In addition to our core emphasis on reading, writing and math (and the full scope of curriculum strands derived from the Ontario Ministry of Education Curriculum) we place considerable emphasis on adjunct programming focusing on big-picture skills that position our students to thrive as they move into post-secondary education. Adjunct Programs are those which augment the traditional subjects, and expose students to a variety of kinds of learning opportunities which ask them to extend and apply knowledge in real-world applications.
CALM stands for Children Appreciate Living Mindfully. Our CALM Program creates opportunities to pursue mindfulness, guided meditation, self-reflection, and yoga and movement in addition to instructional periods designed to build self-awareness and acknowledgement of the mind-body connection. We pursues wellness for each of our students by teaching habits that help students reclaim their calm when emotions get big through instructional periods, hands-on opportunities to build "tool box strategies" (coping skills) and practice using them!
Outdoor Learning Program
In addition to daily unstructured outdoor play (recess), students participate in weekly outdoor learning periods when teachers think outside-the-box, taking learning outside in order to facilitate flexibility, skill extension/application in novel settings, and opportunities to think critically (and often creatively) about the natural world! From scavenger hunts to science experiments, the world is our classroom!
Think, Plan, Do Program
Our Think, Plan, Do Program focuses on helping students answer: What habits make an effective learner? The answer: It depends on the MY unique needs! In order to be an effective learner, self-awareness and self-management are essential starting points. We use a variety of curriculum resources developed by Occupational Therapists and other multi-disciplinary professionals, to focus on these skills.
Our Think, Plan, Do Program recognizes the importance of self-regulation and executive function skills by focusing on development of working memory, outside-the-box thinking, perspective taking, creative problem solving, self-awareness, self-regulation; establishment of core learning to learn habits that carry our students forward as they encounter increasingly complex academic content.
Our Community Program
Our students participate in hands-on exploration, through field trips and project-based learning that targets understanding and appreciation of our local community and recognizes the important role humans play in maintaining our natural world and contributing to community betterment. Sprinkle in some all-season outdoor adventure, field trips within our local community and the program comes to life. We make use of t(he City of Toronto Park) Earl Bales, which spans 127 acres and is located just a short distance from our school and other local destinations selected each year based on curriculum goals and local exhibit schedules.
There's no better way to motivate student performance than to include technology in the classroom. From Kindergarten through Primary/Junior years our students use classroom devices (tables/computers) to access curriculum content. We've selected reading and math programs, online, that reflect our commitment to best-practices in education and incorporate prompting, gamification and direct feedback to our learners (and their teachers). These applications offer analytics for our teachers to utilize for monthly progress reports, and insight into mastered concepts and application. In Primary/Junior years students also begin to learn the basics of keyboarding, and navigating handheld devices (Ipads/tablets) for project-based learning.
In Middle School our students continue to access curriculum content through classroom devices with increased emphasis on computer literacy for the development of projects, reports and presentations. Students continue to learn about cyber safety, and explore various online modalities and software.
All of our students enjoy learning "on the big screen" with our classroom projectors.
Daily Living Skills Program
What does it take to be an independent and self-sufficient person? Self-reliance is not just the ability to independently execute daily living tasks, it's also the ability self-advocate, self-monitor, make choices (live with the outcomes), and contribute to the community in a positive way. Our Daily Living Skills program includes instruction which includes use of functional academics, and hands-on learning experiences like: cooking, baking, budgeting, building and measurement, community involvement and volunteerism.
In Middle School, students are required to complete volunteer hours, within their school day, in order to meet program criteria for the academic year.