Together in Education Family Update
Dear Lancaster Families
Welcome back! We are all looking forward to returning to face-to-face learning this week. Over the period of remote learning, there were learning highlights and connections made amidst some of the challenges as we tried new things together. Our great appreciation is extended to staff for their extended efforts, and families for navigating the ups and downs of technology and learning at home.
The return to school on Monday is welcome news and it is essential that we "stay the course" to keep our community numbers low so that we can continue to learn in the building together. It will be important that we a diligent with daily screening for all staff and students and that we adhere to safety protocols within the school. Students who do not pass the screener, are symptomatic at school, or express feeling unwell, will be isolated until a parent can come and pick them up.
We do ask that families who borrowed a school device return it as soon as possible so that students at school have the tools they need for learning. Devices can be returned to the office by buzzing at the front door or with your child if this can be achieved safely.
Looking forward to being together again,
Your Lancaster Team
January 25th - Return to Face to Face learning! : )
January 25-28 ~ Literacy Week @ Lancaster
- Monday ~ Drop Everything and Read Day "DEAR"- the whole school will make time and space for reading!
- Tuesday ~ Read my Shirt Day - wear a shirt with saying, a logo, numbers, or letters on it
- Wednesday ~ Favourite Character, Favourite Book Day - dress up like a book character, bring your favourite childhood book, or wear a picture of your favourite book on your shirt!
- Thursday ~ Bell Let's Talk Day - We'll join the conversation about Mental Health in classrooms using speech bubbles and conversation starters and class community check-ins
- Friday - Family Friday - challenge each other to find literacy in your day, read to a loved one over Facetime, read to a pet, play a board game, write a list, have a family meeting, take a virtual tour of a place you'd like to visit one day (see a list of activities in this newsletter)
January 27th ~ Family Literacy Day
January 29th ~ PA Day
February 1-18 ~ Black History Month
February 10-14 ~ Scholastic Book Fair - virtual all week!
February 15th ~ Family Day
February 17th ~ Term 1 Reports Cards go home
Literacy Week and Family Literacy Day
Family Literacy Day takes place on January 27, 2021 – an annual initiative in its 22nd year that aims to raise awareness of the importance of learning together as a family.
This year’s theme is Travel the World Together (not literally of course!). After a year of limited mobility, ABC Life Literacy Canada, the founder of Family Literacy Day, is encouraging families to use their imagination to explore and travel the world from the comfort of their home. Whether it be discovering what’s in your own back yard or researching a faraway place, the opportunities for adventure are endless!
Here are 10 activity ideas for families to Travel the World Together this Family Literacy Day.
- Go online. Research a country that interests you on the internet with your family. Find out things like the language they speak, their currency, and popular food, music and sports.
- Flags of the world. Look up colourful flags from different countries and try drawing them together.
- Ciao! Teach your family how to say hello and goodbye in different languages.
- Greetings from abroad. Imagine you’re on a vacation and write a postcard to a friend or family member. Describe the weather, what it’s like and what activities you’re doing.
- Map the world. Look at a blank world map and try to name each continent and ocean. For more of a challenge, try identifying countries or even cities.
- Family vacation. Research your next family vacation online together, even if you don’t have one planned. Look up how much it will cost to travel there, hotels and activities, and put together a budget for your trip.
- Get cookin’! Find a recipe for a popular international dish, such as butter chicken or paella. Follow the recipe together as a family and enjoy the meal you’ve cooked.
- Family history. Research your family’s history and culture. Learn about your family traditions (how about starting a new one!)
- Sounds of the world. Go to YouTube as a family and play some popular songs from other countries. Dance and move to different tunes and hum along, trying to guess what the lyrics mean.
- A to Z. Test your family’s geographic knowledge by trying to name a country for every letter of the alphabet. Hint: there is one for every letter except X.
For more family literacy activity ideas and resources, visit www.FamilyLiteracyDay.ca.
SCHOLASTIC BOOK FAIR IS COMING!
Mark your calendars! The fun and excitement of a Scholastic Book Fair is coming to our school. To adapt to our changing needs, Scholastic has developed a Virtual Book Fair to provide an opportunity for our students and families to experience the joy of reading together.
So save the date! Our Scholastic Virtual Book Fair will take place February 10 through February 17, 2021!
Book Fairs generate reward points that the school can use to purchase learning materials for students. Often these are books and teaching materials for the library or classrooms. This year funds were used to purchase:
- WOBBLE STOOLS: (2-4) for every classroom as a way to support flexible seating and learning needs for all students.
- HEADPHONES WITH MICS: With these students can better access voice-to-text technology, various interactive learning platforms, and participate in our Virtual Reading Buddies with Bayridge Secondary Students.
- FRENCH RESOURCES: Levelled Readers, Mentor Texts, French posters and board games to help reinforce language learning.
- PRIVACY BOARDS: These are used to create mini offices during learning periods and can minimize distraction when students are engaging in focused independent work.
- SETS OF STUDENT WHITEBOARDS: These allow students a surface for thinking or responding to learning prompts in the classroom. A non-permanent surface is sometimes beneficial as it makes committing thinking less intimidating for students, gives each child a chance to "give it a go", and can be a great collaborating space during group problem-solving.
When it’s time to shop, visit our school’s Virtual Book Fair site using this link:
Before our Fair begins, click the link to:
SAVE it to your browser
WATCH videos of popular new titles
PREVIEW our Featured Books
FREE shipping on orders over $40 at all times, FREE shipping on all orders between 6-8pm on Wednesdays (Feb 10 and Feb 17 for our fair)
Watch for news leading up to our Scholastic Virtual Book Fair!
Free Menstrual Hygiene Products available in Limestone Schools
Limestone District School Board schools will offer free menstrual hygiene products to students to remove barriers and ensure equitable access for all. Beginning January 25th, all female washrooms and gender-neutral washrooms at Lancaster will be equipped with menstrual hygiene products in easily accessible locations for students who access our Junior/Intermediate bathroom. The products are free to students.
Access to menstrual products can be a barrier for many students. Studies show that one in seven young women and non-binary people in Canada will miss some school because they don't have access to pads and tampons, largely because they cannot bear the financial burden of purchasing their own. Other times, students forget to plan ahead or find themselves in an emergency situation. Menstrual products have been made available at most schools, including Lancaster, for a number of years. As a system we are taking steps to ensure that this practice is consistent, clearly communicated, and openly available in school bathrooms removing the need for a student to independently inquire.
Looking to purchase a pink shirt? Order a size bigger to last for next year too
This link will take you to information about how to report student absences.
Government Support for Learners
The Government of Ontario is providing one-time funding for parents to help offset costs during the 2020-2021 school year. Eligible parents or guardians will receive a one-time payment of:
- $200 for each student up to age 12
- $250 for each student or youth up to age 21 with special needs
- NEW $200 for student age 13 to Grade 12 including students who are in secondary school that are over age 18
Applications open on Monday, January 11, 2021. The deadline to apply is February 8, 2021. Learn more on the government’s Support for Learners webpage liked below.
Accessing Communication Tools
Learn how to:
- Set up a SchoolMessenger App account: set up your account, review your contact information and communication preferences, join teacher-instant messaging groups, and view all your alerts and messages in one place. Watch the video tutorial.
- Use the Communicate broadcast tool: choose how you will receive alerts including how to opt-in for text messaging. Watch the video tutorial.
- Use the Board mobile app: how to choose your schools, see your messages and report and review student absences. Watch the video tutorial.
Subscribe to school calendars: receive email alerts or download calendars or individual events to your personal calendar
Click here to see our virtual store for student clothing. More options coming soon!