Earlier this morning I was honoured to hang out with a couple hundred student leaders from the Interlake School Division. These young people were sharp, positive and loved reading. I learned about how committed to relationships the division is, which was obvious in the way the staff and students and school trustees interacted with one another. After sharing stories about multiple languages, social literacy & systemic literacy, it was clear that the students were interested in learning more about the topic of literacy. Then, at the last possible moment before the group dispersed to their workshops…I was able to snap this photo
The students were dressed & seated in the colours of the rainbow & I was welcomed by those students/teachers with enthusiasm. (You can see a cooler photo of MC actually sitting with the kids moments after this pic was taken by clicking here!) We had so much fun exploring how learning how to read books (in English) is so helpful in their classrooms and has previously been helpful to me. We also learned that the students can also read in Spanish, Ukranian, Japanese and French to name a few. There was a really special moment when the students all stood up and were each asked to think of their gift. Once they had selected a gift in their head they could sit down. It was so great to watch, as one at a time, the students with closed eyes would at first frown while thinking, and eventually smile as the realization that they did indeed have a gift became real to them. The students later were adamant that each of our gifts were meant to be shared with the people around them. It was a great experience!
So when I graduated from St John’s High School in 2005, one of the administrators was Ms Christine Penner. She came into our school with a tiger like roar as she made local headlines with her relationship based approach. She personally went to the homes and spoke to the families of every single Gr 7&8 student in SJHS and made that face to face connection. Also, she has extremely high standards of behaviour of her peers and the students and it is very obvious that those around her rise to that challenge. I am grateful to reconnect with the people from my past who have helped to impact and shape me into the MC I am today. So, thanks Ms Penner, you da best!
Thanks for being awesome ISD, hope your day on LITERACY was enlightening!
With love & respect