Hello CJFS Families!
We hope you all had a great “Back to School" week here at CJFS. We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for their participation and learning of our new safety protocols that have been implemented to keep our school safe.
Please note the following important information to review for our upcoming school year:
- COVID-19 DAILY CHECKIST: Please remember to use the COVID-19 Alberta Health Daily Checklist and do not send your child(ren) to school if they are displaying any symptoms on this list. This list was sent home in the Student Forms packages that went home last week and via email on August 31. COVID-19 Alberta Health Daily Checklist
- STUDENT FORM PACKAGES: Our student forms packages went home last week. Please complete all colored forms and return to school with your child(ren) next week. It is important for us to have the most current information for your child(ren) and family on file at all times.
- STUDENT HEALTH FORMS: We have received a last minute change to our “Student Health Forms".
- Please dispose/recycle the yellow copy of the form (dated April 2014)
- Please complete and return the purple form (dated August 2020)
- SCHOOL INQUIRIES: During this unusual school start-up, we encourage any inquiries be sent via email at email@example.com. We need to minimize the number of people coming into the school to ensure the safety of all students and staff.
- IN PERSON VISITS: If you must visit the school office in person, please call to make an appointment. Upon arrival for your appointment, ensure you utilize the hand sanitizer stations in the front foyer and wear a mask.
- EARLY PICK UP: If you need to pick up your child early from school, please call ahead to our school office so we can have your child ready for pick up. We will have you come into our front foyer, sanitize and wear a mask in order to sign your child(ren) out for the day.
- VOLUNTEERS: We cannot have volunteers in the building for the 2020-2021 school year due to minimizing the number of people in the building. If the volunteer protocol is reviewed and/or changed throughout the year, we will let families know.
- LUNCHES and STUDENT ITEM DROP OFF: Due to COVID protocols, we are unable to accept student items that are being dropped off at the school office including lunches, water bottles, masks, glasses, etc. Please ensure your child(ren) brings all items they will need for the day when they leave home. The school will accommodate child(ren) with anything we are able to such as emergency lunch and snacks as well as disposable cups for water for that day. You can notify us in advance by calling the school office if you have a situation your child(ren) requires assistance with.
- LUNCH ROOM REGISTRATION: Please register your child(ren) on-line as soon as possible if your student is staying for lunch at school. Fees cannot be paid until October 1, 2020. https://cbe.ab.ca/support/Pages/MyCBE-PowerSchool.aspx
- FEES: You will be notified of school fees by October 1, 2020. The are payable on-line through your MyCBE/PowerSchool Account. No fees will be available to pay until October 1, 2020. We are unable to accept cash or cheque.
- MYCBE/POWER SCHOOL ACCOUNT: If you have not already set up your MyCBE/PowerSchool account, you can do so at the following link:
- ATTENDANCE LINE: Please call the attendance line at 403-777-6710, option 1, or email firstname.lastname@example.org if your student will be away from school. Alberta Health Services has asked that we track why students are absent. Please be specific as to why your child is absent.
- WEBSITE: Please visit our website for all of the most current information and calendar updates at https://school.cbe.ab.ca/school/ColonelJFredScott
If you have any questions regarding any of this information, please contact our school office at 403-777-6710.
Scott Robinson (Principal)
Hello CJFS Families!
I hope you and your
family are keeping safe and well. We miss the students tremendously at
By now, all students have
had access to Google Classroom for their daily school activities. All classes have also had an opportunity to
have a class meeting, where students and staff connect with each other through
the video conferencing app of Google Meet. Teachers were thrilled with their
first Google Meet when they saw their
students’ happy faces again!
working very hard to organize ongoing on-line learning for students. This is a
steep learning curve for everybody – students, parents and staff!! We realize that learning on-line from home
will place significant demands on families and we will do our best to make this
work successfully for both students and their families. We
appreciate your understanding that we are all learning how to do this together.
We are available every weekday to answer any questions you may have and support
you in any way that we are able. Please do not hesitate to call the school at
403-777-6710 if needed.
weather is finally arriving!!! With
that, there is a temptation for students to play on our two school playgrounds.
