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July 05
Principal Speech to Leaving Class of 2016

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Welcome parents and guests to the Class of 2016 Leaving Ceremony.  Thank you for joining us this morning.

When principals give farewell speeches to classes leaving their school, they often offer words of advice to students to support their success in the ‘real world’.  However, in reflection, to our students, school IS the real world.  All the students we see in front of us today are unique and as such, have unique learning profiles.  Many have overcome challenges and obstacles just to get to this point in their education.  This needs to be acknowledged.
EACH student deserves to be recognized for all the strengths and talents that they have; they also need to be recognized for the contributions they make to our school and community.  Hence today’s ceremony is not just an awards ceremony recognizing athletic and academic achievements.  It is also a ceremony that highlights contributions in service and leadership.
In the next few minutes you will hear teachers talk about their students’ strengths and qualities.  It is our hope that these students are already aware of these amazing qualities and will leave our school and continue to focus on these talents. 
It is also our hope that these strengths are, in fact, passions and that moving forward students will spend their time doing something in which they are passionate about.  So grade 7’s, you know what you are good at…so do it!  Really challenge yourself in these areas.  Push yourselves and encourage each other in their areas of strength.
When you push yourself you might actually go outside your comfort zone and take a risk.  When you do this, you WILL make mistakes-please remember mistakes are made because you are pushing yourself and this is a great thing.  This is how we learn and move forward in life.
As indicated last week during the grade 7 dinner /dance celebration, some of you have spent quality time with me at the office.  I hope you all know that lessons learned through the elementary years go beyond the conversations had in the principal’s office. 
Of course, there are many teachers in this school that have also put in significant amounts of time to help you to learn.  We have ALL taught and learned from one another, student to teacher, and teacher to student.  I hope you take some time today to reflect on lessons learned over your elementary school years.   
I would like to take some time to share with you lesson highlights I know will support your success as you transition into high school.
Firstly, Learn from Correction and Criticism….though difficult to hear and challenging to change direction, correction and criticism, force you to become flexible and teach you to understand perspective.  Understanding perspective will help you to become a critical thinker and peaceful problem solver. 
Remember, that there is no such thing as failure…You will at some point fall and when you do, remember this…there is no such thing as failure.  Failure is really life trying to move us in another direction…Learn from every mistake. 
I hope you have learned also the importance of developing your own internal compass….develop your moral and emotional GPS and use it to guide your day to day decisions and use it to set goals for yourself.  This will help you to create your own story…a story that will be about purpose….and this is the important thing…because when situations become difficult, and they will at times, this purpose and your internal compass will get you out of difficult situations. 
Make time for face time…..my hope is that you will try to have more face to face conversations with people you agree with and people you disagree with.  Have the courage to look people in the eye and hear their point of view. Balance tech time with face time.
Find your passion.  What makes you come alive……The world needs interesting people.  Find your passion and you will find your purpose.
Listen….the real secret to success is your willingness to listen.  Be still, focus, be open minded….listen.  If you are willing to listen, you will be happy, successful, and make a difference in the world.
Always be kind…Extend yourself in kindness whenever you can.  Banish dark words and actions with positivity.  Kindness never goes out of style.
Don’t forget to show gratitude….being thankful and showing thanks for what is going well will build resiliency and resilient kids are healthy kids…so show gratitude.
And finally, max out your humanity…..be aware of what is going on around you…be aware of people in your community, country and world.  Serve, lead and continue to make a difference.
Elementary school lessons are real world lessons. 
Students, today we recognize and honour  you for your accomplishments and strengths as well as for your ongoing efforts and contributions to our real world.
Lessons learned and honed in high school will surely contribute to your ongoing successes.
Thank you Grade 7s. Together with your teachers I wish you the very best as you advance to grade 8.
Parents, teachers, guests, please join me in Congratulating the Ridgeview Grade 7 Class of 2016.
May 15
MAYFAIR 2016

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The Ridgeview MayFair event is a school sponsored event that generates energy and spirit from the entire WV community. 

This year’s MayFair event was coordinated by Ridgeview parents Julie Cameron and Kerra Snugdon and supported by Ridgeview PAC Chairpersons Nancy Saar and Nicole Clough as well as a host of Ridgeview parent and student volunteers.

