James R. Henderson Weekly Update

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Friday, May 21st, 2021

Dear Families,

We continue to see creative, authentic and relevant learning in our virtual classrooms...and outdoors as well! Some classes participated in "Outdoor Classroom Day" yesterday: teachers provided students with a choice-board of learning tasks to accomplish outdoors, and students selected the activities that were the most accessible and interesting to them. We know that it was a very successful day, and that the learning generated lots of discussion during morning meetings today! Teachers are working hard to be responsive to the type of learning that the children are needing right now and (just like when we are learning face to face) students will likely participate in more outdoor learning activities over the next few weeks, now that the weather is warm and sunny.

Vibrant indoor learning continues as well! This week, we noticed many of our teachers, ECEs and EAs meeting with students in "breakout" rooms or one on one to complete end of year assessments, to do guided reading and to work on small group projects. We continue to be impressed with the continuity of learning that our staff are providing, and how students' daily routines mirror what happens when we are in the building. Some students participated in Art Appreciation lessons, viewing and critiquing modern and antique masterpieces (there were lively discussions about whether some of the works of art are really worth millions of dollars!) We noticed students learning about First Nations and the historic and present impact of European settlements, students watching 'how to draw' videos and practicing their own sketching and drawing, and students preparing a puppet show: shoebox sets, puppets and dialogue -- we can't wait to be part of the audience when they are finished! Teachers are also inviting a variety of community members in to participate in Virtual Learning: this week, we welcomed a firefighter, a police officer, a nurse, and next week some Queen's Engineering Students will be teaching students how to build air-powered cars!

Special Days and Reminders:

Monday, May 24th - Victoria Day: Holiday for students and staff

Wednesday, May 26 - Beach Day! Hats, sunglasses, Hawaiian shirts, flip flops...we will celebrate the warmer weather in style!

Friday, May 28th - Hawks Day! Wear green and yellow and show your school pride!

Wednesday, June 2nd - Rainbow Day -- wear your brightest and most favourite colours of clothing and accessories!

Friday, June 4th - PA Day: no school for students

Thursday, June 10th - Virtual Parent Council Meeting (6:45pm)

A reminder that the Parent Council "Plantables" Fundraiser is still going on: detailed information can be found below.

Parents and caregivers, you continue to do tremendous work to help keep your children feeling positive, healthy and engaged in online learning to the best of their ability. Please continue to reach out to us should we be able to support you in any way.

Happy Victoria Day weekend, everyone!

Mme Peart and Mrs. Davey

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Plantables Spring Fundraiser

Hello Parents,

This spring, Henderson is teaming up with Plantables to bring you an exciting new fundraiser! And with the weather warming up and many of you thinking about rolling up your sleeves and getting back into the garden, it’s a great time to help us hit our goal. Not only do Plantables let you grow the same high-quality fruit and veggie plants used by farmers across the country, but they deliver your ready-to-plant plants to your front door exactly when you need them.

That means all you have to do is bury them in the ground, give them some love and water and you’ll have tasty fruits and veggies in no time. (They’re all certified organic plants, too!) If you -- or anybody you know -- is looking to fill out their vegetable patch, tell them to head to plantables.ca and enter GOHAWKS at the checkout. (Don’t forget the code!)

Profits from this fundraiser will support a variety of on-going school projects, including the purchase of items for students to use at recess and playgound/yard eco-initiatives.

Thanks for all your support!

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What If My Child is Not Going to Be Participating in Remote Learning on a Given Day?

Please continue to use the Safe Arrival system to report your child's absence if your child is not going to be accessing online learning (either synchronously or asynchronously) over a 24 hour period. Wellness calls will continue to be sent out automatically to those students who have not make contact with their teacher, or participated in any form of learning. This is to help us keep a connection and ensure the well-being of every child. If you do not wish to receive a call, please use the automated Safe Arrival System to create an absence. There are three ways to do this:

1. Toll-free telephone

  • Call 1-855-257-9349 toll-free to report an absence using the automated phone system.

2. School Messenger App

  • Use your mobile device to download and install the free SchoolMessenger blue app from the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store, the SchoolMessenger website portal, or from within the LDSB mobile app.
  • The first time you use the app, you must select Sign Up to create your account. Please ensure you use the same email address your student’s school has on file. If you do not use that same email address, you will not be able to create an account, or may not be able to see the "Attendance" option. You may have already created an account when we introduced the Communicate broadcast system.
  • Select Attendance, then select Report an Absence and follow the prompts.

3. SchoolMessenger SafeArrival Website Portal
  • Visit the SchoolMessenger website portal.
  • The first time you use the app, you must select Sign Up to create your account. Please ensure you use the same email address your student’s school has on file. If you do not use that same email address, you will not be able to create an account, or may not be able to see the "Attendance" option. You may have already created an account when we introduced the Communicate broadcast system.
  • Select Attendance, then Report an Absence and follow the prompts.

How Can I Best Stay Informed?

As Covid-19 information unfolds, we encourage families to watch the LDSB website, the LDSB Twitter account and School Messenger communicate messages sent directly from Limestone. School specific information will communicated in our online Weekly Updates, and via School Messenger communicate messages. Please watch for updates from these reliable sources to get correct information regarding our return to face to face learning or the extension of remote learning.

Mental Health Supports


We continue to get support from the Food Share program. If your family is struggling, please reach out to the school and we will connect you with support from our local Food Share Program for bi-weekly deliveries to your home.


Kids Help Phone – Children and youth can contact Kids Help Phone 24/7 from anywhere in Canada, via phone, text or online chat.

Wellness Together Canada: Mental Health and Substance Use Support – Provides free online resources, tools, apps and connections to trained volunteers and qualified mental health professionals when needed

Anxiety Canada - Free online, self-help, and evidence-based resources on anxiety, including resources specific to COVD-19.

Government Support for Learners

The new COVID-19 Child Benefit announced in the 2021 Ontario Budget will provide direct payments to families and students to help with additional costs during the COVID-19 pandemic.

If you received a payment through the Support for Learners program, you do not need to apply. Starting on April 26, 2021, we will begin issuing additional payments of:

  • $400 for each child or youth up to Grade 12
  • $500 for each child or youth up to age 21 with special needs

If you missed applying for the Support for Learners program, you will have the opportunity to apply for this new round of payment. Applications will open from May 3, 2021 to May 17, 2021.Learn more on the government’s Support for Learners webpage.

Need a Book to Read? Check out Sora!

Sora Online Library

Students can access e-books or audio books with their LDSB login.

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