Visitors to our school consistently tell us they are surprised at how our little school feels so happy and looks so busy! This is visible when you walk in. Amazing student art decorates our walls and students are cheerful and engaged. Every opportunity is taken to bring students together, to work collaboratively in a variety of activities. This article hopes to show you this about our school.
Learning spills out into the hallways when older and younger students buddy up for reading and math problem solving activities. At the beginning of the year, students travelled between classes in family groupings and discovered many ways to define intelligence. Not just proficiency with words and numbers but intelligence for music, art and sports ability; also for skills with communicating with others and self-awareness. An art activity, presently displayed, had older students writing directions for simple origami figures that younger students made.
For Literacy Week, our whole school read for one half hour in the gym. And twice, classes moved to other classes to hear a favourite story read by the teacher. This gave children the chance to visit a different classroom and see how and where their buddies work.
Our school goal this year involves helping students achieve success in solving math word problems. Research indicates that teaching students to think critically is the key to future success. Each week students are given a thinking problem to solve at home and return. This idea has expanded into a flourish of activities involving small groups of students, to a mixture of primary and intermediate students working weekly on solving thinking problems together or creating a structure using a specific set of criteria. We are planning whole school ‘Minute to Win It’ thinking activities. Coming together once a month, students will be in family groupings trying to complete a common task. Building, thinking, creating, and working hands-on together makes learning fun!
Living so close to the natural world, we consider Edgewater Elementary an outdoor education school. Every opportunity is taken to engage our children in outdoor learning. In September we went on two whole-school hikes. In the fall we learned about bears. This winter our students have been outside building snow sculptures, downhill skiing and skating. You can also see classes cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in our back field.
Edgewater Elementary embraces Aboriginal values related to local cultures and making connections to wildlife and the natural world around us. Our Aboriginal Support Worker, Debra Murray is a wealth of aboriginal learning and welcome in every class. A central focus in our library is our Aboriginal learning carpet beside drums and a number of Aboriginal story and reference books.
Edgewater Elementary has an active music program. Each year we bring all classes together to create a whole- school musical at Christmas. This term, recorders, ukuleles and guitars can be heard in the school. Primary classes come together in the gym once a week for school sing.
Leadership Club actively helps to promote whole -school activities such as fun days, an Edgewater Has Talent show, a Pop a Top campaign to purchase a wheelchair, and helping our PAC with the hot lunch program. Leadership is now looking into raising funds to have our school adopt a child from another country. Edgewater Elementary is fortunate to have a talented and caring staff whose passion for teaching is evident. Edgewater parents are our partners and visible in the school, creating a real family feeling. A little school that focuses on bringing students and community together, making learning relevant and fun!
Come on in. Someone from leadership would be happy to show you around. See for yourself how Edgewater Elementary lives up to our motto, “ A place to learn and grow.”