Chair’s message

Thanks to all who attended last night’s APA meeting. Tracey O’Toole spoke to parents about STEM – what it is, who’s doing it, why our kids need it and where it’s taking place in our school.

I always thought that STEM was simply Science, Technology, Engineering and Math – just an acronym. Of course it makes sense that STEM encompasses these subjects, but STEM is so much more. Rather than teaching these 4 disciplines as separate discrete subjects, STEM integrates them and applies them to the real world. I have been talking about STEM for over a year (please note: I am not an educator…just a parent) and this idea of integration only occurred to me last night through Tracey’s talk. It’s very exciting! We heard so many great examples of STEM learning happening in the school, from experimenting with muffin baking in Grade 2 to designing accessible playgrounds in Grade 3.  All of the pictures that Tracey shared of our children participating in STEM lessons showed engaged and enthusiastic learners. The APA is happy to support this type of learning and has partnered with the school to outfit a STEM Innovation Lab filled with materials for designing and building and chromebooks,  iPads, Bee Bots and We Dos for coding. Teachers can also use their APA Experts in the School grants to bring STEM focused experts into their classrooms. STEM is definitely happening at Allenby and our kids are becoming 21st Century Learners!

Another great thing that is upcoming for our school is a kindergarten yard renovation. Set to start in late spring, the renovation will include a new sand play area, line painting, wall chalkboard a stage and seating area, teaching area with log seating and chalkboard, additional storage and a friendship bench. The cost of the renovation is expected to be $65,000. The good news is – we won’t be asking parents for any money to fund the reno! The city has granted the school/APA $50,000 in Section 37 money (developer kickbacks to the City get allocated to communities going through densification), the APA agreed to contribute $10,000 from our surplus and the Allenby Daycare will also contribute an TBD amount. A presentation given at last night’s meeting by Gillian Uy is available here.

Lastly, a big thanks to Hatch Canada who provided our babysitting kids with a coding introduction during our meeting.

The next APA meeting will be held on Wednesday March 29th. Tracey and Sandra (our new VP) will be speaking about Math and the Growth Mindset. Babysitting kids will have a Movie, PJ & Popcorn Night.

We hope to see you there!
Lisa Parker