School playgrounds remain closed due to the social distancing expectations to
reduce the spread of COVID-19. We ask
for your support to remain off of the school playground equipment until these
areas are officially re-opened.
the family that left the kind message on our playground! We appreciate it! We miss you all too!
Welcome to the 2019 – 2020 school
year! We are happy to welcome both our returning and our new
families to Colonel J. Fred Scott School and we look forward to working closely
with you and your children.
Staff and students will begin the
year by talking about how we can work together and to continue to make CJFS a
great community of learning. We would encourage all parents to talk about
these ideas with your children and to review the opening pages of the Student
Agenda to ensure you understand the foundations of our work at school.
We have a wonderful staff at CJFS
and are pleased to welcome new and returning staff. Our work together has
already been thought provoking and we are excited about this new school
year. This year, our staff will be:
Ms. Y. Atsin Lunchroom
Mrs. S. Jabali,
Mr. M. Collins, PE
Ms. D. Klem,
Ms. A. Coupland, Education
Assistant Ms. D. Knust,
Mrs. J. Duros, Facility Operator,
afternoons Ms. B. Kolb,
Grade 3-4, Learning Leader
Mrs. L. Deol, Lunchroom
Supervisor Ms. N. Lauchlan, Grade 1-2
Ms. E. Deschamps, Lunchroom
C. Luzzi, Library Asst & Lunchrm
Mrs. A. Dhadda, Admin
Secretary Mrs. S. McLellan, Grade 3-4
Ms. A. Dixon, Grade 1-2 Ms. V. Medford, Education Assistant
Mrs. J. Dixon, Grade 1-2 Mrs. C. Petersen, Assistant Principal
Mrs. L. Dryden, Grade
3-4 Mr. S.
Mrs. R. El-Haj-Ahmed, Lead
Lunchroom Supervisor Ms.
K. Roeding, Grade 1-2
Ms. T. Engel, Diversity Learning
Leader Mrs. C. Sasse,
Mrs. K Eriksen 1-2, Learning
Schulhof, Grade 1-2
Ms. H. Exner, Grade 3-4 Ms. S. Schumacher, Education Assist
Ms. L. Farley, Grade 1-2
Ms. M. Serquina,
Mrs. M. Gawley, Bookkeeper
Mrs. S. Grant, School Secretary
T. Storrier, Grade 5-6
Ms. B. Greaves, Grade
D. Taylor, Grade
Ms. S. Gulamhusein, Kindergarten,
Learning Leader Ms. M. Tran, Grade 5-6
Ms. J. Gunderson, Music
Specialist Mr. V. Thelmo, Facility Operator
Mr. K. Higgins,
Teacher Grade 5-6 Mrs. S. Warmerdam, Lunch Sup.
Ms. S. Yap, Grade 5-6
We look forward to
seeing you soon.
Mr. Robinson, Mrs. Petersen
& the CJFS Staff
There are many ways a child’s progress
is reported throughout the year. In
order to be sure that parents have a thorough understanding of student progress
we have developed the following process:
Classroom Social Media accounts
There are many different ways to
communicate to parents through social media in today’s world. We have given the choice to teachers to
communicate through either a classroom blog, Twitter or Instagram. At least monthly, each teacher updates their
blog, Twitter or Instagram accounts. These
accounts communicate what children are learning and how they are taking up the
work in the classrooms. Things you may
see on these accounts are class projects, inquiries, homework, instructions,
links to websites etc. Please ask your
child’s teacher for more information on subscribing to their classroom accounts
Parent, Student & Teacher Conferences
During these meetings, parents will
talk about questions such as:
What gains have students made over the past 3
What gains have been made on the parent’s
goals? The student’s goals? The IPP goals?
Are there new goals for the coming months?
What are the next steps for students and how
will the student be supported?
How has your teacher-parent communication plan
What were the results of the Kindergarten Eye
First Report Cards
The written report card with comments
will be sent home for parents to read.
It will support information shared in the conferences, as well as on-going
Teacher & Parent communication.
