Welcome parents, and students to our 2023 Remembrance Day Assembly. I have tremendous gratitude to our teachers and grade 4 students for their leadership and talents at our Remembrance Day Assembly on November 8th. Special thanks to our music teacher and creative director Ms. Lyons.
The school Remembrance Day Assembly is a day to pause and think about all that we have
and those that defended our freedoms around the world and those that continue to defend our way of life. Today we remember all who fought so that countries like Canada remain free and safe places for us to live.
We are reminded every day that we must NEVER take our the peace we have in Canada for granted. We recognize and honour the efforts of our Canadian vetrans at work at home and abroad, as well as those who are currently sacrificing their safety and their lives for freedom in countries around the world.
Today as we look back, we need to stop and remember that The Canadian Armed forces made up of real people. Sometimes these soldiers were our Indigenous brothers and sisters. November 8th every year marks the official Indigenous Remembrance Day. We specifically recognize the sacrifices of all our Indigenous soldiers who fought, were wounded and died for this land. Some of our soldiers were recent immigrants or second or third generations Canadians - defending a country they loved because of the life they were building here.
My friends, how many of you have older brothers and sisters? Cousins? Teenage friends or family members? You might be surprised to know that soldiers were often only 18 years old when they were sent off to the horrors of war. They have futures ahead of them, hopes, dreams and people who loved them. In a moment, they gave all of that up so that Canada could be the place we count on for freedom and safety today.
Think about that for a second.
Would we do the same?
Earlier this week, I able to be part of a lesson with grade 1 and 2 students. As a class, students had read The Peace Book by Todd Parr and were making personal connections.
I did a stand-up hand-up activity with the kids and heard what peace meant to several of our students. I was really proud that this conversation was happening in our school with some of our youngest students.
Here are some of the things I heard them tell me:
Peace being curling up with their mom or dad and reading a book.
Peace is sharing your snacks,
Peace is helping someone up when they fall down.
Peace is when we say we are sorry, even if it was an accident.
What students were discribing was the feeling of comfort and safety that we get because of the small actions we take every day. We started to realize that peace starts small and spreads to others. Every day we have an opportunity to choose our actions. Every day we can choose between conflict and peace, love and hate. belonging or lonliness
On Remembrance Day we ask you to remember our soldiers’ incredible actions and sacrifices but EVERYDAY we are asking you to think about the kind of world we want to live in. We must take actions to create peace, safety and belonging in our school, our community and our world.
What we do matters. Together we will make our school and the world a better place, one peaceful decision at a time.
Principal's messages can be found in the news stories on the front page of our website. Messages from the office are posted weekly.
All kidding aside, it has been wonderful to return to learning in a much more collaborative and creative way. The beginning of this year started with us at the height of the Delta variant. Still wearing masks, social distancing and maintaining cohorts we all wondered what would be possible in our 3rd school year of the pandemic. As always our students amazed and inspired us. They wore their masks, smiled with their eyes and dove into their learning!
We started our year with Coach Dan Taylor of Elev8 Lacrosse. Our first ever athletic residency was a big success. Held outside and observing enhanced sanitizing protocols, students learned to stickhandle, pass and score. There was much cheering and an opportunity for kids to again be kids! While there were times throughout the year when we held our collective breath hoping the different Covid variants would pass quietly, day by day students and teachers returned to more collaborative and interactive learning with even more opportunities for friendships and relationships with classmates. This year also marked the return of a vibrant and joyous music program in our school. From the first day in September the notes flowed out of the classroom doors and filled up the heart of our building with renewed joy and hope! We got to meet and love our new music teacher, Ms. Georgie Lyons! We posted videos of students performing on Google Classroom streams. We continued to dream of a day when students could sing, dance and play for a real audience and to real applause.
Looking ahead to next September we have learned so much! We will take many of those lessons with us. Things like making sure that our hand hygiene is strong, soft entry in the morning and use of technology as a way to connect parents with our school in a meaningful way. Other things we hope we will be able to reclaim. There is hope! We had our first fun lunch this month, we welcomed parents to a live Grade 5 Farewell and watched with pride as our Edgemont Ambassadors toured over 100 new students and their families through our beautiful building on the evenings of Kindergarten and Grade 1-5 Orientations.
