May Happenings

Well, we certainly experienced  ‘April showers’ last month, and I am wholeheartedly awaiting the May flowers!  The Primaries are celebrating May by planting seeds they collected last Fall on our seed gathering walks.  So far, they have planted Sunflowers, Love-in-a-Mist, Phlox, Spirea, and Lavender.  We will find out which seeds are the most viable and fastest growing as the children all chose different seeds to plant.

As we approach the end of the school year, the Primaries will be working on developing and practicing their performances for our class Talent Show.  More on that later.  The Intermediates are still reading through Shakespeare scripts to find one they all want to do.  So far, they are a ‘maybe’ for Romeo and Juliet, but The Tempest was a most definite ‘no!’

Next week, both the Primaries and Intermediates will have the opportunity to participate in a presentation by the OWL rescue organization, who will be bringing raptors to the school.  I think the students will be quite enthralled by these lovely birds.

Thursday, May 16th is Beaconsfield’s annual Sports Day.  All Home Learners are invited to participate.  The day will start in our classroom at 9:00 a.m. sharp.  Sports Day is from 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. with dismissal at 2:00 p.m., so please mark your calendars for a 2:00 pick-up that day.

Finally, the last Portfolio Meetings of the year occur from May 27th through June 4th.  Please book your appointment asap by sending me your first and second choice of meeting dates and times.

The last Scholastic orders of this school year are due by Thursday, May 23rd.  Please remember that allotments are now closed, so a cheque made payable to Scholastic must accompany any orders.

Field Trip to Carousel Theatre’s The Young King


On Thursday, April 18, we are going to see Carousel Theatre’s production of The Young King.  This performance is different from other Carousel productions as it has a different start time than usual, and a slightly different format and location.  Please note that the performance itself actually starts at 9:40 a.m.

Carousel asks that everyone be there 20 minutes early for seating, so please be there by 9:15 a.m. at the latest.  I do have more tickets booked for this production than I did for Salmon Girl, so don’t hesitate to sign up!

Important! The performance will take place at Performance Works on Granville Island at 1218 Cartwright Street. Please check the location in advance; this is not at the Waterfront Theatre, it is a different location further along the street, beside the bus parking area.

Please note that babes in arms cannot be admitted to the theatre.

LENGTH: The play is approx. 60 minutes with no intermission. There will be a participatory pre-show coronation activity – please be aware that this makes the end time of the performance subject to change.

Carousel Theatre Field Trip


This coming Wednesday, April 10th we are going to Carousel Theatre to see the performance of Salmon Girl.  The performance starts at 10:00 a.m., so please meet me in the theatre lounge by 9:45 at the latest so we can enter as a group.  The performance is one hour long.

Seymour River Hatchery Field Trip

The students have been learning all about the life cycle of Salmon, why they are an important link in the eco-system, what threats Salmon are facing, and they have been working hard on their dioramas, which are looking fabulous!

I think everyone is pretty excited about our trip to the Hatchery on Tuesday!  The Seymour Salmonid Society has sent me an overview and guidelines to share with all students and guardians.  I have reviewed this with the Intermediate class and will review this with the Primary class on Monday.  Parents and Guardians:  Please read through these guidelines carefully so that your child(ren) and you are properly prepared for the day:

The actual field trip time is 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.  They ask us all to arrive there for 9:45 so the leaders can get us ready, go over the day with everyone, etc.

Please note, due to the nature of this field trip, only registered students and their parent/guardians can participate in this trip.  No toddlers, babies, or students who are not registered in the program.

Washroom facilities are out-houses.

Backpacks, extra clothing and lunches will be stored in their classroom for the duration of the field trip and lunch will be indoors.

What to bring:

Please bring a waste-free snack, lunch, and water bottle.  All visitors are asked to take their own waste home.

No food or drink is available for purchase at the Hatchery.

Please wear sturdy footwear.  Rubber boots are great.

Please wear a waterproof jacket, warm layers, and pack extra socks.  (Remember, it is cooler and damper in the forest, and also we will be wading into the water with hip-waiters they provide.  Also, if the forecasted rain happens, it will be quite wet everywhere in the forest environment.)

Students and parent volunteers are asked to stay with the station leader at all times.

Walk only on the trails.

Use equipment (microscopes, etc.) only after instruction from the leaders, and use with care.

Parent volunteers:

All Adult attendees/supervisors are asked to help with group supervision, especially during lunch and trips to the outhouses.  This includes:

Ensuring students follow safety guidelines outlined by the GDS Educators, collecting student attention when necessary, and supporting students during station activities.

Ensuring students experiences come first, by conducting conversations at respectful levels.

Parents are advised there are no places to purchase food near the field trip site, no coffee or tea, and that there is no cell reception.

Finally, to find directions to the Seymour River Hatchery, on Google Maps please enter “Seymour River Hatchery.”

Note that highway traffic near exit 22 is very busy in the morning.  Please budget extra travel time if possible.