Mathematics Celebration of Learning – all grades
This Celebration of Learning is
designed to provide students with opportunities to share their mathematical learning
with our families so that parents better understand the work students are
engaged in and can see a wide variety of evidence of student learning.
Year End Celebration of Learning – all students
End of Year Celebration of Learning is a celebration of the Artist-in-Residence
work taking the form of an art gallery where families can celebrate student
success while learning more about art appreciation in school.
Principal, Colonel J. Fred Scott School
to the 2018 – 2019 school year! We are
happy to welcome both our returning and our new families to Colonel J. Fred
Scott School and we look forward to working closely with you and your
children. We begin every year by
reviewing our three pillars of respect:
- We respect
- We respect each other
- We respect this place
and students will begin the year by talking about how we can work together and
to continue to make CJFS a great community of learning. We would encourage all parents to talk about
these ideas with your children and to review the opening pages of the Student
Agenda to ensure you understand the foundations of our work at school.
have a wonderful staff at CJFS and are pleased to welcome new and returning
staff. Our work together has already
been thought provoking and we are excited about this new school year. Our staff this year will be:
Atsin Lunchroom Supervisor Mrs. S. Jabali, Kindergarten
Ms. J. Bedi, ESL Assistant Ms. D. Klem, Grade 3-4
Collins, PE Specialist Ms. D. Knust, Education Assistant
Coupland, Education Assistant Ms. B. Kolb, Grade 3-4
Duros, Part Time Cleaner Mrs. C. Luzzi, Library Assistant & Lunchroom Supv
Deol, Lunchroom Supervisor Ms. L. MacPherson, Grade 5-6, Learning
Deschamps, Lunchroom Supervisor Mrs. S. McLellan, Grade 3-4
Dhadda, Admin Secretary Ms. V. Medford, Education Assistant
Dixon, Grade 1-2 Mrs.
D. Omar, Lunchroom Supervisor
Dixon, Grade 1-2 Mr.
S. Robinson, Principal
Downing, Grade 1-2, Learning Leader Ms. K. Roeding, Grade 1-2
Dryden, Grade 3-4 Mrs. C. Sasse, Resource
El-Haj-Ahmed, Lunchroom Supervisor Ms.
K Schulhof, Grade 1-2
Engel, Diversity Ms.
S. Scott, Grade 5-6
Eriksen 1-2, Learning Leader Ms. M. Serquina, Education Assistant
Ms. H. Exner, Grade 3-4 Ms. M. Shustack,
Farley, Grade 1-2 Mr. C. Southworth, Assistant Principal
Gawley, Bookkeeper Mrs. T. Storrier, Grade 5-6
Grant, School Secretary Ms. D. Taylor, Grade 5-6
Greaves, Grade 3-4 Mr. V. Thelmo, Facility Operator
Gulamhusein, Kindergarten Mrs. S. Warmerdam, Lunchroom Supervisor
Gunderson, Music Specialist Ms. S. Yap, Grade 5-6
Hergenhein, Lead Lunchroom Supervisor
We know that school and families make the greatest impact on children’s
lives when we work closely together to support learning and we encourage you to
become actively involved in our school. In particular, we would like to invite
you to attend School Council meetings on the third Thursday of each month, with
our first meeting being Thursday, September 27 at 6:30pm in the Learning
Commons – everyone is welcome!
also encourage you to attend our Parent Teacher Conferences on September 20h
and 21st so that you can help your child’s teacher better understand
your child’s learning profile. To use the booking system, you must have a “My
CBE Account” by registering at www.cbe.ab.ca/mycbe. This is the same account to register for noon
supervision if your child is staying at school for lunch. We are looking forward to a wonderful year at
Scott, Chris & the CJFS Staff
Every school has processes and traditions which are relatively unique to them. At CJFS we hold a meeting with each and every new family that comes into the school. This is one tradition that we are very proud of because it gives us a chance to meet and get to know each family. During the meeting, parents are invited to share their future goals for their children. Responses we get often range from hoping their children become doctors, lawyers, engineers and artists to simply children who treat others with kindness and respect. Each response tells us about the love, care and hope that parents feel for their children, but also the importance families place on education and children’s success in school.
