60 Minutes Club!

HCOS is taking part in the the 60 Minute Kids Club!

All you have to do is commit to living healthy and active over the next 60 days. We’ll help you with challenges and tools to keep track of your progress and keep you motivated.   See FALL_Parent Letter for more information!

Or go to http://60minkidsclub.org/ to sign up right away….


Once your kids are signed up- let your contact teacher know, he or she can use this as a PE/ DPA tracker.

God bless you today!

Nola Morgan


Trust in the Lord with all your heart

 and lean not on your own understanding;


L4U and Overdrive Passwords, Booking Unit Studies and more!

We are adding new patrons to the system every two weeks. If you enrolled after September 15th, your information was uploaded today. Please check your junk folder for an email from L4U with your client code and pin. Students were also sent their information.
To learn how to access the L4U library, click on the icon “How to Use the Library” and read the documents provided. Shipping information is also included further down the page.

Help! The Unit Study I need is fully booked! What do I do now?

It’s been a busy time in the learning commons – we can tell by the bare shelves that homeschoolers everywhere are hard at work! Many new families have joined us – Welcome! We are happy to help you navigate the websites and learn the ropes!

Due to the popularity of the physical unit study kits, some are already completely booked for the year. But don’t despair; we have other options for you! Alternative Resources

Incredible Art Department | Art Education

This is the home page of The Incredible Art Department (IAD), the oldest art education website on the internet. See hundreds of art lessons, resources, art news, art jobs and more.

Source: www.incredibleart.org

Art lessons, jobs, gallery, news, teacher tools and more on this comprehensive art site for students and teachers!

Collaboration in the learning commons!

This year we have 3 great programs that you and your students could consider to help get you connected!

NING: This is a social network created for our own school environment to help homeschoolers (and their parents) connect with each other more. It functions much like Facebook does in that you have your profile, you can add friends, talk to people, enter contests, play games and find out about upcoming events. However it is a much safer online environment, only accessible through the school site with a username and password. Distance learning may at times be isolating, and the NING offers a way to fellowship more and bring us closer together as a community.

If you would like more information on the NING please contact Pippa Davies ( pdavies@onlineschool.ca ) or Erin Duncan ( eduncan@onlineschool.ca ).  Students need to be 13 or older to join.

FMT: FMT Stands for Forum Moderation Team. It is a volunteer  peer mentorship team that is put together at the start of every school year to help keep the HCOS Moodle Discussion Forums and the NING running smoothly. Forum moderators will  alert the overseeing staff if there are any problems or disagreements on the Forums or NING that may need addressing, and point people in the right direction to get any questions about these social networks answered. It is approximately a 3 hour a week commitment that includes spending time on the Forums/NING, writing weekly reports on the parts of the Forums/NING that they are assigned to and attending weekly meetings/bible studies. We currently need 2-4 more students, from grade 10-12 to join the team. Being on this team allows you to count the hours toward your volunteer and work experience needed for graduation, and you will receive a letter of reference. If you are interested in this program please contact Erin Duncan (eduncan@onlineschool.ca ).

HCOS Mentor and Protege Program High School Students: This is a group that we are starting this year pairing up an older high school student with a younger one. Mentors (grade 10-12 students) get to help their protege through the transition into the high school system, answering questions and giving tips on how the system works, what studying habits worked well for them and being there as part of the Protege’s support system. The Protégé (grade 8/9 students) gains helpful information and support from a peer, and the Mentor is able to count the hours toward volunteer and work experience needed for graduation.  If you are interested in this program please look at the Mentor and Protege Program group on the NING events tab or contact Pippa Davies ( pdavies@onlineschool.ca ) and add your name

A New Excellent Interactive SAMR Visual for Teachers ~ Educational Technology and Mobile Learning

A New Excellent Interactive SAMR Visual for Teachers ~ Educational Technology and Mobile Learning http://t.co/GbK9wUHM62 via @delicious

Source: www.educatorstechnology.com

Redesigning Bloom’s with ed tech apps!  

Blogging as Writing Curriculum

September 16, 2014 – by Susan Lucille Davis – A look into how to incorporate blogging into students’ writing curriculum.

Source: gettingsmart.com

Blogging is the best tool for encouraging digital writing whilst establishing online community!

Novel/Literature Study Guides in Overdrive!


What a joy to be back at school! We continue to add new resources to the Overdrive library to serve you. This month we have added many novel/literature studies to Overdrive and we have created an easy downloadable list for you. These studies are all printable PDF’s.

You can find it here: Novel/Literature Study Guides in Overdrive

If you need any assistance with Overdrive please feel free to contact Pippa at pdavies@onlineschool.ca or Natalie at nsing@onlineschool.ca. We would love to help you get started with Overdrive and access these (and many more) amazing resources!


Mysteries in Overdrive

September 15th was Agatha Christie’s Birthday. In honour of this amazing mystery writer, we thought it would be great to highlight a few of our wide range of mysteries in the Overdrive library.

