Chair’s message

Mindfulness has become a focus in the TDSB and it’s a key priority for our school and for the APA. According to Psychology Today mindfulness is “a state of active, open attention on the present. It’s observing your thoughts and feelings from a distance, without judging them good or bad. Mindfulness means living in the moment and awakening to experience.” There are many ways to be mindful and it means different things for different people. This week, our kids will learn a little more about what it means to be mindful at recess as our schoolyard becomes just a little bit more friendly for those kids that might need help making connections or finding their friends. While the school runs an amazing Peer Helper program, Amber Christie and Louise McCrindle, with the help of our very talented graphic designer, Gaël Porteu de La Morandière, have designed and implemented the “Buddy Seat – A Place to Meet” for the primary/junior playground. The new Buddy Seat is an existing log, near the Peace Pole, where kids can go to meet their friends, make new friends or check in if they feel they need some social support at recess. Grade 6 Peer Helpers, under the direction of Mr. Hussain and Ms. Larosa, have been talking to classes about this special addition to our playground and we are all excited to see it in action. The kindergarten playground will also have a buddy seat installed as part of the enhancement project happening this coming spring/summer.

Also, we’d like to remind you about the “Anxiety” speaker that we are hosting in the library on Monday, March 6 at 7 pm. We’ve arranged this speaker following feedback from teachers and administration that our kids are stressed out. Anne Murray, Lead Trainer of The Psychology Foundation of Canada will give an interactive workshop for parents of JK to Grade 6 students that will teach us to recognize, reduce and manage the stress of our children. We will walk away with strategies that can be implemented right away for both ourselves and our children. Allenby teachers and staff are receiving similar messaging at an upcoming staff meeting to ensure that home and school strategies are aligned.  Please RSVP to Amber Christie. Child care will be provided and if needed please email Amber by Friday, March 3.

Lastly, the APA and the school are working together to bring creative ideas to the students’ Mindful Monday sessions. If you can contribute in any area of Mindfulness and would like to make a difference in the lives of our students, please contact Amber Christie.

Find your joy today!

Lisa Parker