The teachers’ job is an awesome responsibility. Families trust us with the most precious thing in the world each and every day. For people to be successful in life we must all have strong literacy skills. Research has shown that the reading ability of a student at the end of grade one is predictive of how they will do in later school years.
In a world where information is everywhere and knowledge changes at light speed, we must raise children to adapt and learn on their own. Parents often ask how we can work together to set students up for success when, in many cases, parents may not have done well in school themselves, or are unsure of how to help their children.
The good news is that it actually is much easier than we might expect. It is true that we need to teach students how to figure out words, decode text and how to think and visualize while reading, but the most important element in literacy development for children is coming to love language and story.
Children who hear more language, whatever the language may be, learn more words and come to understand that language is how we communicate. From the time they are in the womb, to the late elementary years children learn to read and write quicker and easier because they have heard and used many of the words and ideas they encounter.
Oral language (listening and speaking) is the stepping stone to literacy. As students begin to read picture books, early reader books and novels, they make connections to the words and ideas they have heard and used orally. The more we talk, tell and share stories aloud, the more we set children up for success in all areas of future life.
So, what do parents of young children need to do to support their children with literacy? Simply talk to them, tell them stories and read to them from the earliest age possible. The more words and stories we share with children, the more value they place on those words and stories and the more they will want to learn to read themselves.
We can teach children all of the phonics rules and mechanics of reading, but the most powerful force for children learning to read is a love of language and a love of story. That is something we can all share in and enjoy.
Math in schools has changed quite a bit since I was a child. When I think of my youth in school learning math I think of worksheets. Page after page of worksheets. I think of homework where we practiced math computation skills with little or no context. And half of the time we spent in math class was dedicated to taking up the homework. But the most dreadful part was the math “word problem!” Word problems like…
“At 10:00 AM train A left the station and an hour later train B left the same station on a parallel track. If train A traveled at a constant speed of 60 miles per hour and train B at 80 miles per hour, then at what time did train B pass train A?”
“Al's father is 45. He is 15 years older than twice Al's age. How old is Al?”
When we were young, we really didn’t care how old Al was or what time train A passed train B!! And we would have many, many similar word problems that had no connection to any of us. To make matters worse, the teachers tried to confuse us with the language they used. They purposefully tried to trick us with words!
Today in schools, we teach math differently. Of course, the actual math is the same and the basics are the same. Teaching the foundations of math is still important, however we now use current brain research, current research on learning and we need to be aware that there are now computers in all schools and homes. The way we teach math has evolved and students are being asked to think differently about mathematics.
But this is all very confusing for parents who grew up in the age of ‘old math’. I often hear from parents who ask…
“I don’t understand the math they are doing in schools these days.”
The job requirements in today’s world have changed dramatically over the years. Many of today’s jobs did not even exist when I was young. As such, the goals for our students in math have also changed. Instead of focusing mostly on computation, we are focusing on the understanding of math concepts and the ability to apply this understanding to real world situations. The Alberta Program of Studies states that the main goals for mathematical education are to prepare students to:
use mathematics confidently to solve problems
communicate and reason mathematically
appreciate and value mathematics
make connections between mathematics and its applications
commit themselves to lifelong learning
become mathematically literate adults, using mathematics to contribute to society.
This is a very comprehensive list of goals. Not only do we teach the basics of math, but we also teach problem solving skills and communication skills, as well as help students to connect mathematical ideas to other concepts, use mental math, develop mathematical reasoning, and develop visualization skills.
The biggest problem I hear from parents is that they don’t understand the different math strategies their children bring home from school. Most parents were only taught one way to solve a math problem. Many years ago, the teacher would teach the entire class only one way, but students are now learning many ways to solve the same problem. These aren’t different ‘tricks’ to solve a problem but different developmental strategies that fit the needs of each learner.
Another question I hear from parents is…
“I don’t know how to help my child in Math.”
