Clubs and art activities keep students busy

A "School Matters" column, sent in this week by Jill Jensen of J.A. Laird Elementary,

As most of you know, our school is home to an often-used climbing wall run by Mr. Weller. Our climbing wall is open for public climbing on Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Special functions like birthday parties can also be accommodated. If you would like to make arrangements to use the climbing wall, please call the school at 342-6232.

Our grade sixes (Mr. Weller’s class), have designed climbing T-shirts which are available through the school. Each class in our school has the opportunity to climb as part of their physical education program, three to four times per year, with Mr. Weller’s class acting as belayers.

We have been fortunate this year to have an active Leadership Club, initiated by Mrs. Gauthier. They have been busy planning and running school and charity events. The club gives students in grades four through seven the opportunity to be leaders in our school and to realize the difference they can make in their own community, and in the world. Each day, Leadership Club members read daily morning announcements and two times per week they co-ordinate milk distribution.

Since October, the club has organized a school food drive for the Invermere Food Bank as well as a fundraiser for the S.P.C.A. Members of the club choose charities that the club supports and they are currently working on a talent show and auction in support of our school garden. In addition, members of the club have been working on creating a “Solving Problems Peacefully” bulletin board for the school (in support of our school focus) and posters demonstrating different strategies for peaceful conflict resolution will soon be displayed throughout the school.

Our Fine Arts Teams (all students in our school have been put in multi-age teams) have each been focusing on a decade from 1900 to the present day. We recently completed visual arts projects that represent each group’s decade and are on display at Pynelogs Cultural Centre. Mr. Childs and Mrs. Gauthier enlisted the support of local artists who came in and worked with each group. We would like to send a special thank you to the community artists who gave their time to come in and teach us.

Our Silver Strings ukulele group recently returned from a successful spring trip to Vancouver. Mrs. O’Sullivan works with this talented group of students every Monday and Thursday and is to be commended for organizing and leading our students. Silver Strings wrapped up with a performance and dessert night on April 19 at Christ Trinity Church.

I would like to thank all of our staff and the many parents who dedicate their personal time to provide meaningful activities for our students. It is a joy working with staff, students and parents who care about making our school a place we all want to be!

Jill Jenson

J.A. Laird Elementary