February is Black History Month



February is Black History Month and a great time to study the Underground Railway, Africa, Human Rights, and all aspects of Black History. There are many resources available, and this resource about Canadian Black History is excellent for our students. It includes a downloadable guide with learning tools to add to your studies. You may also want to take advantage of the National Film Board’s playlist for Black History Month  in Canada.

We have a collection of Black History resources in our Overdrive library. They are in our Teacher’s Lounge which is where we will be highlighting some of our great collections in Overdrive. Here are just a few of the resources to give you a taste of the collection.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Discovery Education and Learn360 also have many videos available under the search headings Slavery, Civil Rights and African American, including Reading Rainbow titles, Rabbit Ears Titles and titles with Teacher guides and/or Student pages. Brain Pop has many titles on Civil Rights, Slavery and the Haarlem Renaissance.

If we can be of service to you in finding a specific resource for your studies, just send an email to Pippa Davies at pdavies@onlineschool.ca, Shandra Wiebe swiebe@onlineschool.ca or Natalie Sing nsing@onlineschool.ca.

Classroom Complete Press Unit Studies – Inquiry and Project Based available in Overdrive

We have added many titles from Classroom Complete Press to Overdrive and these will work very well for your students learning about topics from Water Conservation to World Politics and many, many more!  At present we have Science Units, Social Studies Units and Literature Kits for all grades.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

To find Classroom Complete Press in Overdrive E Library just use the words Classroom Complete Press in the search bar and all of the available titles will show up.  Or go to the Non fiction tab under Subjects and refine your search by publisher.

Now, let us tell you why we prefer these workbooks as opposed to others.

First of all, they are on subjects and topics that meet many of the new BCEDPlan curriculum content. These include many Environmental Awareness and Sustainability, World Conflicts and Social Justice issues.

Second they have great inquiry based questions that your student can answer themselves through their own research. There are many questions that require your student to dig a little deeper and give an opinion based on their own thoughts and research.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Third they have both Assessment Rubrics and Bloom’s Taxonomy correlations in each of the units. This will allow you to have a sense of your student’s progress and where you want to focus your efforts.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Fourth they include Graphic Organizers and Hands on Experiments and Activities. Many of the Activities include a choice from the student of what and how they would like to present the information they have learned. They also include more traditional vocabulary activities, comprehension questions and all of the information to learn about the basics of the topic.

Finally, for you a great benefit is that we have the digital rights for printing under copyright rules! Many of them come in the Overdrive Read or PDF Ebook formats for ease in downloading and printing.

We urge you to check out these unit studies today! If you need some help getting started with Overdrive, please feel free to email Pippa at pdavies@onlineschool.ca or Natalie at nsing@onlineschool.ca

Blessings! The Learning Common’s Team

New Digital Kindergarten Kits available now for the New BCEDPlan

Kindergarten Kits

We are so excited in the Learning Commons to offer you the first kits based on the new BCEDPlan. We have completed Kindergarten and are just bursting to share them with you! These kits are much more open ended and allow for student and parent choice. There are many fiction and non-fiction suggestions, video suggestions (from Discovery and Learn 360), hands on projects and activity ideas along with ways to use our other subscriptions.

We have added many new titles to our Overdrive library to make these kits interesting, engaging and an exciting learning experience for you and your children. They include integrated Biblical content, First People’s content and many of the Curricular Competencies for both Science or Social Studies and Language Arts.

Even if you don’t have a student in Kindergarten next year you may want to look at the new format. I think you will find these kits amazing – when we have each grade ready to go we will let you know via our blog. If you haven’t signed up to follow our blog now would be a great time!

Here are links to all of the Kindergarten Kits:

Communities Kindergarten 510x680

Communities – Kindergarten (using Overdrive Resources)

Daily and Seasonal Changes Cover

Daily and Seasonal Changes – Kindergarten (using Overdrive Resources)

Personal and Family History

Family and Personal History – Kindergarten (using Overdrive Resources)

Needs of Plants and Animals Kindergarten 510x680

Needs of Plants and Animals – Kindergarten (using Overdrive Resources)

Motion of Objects - Kindergarten 510x680

Motion of Objects – Kindergarten (using Overdrive Resources)

Thanks to our kit writer Rachael Freed and the whole Learning Commons team for their great work! Stay tuned for more Digital and Physical kit guides coming soon! Blessings!!

Lunch n Learn Thursday Jan 28

Hi folks,

Here is a reminder for our Lunch n Learn webinar happening this week Thursday.

Research Skills Workshop– Pippa Davies (Learning commons)

Pippa will teach high school students how to research using web tools, and how to create a digital footprint.

Where:  Blackboard virtual classroom

Who may attend:  Students in grades 8-12, parents, staff

When: Thursday  Jan 28th 2016 12-1 pm PAC time

Link to sign into Blackboard classroom on the day


Lunch & Learn Webinar Thursday!

