CambridgeLearns August 15, 2014

IN THIS ISSUE:

PRINCIPAL’S GREETING
It’s been a long summer and I am looking forward to the start of an exciting new school year. I hope you have had a time to create many memories together with your family. Back in July, I enjoyed a trip to New York City and have been doing a lot of running, hiking, and camping.

I am buoyed by news that there has been some progress made in the teacher dispute and that veteran mediator Vince Ready has agreed to assist in bringing both sides closer together. Read more here. I think that I speak on behalf of our entire staff when I say that we are very much looking forward to getting back to doing the work we love – fostering a love of learning and helping your children be the very best learners and people they can be!

As Cambridge’s new principal, I welcome every opportunity to hear from you and to get to know students and parents. I hope you will take the opportunity (like I have) to either use Twitter or Instagram to introduce yourselves and to share your summer adventures and learning. If you feel comfortable posting, be sure you use the #CambridgeLearns hashtag.
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Have a wonderful next few weeks and fingers crossed for a September 2nd school opening.

Kind Regards,
Mr. Vendramin
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SCHOOL SUPPLIES

While I know parents are looking forward to the beginning of a new school year, I certainly hope students are little more enthusiastic than the children in the video above.

Back to school means being prepared for learning and this includes school supplies. If you purchased supplies through EDU-PAC, students will receive these supplies once they are assigned to classes (hopefully by the end of the first week of classes). If you are purchasing your own supplies, you can find updated supply lists on our school website.
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STAFFING UPDATE and CLASS PLACEMENTS
Below please find an updated staff list. Please note that grade levels are tentative at this point and could change based on enrolment.

Teacher
Mr. Owen Stemler – Grade 7
Ms. Shelagh Lim – Grade 7
Ms. Nina Minhas – Grade 7
Ms. Leslee Burwash – Grade 6
Mr. Peter Beale – Grade 6
Mr. David Morrison – Grade 5/6
Ms. Sandy McLean – Grade 5
Mr. Chris Lee – Grade 5
Mr. John Kwon – Grade 4/5
Mr. Alex Dewar – Grade 4
Ms. Kam Padam – Grade 4
Ms. Trish Ineson – Grade 3
Ms. Tracey Steeves/Ms. Kiren Sidhu – Grade 3
Ms. Jessica Gray – Grade 3
Ms. Kelli Vogstad – Grade 3
Ms. Patricia Watson – Grade 2
Ms. Punam Sharda – Grade 2
Ms. Suparsha Sharda – Grade 2
Ms. Laura Warkentin – Grade 1/2
Ms. Charlene Anderson – Grade 1
Ms. Kerry Tinant – Grade 1
Ms. Dawn Unruh – Grade 1
Ms. Becky Weber – Kindergarten
Ms. Raj Taank – Kindergarten
Ms. Carri McMillan – Kindergarten
Ms. Bonnie Jennings – Kindergarten

A complete staff list including our Education Assistants and support staff will be included in the next edition of CambridgeLearns.

As we look forward to the start of an exciting new school year, thoughts turn to class assignments.

Job action at the end of the 2013-14 school year hindered our ability to fully engage in class-building activities. As well, there are many new staff members joining us. Therefore, students will work in grade groups during the first few days of school as teachers get to know students and work collaboratively to develop classes. We will take feedback from both parents and previous year teachers in order to create the most appropriate learning environments.​ We hope that students will be in their permanent classes by the end of the first week, or by the very beginning of the second week at the latest.

When students are placed in classes, the following factors are taken into consideration. As each class situation is different, the factors are not in order of importance.

  • Academic Ability – we try to ensure that each class has students with a variety of ability levels
  • Gender – attempts are made to form classes with equal numbers of girls and boys
  • Group Dynamics – based on past experience, some students may not be placed in the same class as they experience difficulties together, while other students may be placed together because they work well together
  • Behaviour – students requiring behavioural support are placed in classes that best meet their needs
  • Teaching/Learning Styles – some students are placed in classes because the teaching/learning situation will be the most beneficial to them
  • Parent Requests – parents often come to the school in the Spring to make placement requests for the next year. If these requests are for educational reasons, we try to honour them if possible.

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RESEARCH ON COMBINED CLASSES
Classes with a combination of students from different grade levels have, for some reason, been considered second-rate learning environments. However, existing research does not support this view. Rather, teacher quality remains the single most important factor when it comes to student success. Research suggests that:

  • “Students in combined grade classrooms achieve as well academically as those in single grade classrooms.
  • Students appear to benefit from the spirit of co-operation and mutual help that exists in these settings.
  • Whole-class strategies such as explicit instruction, co-operative learning and subject integration support improved learning in combined grade class-rooms.”

Find more research HERE.

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2014/15 SCHOOL CALENDAR

September
2-First day of school – 10:00-11:00 a.m.
3-First full day of classes – 8:38 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
5-Fine Arts Performance – “Dumpsta Dragrons” – 9:00-10:00 a.m.
5-Assembly – 1:30-2:30 p.m.
18-Meet the Teacher Night/ Community BBQ
19-Terry Fox Run
22-Professional Day

October
13-Thanksgiving Holiday
18-Interim Reports
24-Professional Day

November
10-Professional Day
11-Remembrance Day Holiday

December
5-Reports Cards
10-Parent Teacher Conferences – Early Dismissal – 1:30 p.m.
11-Parent Teacher Conferences – Early Dismissal – 1:30 p.m.
19-Last Day Before Christmas Break

January
5-School Begins

February
9-Family Day
19-Student Led Conferences – Early Dismissal – 1:30 p.m.
20-Professional Day

March
6-Report Cards
9-20-Spring Break

April
1-Running Club Starts
3-Good Friday Holiday
6-Easter Monday Holiday
30-Running Club Ends

May
1-Professional Day
7-Parent Thank You Tea
18-Victoria Day Holiday
25-Professional Day

June
3-Kindergarten Introduction Parent Meeting
4-New Kindergarten Student Visits
12-Sports Day
19-Grade 7 Assembly
25-Last Day Before Summer Holiday
Final Assembly
Early Dismissal 1:30 p.m.
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WELCOME KINDERGARTEN FRIENDS
Welcome Kindergarten friends! We look forward to the start of the school year. During the final week of August, parents of incoming Kindergarten students will be  receiving information in the mail regarding the gradual entry. All Kindergarten students will begin attending full-time school on Wednesday, September 10, 2014. Stay tuned.
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QUOTE OF THE WEEK
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VIDEO OF THE WEEK: What do we leave behind?
As teachers and parents, we leave a legacy. Our legacy isn’t in the physical, but in what we believe, what we do and say, and how we treat others and make them feel. Watch and discuss this touching video with your child. What legacy will we leave behind?

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