Please Bring

Looking way ahead, into April, we have a special field trip planned on April 9th to the Seymour River Fish Hatchery & Education Center.  To that end, we will start learning all about Salmon and the life cycle of Salmon.  I am asking parents to please bring a small box (like a shoe box) and a small bag of gravel to class so that the students can start making dioramas of Salmon habitat and salmon spawning.  We will start right away on Monday and Tuesday, so please do your best to find a box(es) and some gravel to bring so everyone can get started!

Thank you!

I will have more information and sign-ups late next week or the first week of April.

March Comes In Like A Lamb

This first week of March with the Home Learners will be a busy one!

Monday we still have portfolio meetings for the day – no school.

Tuesday the Intermediates will be snowshoeing with the school at Mount Seymour.  Everyone who is coming, please be to the classroom by 8:50 a.m.  We need to get ready and get on the bus for a 9:00 a.m. departure.  We should be back for 3:00 p.m.

Wednesday we have our field trip to Carousel Theatre’s Elephant & Piggie.  Please be at Carousel Theatre no later than 9:40 a.m. as we must enter as a group and groups enter first come, first served.  This production will go from 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.  Programming at Beaconsfield will resume at 1:00 p.m.

Thursday  we have our field trip to Vancouver Symphony Orchestra’s Peter and The Wolf.  Please meet me at the corner of Smythe and Seymour by 9:40 a.m. at the latest.  DO NOT enter, even if the ushers ask you to!  Wait for me and the group and we will enter together so nobody is missed or left unattended.  The symphony  is from 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.  Programming at Beaconsfield will resume at 1:00 p.m.

Portfolio Week and Class Photos

February 25th through March 4th are our mid-year portfolio meetings.  There are still families who have not yet set up an appointment.  This is a friendly reminder that portfolio meetings are a mandatory component of participation in the Home Learning program.  Please contact me ASAP to book your appointment.  Classes will resume on Tuesday, March 5th.

On Tuesday, February 26th, the Home Learners’ class photo will be taken at 9:45 a.m.  Everyone please come to our classroom by 9:40 a.m. to take coats off, line up, etc.  Parents are asked to wait in the classroom while the photo is taken (not in the hall, please).  Once the photo is taken, everyone is free to go.  Please note:  There is a tight schedule for all the classes to take their photos in the time the photographer has allotted for our school, so if your child is late, we cannot wait or re-take the photo.

Upcoming Field Trips:

We will have a very busy week following portfolios as it just so happens that both the VSO and Carousel Theatre have productions that week.

We have Carousel Theatre’s production of Elephant & Piggie’s “We are in A Play” on Wednesday, March 6th, and VSO’s Peter and The Wolf on Thursday, March 7th.

Pyjama Day!

The Intermediates have been asking to have a pyjama day!  To that end, we will have pyjama day this Thursday, February 21.  Wear your pyjamas to school!

Tomorrow, Wednesday, February 20th is The Very Hungry Caterpillar at Carousel Theatre.  It starts at 1:00 p.m., so primary parents/caregivers are asked to pick up students from the classroom at 12:00 p.m. so we can all get there in time.  Carousel will only admit us when our entire group is ready, so please be at the theatre by 12:40 p.m.

The Very Hungry Caterpillar & Other Eric Carle Favourites

Image result for theatre A Very Hungry Caterpillar


Well, I almost missed this!  We have tickets to the magical production of The Very Hungry Caterpillar & Other Eric Carle Favourites.  This production is by Mermaid Theatre from the Maritimes.  I have seen this performance in past years and it is truly a delight!

The performance is on Wednesday, February 20th at 1:00 p.m. at Carousel Theatre on Granville Island.  Tickets are $12.50 per person.  The sign-up sheet and consent forms are on the parent table.


Mark Your Calendars!

Even with the predicted cold snap approaching, February’s arrival always seems to me to signal the beginning of the end of winter and the gradual approach of spring!  I do hope that Wiarton Willie does not see his shadow tomorrow!

We have lots of events and activities fast approaching to mark on your calendars for February:

  • Ice Skating on Monday, Feb 4th:  Please remember to bring your $5 cash for the outing.

Valentines day: 

  • The Primary students will have their Valentines Day party on Wednesday, Feb. 13th from 2-3:00.  If your child wishes to give out valentine cards, please ensure your child gives every member of the class a card – you can find everyone’s names on the show & tell schedule. You are invited to bring a treat for the students to share.
  • The Intermediate students will have their Valentines Day party on Thursday, Feb. 14th from 2-3:00.  If your child wishes to give out valentine cards, please ensure your child gives every member of the class a card.  You are invited to bring a treat for the students to share.


  • Thursday, February 21st will be Pyjama Day for the Intermediates.


  • Portfolio Meetings are being held February 25th through March 4th.  Classes will resume March 5th.  Please email me your first and second choices of dates and times so I can schedule everyone in.


