Read an eBook Day is Monday, September 18th

Tell your story


Share your #eBookLove on social media for a chance to win a Kobo Aura ONE thanks to our friends at Kobo.  Simply share a post, picture and/or videos showing off your #eBookLove for a chance to win this incredible device. OverDrive will notify the winners and share their posts throughout the week of the 18th.

RAEBD flyer 2

Read an eBook Day was created to promote the joy of digital reading and modern storytelling.  Visit Read an eBook Day website to get book recommendations, hear interviews with authors by our Professional Book Nerds podcast, and post comments about their eBook experiences. We hope you’ll join the conversation by sharing what you’re reading, stories about why you love eBooks, and by using the hashtag #eBookLove on social media for a chance to win content credit and devices!


New eBooks on OverDrive for STEAM and MakerED

Need some inspiration?  We have lots of new eBooks on Overdrive for STEAM and MakerEd.  To find these excellent resources, first log-in to your Overdrive account, and then click this link.  To see our new titles first, sort by “added to site”.





Adventures in Coding
Hello Ruby Series, Book 1

Cover of Adventures in Codingby Linda Liukas

Meet Ruby—a small girl with a huge imagination, and the determination to solve any puzzle. As Ruby stomps around her world making new friends, including the Wise Snow Leopard, the Friendly Foxes, and the Messy Robots, kids will be introduced to the fundamentals of computational thinking, like how to break big problems into small ones, create step-by-step plans, look for patterns and think outside the box through storytelling. Then, these basic concepts at the core of coding and programming will be reinforced through fun playful exercises and activities that encourage exploration and creativity.

In Ruby’s world, anything is possible if you put your mind to it.

Cover of The Marvelous Thing That Came from a Spring

The Marvelous Thing That Came from a Spring: The Accidental Invention of the Toy That Swept the Nation

(With Audio Recording) by Gilbert Ford

With magnificent dioramic illustrations, Gilbert Ford captures the joy, creativity, and determination behind the invention of an iconic, one-of-a-kind toy: the Slinky!  One day, a spring fell from the desk of Richard James, an engineer, and a dreamer. Its coils took a walk…and so did Richard’s imagination. He knew right away that he had stumbled onto something marvelous.

With the help of his wife, Betty, Richard took this ordinary spring and turned it into a plaything. But it wasn’t just any old trinket—it was a Slinky, and it would become one of the most popular toys in American history.

Cover of Rosie Revere's Big Project Book for Bold Engineers

by Andrea Beaty
Embark on an adventure of personal creativity and invention with fan favorite Rosie Revere! This activity book features art from the picture book Rosie Revere, Engineer and will inspire young readers with activities of all kinds. Kids will have the chance to design a better bicycle, build a simple catapult, construct a solar oven, and more! This empowering activity book will teach problem-solving and creative-thinking skills crucial to STEM fields while also providing opportunities for its readers to try new things and, sometimes, to fail. As the picture book so brilliantly showed hundreds of thousands of young readers, flops are an inevitable part of success and something to be celebrated rather than feared. Created by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts, the same New York Times bestselling team who brought us Rosie Revere, Iggy Peck, and Ada Twist, this activity book will be perfect for old and new fans alike!

A cool idea with a big splash   You know the Super Soaker. It’s one of top twenty toys of all time. And it was invented entirely by accident. Trying to create a new cooling system for rockets, impressive inventor Lonnie Johnson instead created the mechanics for the iconic toy.   A love for rockets, robots, inventions, and a mind for creativity began early in Lonnie Johnson’s life. Growing up in a house full of brothers and sisters, persistence and a passion for problem-solving became the cornerstone for a career as an engineer and his work with NASA. But it is his invention of the Super Soaker water gun that has made his most memorable splash with kids and adults.

Cover of Design Thinking

Design Thinking
Series: 21st Century Skills Innovation Library: Makers as Innovators

by Kristin Fontichiaro

Learn how to think critically about the design of things you want to make. Readers will learn to analyze the efficiency of their plans, while still feeling encouraged to push forward with new ideas. Photos, sidebars, and callouts help readers draw connections between new concepts in this book and other makers-related concepts they may already know. Additional text features and search tools, including a glossary and an index, help students locate information and learn new words.