As a community event, MayFair has something for everyone.  Kiosts and events included the Barbecue, Café, Face Painting, Arcade Games, Plant Sale, Tombola, Paint a Pot, Books and Games, Silent Auction, Pony rides, Bouncey Castles and many varied Sporting Challenges. 

Proceeds for this event exceeded $25,000!  A detailed itemization and final tally will be reported at the June PAC meeting scheduled for Friday, June 10th. 

A heartfelt thank you to our coordinators, parent and student volunteers for helping to ensure the success of the MayFair tradition.  Thank you also to our community sponsors listed below for your many contributions. 

 

MAYFAIR 2016 SPONSORS

Platinum:

Jason Jennings Personal Real Estate Corporation

Gold:

Tom Hassan West Vancouver Real Estate

Gold:

The Munnis-Sadeghi Family

Silver:

The Swann Family

Silver:

The Liang/Xiang Family

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Silent Auction & Other donations

4 Cats                                                       

The Ahuja Family

Alice Chang

Bar Method

Bella Ceramica

BG Corbett Realty

Bluefish Bohemian

Body Shop

The Weisbrod Family

Cactus Club

Cafe Crema

The Cameron Family

Capilano Highways

Capilano Suspension Bridge

The Clark Family

The Clokie Family

Compass Group Canada

The Craddock Family

Cute Paws

Da Vinci’s

David’s Tea Park Royal

Dairy Queen

Different Bikes

EA Games

Earls Restaurants

Fresh Street Market

Hangers

Honda Canada

IGA Dundarave

Innovative Fitness

Intercept

Ivivva

The Jennings Family

The Mason Family

The Kim Family

Lash Fabulous

Lions Gate Cleaners

Mithra Sawyer

Mitras

The North Shore Table Tennis Club

The Palfrey Family

Pinnacle at the Pier

Pop Lash

Queen Charlotte Lodge

Razed Ros

The Reznik Family

The Reilly Family

The Saar Family

Sarah Jane Photography

Sea to Sky Gondola

The Shen Family 

Starbucks Dundarave

Terra Breads

Tim Bennison

UME Academy

West Vancouver Physio

West Van Community Centre

Vancouver Police Department

West Van Basketball Club

West Van Police Department

West Van Soccer Club​

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May 02
Money Smarts

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Talking to our kids about money is a responsibility of the home and school.  In fact, building financial literacy is a lifelong process and students as young as kindergarten and younger can benefit from early discussions about money. 

To bring attention to the importance of talking with our kids about money and to help get the conversation started, Ridgeview students participated in the “Talk With Our Kids About Money Day” held this past month (and celebrated the third Wednesday of each April). 

Talk With Our Kids About Money Day is an initiative which in the past year saw 2,020 schools and over 400,000 students across Canada participate.  Classroom and subject teachers were encouraged to engage in conversations with students about money.  A comprehensive, creative, collaborative approach to healthy financial conversations was encouraged.  Some ideas discussed included:

Science:  How can we save money and help the environment?

Math:  How do you balance a personal budget?

Language Arts:  Read a newspaper article and discuss countries and currency.

Social Studies:  What motivated the start up of the Hudson’s Bay company?

Arts Education:  Listen to a money song and create a collage depicting needs versus wants.

Health Education:  Compare and contrast a weekly menu:  eating out versus eating homemade food.

Career Education:  Conceptualize and implement a small enterprise in your school…Dragon Den style.

A cross curricular approach to teaching financial literacy was also explored by Mr. Blackburn’s grade 6 students who participated in a program called Start Up Skool. 

Start Up Skool is a program designed to work with teachers in the classroom to help transform youth into critical thinkers, problem solvers, creators, and ethical entrepreneurs.  Start Up Skool challenges students to make a pitch, Dragon’s Den style, in order to apply for a loan that they can use to start an ethical business. 

