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Connecting Learners with the Community at Richland

An integral part of Reggio-Inspired learning is engaging with the community, as well as inviting experts into our learning journeys. These connections create authentic learning opportunities for students, and provide them with genuine occasions to apply their skills and engage with others meaningfully.

Recently, Richland’s 5/6 Classroom was a gathering place for experts and guests, coming to share their expertise with our students. It was such a wonderful thing to see the in awe of a poet, politician and business woman, respectively.  Needless to say, we had a set of star struck children!

In Literacy, the Grade 5/6 Students continued their poetry unit and welcomed guest, Truth Is… an acclaimed slam poet that works to write poetry for equality and social justice. The students were wowed by her performances, and were inspired to then write their own. Truth challenged the students to write about a social justice issue. This work is heavily tied to the idea the students are exploring of “utopia” or perfect worlds, as it encourages the students to imagine a better world – free of crime, hate, war, violence and discrimination. Students picked a wide array of topics including standing up to bullies, the Syrian War, domestic violence and climate change. Truth returned again to Richland to help our young poets further hone their ideas and begin developing a poem. The students are looking forward to presenting them in Richland’s Third Annual Poetry Slam. Stay tuned!The students also had the unique opportunity work with Liberal Party Member Seeking Candidacy, Mr. Brian Chamberlain, through their Investigative Research. He visited the 5/6 classroom to kick off their Mock Election Project, explaining the ingredients of political campaigning, and answered a variety of burning questions! The group was blown away by Mr. Chamberlain’s passion for creating a better world, and were inspired by his words. Through this authentic community connection, it was wonderful to see the students’ deep interest and passion in the topic – it reminded me that our future will be in good hands. Students are inspired to develop their message and begin their campaigns!The students welcomed another guest through Richmond Hill’s Small Business Enterprise Centre. Ms. Nanofski from the SBEC came in to help jump start their business projects. She challenged them to think about what makes a good entrepreneur, and encouraged them to build the character traits necessary to become successful. She also shared some resources that real entrepreneurs in Richmond Hill use to start real business ventures. The 5/6 students look forward to continuing their collaboration with the SBEC as they work towards the Business Tradeshow in May.These experiences are vital to creating impactful opportunities for our students.  Inquiring Minds looks forward to sharing future posts that capture the voice of our students, and their learning reflections throughout the process.  If you would like to know more about the power of community involvement and education, please refer to this link.

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