We recognize that parents play an important role in shaping the way their children view learning. As a parent, you understand more than anyone else how your child learns and processes information. Instead of thinking about homework for your child in math, please consider:
Talk about math in a positive way. A positive attitude about math is infectious.
Encourage persistence. Some problems take time to solve.
Encourage your child to experiment with different approaches to mathematics. There is often more than one way to solve a math problem.
Encourage your child to talk about and show a math problem in a way that makes sense (i.e., draw a picture or use material like macaroni).
When your child is solving math problems ask questions such as: Why did you...? What can you do next? Do you see any patterns? Does the answer make sense? How do you know? This helps to encourage thinking about mathematics.
Connect math to everyday life and help your child understand how math influences them (i.e. shapes of traffic signs, walking distance to school, telling time).
Play family math games together that add excitement such as checkers, junior monopoly, math bingo and uno.
Computers + math = fun! There are great computer math games available on the internet that you can discover with your child.
Talk with your child’s teacher about difficulties he/she may be experiencing. When teachers and parents work together, children benefit
Adapted from information provided by the Ontario Ministry of Education.
I would also encourage you to stay as informed as possible by reading our schools communication through our school/teacher blogs, twitter, newsletters and agendas. Also, please stay in constant communication with your child’s teacher to stay on top of what they are learning in Math.
With regards to homework, the current research states that homework in elementary school does not improve academic achievement. That doesn’t mean that we need to get rid of homework completely, but we can improve it! According to research, five to ten minutes of homework has the same effect as one or two hours. We now realize that the worst thing you can do for homework is give students projects to do at home or have parents teach a new concept. Instead, the best homework is reinforcing something your child has already learned!
Scott Robinson, Principal
Colonel J. Fred Scott School
As a school and as a system we are working on learning and
developing ‘high impact math tasks.’ In other words, we are studying math
lessons demonstrated by research to have the biggest impact on student
learning. This year we are working on studying the latest research from John
Hattie and Jo Boaler.
Both of these authors have done extensive research in the
area of high impact strategies. Hattie’s
research group conducted a study involving over three million students that
fount some of the best strategies for learning.
These were then ranked for their effectiveness within his book Visible Learning For Mathematics. These include teacher clarity (making
sure students understand what and why they are learning), building good math
tasks, student collaboration, direct instruction and effective assessment.
Math is an area of considerable stress and anxiety for many
students. Much of the research states
that all students can and should do well in math if they have the right mindset
to do so. A mindset is a way of thinking
that believes that we can be successful.
In many ways, it refers to the power of positive thinking and self-confidence,
but it is more than that. It is actually
a way to believe we can accomplish our goals because we are able to grow and
learn. This idea is based in “brain
plasticity,” that our brain can and will build new connections as we
In Jo Boaler’s book Mathematical
Mindsets, she outlines the
strategies, tasks and ideas that support students in building their growth mindsets
in math. These include mathematical
growth mindset, flexibility in thinking, assessment and seeing the beauty in
It is my hope, as we move through this work, that these
ideas will be visible and evident throughout our school as this will show that
it is truly having an effect on our school culture.
-Mr. Scott Robinson
This year at Colonel J. Fred Scott School, we are focusing
our student and staff learning on mathematics.
In order to improve our student’s mathematical understanding and skills,
all our staff professional development will be focused on improving teaching
math and finding ways to better engage our students towards deeper mathematical
In the news recently, there has been some public debate
about how math is taught in our schools.
Many people in the public would like a more “back to the basics” approach
to teaching math. You may have heard the
expression “discovery math.” This is a math approach where students ‘discover’
math concepts on their own and aren’t directly taught. Some parents might think that “discovery
math” is our approach to teaching math and we don’t teach the math facts
anymore in Alberta schools. This is not
true and I would like to take a moment to help parents understand how math instruction
works at CJFS and most other schools in Alberta.
