- Tuesday saw us mark Remembrance Day as a school with an assembly. We were honoured to be joined by Mr. Affleck, a veteran from World War 2, and by Cst. Burwell from the RCMP, and we thank them both for their time and commitment to the school. The assembly gave us a chance to reflect on the sacrifices made by countless Canadians before us; sacrifices that allow us to have the safety, security, and quality of life we enjoy today.
Pt. Boyd Affleck, Highalnd Light Infantry of Canada, known during his time in Europe as ‘Water Rats’ who shared some memories of his time fighting in Europe at the end of World War 2. He shared some other stories with me as I drove him to and from the school, including one of ‘Victory Bars’ (chocolate bars) Canadian soldiers were given to hand out to children in Holland as the country was liberated. He said, ‘…those kids didn’t know what to make of a chocolate bar. Didn’t know what to do with it. They caught on pretty quick, though.” His stories made me, for one, realize again how lucky we are in Canada, and in Langley, to have our basic needs so fully met. He told us of a little boy in Holland who waited around the soldiers’ mess to collect scraps to take home to his family. Mr. Affleck procured for the boy a full meal and a bunch of bread, rather than letting him take away only bacon rinds collected from the kitchen scraps.
Our students were impeccable for the assembly, with grade 7s running the entire program, sharing their thoughts and their talent, singing a great rendition of ‘In Flanders Fields’, and doing all the work associated with such a program. It was the vision and leadership of Mrs. Senften that gave them focus and direction, and I want to thank her, as well as Mrs. Schmidt and Mrs. Gorseth for contributing as well. Finally, thanks to Mrs. Janzen who thought of and organized Pt. Affleck’s visit!
- Here’s a quiet and heartwarming ROAR. On Monday as I was walking around the school at recess, I came upon a group of kids, ranging from K to grade 5, sitting in a circle, clearly having a great time. I watched for a bit, and finally asked what they were doing? The answer: ‘playing telephone.’ I didn’t want to mess up the game by having the message repeated for all to hear, and they carried on, but I thought it was wonderful to see such a wide-ranging group of kids playing so nicely together, looking after each other, and clearly having fun.
- Ms. McLeod’s class are learning about, and responding to, various Charters of Rights (rights of the child, Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms), and are looking, too, at the Responsibilities that go along with those rights. They’ve made a tree of their rights in the school, and are connecting their learning of Rights with a literature unit, and with some artistic endeavour.
Some of the learning and thoughts:
‘I think the right to play for children is the most important.’
‘I learned that there’s a second law for children because they think that we need more help than adults… I think that’s right.’
‘I learned that if parents can’t take care of you properly, you have to get taken away. In the Charter of Rights, you can’t be arrested without a good reason. But with the Residential Schools, parents would be arrested if they kept their kids, but that wasn’t a good reason.’
- We had our first Movie Afternoon of the year Friday, with tons of kids coming to watch Inside Out together after school. Notice was short, and the grade 7s were thrilled to have it come together, as these events support their June trip to Camp Jubilee. Thanks to all the students who came to watch; we hope you enjoyed the show!
- It was PJs and Stuffies Day in Mrs. O’Byrne/Mrs. Bentley’s and Ms. Hall’s classes. While they may have looked pretty casual, those kids did a lot of quality learning. I had a couple read to me (we saw Mandrills, Chameleons and Gila Monsters in one book), they pursued multi-sensory observation in science, and graphed the stuffies that came along for the day. People looked awfully cozy to me!