The DIY World of Maker Tools and Their Uses

From new technology to everyday materials to rebooting school woodshop and home ec classes, makerspaces challenge students to open their minds and expand their skillsets.


All the latest tools and tips about #makered and #projectbasedlearning in this article by @coolcatteacher

Canadian Picture Book List

Canadian Picture book list.jpg

We have recently added a Canadian Picture Book List on our website. These are recommendations that we may or may not have in our libraries but you will be able to source out other places. Any titles on this list that we do have available are all directly linked. We have a variety of Reading Lists available for you under the Literacy tab on our website. We will be updating many of them over the summer. We would love to hear your suggestions as well! Feel free to email any of the Learning Commons team including Pippa Davies at , Shandra Wiebe at or Natalie Sing at to make your suggestions.

We hope you are getting some time to read in the sun this summer!! Blessings!!

Social bookmarking site for schools. Allow students to learn, gather & share resources with classmates.

A social bookmarking site for schools. Allow students to explore, learn, gather & share resources with everyone in the class. No student sign up required! Easily share resources with anyone in the class!


New content curation site for classroom teachers.  No student email required!  Perfect for elementary or high school teachers!!

Where have all the summer reading assignments gone? | eSchool News | eSchool News

Read Summer: a time in a child’s life where they are no longer bound by societal rules to attend school nor do anything school related.


Read, read, read over the summer and prevent the summer slide!!

Paper by FiftyThree

Get Paper by FiftyThree on the App Store. See screenshots and ratings, and read customer reviews.


Paper by 53 is the latest artsy app to make 21st century presentations look like modern works of art!  App of the year in 2012!  It’s the easiest and most beautiful way to create on iPad. Capture your ideas as sketches, diagrams, illustrations, notes or drawings and share them across the web.

Story-Driven, Evidence-Based Teaching and Learning Platform, Awesome Stories is a Cure for the Common Core. Non-Fiction, Fiction, Films, Books, Social Studies, History, Science, Math, the Arts, Trials, Disaster.


Primary sources for research projects in simple, easy to use format!  All grades!

Celebrate Canada Day – Plan your Canadian Resources for Next Year using Overdrive…


We have many Overdrive resources to help you to study Canadian Geography and History. Here are just a few of them…

ABC of Canada


ABC of Canada by Kim Bellafontaine and Per-Henrick Gurth

This book is part of a great series, including these titles:

Oh Canada

Canada 1,2,3

Canada in Colours

Canada All Year

Canada, The People

Canada the People by Bobbie Kalman

This series includes two more great titles Canada, The Land and Canada, The Culture

Multicultural Canada

We also have a wide range of Rainbow Publishing Canadian Unit Studies including:

First Nations: Native Cultures of Canada

Canada and It’s Trading Partners

Canada Eh?

Multicultural Canada

Canadian Urban and Rural Communities

Canadian Governments and Elections

Canadian Trees and the Urban Forest

Famous Canadians

Caring for a Colony

We also have in Overdrive The Stories of Canada Series of Biographies of Famous Canadians:

Making it Home Catherine Parr Trail

Mapping the Wilderness The Story of David Thompson

Caring for a Colony The Story of Jeanne Mance

Stand Together and Fight Richard Pierpoint and the Coloured Corps of Upper Canada

Bold, Brave and Born to Lead Major General Isaac Brock and the Canadas

The Learning Commons team wishes you a wonderful Canada Day! May you feel God’s blessing for residing in this amazing country!!


Create a school makerspace in 3 simple steps

Makerspaces can be elaborate learning spaces equipped with sophisticated tools and supplies, but they don’t have to be.


How to create a #makerspace #makered in your learning commons.  ISTE

Summer time and the books are calling – Summer Reading Contest!

Fish are jumping and the weather is fine:)

YES… it is finally time to take a break from studies, head outdoors and celebrate the beauty and majesty of British Columbia and Alberta!  Before you head out on holidays please remember that the best way to read this summer is to log into your Overdrive E library, and find your e-book or audiobook of choice.  Overdrive will be open all summer long to help your students reach new reading targets, and may also to help you prepare for next year with some amazing curriculum choices.

See below for details about our Summer Reading Contest!

Pippa and Natalie would like to share their 3 favourite reads with you to invite you to enjoy Overdrive this summer!


The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak.  Middle school and up. The extraordinary #1 New York Times bestseller that is now a major motion picture, Markus Zusak’s unforgettable story is about the ability of books to feed the soul. It is 1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier, and will become busier still. Liesel Meminger is a foster girl living outside of Munich, who scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can’t resist–books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster-father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement. In superbly crafted writing that burns with intensity, award-winning author Markus Zusak, author of I Am the Messenger, has given us one of the most enduring stories of our time.