The grade 6 students pitched a smoothie business, which they called “Instasnacks” (follow them on Instagram!).  After some research, the team decided that they would donate the profits from their business to the Free the Children charity.  The pitch was a success, and the marketing, operations, finance and product design teams worked hard to turn a $200 loan into a successful business.  After their very first sale, Instasnacks was not only able to pay back the loan, but also raised over $600 for Free the Children. 

Together, the students learned about entrepreneurship, collaboration, leadership the importance of giving all components of financial literacy.

There are numerous resources for parents to support the teaching of financial literacy.  One site, Money Coaches provides quick tips to get you started.

Gail Vaz Oxlande’s blog, Making Money Make Sense​, is also an excellent resource .

Gail emphasizes that teaching kids a healthy, balanced attitude towards money begins when kids are young.  She provides lots of tips and strategies so support raising Money-Smart Kids.

It is no surprise that Kindergarten teachers Mrs. Daudlin and Mrs. Campbell promote many Money-Smart strategies learned from Gail in their recent blog post Talk to Our Kids about Money on  their website The Self Regulated Teacher. 

There are many storybooks that emphasize financial literacy for primary students.  Staff top picks are:

Alexander, Who Used to Be Rich Last Sunday written by Judith Viorst and illustrated by Ray Cruz, and

Bunny Money written by Rosemary Wells

Research shows the importance of starting the conversation about money early in order to promote the development of positive skills, attitudes and behaviours toward money.  Financial literacy, like all other forms of literacy needs to be taught explicitly and practiced in real life contexts both at home and at school.  Here’s to raising the next generation of money-smart kids!

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April 10
Creating a Legacy

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It is pretty amazing to watch a playspace come alive with student activity. 

The Ridgeview sportcourt has been a work in progress.  It wasn’t until this past summer that construction on the sportcourt began.

However, well before the ground was broken, planning and fundraising was long in the works.  Funded in partnership with the school district, Ridgeview parent fundraising and the grade 7 class of 2015, the sportcourt was refurbished and revitalized.

Combined with a little sunshine this week, and with defined game areas painted on the court, this playspace came alive with student activity.  The two basketball courts, four 4-square and tetherball courts, and hopscotch spaces were all in use.  Combined with the forest and creek playspace, the swings and play structure, expansive field spaces, and strategically installed benches, Ridgeview students have a lot of choice at play times. 

It is important to note that a project this size is expansive…and expensive!  It is through the collaboration of District and School that a project of this magnitude is realized. 

Parents, your participation, leadership and financial support of school activities have helped to raise the funds for this playspace.  Your volunteer hours for hot lunch, Halloween Skate, MayFair, and Gala events among other activities all combine to financially support this project. 

The grade 7 class of 2015 also saw the importance of revitalizing the sportcourt and through many fundraising activities hosted through the year (bake sales, car washes, spirit activities) raised enough to contribute to the painting and logo creation of the large basketball court.  Branding the court with the school logo and name is commitment to school pride and an investment for future Ridgeview students.

And of course, sizable financial support and coordination of this project by West Vancouver Schools Facilities has been absolutely necessary to the realization of the sportcourt project.

Thank you and congratulations to students, parents, and our West Vancouver partners for making the sportcourt project come to life!  Creating a legacy for future students is truly a colloborative effort.

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April 03
Coding in the Classroom (Guest Blogger:  Cari Wilson)

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If you had walked into Mrs. Sandor’s Grade 1 classroom earlier this year, you might have seen students walking around in pairs, peering intently at pieces of paper on which they had written seemingly unintelligible lists of letters. What were they doing? What was on the paper? And why were they having so much fun?

Mrs. Sandor’s students were participating in partner-coding, a fun activity that introduces students to the concepts of computer programming or coding. They were using the basic commands of F, B, R and L (forward, backward, right and left) to program each other to do things like move from a desk to the door.

 

Coding is in the news a lot lately - our premier even recently commented that it was an important skill that would be added to the BC Curriculum. Some studies indicate that within the next 10 years as many as 1 million jobs will need to be filled by people who can code. West Vancouver is ahead of the curve and in many classrooms, like Mrs. Sandor’s, we have already started introducing basic coding.