We are looking forward to next year and the promise of gathering as an extended learning community. We are hopeful to again welcome parents to celebrate learning and volunteer in our school. We kick off our year on August 31st with our Chalk the Walk event the night before the first day of school. Mark your calendars for 5 - 6 pm. Students, parents and staff will gather to write messages on the sidewalks surrounding the school and ring in a positive new year! I have it on good authority that Chalk the Walk will coincide with Food Trucks in the community center parking lot!
Students’ last day of school is Tuesday, June 28th. Parents please watch your child’s Google Classroom stream for our Farewell Video and Celebrations of Learning. The school office will be closed on June 30th at 1:00pm and will remain closed until Thursday, August 25th at 1pm. Please be advised that school voicemail and email accounts will not be monitored over the summer vacation. If you have any pressing questions please contact the CBE main line at (403) 817-4000.
Parents can expect to receive an email from their child’s teacher on or before August 31st to inform them about where to meet on the first day of school. Our day will begin September 1st at 9:05.
I am grateful for all the support parents have provided for our children over the past 2 and a half years. We are fortunate to have such an amazing community to work with. Have a wonderful summer and we look forward to seeing you all back for an amazing 2022-2023 school year!
IS YOUR CHILD RETURNING TO EDGEMONT SCHOOL NEXT YEAR?
It is the time of year that we are starting to make plans for next year. Please help us to anticipate our enrolment for next year by letting us know if your child is returning for the 2022-23 school year
CLICK HERE TO ACCESS THE QUICK 1 MINUTE SURVEY
Please fill out one form for EACH child that you have attending Edgemont School.
If you are unsure about your plans for next year that is important information for us to know as well. Please indicate that you are unsure and we can follow up with you at a later date.
Dear Students and Families,
WE MADE IT!
It goes without saying that much has happened since a year ago. Last year we weren’t able to say good bye to our students or staff who would be leaving us. Last year we faced an uncertain situation returning in the fall. Last year we didn’t know what was going to happen to our school or our world. We have overcome much in the past year and through it all it has been our relationships that have carried us forward. The pandemic has focussed our attention on what is truly important in our lives and in our school.
Over the last year students have thrived and made us all so proud. Looking back, we are celebrating teaching and learning that is responsive and honours student growth from their own unique starting points. We have had opportunities to extend our outdoor classroom beyond good weather and see the benefits of getting outdoors and reconnecting with the land. We have included digital technologies to deliver learning and communicate with parents in meaningful and timely ways. Even while we are hopeful for a typical school year next year, we will incorporate many of the things that we have learned and adapted during this unique year. If you haven’t had a chance to visit our student showcase page on our website we hope you will! Here we have shared celebrations of learning in each online and in person classroom through the 2020-2021 school year. We have much to be proud of and to celebrate!
We’ve observed our students’ responses to the pandemic and realize the need to pay attention to student (and staff) wellness - nothing is possible without this starting point. We’ve also identified a need for intentional teaching in literacy and numeracy in order to prioritize learning interventions for students. This will be the main work of our school development plan next year. Along with this, we will build student resilience through the lens of Growth Mindsets. We will revisit our commitment to Truth and Reconciliation through land based learning and indigenous pedagogies. We will build students’ creativity and critical thinking through the lens of inquiry. Though it reads as a tall order in a single year. In practice these are the strands that connect and intertwine with each other - braided together to create strong outcomes for students.
It is important to emphasize that the summer's time for families to spend with each other. Don’t stress about schoolwork. In September we will support students to learn from their starting points. Students and families have lived through an extraordinary year. It is important that students spend time relaxing and knowing that they are strong and capable. Reassure them with your calmness, share your strength with them and laugh a lot! This will help students to be centred and regulated when they return to school. - ready to learn!
Our school office will close on Wednesday, June 30th
The office reopens on Tuesday, August 24th at 1pm.
Your child’s teacher will reach out to you August 31st via school messenger. They will introduce themselves and let you know where your child will meet them on the first day of school.
Our first day of school will be September 1st. School starts at 9:05 am.
More updates will be posted to our school website at the end of August
We will continue to use a “soft entry” system where students come directly into the school between 8:50 and 9:05 each morning.
If you have any general questions at that time you can contact the main office at 403-777-6340. Please note that our email and phone messages are not monitored during the summer. We will respond to parent messages within the first few days of school.
