Lorna Jackson Public School Blog

New frontiers for new learning

Category Archives: Digital Literacy

Three months

We have now completed our first three months of the school year and already have much to celebrate thanks to excellent focus and initiative by our students, staff and community, including:

welcoming our Elder’s Mills community to our team

The launch of our school touchstone

– Sharing a redesigned Learning Commons

Launching our Green Bin program through our school’s Eco Team

Implementing new technologies into our classrooms and classroom programs

Meeting with parents and guardians to review student’s Progress Report Cards

Our staff exploring professional learning in many ways

Starting to plan for the transition of our grade 8 students to high school

Starting our Roots of Empathy programs

Recognizing Bullying Awareness week

Starting our Healthy Snack program

We have developed a focused start in our classroom programs in the areas of academics, athletics and the arts.

We have had the chance to recognise the work of various employee groups at our school including: our Designated Early Childhood Educators, our care taking team, Educational Assistants and our Administrative Assistants.

Our staff have provided several student leadership and extra curricular opportunities such as our Cross Country Team, The sign language club, library and office helpers, the student Tech Team, our Eco team, Student Council, Boys’ and Girls’ Volleyball, Floor Hockey intramurals, homework club, Lunch room helpers, and our Positive Climates for Learning Committee.

As school community we have given back through our Terry Fox Walk, The Count Me in Project, and our local food bank drive.

We also appreciate the work of our school council with our school this year. Their upcoming Dance-A-Thon will take place on December 13, 2013 and will surely be an enjoyable event. Remember that all parents and guardians are welcome to our meetings. Future meetings will be: January 14, 2014, February 20, 2014, April 22, 2014 and May 29, 2014.  We look forward to seeing you there.

Three short months…

remember when it was only 3 short weeks?

Remember when I asked us to write our story?

How do you think we have done so far?

Onward.

Mr. Collins

Refreshing our computer technology

This summer, our school will undergo a significant “computer refresh”. Our board has developed a plan to help remove computer technology that is unable to run Windows 7 that will be the new operating system our board will use. For our school this will mean the upgrading of over 70 computers in our school. Over the past year I have worked closely with our board’s I.T team and appreciate the plan we’ve co developed to replace these computers through both school and board budgets over the summer. Our continued work as a school in the area of Digital Literacy will remain a key focus area next year. In addition to this refresh, our school has been working hard over the past three years to support technology integration at our school as follows:

– Purchasing additional laptops and netbooks to provide mobile learning both in our Learning Commons and through classroom sign outs.

– Ensuring each classroom has a dedicated technology cart that includes an LCD projector, computer and document camera to support classroom instruction and programming.

– Purchasing 30 iPads to support mobile learning and with a focus on staff professional development.

– Dedicating an Interactive Whiteboard “IRover” in each of our Full Day Kindergarten classrooms to support instruction and enable interactive learning centers in the classrooms.

Technology demands a long term vision with a careful balance of the following:

Acquiring technology itself to support student learning and engagement with a long term plan to keep the technology as up to date as possible. I’ll be honest and say this is a significant challenge for most schools but am very proud of the work we have done  in this area.

Professional development for all of our staff to support the integration of technology into our classrooms in meaningful ways. No single technology tool itself will improve student learning simply by “existing” at our school. The work for us is to all learn and explore these tools and look for ways that technology can actually enhance learning. Each of us are at different points in our learning at a time when technology itself changes so rapidly. This is a challenge our education system faces however and we will continue to embrace it.

Supporting student learners. We will continue to support our learners in using technology in responsible, meaningful ways at our school. This includes our implementation of Bring your own Devices which we field tested this year.

We look forward to the “refresh” but more importantly, to our ongoing work on integrating technology in meaningful ways for all of our learners in our classrooms.

Mr. Collins

School Council Forum follow up

smAt the West School Council forum in April, there was a presentation on social media for parents. The presentation was shared by one of our board staff and he has kindly offered to share it with our community. The presentation shared some of the challenges and cautions for all of us with regards to technology and concluded with some of the valuable ways we can use social media to positively impact the work we do.

One way our board is working on supporting students and teachers with these new frontiers for new learning is through what we call our Knowledge Skills and Attitudes standards, namely:

1. Creativity and Innovation
2. Communication and Collaboration
3. Research and Information Fluency
4. Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision
Making
5. Digital Citizenship
6. Technology Operations and Concepts

The notion of digital citizenship is worth careful consideration as we all work together to support our learners in developing safe and responsible uses of technology.

We also thank our police partners in York Region for their tips for parents on “Be Net Aware”.

Let us know what you think of the presentation document.

Resources for your family

Thanks to one of our parents for inquiring about resources her family could use at home with children.

Here are some starting points:

Literacy

  • Tumblebooks is a resource we have purchased to support reading at home. Our site license username is: ljps password is: books
  • Bookflix is another wonderful resource to support reading with your child. Our  username: dsbyork   password: dsby7692
  • Last week we sent home hard copies of the Ministry Document Reading and Writing with your Child from the Ministry of Education.
  • Adlit.org is another website focused on adolescent literacy for parents and educators.

Math

We hope you enjoy these resources to support your child’s learning at home.