Murder on the Orient Express

Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie

Just after midnight, a snowstorm stops the Orient Express dead in its tracks in the middle of Yugoslavia. The luxurious train is surprisingly full for this time of year. But by morning there is one passenger less. A ‘respectable American gentleman’ lies dead in his compartment, stabbed a dozen times, his door locked from the inside . . . Hercule Poirot is also aboard, having arrived in the nick of time to claim a second-class compartment — and the most astounding case of his illustrious career. Grades 9-12

Mini Mysteries

Judy Moody’s Mini Mysteries – and other Sneaky Stuff for Super Sleuths by Megan MacDonald

Join detective Judy Drewdy to create a way-official detective kit, solve six mini-mysteries, and sharpen real-and-actual sleuth skills. Chock-full of advice for the would-be sleuth and bursting with activities, here is an uber RARE diversion for fans of Judy and for anyone who loves a good mystery. “The Great Class Heist” is just one of the whodunits tackled by Judy Drewdy and agents Dills Pickle (a.k.a. Frank), Spuds Houdini (Rocky), and James Madagascar (Stink), who need readers’ help in cracking these cases! In addition to six solve-it-yourself missions, kids can get in the mood to create a detective kit, sketch suspects, test powers of observation, puzzle through ridonkulus logic puzzles, write super-sneaky codes, and more! Grades 2-3

The Perilous Journey

The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Perilous Journey by Trenton Lee Stewart (and other titles)

The Mysterious Benedict Society is back with a new mission, significantly closer to home. After reuniting for a celebratory scavenger hunt, Reynie, Kate, Sticky, and Constance are forced to go on an unexpected search–a search to find Mr. Benedict. It seems that while he was preparing the kids’ adventure, he stepped right into a trap orchestrated by his evil twin Mr. Curtain.

With only one week to find a captured Mr. Benedict, the gifted foursome faces their greatest challenge of all–a challenge that will reinforce the reasons they were brought together in the first place and will require them to fight for the very namesake that united them. Grades 4-8

Eye of the Crow

Eye of the Crow by Shane Peacock

Sherlock Holmes, just thirteen, is a misfit. His highborn mother is the daughter of an aristocratic family, his father a poor Jew. Their marriage flouts tradition and makes them social pariahs in the London of the 1860s; and their son, Sherlock, bears the burden of their rebellion. Friendless, bullied at school, he belongs nowhere and has only his wits to help him make his way.

But what wits they are! His keen powers of observation are already apparent, though he is still a boy. He loves to amuse himself by constructing histories from the smallest detail for everyone he meets. Partly for fun, he focuses his attention on a sensational murder to see if he can solve it. But his game turns deadly serious when he finds himself the accused — and in London, they hang boys of thirteen.

Shane Peacock has created a boy who bears all the seeds of the character who has mesmerized millions: the relentless eye, the sense of justice, and the complex ego. The boy Sherlock Holmes is a fascinating character who is sure to become a fast favorite with young readers everywhere. Grades 3-6

Boxcar Children

The Boxcar Children – The Lighthouse Mystery by Gertrude Chandler Warner (and many other titles)

Renting a lighthouse is unusual, but even more so is an unfriendly boy’s peculiar behavior. Grades K-2

39 Clues

The 39 Clues – The Maze of Bones by Rick Riordan (and many other titles)

What would happen if you discovered that your family was one of the most powerful in human history? What if you were told that the source of the family’s power was hidden around the world, in the form of 39 Clues? What if you were given a choice – take a million dollars and walk away…or get the first Clue? If you’re Amy and Dan Cahill, you take the Clue – and begin a very dangerous race. Grades 3-6

The Case of the Lost Boy

The Buddy Files, The Case of the Lost Boy by Dori Hillestad Butler (and other titles)

The Edgar Award–winning first book in Dori Hillestad Butler’s Buddy Files series
King’s family is missing, and he’s been put in the P-O-U-N-D. Why doesn’t his beloved human, Kayla, come to get him?
When King is adopted by Connor and his mom, things get more confusing. The new family calls him Buddy!
Then Connor disappears!
Buddy (aka King) has some big problems to solve. Mystery fans and dog lovers will be swept up in Dori Butler’s entertaining story about a smart, funny, loyal dog . . . and left eager for Buddy’s next adventure. Grades K-2

Hidden in Plain Sight

Hidden in Plain Sight by Chris Auer (and other titles)

Eerie stories surround the old Victorian mansion-turned-museum known as Eckert House. But what was once thought to be fiction may prove to be fact after twelve-year-old Dan Pruitt makes a gruesome discovery. Dan and his friends set out to uncover the truth, but will their search lead them down a path of danger instead? Grades 3-6

Mystery of the Melting Snowman

The Mystery of the Melting Snowman by Florence Parry Heide (and other titles)

It’s snowman season in the neighbourhood, but the Spotlighters discover that someone’s not just playing! They find a curious iron figurine hidden inside one of the snowmen. Who was hiding it—and why? When a stranger comes looking for it, it’s clear the Spotlight Club has another mystery to solve! K-3

Reviews by Overdrive

Training in the Learning Commons

Hello Learning commons folks :)

October is Training or Professional Development in the learning commons. and our team is excited about sharing and meeting with you at Community Connection centres, and also in the comfort of your own home via our virtual classroom.