 

For some students, their introduction to coding begins with device-free activities like Mrs. Sandor’s class was doing. For many others, it begins with their teacher signing them up to participate in the yearly Hour of Code challenges. The Hour of Code was created specifically to expose students to the coding and give them a chance to try it out. The teachers or adults involved don’t need to know anything about coding and there are enough activities on the site to keep even the most avid young coder occupied. With games like Star Wars, Minecraft and Frozen all using a simplified language called Blockly, kids are quickly drawn in and encouraged to solve problems using code. Some lucky students in a few schools have even started to have the experience of programming simple robots.

 

Regardless of how a child begins to experience coding, the benefits are many. Coding encourages creative and critical thinking. Students who are able to problem solve and overcome failure are rewarded with success. Through play and experimentation students are exposed to abstract concepts like computational and algorithmic thinking in a way that makes sense to them. Students often work together when coding, developing not just coding skills but skills in collaboration and negotiation, too.

 

If you have a child who is interested in learning more about coding, there are lots of resources available. Start by looking through the Hour of Code website. Many of the games on there are apps that you can download or they come from sites that you can access. There are sites like the Khan Academy and CodeAcademy that offer online course for students and there are increasing numbers of summer camps that offer coding. For those students who want to go take their coding and apply it to robotics, there are lots of great educational robots on the market now. West Vancouver School District is offering a high school academy called Mechatronics Robotics for students entering Grades 9 to 12 and two coding and robotics related courses for students entering Grade 6 and 7 through the Ignite Your Passion program.


Of course, not all students will become coders any more than they will all become Olympic athletes or Nobel prize winners. As parents and educators, it is our job to introduce children to many activities and life skills in order to prepare them for their future and help them discover their passions. In the future we are heading towards, a basic knowledge and understanding of coding will be a life skill we are glad we gave them.​ 

February 16
Defining School Culture

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Culture  is the foundation of how we live, learn and behave.  At school, culture is the landscape in which learning takes place.  When students are involved in defining the culture of the school, they are empowered by their engagement and feel greater ownership in their learning experiences.

Throughout the school year, teachers and school personnel  at Ridgeview assist students with a sense of purpose by clarifying our school “Culture” . 
How do we introduce the concept of school culture?
In the early days of each school year, children learn that the classroom and school is like a family away from home.  Class and schoolmates are all here to support one another as individuals and as learners. 
Students learn about the culture in their own homes by reflecting on what they see and hear about their family if they were a newcomer in their homes. Questions to guide their reflections may include:
·         “If I came to your home what would I see?
·         “What would I see you doing together?”
·         “Where would I see you sitting?”
·         “Who would I see reading, cooking, or making lunches?”
·         “Would the children be assisting with meal preparations and school readiness chores?”
·         “How would I see you helping one another”
·         “What would I see when there is a conflict or a problem?”
What one sees and hears when they enter a home is indicative of the culture of that home.  These are the foundational values of the family members.  The same is true in a classroom and in a school. 
What students see and hear in a classroom and in a school is also indicative of culture.
Students learn about classroom and school culture in the same way they learn about their home culture, by observation.  Questions to guide their observations may include:
·         “How do students enter the school and classroom in the morning?”
·         “How do the students greet the teacher and other adults in the building?”
·         “How do the adults greet the students?”
·         “How do students decide what to do first when they enter their classrooms?”
·         “If another student approached you, what would you say?  How could you invite him to join you?”
·         “What does it look and sound like when you transition from one activity to another?”
Student-generated reflections about what is seen and heard help students understand classroom and school culture. 
Helping students take part in discussing and understanding that a culture of kindness is inclusive, calm and joyful lays a foundation of mutual respect and engagement in school. 
Using visual and auditory signals reinforces school culture and engages the students’ brains in a deeper and more meaningful way.  Teaching students mindful alertness supports their ability to be ready and present to learn.  To create a mindful, kind and compassionate classroom and school we begin each day with expected routines including active listening to our National Anthem and morning announcements.  The practice of listening with a mindful body (still and quiet, and mindful breathing) is the first step in mindfulness and supporting mindful experiences where  individuals can examine their thoughts, senses, emotions, feelings, physical and mental impulses.
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Visual cues to support a culture of kindness are many and varied.  You may have noticed in the front hallway, our blossoming heart tree.  This tree helps us to celebrate “Real Acts of Caring”, RAC, at Ridgeview.  A ‘Real Act of Caring” means to do something kind for another person without expecting anything in return.  At Ridgeview, we are celebrating this generosity of spirit with a symbol, the heart, which is attached to the tree.  Students and teachers are asked to identify real acts of caring by naming the caring act and identifying the caring individual.  This visual cue will show students just how quickly kindness grows at Ridgeview.  (A special thank you to Mrs. Meldrum for designing our RAC tree.)
Creating a culture with clear expectations and purposeful meaning establishes a place where children feel safe to learn.  At Ridgeview, our favorite type of culture is a “Culture of Kindness”.   Acts of kindness and our blossoming RAC tree are simple cues to promote  positive school culture. Be part of the Ridgeview cultural challenge, be part of our school culture of kindness, and show you care!
Cultural Challenge!
The following caring acts are ideas that are helpful and important anytime.  Choose one of these or select your own ideas each day to spread the culture of kindness.
1.       Give a compliment
2.       Make eye contact
3.       Smile
4.       Talk to someone new
5.       Clean up after yourself at home or at school
6.       Volunteer to help at home or in the classroom
7.       Share your umbrella
8.       Say Something if someone is talking negatively
9.       Recommend a book.  Better yet, lend a favorite book
10.   Play with someone who is all alone
11.   Apologize freely without a reminder
12.   Hold a door open for someone and smile
13.   Out of the blue, make a card for a friend to let them know what they mean to you
14.   Say “please” and “thank you” and be sincere about it
 