As we head into the second summer of the pandemic we are hopeful! I Hope that school will return to more normal operations and that students' learning will not be interrupted in the upcoming school year. We are also planning for safety and will likely continue many of the protocols that have kept our learning environment safe over the past year. More information will be communicated to you at the beginning of the year as our directions from Alberta Health, Alberta Education and the Calgary Board of Education are made clear to schools.
I know that I speak on behalf of all the Edgemont Staff when I say thank you to our wonderful community of parents! You have encouraged us and believed in us throughout this year! Thank you to each and every parent that sent an encouraging email, answered the phone with understanding and created a space where we knew that we had your trust and support. I feel privileged to be a part of this school community and wish all of our families a wonderful summer!
At the beginning of important gatherings, we pause to remember that this land has a history and that many have walked here before us. I often wonder whether this small act of reconciliation will help to create meaningful change in our world and whether students understand why it is so important for schools to do this.
I think about my own connection to the land, the places that have been important to me throughout my life, the places where I have grown and become an adult. I realize that the connection I feel to special places in my life is a physical, emotional and spiritual one. I have a deep love for the place where I have grown up and where my own children have grown. I remember fondly the places where I’ve happily celebrated milestones in my life. So many of these places have been schools. As a teacher, I’ve been continually in school for more than 40 years. Schools are where I felt safe, loved, nurtured and where I belonged. My own teachers are among the most influential relationships in my life.
I know that my experiences in schools are not what everyone has experienced. In fact, many people my age have had very different and sometimes traumatic experiences. This saddens my teacher's heart and makes me want to make sure that our school is one where students are deeply cared for and their gifts are nurtured.
The pictures shown are of Edgemont students interacting with this place in many different ways. The land that Edgemont School was built on is special. A walk around our school, across the ridge and looking out towards the Rocky Mountains is breathtaking. We are so fortunate to be able to come to this place every day to breathe the air that rises on the wind and feel an abundance of space in the city. We have the privilege to belong to this place that is both beautiful and provides a connection with our community.
In the spring when schools closed, I felt the loss of a place like I’ve never experienced before. I have moved homes, changed schools and even relocated to a different province. Each time I have left a space it has been by my choice or knowing that the change was leading forward to the future in some positive way. But in the spring, I felt a profound loss of community and of purpose. In a moment the school stopped being a safe, nurturing center of our community. We were no longer able to come together and learn, laugh and live.
The pandemic has helped me to realize that circumstances change very quickly and unpredictably and that connection to this place and all of the relationships between people in this space can’t be taken for granted. In a moment there can be an event that changes everything.
I also know that the loss that I felt when our school was taken from us is very small in comparison to the suffering of our indigenous people, who have suffered being removed from their lands, children removed from their families. It pains me that schools were the source of trauma and pain inflicted on so many. As a child and even as a student becoming a teacher I did not know about the legacy of residential schools. Now that I do, I can’t go back to not knowing, I am changed by knowing. I struggle to find answers to questions that belong to us all.
The land acknowledgement is a small but potentially powerful act of remembering and revealing the truth. It is important that the history of this place and of the traditional people who once lived here be heard not hidden. Only then can we start to reconcile, heal and build a future that unites all who now make their home on this land.
Always, the land remains.
We would like to acknowledge the traditional territories and oral practices of the Blackfoot Nations, which includes the Siksika, the Piikani, and the Kainai. We also acknowledge the Tsuut'ina and Stoney Nakoda First Nations, The Metis Nation (Region 3), and all people who make their homes in the Treaty 7 region of Southern Alberta.
Principal Edgemont School
November 13th, 2020My Trusting Grateful Inspired (Remembrance Week) Friday
Trusting our teachers and community members to follow the new Alberta Health Guidelines. We have been working very hard to make sure that our students at Edgemont School are safe and healthy! I am so proud of the resilience of our students and teachers throughout this year. We are ready to support learning in whatever way we need to in the days and weeks ahead. for the forward thinking and preparedness of all our teachers as we consider the possibility of needing to shift to Scenario 2 or 3. I am grateful that we have had time to adjust to Scenario 1 and that staff have created meaningful learning for students both online and in person. I have every faith in our ability to stay focussed on supporting our learners regardless of what circumstances may arise in the future.
