Time Flies When Your Having Fun

(or when you’re over 40).

September has almost come to a close, and I had an excellent first month on the job at Cleveland. The days have gone by so quickly, and yesterday I was reminded that I had only one more day to learn all the names of the children in the school.

Did I do it?

Do I know all the names?

No. I failed. I did not achieve my goal. I have not memorized every name of every child in the school. 🙁

To the boys and girls of Cleveland, I am sorry if I still don’t know your name when I see you. I am sorry if I use the wrong name when you say “bonjour” in the hallway. I tried, and I did not succeed.

Am I disappointed that I do not know all your names? Yes

Will I give up? Never!

So …

  • Please! Keep coming up and testing to see if I know your name.
  • Please! Keep coming up and sharing with me your name if I ask for help.
  • Please! Keep coming up and asking about my tie.  🙂

I love talking to you.

Maybe I didn’t fail after all. Every day I get to talk to a fantastic group of children, and they are helping me learn.

How can that be failure?

Take care.


Are You A Reading Role Model?

Do you encourage your child to read daily?

Does your child see you reading every day?

Do you surround your family with reading material?

Are you a reading role model?

Learning to read is one of the many important learning goals of any school, but we cannot do it alone. If a child only works on their reading at school, they will not develop the attitudes or skills needed to become life-long readers.

They need your help.

“Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.” ~ Frederick Douglass

Being a reading role model does not mean you have to read the latest best seller. Magazines, newspapers, non-fiction books, poetry or novels will all do.

Tune off screen time, get in your favourite reading chair or couch, and have the family settle in with good books. Read to one another. Read quietly beside one another. Share what you read.

Be a reading role model. Help your child develop a love of reading.

“If you want your children to be brilliant, read them fairly tales. If you want them to be geniuses, read them more fairy tales.” ~ Albert Einstein

Take care.

Home/School Communication

or “How come nobody told me…”

 “How come nobody told me about the Professional Day?” (The next one is on October 21st, 2011.)

 “How come nobody told me about the early dismissal?” (The next one is on October 4th, 2011.)

“How come nobody told me that I had to sign up with PAC to be in the directory?” (It’s happening now – Cleveland parents click here.)


“How come nobody told me…” I think we did tell you. Didn’t you get the email?  🙂

Smile if you have heard statements like the ones above. Smile if you have found yourself saying something similar. I suspect we all have.

How do we keep parents informed at Cleveland?

Once upon a time (in 2010), we would photocopy thousands of pages for the weekly or monthly newsletters and send them home with a child. Parents sometimes received them on time, or would find them a month later at the bottom of the backpack. Now, we send electronic pages every Friday, with almost no paper used.

Have your received your emails? Do we have your current email address?

When teachers wanted to share information with parents, they would write notes and send them home with the child. Parents would send notes to school with their children. Now teachers and parents can communicate over the phone or via email. Notes are still welcome.

Home/School communication is very important, and it takes all parties to make it effective.

Thank you for being active listeners (or more accurately – active readers) when we send out information, and thank you for keeping us informed when we need to hear from you.

Thank you for being patient if we missed sending out timely information. We sometimes miss things, but we try to be as accurate as possible.

Together, we can work to help ensure that our Home/School communication keeps us connected and informed.

Take care.


PS. Thank you for the wonderful turnout at our PAC meeting last night. We are a lucky school.

Our School Library

Here is where people,
One frequently finds, 
Lower their voices 
And raise their minds.
 ~ Richard Armour




Have you visited a school library lately?

Ours is fantastic.

Cleveland’s library is home to many French and English books, as well as a collection of photos, pieces of art, a number of quotations (written on pipes from former students and some famous authors), and some interesting collections of stuff. Ask your child how many crows are in the library? I wonder if they know.

Children can check out their favourite novels or picture books. They can find books on space, machines, other cultures, or a number of non-fiction topics. There are so many books that I do not believe a student will be able to read them all. However, I have met a grade 7 girl who might be capable of accomplishing that task, if she was so inclined.

In an elementary school, the library can often be the place that inspires children to develop a love for stories. Mme. Santarosa (our teacher librarian) may introduce a new story to a class, or she may help children fall in love with an old favourite. Children may come to her for book advice, or with recommendations about what to buy.

As a child, my number one best friend was the librarian in my grade school. I actually believed all those books belonged to her. ~ Erma Bombeck

When children need a quiet place to read, there are comfortable sofas or chairs, as well as small reading corners. For a child with a love of books, this is a place to come.

When I step into this library, I cannot understand why I ever step out of it. ~ Marie de Sevigne

If you have not visited a library lately with your child, do it soon. You and your children can find many hours of entertainment through the many great books you will find, at no cost to you (no cost that is if you return things on time).

A library is not a luxury but one of the necessities of life. ~ Henry Ward Beecher

Go check out some books and read.

Take care.

Grade 6’s To Outdoor School

Today, our Grade 6 students are going up to the North Vancouver Outdoor School in Paradise Valley, Brackendale, British Columbia. They will be there for 5 days and 4 nights, and are going with Mme. Power and Ms. McIntyre.

Outdoor education is essential in educating our children to be stewards of our planet and in developing an understanding of the importance of the natural world. Students will have the chance to learn about salmon, birds, forests, bugs, plants, ponds, geology, and a variety of other topics. They may get into the farm area and pet goats or feed the pigs. Weather reports will be made daily by cabin groups, and students will take turns cleaning up after meals.

Cleveland students are joining students from Larson Elementary School, and will be making new friends as they share cabin groups and recreation time with the Larson students.

Students in North Vancouver are very lucky to enjoy such a wonderful outdoor school. I am thankful that I was able to take classes there when I was a grade 3 and grade 6 teacher. It is a special place.

I look forward to hearing from our students all the great stories that they will share when they return.

Have fun. Stay warm.

Take care.