Much has changed over the years with regards to how math is
taught in Alberta schools. Historically, mathematical teaching was focused on
learning the basics of computation, memorizing facts and learning the ‘proper’
way to solve math equations. We now have current research on how the brain
works and how children learn, and a fundamental shift about learning has
occurred. Instead of only teaching skill based, procedural math, now we also
focus on conceptual understanding, using multiple strategies, solving problems efficiently, and most
importantly focusing on the skills and
concepts that build success in each child. I will explain each of
these concepts in further detail below.
In the past, teachers focused only on the procedures or the
“how to” in math. Whereas now, we focus on the deeper understanding of math. For
example, when teaching the concept of division, students are expected to
understand how division works, not
just knowing the facts or knowing how to do long division (the ‘procedural’
math). Teachers now explore real life
situations where people would use division to solve problems. We then take these problems and together with
students, figure out how to solve them. Students would use different ways to
solve the problems, use manipulatives, explain their thinking out loud, and work
with other students to solve the problems together. In other words, students experience the
concept of division in many different real and meaningful ways so that there is
a deeper understanding of how division really works.
Strategies to Solve Math Problems:
Research has shown that students do not all learn the same
way or at the same time. Some students strengths are more ‘hands on’, others
learn best working with others, some learn best by themselves, others learn
creatively, and some logically. So, if students learn differently, then they
will naturally understand math differently and thus solve math problems
differently. Continuing with the
division example, students who think more logically would benefit from using ‘long
division’ when confronted with a division problem. But to another student who
thinks more creatively, the procedure of long division might be confusing and he/she
might draw, use blocks or invent their own method of dividing. Nowadays, we teach different strategies. Overall, students who solve problems using
their own strengths and strategies are much more successful.
Solving Problems more
Students learn math at different speeds. Not all students in
a classroom will have the same mathematical understandings and skills at the
same time. As such, some students will be very quick to solve problems and
others will not. For the students who take
more time to solve math problems, it is quite often because the student
continues to rely on a strategy that they learned in earlier grades and don’t
know a strategy that would be much more efficient. Lets’ use a grade 3 example:
when students add 5+7=12, some students would just know the answer, some would
add 5 + 5= 10, then 10+2 =12, some would ‘add up’ by starting with 7 and then
counting up five more to 12 and others would put together 5 manipulatives and 7
manipulatives and then count them all to 12. It is clear that the students have
an understanding of addition and for the student who was relying on using manipulatives,
teachers would help the student move on to a new more efficient math strategy.
Teaching Math Skills
that Build Success with each child:
In the elementary grades, mathematical learning is very
connected to mathematical confidence. Confident math students are usually
successful math students. For students who come to school without confidence in
math, they are often behind in their mathematical understanding and trying to
catch up to their peers. We expect
teachers to build success and confidence in students at their level. So, in the example of the grade 3 students adding 5+7,
we would teach the student who already knew the answer differently than we would teach the student who was still counting
the manipulatives. This way, both students are working at a level where they
can be successful.
In conclusion, mathematical learning is more than learning
the facts and skills. In today’s schools, we must teach mathematical
understanding through engaging math problems.
The math class now does not always have kids quietly working at their
desk, but can have kids solving problems together, explaining their learning
out loud and defending their understandings with each other. Math class can now be exciting, interesting,
and a challenging place to learn!!
At Colonel J. Fred Scott School, report cards and Parent-Teacher Conferences are two significant ways for teachers and staff to communicate to families about student learning. They allow us all to come together around a student’s strengths and understand both the student and his/her learning.
Report cards are a very important way for schools to inform parents about their child’s progress and achievement. A student’s report card is one of the most important ways teachers support the continued learning of their students through ongoing assessment.
As always, the goal is to work alongside parents and families to create high quality learning experiences for children and to communicate carefully both progress and achievement throughout the year. We always encourage families to speak with their children’s teachers if they have any questions, or need help reading and interpreting the report card.
Parent-Teacher Conferences happen three times per year. These are conversations around a child’s strengths and level of achievement, as well as the next steps in working towards his/her learning goals. These meetings allow us to explain children’s progress in greater detail and to show examples of our grade level expectations. We always value the chance for school and home to work together to ensure that children are successful and that we are all working towards common goals.
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