Grateful to live and work in a community and country that honours our history and creates meaningful connections to the sacrifices of our service men and women. The Remembrance Day assembly at school is always profoundly meaningful to me. I a grateful for all the meaning making conversations, big and small, that help children to understand the significance of peace and the profound impact of war. Lest we forget.
Inspired by all of our classrooms who did thoughtful work leading up to Remembrance Day Assembly. Thank you to teachers for sharing your students’ reflections and creative interpretations with us via our virtual Remembrance Day Assembly. War is a difficult topic for young students to sometimes wrap their thinking around. I am grateful for the connects teachers made to student areas of study, prior experiences and rich literature. A real highlight for me was Room 22’s Peace Rap which the the student wrote and performed with passion!
Have a wonderful weekend!
November 6th, 2020
My Trusting Grateful Inspired Friday
Trusting our provincial health officer to relay timely information to Albertans and lead with incredible calm. Trusting also in the strength and resilience of our Edgemont community that we will all continue to be vigilant in keeping our students and school safe.
Grateful to my principal colleagues for sharing their wisdom so that I can learn from their experiences. Also grateful for the strong and compassionate leadership from our Area 1 leadership team including Director Prem Randawa, Director Christine Davies and Area Principal Shelaugh Reading. Even though many parents and staff my not know these names, you need to know that they are actively working to support students in our school. Thank you all for supporting new directions for our school development plan, for creating opportunities for meaningful dialogue and for your incredible ability to shine light in dark places!
Inspired our Elder Saa’kokoto who met with our students virtually over 3 days this week. His stories and teachings have profound meaning for our staff and students. Using virtual meeting software presents many challenges and I am grateful to our Assistant Principal for facilitating this important connection for our students. Saa’kokoto you inspire us as a teacher and a learner!
Fun! It’s been wonderful to see all the amazing student projects pop up on bulletin boards around the school. Students light up when they see Ms. Dickson come into the classroom with her bright smile boundless enthusiasm. Fine Arts FUN for everyone!
Have a wonderful weekend!
My Trusting Grateful Inspired Friday
Trusting teacher collaboration and deep knowledge about student learning and learner outcomes. Our PD day on Friday was full of rich and purposeful conversation starting with student writing assessments and leading to impactful learning strategies to support next steps. The conversations and clarifications about learning targets led us to research based instructional practices that we've all committed to integrating into instruction over the next 6-8 weeks. Simon Breakspear calls these Teaching Sprints. I completely trust in Edgemont Teachers' already strong practice and their commitment to continuous improvement! Honoured to work with and for these incredible people.
Grateful to my mentor and retired principal who treated our staff to pizza lunch during our professional development day. She wanted our staff to know that retired teachers stand with us and that we are seen and cared for. I am so grateful that I have had the opportunity to learn from the heart of this wonderul leader and educator. MJ, our bellies and hearts are full from your generosity!
Inspired by kindergarten students demonstrating their literacy skills using loose parts and document cameras. Check out this joyful tweet showing Literacy in Kindergarten.
Fun! Wearing Halloween costumes and digital costume parade were a big success. It was a glimpse of kids being kids and finding delight in the unexpected. Thank you teachers and all staff for getting in the spirit and honouring our student voice to bring costumes back for Halloween.
Have a Happy Halloween weekend!
My Trusting Grateful Inspired Friday
Trusting the incredible work that our cleaners and facilities team have done to keep our school safe and clean. It is a huge task to repeatedly sanitize touchpoints and respond to requests in the moment. We appreciate their vigilance and hard work. Thank you Yaming, Tammi, Leanne and Surrinder!
Grateful for Ms. Briand who has decorated our front hallway and office. The festive decorations have given us all a lift and a smile! Our Edgemont School Council Executive members are finding their way in new roles in very different ways.
Inspired by our teaching staff who are finding rich and authentic ways to engage students in learning tasks within the “new normal”. I admire their commitment to students and their tenacity in showing up physically and mentally for their kids! I am also inspired by our outdoor learning. This has been a great success and even as the weather turns cold, we breathe fresh air, move our bodies and become more healthy and resilient day by day. Finally by author Brené Brown. She is a research professor and writer who studies vulnerability, courage, and authenticity. TGIF is her format!
Have a wonderful weekend!
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