Lorna Jackson Public School Blog

New frontiers for new learning

Category Archives: Inquiry

Reflecting, learning, sharing

On March 7, 2014, our staff engaged in a day of learning during our Professional Activity Day. The day was divided into three 100 minute learning blocks just like the students experience each day, but with a focus on our School Improvement Plan.P.A. Days are one of the many ways we engage in ongoing professional learning as a staff.


Our opening block provided us time to focus on mathematics. Our board has recently created a “Math Frame” whose components help to guide our overall work in numeracy, including: commitment, planning, assessment, engagement, instruction and relationships. We considered our own work within the frame and discussed next steps for us as a staff. We also had the opportunity to look at Ministry of Education research, including the article Supporting Numeracy: Building a Community of Practice.

Social Studies, History and Geography

In September 2014, our board will fully implement the revised Social Studies, History and Geography curriculum in our classrooms. We had the opportunity to examine what is new in the curriculum and compare it with our present work and understandings. The opening pages of the curriculum are interesting to explore as we did, particularly the concepts of disciplinary thinking (pg 13). We reflected on how inquiry based learning is an integral component of the curriculum. Our French teachers’ team was also able to spend time examining the recently revised French curriculum that has similarities as well.

staffartProvocations, art and inquiry

Our afternoon concluded with a very special session led by one of our Designated Early Childhood Educators Ms. Theis. She was able to guide us through various art experiences that allowed us to learn and explore visual arts. The session used “provocations” to get us thinking, reflecting and inquiry in variety of ways linked to variety of curricular areas. Ms. Theis has recently started a professional blog and her inaugural post was about our learning session in the afternoon. Be sure to have a look for more wonderful pictures from the session like the one on left side of this page.

I want to thank all of the staff who helped to facilitate the day of learning and to everyone for their participation throughout the day.

Reflecting, learning, sharing: we ask of it of our students and so too of ourselves.

We look forward to putting the learning into action in the coming months of school.


Mr. Collins


LJPS math challenge

photoDear students,

If you love sports, you may love this school wide math challenge. Baseball is back in town! It is amazing how much math you can find in sports. For example, you can see all the current blue jay batters’ statistics at this website. To start, what do the following mean?





How do we calculate each one?
Please post your ideas here. Once you have done so, here is my challenge:

If we look at the AVG column, what do you think we will need to see in that column in September in order for the Blue Jays to win their division?

Now of course it will be easy for you to say everyone achieve 1.000, but we have to be realistic.

Realistically speaking, what will need to be in that column for them to be winners and why?

Some additional key questions you may want to consider:

How do you calculate AVG?

What is an “average” AVG?

What have the rosters of divisional winners from previous years looked like?

Let me know what you think about this challenge by submitting your thoughts to me in the office via this spreadsheet. Forms are also available on the bulletin board outside the main office.

Remember it is your prediction as to what the roster will look like for them to be winners and your explanation as to why you think this that your submit.

We will run the challenge until April 26, 2013 to give you time to think, research and plan. Then we will seal up the predictions and reopen them in September to see how we did.

Go Jays go!

Mr. Collins

Science in action

sciencefairOn Saturday April 6, 2013, The York Region Science and Technology Fair took place at Stephen Lewis S.S for schools from across York Region and for students in grades 7 through 12. There were amazing projects on a wide variety of topics including:

– Health and sciences projects looking at healthy living and ways to combat diseases

– Environmental projects looking at “better insulation for packaging” and “green roof technologies”

– practical topics such as “does washing lettuce actually reduce bacterial counts”?

One of our own grade 8 students entered his project on “The Abstract Era” focusing on holograms both in the past and with a look ahead to the future. We thank Mrs Daryanani for her mentoring support and sponsorship of our student.

What was amazing throughout all of the projects was the students’ enthusiasm and passion for the topics they chose to explore. In front of us we saw students who spoke confidently about ideas, questions and research they themselves had conducted. All the students had a clear eye to the future in their work.

It was an inspiring afternoon.

What can you see?

wecanseeOn our P.A day meeting Friday, one of our team’s shared a project that they have been involved in for several weeks now called the “We can See project”. It started with a fairly simple question: What can we see outside our classroom window? Our school was able to connect with Lake Simcoe P.S through a SKYPE session to compare what their community was like to our community. Over time, more schools connected and in late November, one teacher decided to launch the We Can See project. In two short months, the project has now grown to include schools from across the world. Children from Manhattan, India and multiple schools from across our own country of Canada are dialoguing about what they see in their communities.

As we explore Inquiry based learning as a school, we recognize how motivating and engaging it can be for our learners. Students can develop critical thinking skills through real life questioning and problem solving. Further, we we use technology to enhance this learning, the possibilities become endless. We can now network across our world and learn.

Now it’s your turn.

Please join the discussion on the project’s website.

What can you see in your community?

Mr. Collins