If you are interested in:

  • Discovering what is available in your physical and virtual learning commons
  • How to download software, borrow an item etc.
  • Want to know about collaborating with others on Ning

Please come to our first one hour session on Blackboard Collaborate on 1st October @ 10.30 Pacific time, and meet with Shandra, Pippa and Natalie.

What will you need to do before such a meeting?

Click on this link half an hour before the session is due to begin.

Participant Link: (to invite others, email them this link)


You will be prompted with a download option.  Click on the download and if you are good to go a new window will pop open with your virtual classroom.  It takes a couple of minutes to download.

If you are brand new to using Blackboard please review the following tutorials, especially the first one.  This is highly recommended for all new users!

We look forward to seeing you at this session where we can connect and learn more about your information needs:)


Pippa, Natalie and Shandra!

Back to School Greetings!

Greetings and welcome back to a new school year with Heritage Christian Schools Blended Learning Commons :D

We hope your first week back is going well, and you have enjoyed opening that new curriculum!  Or maybe you have not hit the books yet,  but are enjoying the last few rays of sunshine, or celebrating not back to school with a WOW day!  Whatever you are doing we pray the Lord will bring great learning this year, and blessings in your online environment!

We thought we would introduce our learning commons team, and point you in the right direction to get you started in the learning commons this fall.  Shandra Wiebe is our online librarian and she works from Kelowna!  She is your go to lady for all things related to how L4U works and reference retrieval from the catalogue.  Kelly Wiebe is back on track with shipping and she does an awesome job of getting all things shipped to you in fine shape .  Natalie Sing is our curriculum consultant who loves helping families find curriculum to suit their needs, whether it be e books, websites or digital databases.  Jessie Davis is our campus co-ordinator and she is available for campus reference queries and events in the physical commons.  Sherri Funk is our campus reading specialist and she loves teaching music and reading skills.  Erin Duncan is our Forum and Ning moderator, and she keeps the peace in all things social networking.   New this year to our team we have Rachael Freed former HCOS alumni returning as a teacher and kit writer for the learning commons.  Welcome Rachael!  Then of course there is me, Pippa Davies who does a bit of everything in the cloud, but loves helping students, staff and parents find the right information at the right time!.  We all runs webinars related to websites, subscriptions, and research, and we love to co-teach anything in the literacy realm.

  • Learning commons passwords to use both the E library on Overdrive and the campus physical commons catalogue L4U are emailed to you when you enrol with the school, or when you email Shandra Wiebe our online Librarian. swiebe@onlineschool.ca
  • Please check your junk mail folder for passwords.  We have found in the past that when you enrol your  L4U generated passwords may often get sent to junk.  We are working on fixing this.  This is only for new enrolling families.  If you are unsure at all please email Shandra 
  • Watch the Getting Started video on our website.  Just five minutes long it will point you in the right direction!
  • Our blended commons has a large variety of digital databases and subscriptions and we want you to know about all of them!:D  Please scroll through the alphabetical listing of our subscriptions to find learning resources to meet 21st century learning.  New this year we have Pebble Go and Nallenart L’art De Lire French curriculum.  Your teacher will help you get started by sharing the list of usernames and passwords.  Please make sure you do not share these with other school students.  We are only paying for HCS blended commons families.  Beth Johnson is in charge of signing up patrons for the different databases.
  • This month there will be a Getting Started webinar on Blackboard Collaborate and we look forward to seeing you all there with questions.  Registration Link to come soon.
  • Ning is back in the swing! if you have not seen the green icon on our website, and you have a student aged 13 and older please send them my way to join our private social network,  moderated by both Erin Duncan, Natalie Sing and Pippa Davies.  Students, parents and staff meet to share music, photographs, websites, learning experiences and more! All events planned on the Ning encourage discipleship and community, along with competitions and prizes.  If you would like an invite please email Pippa Davies pdavies@onlineschool.ca New this month we have a mentoring program for new grade 8/9 students and our older senior students.  For more information check out this group page here.  There are also icebreaker games for you to check out on the events tab!
  • Our summer reading challenge is still open to all our avid readers from K-12 who would like to share their book reviews.  For more information go here or to share your book review go here.
  • Please follow our blog by signing up on the learning commons website.
  • Information on all book clubs will be updated shortly.  But in the meantime here is a sneak peek!

Natalie shares more on the latest in the way of curriculum with her article on Canadian Historical Fiction.  What a great way to meet social studies learning outcomes than by reading great non – fiction books!

Shandra shares some important booking information for kits on L4U.

Lis Johnston, HCOS learning services consultant shares about learning styles in her book review on The Big What Now Book of Learning Styles.

Current awareness newsletter on Scoopit.

From all of us to all of you, cyberhugs and blessings!

The learning commons team!



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