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February 15
MAYFAIR 2016

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Calling all Students!

The Ridgeview MAYFAIR is scheduled this year for Saturday, May 7th from 11 - 3 p.m. Parent volunteers are busily preparing for this event and need your help.  Parents are looking to refresh the poster advertising for Mayfair.  We need your help to design a new poster for this special event.

In addition to recognition for submission, select/winning entries will receive MayFair tickets for use during the Fair.

Poster guidelines are as follows:

1.  Entries are open to all students registered at Ridgeview.

2.  All entries are to be submitted to the school office on or before March 11th, 2016.  

3.  All entries are to be 11" x 17" in size.

4.  All entries are to be Black & White only.  Use of pencil or felt is permitted.

5.  Entries should give considertion to originality, effect, and clarity.

6.  The poster shall reflect the Fair with examples of activities and events including:  

games, plant shop, pony rides, mini carnival games, sport challenges, duck pond, book sale, toys & treasures, snack shack, cafe, ticket booth, cake walk, prizes, candy floss, tombola and so much more!

7.  All entries are to include the following details:

MayFair at Ridgeview Elementary School, Saturday, May 7th, 11 - 3 p.m. 

As well, all entries must include an item that reads:

Remember, Mother's Day is May 8th!

8.  Student name and grade is to be printed in pencil on the back of the poster.

Select entries will be printed and distributed to students for colouring and then used for advertising at the school and throughout the community.  

(Interested?  Please come to the school office for further details and to view sample signage and posters.)
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January 31
Celebrating Play
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On February 3rd, families and schools around the world are celebrating Global Play Day.  Initiated by Psychologist Peter Gray, Global Play Day encourages sustained, unstructured play for kids.  Dr. Gray explains that the average child’s free time has changed significantly in the past 25 years. 

Notably, children today spend less time outdoors and what time they do spend outdoors is often part of an organized sport activity.  Other activities taking up our children’s time include structured music, art, and dance lessons. Electronic entertainment also takes up a large proportion of our children’s time each day.  While all these activities can be fulfilling and fun for kids, they reduce the time available for unstructured play.

Unstructured play, without direct adult supervision, can take place in many environments.  The outdoors, in particular, provide many opportunities for play that support imagination and exploration of the environment.  You do not need to look further than the Ridgeview school playground to see examples of this.  Sticks, dirt, leaves, rocks and water provide endless enjoyment for kids of all ages.  Outdoor play affords kids opportunities to experiment with the environment learning from their own mistakes and experiences. 