Racing Home by Adele Dueck We read this book as part of our grade 6-8 book club and all agreed this was the favourite along with Catboy (Eric Walters)  from the Red Cedar awards.

My favourite for all in the early elementary has to be Winnie the Pooh by A.A Milne! Come with us to an enchanted place, a forest where Winnie-the-Pooh lived with Piglet, Rabbit, Owl, Eeyore, Kanga, and Little Roo. The stories are about Christopher Robin and these good companions having wonderful times getting in and out of trouble. It is all very exciting and, really, quite thrilling no matter how young or old you may be.


The Trumpet of the Swan by E.B. White A beautiful story on audiobook for your listening pleasureGrades K-3 “Louis is a Trumpeter Swan, but he has no voice. Though he is frightened when his father explains to him that he is different from the other cygnets. Louis is resourceful and determined. Leaving his wild and beautiful home, he finds a young human friend, Sam Beaver, who helps him learn to read and write. When he returns to his lake, Louis discovers his education isn’t enough: The beautiful swan he loves, Serena, can’t read his declarations of love–and he can’t trumpet them. Louis’s resolution to win the swan of his desire launches him on an adventure that will take him far from home and lead where fate–and love–have a few surprises in store. With humor and lyric beauty, E. B. White tells a timeless tale of love, courage, and freedom that will capture the imagination of every listener.”

Gone Away Lake by Elizabeth Enright This was an all-time favourite read aloud in our family! We have it in the Overdrive library in audiobook form. Wonderful for those long summer car trips! Great for grades 3-6. “Enjoy the adventures of eleven year-old Portia, who together with her younger brother, Foster, spend a summer with their cousin, Julian, engaged in more than the usual summer pastimes of sun, fun and games! The three intrepid children soon discover a fascinating abandoned summer resort, consisting of deserted, crumbling Victorian summer homes surrounding a vanished lake, which is now a swamp. But, best of all, they discover and befriend an elderly eccentric brother and sister who tell them the story of “Gone-Away Lake”!”

Summer of the Monkeys by Louis Rawls Another wonderful summer read! Grades 4-8 The last thing a fourteen-year-old boy expects to find along an old Ozark river bottom is a tree full of monkeys. Jay Berry Lee’s grandpa had an explanation, of course–as he did for most things. The monkeys had escaped from a traveling circus, and there was a handsome reward in store for anyone who could catch them. Grandpa said there wasn’t any animal that couldn’t be caught somehow, and Jay Berry started out believing him . . . But by the end of the “summer of the monkeys,” Jay Berry Lee had learned a lot more than he ever bargained for–and not just about monkeys. He learned about faith, and wishes coming true, and knowing what it is you really want. He even learned a little about growing up . . . This novel, set in rural Oklahoma around the turn of the century, is a heartwarming family story–full of rich detail and delightful characters–about a time and place when miracles were really the simplest of things…

Finally, I would also say that a great non-fiction book to enjoy over the summer would be a Thornton Burgess’ book The Burgess Seashore book for Children. Read about all of the seashore creatures in story form infused with facts about each one. “Familiar Burgess characters Danny Meadow Mouse, Jimmy Skunk, and Reddy Fox explore every nook and cranny of the shoreline and learn first hand about the habits and habitats of spider crabs, sea cucumbers, sand eels, and that strangest of little fishes—the sea horse. Veteran storyteller and nature lover Thornton W. Burgess provides fascinating information to young readers as he describes coastal areas along the Atlantic Ocean. Along the way he weaves the area’s many life forms into an entertaining tale that’s also an illustrated guide to the seashore’s natural history.”


What are your favourite reads?  We would love to hear your reviews of e or audio books which you may read over the summer:)

All summer long as you read a book from our Overdrive Library,  come back to this post and write a review in the comment section below. We will then pull a name randomly from all the reviews that we receive, and announce a winner in September. The prize will be a Kobo e- Reader, that will enable you to read more Overdrive e-books!!

We pray that the Lord will bless you and keep you this summer and offer a much-needed rest!

Blessings from the learning commons team!

Aboriginal Peoples of Canada Unit Study

Aboriginal Peoples of Canada

We have just added another one of our Overdrive Digital Unit Studies to the Learning Commons. Aboriginal Peoples of Canada. This unit study incorporates Overdrive E Resources which may be used from the convenience of your computer or digital device at any time.  Maybe you would like to complete it over the summer months?  It is ready for you!

We will be adding more units to our Downloadable Overdrive Unit Studies over the summer, so check back often.  We also have a range of themed resources in Overdrive which you may want to browse.  If you have not yet discovered e-book reading on Overdrive our Learning Commons team would love to help you get started.


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