The Vancouver Home Learners’ Program, housed at Lord Beaconsfield Elementary School, 3663 Penticton St., Vancouver, incorporates grades Kindergarten through 7. The Program welcomes families who are looking for a balance between full time home schooling and structured classroom learning for their children who are self-motivated, independent learners. It should be noted that the Home Learner program is a boisterous, high-energy program. Students typically work on projects, in teams and in multi-aged groupings. Students in our program are typically intrinsically motivated to learn and are very much self-directed learners who require less, rather than more support and direction in their daily activities.
Each child, in collaboration with her or his parent/guardian and teacher develops an individual Student Learning Plan which forms the goals and objectives for the child’s learning year.
Children are invited to attend their optional two days of programming each week: Mondays and Tuesdays from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. for Grades K through 2, or Thursdays and Fridays from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. for Grades 3 to 7 . Programs vary by semester and include such things as Gardening, Medieval Times, Global Learning, Science, Conservation, Robotics, Gym, Art, Language Arts, Book Making, Bowling, Skating, Badminton, Quilting, Languages and Music. The emphasis is on hands-on, experiential learning and project-based learning.
In a nutshell, the Vancouver Home Learners’ Program is not a Home Schooling program where one might register then pursue their own path – the Ministry of BC curriculum must be met for each student registered in our program. In the Home Learner’s Program, a high degree of parent participation in the student’s learning, and collaboration with your teacher is expected. Student attendance on their two days/week is expected also.
I am interested in your program. May I drop-in to observe?
No. Due to the nature of the program, and the high volume of requests we receive, we cannot accommodate observations, daily or weekly student visitations, or meetings to drop by the program. However, for families interested in enrolling their child for Kindergarten, we do offer the ‘Welcome to Kindergarten’ event every year in May. Children enrolled for K for September will receive an invitation to this event directly from the office.
What days would my child attend?
Kindergarten to Grade 2/3’s attend on Mondays and Tuesdays, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Grade 3/4’s to Grade 7’s attend on Thursdays and Fridays from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
What does a typical day in the classroom look like?
The Home Learner program is a boisterous, high-energy program, focusing on hands-on, experiential, multi-modal learning. Students are encouraged to work with peers and/or on teams to enhance their learning. Being a multi-aged program, students also learn to work with and help others. Frequent field trips enhance the experiential learning experience for the students.
You cover the curriculum, so I don’t have to, right?
No. It is expected that parents/guardians cover learning outcomes at home with their children. While our programs are cross-curricular and do align with the BC curriculum, they cannot be expected to cover all areas for all grades and subjects.
Student Learning Plans
Student learning for the year is planned out in a three-way collaboration between the student, parent and teacher at the beginning of the school year, or upon entry to the program. This ensures that your child’s learning plan is unique to her or his learning needs and interests. Student Learning Plans are dynamic, living documents that may grow and develop with your student.
When is the deadline for registration?
At the moment, we have a waiting list for our Primary and Intermediate programs for September. (2020-2021). If you wish to apply, you must completely fill out a registration form (see next section below) and submit it to the office. If a waiting list develops, please note, we cannot answer calls regarding where a particular child is at on the waiting list. We will contact you if a spot becomes available.
How do I register?
Your first step is to register at your catchment school, even if you have no intention of attending at that school. This is a new policy of the VSB. Our program cannot accept your registration unless you have already registered at your catchment school. Once you have done that, you need to fill out a separate registration form for our program, (see link below to print out and complete) scan and email it to the office at Lord Beaconsfield School. You will need include your child’s birth certificate, proof of residency (rental agreement, tax assessment), and immunization record, if you have one, for your child’s registration to be complete. Registrations are dated and processed only when they are completed and the above noted documents have been brought in to the office. You may fax a completed registration form into the office to register, but please remember, you must also fax in a copy of your child’s birth certificate, proof of residency and immunization record. The fax number is: 604-713-4607
If you wish to complete a registration form and have everything ready to go to register for our program, you may obtain and complete a registration form here:
Do you have spaces available?
We currently have wait list for September 2020 in both the Primary and Intermediate programs.
Do I need to use certain curricular material ?
You can chose any curriculum/materials that work best for your child. The teachers are here to help guide you in your decisions regarding materials if you wish and are familiar with most of the programs and materials available. The idea is that children achieve the outcomes for their grade levels, therefore, there is ultimate flexibility in how that is achieved.
Is there homework?
Occasionally, assignments or activities will be sent home with children to augment the learning and exploration that is happening in the program at that time. For example, during our study of Space, children were tasked with recording the phases of the moon for one month.
Is attendance mandatory?
No, attendance is not mandatory. Most students chose to participate two days a week, but some participate one day or one morning or just on field trips. Some families travel during the school year also, which is perfectly fine. The only aspects that are mandatory are: 1. The “activation assignment” when students first register. This is mandated by the ministry and is an assignment the teachers design for the students to get them started on their learning journey for the school year. 2. Three portfolio meetings a year with the student/parents to share with the teacher what the student has been learning.