The End is Near….

As I sit down to write this, there are only eighteen teaching days left in the school year and final exams begin four weeks from today. I think this is a good time to remind ourselves how very quickly the end of the year is sneaking up on us.

When April showers have brought May flowers ,and this year,more May showers, there are lots of things and activities that compete for our attention and our time. We start to emerge from a too long winter and re-energize ourselves outside. Whether our passion is camping, golfing, canoeing, hiking, fishing or another chosen past time, we also have to balance those interests with self-discipline to make sure we finish our school year in a good way.

At this time of year, many students may be feeling overwhelmed with courses, exams, tests and assignments, but I want to encourage you to recognize how close you are to finishing. Like a sprinter, now is the time to put your head down and finish strong. Don’t limp across that finish line but sprint through it. Put in that extra effort now and make your year a successful one. Sure, it might mean you have to stay up a little later a few evenings or maybe miss a fishing trip, but it will be worth it. If you are feeling that you are unable to ‘catch up’ on assignments, talk to your eteacher. See what you can work out between you. Never give up. Keep looking for a way.

So, now is the time for that strong finish. With only 18 days left, I hope students will take every opportunity to find the perseverance to push on and achieve success by completing what you started.

Published in: on May 25, 2010 at 6:03 pm  Leave a Comment  

Spring….a breath of fresh air

Spring officially arrived a few weeks ago. For some, including myself, it’s time to think about spring cleaning, yard work and gardening. For our students, it is a good time to start thinking about final exams and summer jobs. We are so fortunate to live on the prairies and to be able to experience the seasons. Each season brings with it a refreshing change and a new identity.

Much like the seasons, we witness the changes that our Credenda students go through as the year progresses. We see our students becoming confident in his/her skills in computer technology. They become risk takers and seemingly more independent. By being independent, we mean that they hand in their assignments with out being told and are prepared for quizzes and exams. An independent learner who is a risk taker and confident in his/her skills is our ultimate goal.

The Admininstration staff have been busy with the school calendar for 2010-2011. We plan on having a couple of new courses added to our list of course offerings so if you have a moment check it out on our website. As we enter into our last couple of months of school, we can not state enough how important it is that your child attends classes on a regular basis.

Published in: on April 15, 2010 at 3:40 pm  Leave a Comment  

They were the best of times, they were the worst of times…

When Dickens first committed these words to paper, I am certain that he was not thinking about the last time Tyrone MacPherson was teaching in a high school classroom. But when I ‘officially’ returned to the classroom last month after 16 years, I was compelled to think about the changes that have happened over that time. Changes to the curriculum, coupled with the way we deliver education in the 21st Century, present both learning curves and tremendous opportunities for today’s educator. And by extension, provide new and exciting opportunities for the students in our care.

At Credenda Virtual High School this year, we are offering a course called Social Responsibility 20. It was designed at Credenda to target youth who want to make a difference in the world. We try to generate discussion around local, global and environmental issues that impact all of our lives. The course is designed to provide opportunities for our students to practice care, generosity and service. We hold a live classroom session online each Monday from 3 to 4 pm this term but more importantly, students design and participate in a charity project where they are expected to log 80 hours. The course is recognized as a Grade 11 level course where students receive credit but we hope that they get much more from it. We hope that they get a chance to make the world just a little bit better place because of their awareness and efforts.

This is one of the exciting things happening at Credenda Virtual High School this year and I have had the good fortune to work with my colleague Lori Poitras, as we team teach this course. So after a 16 year absence from the high school classroom, I was able to return in a virtual way last month and I am both excited and thankful because of it. All of us here at Credenda are enthusiastic about the chance to teach our youth about social consciousness and as an Elder once told me ‘if we put a little more into the world than we take out of it, we will leave it a better place.’

Isn’t that all we really want for all of our children?

Published in: on March 9, 2010 at 3:18 pm  Leave a Comment  

March came in like a lamb. Will it go out as a lion?

March has finally arrived and it came in like a lamb! Now the question is will it go out like a lion? I don’t know about the rest of you but I always felt that once March came that it marked that we made it through another good old Saskatchewan winter. I know that we are still bound to have some stormy days but overall, we are starting to see the temperature rise. Speaking about temperatures rising, I was talking the other day to a retired teacher who does the occassional subsitute teaching. She was telling me that in the elementary schools, teachers are starting to feel the pressures of report cards. Staff and students are coming down with the flu and colds which makes it difficult to teach. I think that it is just that time of the season. I should know because I just finished a bout of the flu and a nasty cold myself.

Having said that, we encourage our students to take care of themselves this time of the year. With our high school exams coming up the last week of March, we would encourage our students to start reviewing and make sure that all of your assignments are completed and handed in for grading. We can’t express enough how important regular attendance is. If a student is not in class, he/she will be missing important information. The more a student is absent, the more difficult it will be to catch up.

We have sixteen weeks of school left and that’s including the holidays. Before we know it the school year will be done and summer will be here. We encourage all of our students to continue to persevere in their classes. At Credenda we have an open door policy so if you would like to phone, email or drop in, please feel free to do so at anytime.

Published in: on March 9, 2010 at 1:44 pm  Leave a Comment  

A new way of communicating

I start to write and then suddenly stop. I start to write and again I stop. I wonder to myself why does this seem different? Half an hour later I think I finally have it figured out. I am new to blogging. Yes, that’s right. This is my first entry and I bring with it enthusiasm, excitement and maybe a bit of writer’s block. First of all, I have to tell you that I am happy to be a member of a committed Credenda administration team. By administration team, I am speaking about Vince Hill our Director and Tyrone MacPherson, Principal of our Northern Campus. I am Principal of the Southern Campus. Tyrone and I will be taking turns writing new entries each month. The way in which we communicate has come a long way in recent years hasn’t it?

I have to say that we always recognized the important role that parents and caregivers play in education. This is one of the reasons why we came up with the idea of a blog for parents and caregivers. Study after study shows us that parental involvement is one of the critical factors in helping your child succeed in school. We hope that through this blog we can keep our lines of communication open and be able to share with you all of the exciting opportunities your child has with Credenda Virtual High School. I will give you an example of what I am talking about. CVHS now offers a Leadership course on Wednesdays to any student who wants to take it. Starting in semester 2 we will be offering a social responsibility class every monday from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. We have a CAREden program that provides mentoring to any student who wishes to sign up for it. Presently, our mentors are all Credenda staff members which says something for our staff in terms of commitment to kids. We plan on having a leadership camp for kids the last week of May in Saskatoon. We believe in promoting and working with our students to become leaders and not so much followers.

Published in: on January 22, 2010 at 6:39 pm  Comments (1)