are focusing on oral language and vocabulary development. Our intermediate classrooms are exploring more engaging and supportive reading and writing strategies. In all our French Immersion classes we are enriching oral language development through whole-class language initiatives such as “explode the image”, vocabulary banks, starter phrases, big buddy/little buddy activities, and celebrating the use of French throughout the school.


To support these areas, our staff comes together on professional development days and school-based collaboration days to explore literacy and SEL education. We frequently welcome our teacher consultant to support our staff in these areas. We have also collaborated on updating our school resources to better meet the current needs of our students. As our year progresses, we will continue to learn and enhance the literacy and SEL education at Whiteside.

Updated: Monday, January 30, 2023