Techie Tuesdays!

Dear Learning Commons patrons,

Our staff is delighted to share that we will be running Techie Tuesdays every third Tuesday of the month.  These webinars will be hosted on Zoom virtual classroom, and will include professional development on literacy, library software, STEAM learning, and subscriptions information.  If you have a gift which you would like to share with our team, or you would like more training on some aspect of learning please share with us, and we will be happy to try and organize on your behalf.

Techie Tuesday L4U with Shandra

When:  Sep 19th @ 2.30 pm (PST)

What:  Shandra will share how L4U works, how to search and borrow and navigate the newly curated grade topics.

Who?  Open to staff and parents

Where:  Zoom classroom Link

Join from PC, Mac, Linux, iOS or Android:

Or iPhone one-tap :    Canada: +16475580588,,7813674494#

Or Telephone:    Dial(for higher quality, dial a number based on your current location):Canada: +1 647 558 0588      Meeting ID: 781 367 4494

International numbers available:

Click on this poll to register:

Techie Tuesday Overdrive Read an E Book Day!  With Pippa and Cynthia

When:  Sep 26th @2.30 pm PAC

What:  Pippa will share the love of reading e books and show you how to find materials on Overdrive.  Cynthia will share on curriculum resources on Overdrive.

Who may attend:  Students K-12 and parents, staff.

Where:  Zoom classroom

Join from PC, Mac, Linux, iOS or Android:

Or iPhone one-tap :
Canada: +16475580588,,337380724#
Or Telephone:
Dial(for higher quality, dial a number based on your current location):
Canada: +1 647 558 0588
Meeting ID: 337 380 724
International numbers available:

Click to register here:


Have you moved?

Everyone here in the Learning Commons is excited to be back to school!  And home educators around the Province have been busy ordering books and unit studies as they start off their year! Please be sure to contact us if you have moved in the last few months. We do not receive updates from the HCOS office or Encom, so it is absolutely necessary for patrons to contact us directly! Otherwise, you packages may not reach you and sometimes they go missing altogether!  Please email Shandra at or Kelly,

Thanks and have a stupendous September!

Hello my name is JD Robot!

Have you met JD Robot in your classroom?  If not you will be thrilled to hear that as part of expanding our MakerEd technologies at HCS Learning Commons, based on the latest educational trends in the Horizon report,  we are excited to share our newest and latest friend in the commons, who might very well take over our work one day!

JD robot

This week of training our teachers and STEAM mentors were immersed in learning how to teach this robotics course under the dedicated supervision of Dennis from


In the video below Dennis shares some of his robotics experience and expertise in teaching coding.


Our students are about to be totally engaged and amazed at what they will learn with this interactive humanoid robot at your community connection centre, in the winter and spring. Watch for a learning camp in your area! Stay tuned!!


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Help, I Still Need Curriculum! TIPS From our Curriculum Consultant

help-153094_1280The new school year is nearly upon us, and if you’re like me, there may still be a subject or two that you have yet to decide on curriculum for.  I’ve enjoyed the phone conversations and email dialogue I’ve had with many of you, and for the rest of you, I thought I’d share some tips to help you find the best curriculum options for your child(ren).

TIP #1:  Explore the HCOS Learning Commons


  • Discover our Grade Level Pages – a comprehensive collection of what the Learning Commons has to offer, including subscriptions, free of charge to HCOS families, and organized by grade


  • Consider these Unit Study Kits – using your choice of eBooks OR books from our L4U physical library, these kits for Social Studies and Science are fully aligned to BC’s standards and are adaptable to all learning styles


  • Check out this comprehensive Newbie Training document – tap into all the resources, programs, and events the HCOS Learning Commons has to offer


TIP #2:  Narrow Down the Options for Print Curriculum


  • Check out these Curriculum Picks from our BC vendors, chosen to address BC’s standards


  • Explore HCOS Recommended Resources (note that some of these options may require supplementation to fully address BC’s standards)


  • For a broader range of options, explore all the vendors who accept HCOS PO#s.  (Note that some of these options may require supplementation to fully address BC’s standards)


Questions?  Contact Cynthia Duncalfe, Curriculum Consultant:

Welcome from the Learning Commons!