Unfortunately, many parents, in their concern to give their child every advantage and prepare them as early as possible for higher education register their children for organized lessons in literacy or numeracy acquisition, language study, or sport rather than encouraging free play.

Much has been written on the importance of free play in the healthy development of the child.  Free play promotes intellectual and cognitive growth, emotional intelligence, and benefits social interactions.  Play involves problem solving and promotes executive functioning allowing children to plan, organize, sequence, and make decisions.  Social and emotional intelligence strengthen through peer interactions and physical movement that take place during play.  For example, children must work together to decide which game to play, what the rules of play are, and learn how to navigate the many variations of their games as they unfold. Children learn understand varying perspectives of the game.  Through this ‘work’ children learn the social qualities of play:  empathy, self-awareness, self-regulation and flexibility.  Emotional development and physical health are also nurtured when children are engaged in active play.  The correlations between play and learning are well documented.  In fact, unstructured or free play IS learning.

So, how can you incorporate more time for play in your child’s day? 

Family physician Avril Swan, frequent blogger at Whole Family Medicine provides the following suggestions:


Consider the number of extra-curricular activities. 

There is no magic right or wrong number of extras, but if you or your child aren’t taking joy in the activities or if the activities are eating all of your free time, drop one or some.

 

Change your mind set. 

Successful adults are programmed to be productive. Children are not small adults. Their play is their work and is their productive activity.

Let your child go a little outside your comfort zone. 

Consider that a child taking calculated risks  in natural environments may learn and improve their judgment. There is no teacher greater than experience. Learning how to climb a rock or a tree now might decrease hazardous behavior later in life by teaching limits.

Practice letting your child be bored. 

As you might remember from your childhood, we don’t need to have every moment scheduled, and, in fact, some of the best creativity comes from being bored.

 

Play is one of the main ways children learn.  While many children have a natural ability to play, others may need to ‘learn’ how to play well.  It is very important that children play with their peers and are given opportunities and extended periods of time each day for unstructured play.

 

So, this Wednesday, on February 3rd, please join Ridgeview staff in celebrating Global Play Day and encouraging sustained, unstructured daily play for all kids.  

 

 

January 03
Student Reflections

The diverse array of activities and traditions at Ridgeview spark a wide range of interest.  As the holidays come to a close, grade 7 student William Bailey reflects on term one’s educational traditions at Ridgeview.  Based on direct feedback from fellow students and teachers, the following stories resonated with William.  So, here’s the round-up of the term’s best from William’s lense:

Annual Halloween Skate

It was wonderful to see so many families come out to the West Vancouver Ice Arena for the annual Halloween Skate on October 28th. Everyone was dressed up in their Halloween costumes and having a great time! The Halloween Skate is not only fun, but it also raises money for school activities like Sports Day, and equipment like the school iPads and laptop computers, sportswear and much more. All in all, it was a fun filled community building evening. Thank you Ridgeview parents for organizing this event.

Remembrance Day Assembly

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On November 10 at eleven o’clock, Ridgeview held its Remembrance Day Assembly. We honoured our soldiers and veterans for all the sacrifices they made to keep peace in our land. Our assembly began with the singing of O’Canada led by the Intermediate Band and Mr. Santos. Sofia Stankovic and Jessica Tidball were the Masters of Ceremony, while Amy Zhang and Christine Lee read moving exerts from The Diary of Frank Walker, a soldier from the Ridgeview community. The primary choir sang a beautiful song ‘Together We Can Change the World’ led by Mrs. McKanna, followed by Mr. Blackburn’s Grade 6 students reading the famous poem written by John McCrae “In Flanders Fields”. The assembly closed with a brief slideshow and ended with 2 minutes of silence. 

