Thanks to the leadership of teacher Donna Ainsle-O’Conner and others at Brookwood School, students are learning early on what it means to be a global citizen. The Justice League is a group that is open to all students at Brookwood School and currently has over 90 members in Grades 1-4. Mrs. Ainsle-O’Conner states in this video that the club has been set up to give students hands-on learning experiences that show them how they can change the world.
From the local food bank to Free the Children’s We Are Silent fundraisers, students are being given the opportunity to learn about issues of injustice taking place around the world. Vice Principal Diane LeFebvre stated that this group is impacting the entire school community through its activities and teaching children about empathy, compassion, and civic engagement. Through this club, Brookwood School is truly a place “where the world opens up” as Parkland School Division proudly states.
Last week I had the opportunity to begin my Monday morning with the students of Stony Plain Central School. Students in Grades K-6 were brought into the gym to begin their morning with teacher and yoga instructor, Jill Worthington. I was a bit nervous for her looking out at the sea of energy in the school gym. There were so many busy little bodies and naturally, the kids were excited to see and chat with their friends. How was she going to teach yoga to an entire gym of children and youth?
As soon as she turned on the music, she proceeded to move her index finger to her lips to show the children that it was time to focus inwards. The kids responded really well and began to move into chair pose and then circling their arms to stand up again. The entire yoga series was very thoughtful and really engaging for the children. Hundreds of students moved from standing positions to floor positions without any teacher instruction and their free, unique expression of yoga postures was simply brilliant to watch from the back of the gym.
This year, Health Champion Miranda Niebergall has coordinated with administrators so that the school community can gather together each morning to begin their day with physical activity. Here’s principal Archie Lillico explaining the changes he’s seeing in the school environment because of this simple change:
Thank you to everyone at Stony Plain Central for mindfully moving daily physical activity into the culture of Stony Plain Central’s school community.