  • Class photo day is Tuesday, February 26th in the morning.  Both the Intermediates and the Primaries are invited to come to be a part of our HL class photos.  These photos are provided to all students free of charge as a nice memento of the year.


Ice Skating Monday, February 4th

We will have ice skating on Monday, February 4th from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.  All registered Home Learner students are welcome to join in!  I will hand out the consent forms to students tomorrow and Wednesday.  The fee is $5.00  As this is planned through the school, allotments cannot be used for this event.  Please bring in $5.00 per child.

Primaries:  Please drop your child off as usual.  We will be walking to and from the rink, rain or shine, so please ensure they are dressed for the weather and have appropriate skating clothing,  including   mittens, hats and socks.

Intermediates: Intermediates are welcome to join us and be picked up after skating at the rink also.

Please ensure the consent forms are signed.  Sorry, children without a consent form will not be allowed to skate.

Field Trip Monday

This is a friendly reminder that our Tour of the Tropics at the Bloedel Conservatory is on Monday.  Please arrive by 9:45 for a 10:00 a.m. start.  As it is paid parking within Queen Elizabeth Park, I will wait for students at the drive-up area.  The program runs from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

News for the week of January 21st

The students have all settled back into their routines after Winter Break and have lots of energy and ideas for the months ahead!  The Primaries worked on New Year resolutions (posted on the bulletin board) and have started their study of rain forests and rain forest animals.  As a group, they have also decided that instead of an end-of-the-year play, they will perform and end-of-the-year magic show!  We will be learning simple magic tricks together in class and will work towards each student having their own special illusion to perform.  The older students are working on writing their own plays and will perform these for their end-of-year performance.  The Intermediates finally started in on their Living Space project (thank you to everyone for completing the surveys from home).  Alas, the VSB has the downloads blocked which we need to learn and use the Microbits, and collect the data, so we will have to wait a little longer until they send someone out to un-block them from being used.

Which reminds me – if any parent would be able to take photos that I, and others, have taken of this school year, and produce a year-end video, please let me know.

For the Primaries:  Monday, January 21st is a Professional Day, school is closed.

Finally, this is a just a note to let people know that many of your allotments have now been fully used.  For some families, I will be putting “invoices” for allotment overages in your files.  What this also means, for those families who have used their allotments, I will need cash payments to participate in field trips from this point.


Field trip to Bloedel Conservatory to learn about rain forests, Monday, January 28th

Valentines Day parties:  Primaries:  February 13th, Intermediates:  February 14th.  Class rule:  If your child would like to give cards to classmates, everyone must be included.  I will forward a class list for each of the groups to ensure inclusion.  Thank you!

Family Day:  Monday, February 18th.  School closed.

Portfolio meetings:  February 25- March 1

The Week Before Winter Break

The excitement level in the classroom has been growing (exponentially!) the last couple of weeks.  I’ve been hearing all about Christmas parties, visits to Santa, people coming to visit, and family plans.  The children have been busy writing kind notes to one another to fill everyone’s stockings.

This week, every day from 9:00 – 9:30 a.m. there will be caroling in the gym.  If you arrive after 9:00, come directly to the gym and meet us in there.

Tuesday afternoon, Dec. 18th, will be the Intermediate’s Christmas party from 1:00 – 2:30 p.m.  Please bring a treat to share.  Families are welcome!

On Wednesday afternoon, Dec. 19th, will be the Primaries’ Christmas party from 1:00 – 2:30 p.m.  Please bring a treat to share. Families are welcome!

After the break, programming resumes on Monday, January 7th.

For the Intermediates, we will be starting the Living Space project, and for the Primaries, we will start learning about rain forests.

Schedule for Thursday, December 13th

Tomorrow will be a busy day with a dress rehearsal in the morning, a performance in the afternoon, and a performance in the evening.

Primaries:  please bring your child to the classroom with their lunch at 10:55 a.m. so they can hang up coats and get ready for the dress rehearsal.  Parents can pick up their Primaries at 2:30 p.m., following the first afternoon performance.

Parents please note:  Sorry, but parents cannot stay and watch the 11:00 dress rehearsal, this is for students only.

Everyone:  Please return at 5:40 p.m. for the evening performance.  Please drop your child(ren) off in the classroom and head downstairs for PAC’s Cafe Noel and to get seated for the performance.


The Nutcracker Ballet

On Monday, December 10th we are going on a field trip to see Seymour Dance’s performance of The Nutcracker Ballet.  The performance is being held at Centennial Theatre in North Vancouver ( take the Lonsdale exit and head south – it is adjacent to the highway).  There is ample free parking.

Please be there by 9:40 a.m. so we can enter as a group and be seated.  There are tickets for everyone who signed up!

The Dance instructors for the Winter concert know that the Home Learners will not be at the practice on Monday, so please don’t worry about that.

On another topic:  I did not receive the $5.00 fee for skating from everyone.  If you have not yet paid for our skating trip in November, please bring $5.00 at your earliest convenience.  Thank you.