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Starting School off right....

29 August 2019
 

DSCE Students & Parents, a very warm welcome back!!  Over the course of the school year, I’ll be writing a blog with entries every month or so to keep you updated on ways to make the most of your school experience.

As I thought about this first entry, I kept coming back to how important it is for everyone – staff, parents and students - to start the school year off with a positive attitude.  It really sets the tone for the whole year.

So what have we been doing at the school to set a positive tone? 

Long before students arrive back on campus September 2nd , we had been hard at work getting ready for the new school year. We’ve been busy preparing classrooms, reviewing & updating teaching & learning materials, and going over school protocols to ensure that we’re completely ready to provide the most current & meaningful program of study we can in a safe and inclusive environment for all of our students. We are all really looking forward to welcoming new and returning students to class after a summer of relaxing and time spent on more family-focused activities.  It’s always great to see happy, motivated students walk through the school door and to hear stories of their adventures.  

And you, as parents?

As your child returns to their daily school routines, I’d like to remind you how important you are to their success. Your attitude towards education, school, and completing homework and projects makes a huge difference! Sometimes your children may seem pretty independent and grown-up but, trust me, they still need your guidance and they look to you for cues about how to react to things.

I strongly encourage you to be proactive and supportive of your child’s learning process.  At home, please try to create a culture of learning, curiosity, and exploration with a strong focus on reading. Research has shown that reading is the single most important factor in helping a child acquire language, being prepared for school, and developing a love of learning that will last a lifetime.  One thing you could do is to read your own books alongside them as they read theirs. In this seemingly small thing, you’re not only a role model but you’re also spending some quiet family time together – it’s impact can be huge!

I’d also like to invite you to follow along on your child’s journey of learning via the classroom online learning platform.  Talk to your child about what they are learning in class and encourage them to think about the relevance of what they’re learning to their lives.  Promoting thought, discussion and a ‘love of learning’ at a young age goes a long way in producing a society that sees the importance of lifelong learning.

At the same time, children function best when they know their limits and when these limits are properly enforced – things like when they can use electronic devices, where homework fits into the priority list of things to get done and what time they need to go to bed, for example.

Your child spends a lot of their waking time at school. If, at any time, your child feels upset about something that happened at school, please don’t hesitate to discuss this with his or her teacher(s).  It is very important that every child feels comfortable, safe and welcome at school. We have many support systems in place to help students with their social-emotional well-being.  The time a child spends at our school should be among their most enjoyable and memorable experiences! It is our job to ensure this happens.

And Students?

If you find that you just aren’t “getting” something and need a bit of extra help, please make sure that you talk to your teacher(s). This is a key opportunity that isn’t used as fully as it could be. I remember how important that extra bit of more personalized help can be from my own school days - when I was in Grade 9 and struggling with an advanced math course, the difference between success and failure was the continuous support I asked for and received from my teacher!

Finally, if we all work together – School, Parents, and Students – we can create a positive learning environment both at home and at school that will maximize the success and well-being of each and every student. We are a team. Let’s do this together and have another great year!

 

Allan Morrison, BA (Hons), BEd, MA, MBA
Deputy Principal (Elementary)