We Day

This year Mrs. Wilson took 21 lucky Grade 7 students to Vancouver’s annual We Day. It took place on Wednesday, October 21 at Rogers Arena. Craig Kielburger and his brother Marc initially founded the charity Free The Children after reading about the terrible treatment of child workers in Pakistan. Free The Children grew into We Day, which Craig and Marc began way back in 2007. We Day is an annual event created to motivate young people to make positive changes in the world. Fellow Ridgeview student and participant, Marie said one of the most “inspiring moments was when they showed a video of kids in Africa and how donated money really helps kids and communities”. There were also many incredible speakers at this event.  Actress Sofia Stankovic spoke about the importance of breaking boundaries and shared how she found success in acting even though she has a disability [she is hearing impaired]. She communicated the importance of effort and perseverance…”keep trying, she exclaimed!”  The celebrity speakers who supported this event inspired me to look at ways I can make a difference.  We Day was an incredible event to be a part of!

Scholastic Book Fair

Scholastic Book Fair was a huge success! Through sales, Ridgeview student’s raised over $3500 worth of new books for our library. This event, while promoting literacy generates a great deal of excitement from all students.  Students really do seem to enjoy pondering over book selections and calculating affordability and finances with their purchases.  With the Fair proceeds, Teacher-Librarian Mrs. Kennedy even enlists the help of student helpers to recommend and select new books for the library.  This event would not have been possible without the amazing and dedicated parent and Grade 7 volunteers and of course, the sponsorship of Mrs. Kennedy.  

Gingerbread House Family Night

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New to Ridgeview this year was the Gingerbread House Night.  This event was sponsored by Mrs. Wilson and co-hosted by Mrs. Daudlin and Mrs. Campbell as well as the We Team students.  This community building sold out event gave students and their families an opportunity to build and decorate a unique gingerbread house.  Many Ridgeview families attended this event. It was particularly heartwarming to see families new to Canada participate.  Grandparents, fathers and mothers joined students in creating festive creations.  Additionally, over $500 was raised and will be targetted towards fundraising efforts sponsored by the Ridgeview We Team. Who would have known that this simple ‘make and take’ event could have generated so much interest!  

November 15
Remembrance

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Attending Remembrance Day ceremonies on November 11th is a well known way to honour the men and women who served Canada in times of war, military conflict and peace.

 

Attending ceremonies, wearing a poppy, and hosting events at schools are ways we can help children understand the importance of November 11th. 

There are many other ways, throughout the year, to remember the sacrifices and achievements of the one and a half million brave Canadians who served, and continue to serve, our country at home and abroad, and the more than 118,000 men and women who died so that we may live in peace and freedom today.  Taking an active role to remember these people is one way to say “thank you.”

Parents are encouraged to read to their children to explain the complexities of war and the importance of remembrance.  The Canadian Military Family Magazine recommended reads include “Bunny the Brave War Horse” written by Elizabeth MacLeod.  This storybook explains the story of the First World War through the true story of a police horse named bunny, his riders, and his brothers.

To really give children a true understanding of remembrance “A Poppy is to Remember” by Heather Paterson is a recommended book.  Accompanied by brilliant illustrations this book explains in Flanders Field and the history of the poppy.

Another important book is “In Flanders Field:  The Story of the Poem by John McCrae”, by Linda Granfield.  This book was released this year for the 100th anniversary of the poem. 

“A Bear in War” by Stephanie Innes and Harry Endrulat is another heart wrenching story.  The book introduces children to the story of Lawrence Browning Rogers and the teddy bear his daughter sent him overseas to keep him safe.

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Ridgeview students have also prepared poems, stories, creative writing and artwork commemorating remembrance. Many of these student reflections and wonderings are displayed throughout the school.  We encourage parents to take time to review these displays.

Many thanks also to the Hassan family for their participation in the West Vancouver Rememance Day ceremony on November 11th.   Julian, Jake and Ryan placed the Ridgeview wreath in remembrance of our school community's recognition of this special event and our ongoing commitment to peace.

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Remembrance Day is obviously important to recognize.  Children see the ceremony and can sense the sadness of it all, but they may not understand what, exactly, we are remembering.  War is not just something that happened in another place and in another time:  it is ongoing and continues to affect many families.  Let us not forget the contributions and sacrifices of the men and women who have served Canada in times of war, military conflict and peace.

Mark Shepard’s inspiring lyrics of “Together We Can Change the World”, as performed by the Ridgeview Primary Choir, under the direction of Mrs. McKanna at our remembrance assembly, is a poignant reminder that Together We Can Change the World.

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