How to Access L4U and Overdrive – Shandra Wiebe (Learning Commons)

Shandra will help you explore L4U, show you how to search for and book items, including unit studies. She will also show you how to access Overdrive E-books.
Where:  Blackboard Virtual Classroom

Who may attend:  Staff, parents, students.

When:  Thursday January 21th 2016 12.30-1.30 pm PAC

Sign into the classroom here at this link on the day:


MakerEd Idea for Families

Folks have been asking for ideas for doing MakerEd at home.  Over the weekend, I was browsing at a local store (Princess Auto in Kelowna),  and was pleasantly surprised to find these:

Tinkerkits, Arduino kits, Minitronics and electronic kits!  You can find cool kits in the most unusual places!

Read-a-thon starts on Monday, Jan.18th!

Be sure to register your students!  All of the information is located here.

Curriculum for Sale!

Curriculum Sale

Visit our Sales list to find some great deals! More items added!

New Books – Secret Series and More!

We have just added a new series that will be popular with girls ages 12 and up! Book it now from the L4U library!

Secrets Series:

In early June, 1964, the Benevolent Home for Necessitous Girls burns to the ground and its vulnerable residents are thrust out into the world. The orphans, who know no other home, find their lives changed in an instant. Arrangements are made for the youngest residents, but the seven oldest girls are sent on their way with little more than a clue or two to their past and the hope of learning about the families they have never known. On their own for the first time in their lives, they are about to experience the world in ways they never imagined.
Bestselling authors Kelley Armstrong, Vicki Grant, Marthe Jocelyn, Kathy Kacer, Norah McClintock, Teresa Toten and Eric Walters team up to create this series of linked YA novels.

This collection includes the 7 following titles:

We have also added some great books that deal with the subject of bullying:

Confessions of a Former Bully:

After Katie gets caught teasing a schoolmate, she’s told to meet with Mrs. Petrowski, the school counselor, so she can make right her wrong and learn to be a better friend. Bothered at first, it doesn’t take long before Katie realizes that bullying has hurt not only the people around her, but her, too. Told from the unusual point of view of the bullier rather than the bullied.


Patricia Polacco takes on cliques and online bullying Lyla finds a great friend in Jamie on her first day of school, but when Lyla makes the cheerleading squad and a clique of popular girls invites her to join them, Jamie is left behind. Lyla knows bullying when she sees it, though, and when she sees the girls viciously teasing classmates on Facebook, including Jamie, she is smart enough to get out. But no one dumps these girls, and now they’re out for revenge. >Patricia Polacco has taken up the cause against bullies ever since Thank You, Mr. Falker, and her passion shines through in this powerful story of a girl who stands up for a friend.


Thirteen-year-old Eric discovers that there are consequences to taking a stand against the bully at his new school, but although school officials are aware of the problem, Eric may be the one with a solution.

No More Victims, Protecting those with Autism from Cyber Bullying, Internet predators and scams:

The digital world offers a wonderful way to communicate and socialize with others. Yet, it is also rife with the dangers of being victimized emotionally, physically, and financially.

Trusting individuals with autism spectrum disorders, who are oftentimes socially isolated, are especially vulnerable to online predators. Finally, we have a resource to help prepare them for the minefields they may encounter on the Internet.
In this much-needed book, Dr Baker presents three main areas of concern for our kids: Cyber bullying, Online sexual predators, Internet scams
Through Dr Baker’s invaluable advice, kids will learn what to look out for, whom to avoid, and how to protect themselves when they’re communicating online.

You will find these and more resources in L4U under the Topic Search, Books by Subject, Bullying category:


January newsletter!

Greetings fellow learning commons friends!

Happy New Year!

2016 is here and we are excited to share all things literacy and research with you this month!  As students enjoy reading and writing during the cold and snowy days ahead we have some great tools, events and webinars for you to enjoy.

Pippa shares on setting goals with the new book One Word (available on Overdrive)

To encourage all of our students we have our Diversify your Reading promotion happening.  Read about it here.  Find your special reads from this hand picked list from Overdrive.  Contact Shandra for more details.

Lunch n Learn webinars include learning about research and Google docs for high school and parents, and an introduction to the learning commons.  Read more about these here.

Book club News!  Kathy Kanda’s amazing Lit circles are back this term.  Sign up your grade 7-9  students to read some awesome books like Perilous Passage and The Hangman in the Mirror and The Door in the Wall!  Follow this link.

News from the Physical commons and Shandra on early literacy education.

As we head into Winter Natalie has some e and audio ideas for sharing in regards to Winter reading..

Catch up on latest web links curated for you here.

News from the campus and all things MakerEd.


Blessings from the learning commons team!

Pippa et al



Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,673 other followers