Dear Learning Commons patrons,

Welcome back to another exciting school year!

In our continuous effort to provide the very best service to you, I am delighted to introduce our vision, and our amazing team members who are here to help with your every need throughout the school year.

HCS Learning Commons!  Encouraging Community through Discipleship, Literacy, and Innovation.   

The mission of HCS Learning Commons is to provide Discipleship, Literacy and Innovation to all our patrons and staff.  As we purchase our collection of digital and non-digital resources, we try to discern what meets the needs of all our schools from a Christian perspective.  Our goal is to provide easy information retrieval, and quality resources for all your educational needs.   We also host a dynamic community on NING for our high school students, and run book clubs and STEAM workshops in your neck of the woods!

What is a Learning Commons?

“A Learning Commons is a common, or shared, learning ‘space’ that is both physical and virtual. It is more a perspective than a “place.” A Learning Commons perspective supports a student-centred approach that emphasizes active and collaborative engagement and encourages the co-creation of knowledge by all learners.

We love to work one-on-one with families and students to share resources and provide bibliographies to help meet the new curriculum standards.  Please don’t hesitate to contact us via email, phone, Skype, NING, Facebook, Twitter or Zoom.

New Patron Training

For those of our patrons who are new to our school here is a training document which will help you uncover what the Learning Commons has in store for you in 2017/18.

Team Learning Commons

Team pic HCS learning commons

( picture is missing Steve, Erin and Rachael)

My name is Pippa Davies (on the far right of the photo), and I work as our Learning Commons chair to facilitate our team, and help with reference, inquiry, reference queries and requests for new acquisitions.  Our Learning Commons is made up of an awesome group of dynamic library staff;  including Shandra Wiebe, Cynthia Duncalfe, Beth Johnson, Rachael Rennie, Erin Duncan, Kelly Wiebe, and in the campus arena are Steve Cox and  Justine Dehod.  Please click on our contact page to find out how to get hold of each team member, and understand how each team member works in our digital and physical commons!


  • Book clubs happening in your area!  Check them out on this page.
  • STEAM mentors in your area.  Click on this page.
  • Mentor Protégé Program.  Click on this page.
  • NEW Humanoid Robots! To be launched in the late Fall/Winter at a Community Connections centre near you !
  • New Grad page (more content to come this year).

We pray that your upcoming year will be full of amazing learning and joyful activities.  Don’t hesitate to send us your questions and we will be delighted to serve.

Blessings from the Learning Commons team!

Book your Kits and Resources!

Are you organizing your school year and planning which unit studies and resources to use? Did you know you can book your items right up until June of 2018? And it’s a good idea to book in advance as some resources are very popular and harder to book later in the school year.  We also have curriculum resources of all kinds, so you can “try before you buy” or, in many cases, just use ours! And don’t forget to check out our amazing Maker Ed items that your kid’s will love! We are adding more items to L4U this month! Here is a list which has many great suggestions including items available for loan.

Here is a list of all of the physical and digital unit studies by grade.

Not sure how to book them in L4U?  Visit our FAQ page.

Curriculum Sale!

We have added more items to the sale, and more will be added in the next two weeks! Some items are 50% off!

Lots of awesome deals to be had on:

Volume One: Zoology 

The Sassafras Science Adventures Volume One: Zoology SamplesThe Sassafras Science Adventures Volume One: Zoology begins the zip-lining science adventures for Blaine and Tracey Sassafras! The twins and your students, earn all about the amazing animals that can be found around the globe.

SONLIGHT  $170.00  Intro to World History, Year 1 of 2, (2015) Includes:

Sonlight B Instructor’s Guide (BCG), 24 Books, 1 CD.


Sonlight Language Arts Gr. 2,

 2015 Version

$65.00 Includes Instructor’s Guide, and 17 Readers pictured.



Visit both our google documents for Math and Curriculum sales!

As always, you can use your PO number, and shipping is free if combined with a library order!




TAKE 5! … we interrupt your summer to share FIVE Curriculum Option updates

The BC Day long weekend is over, and some of us may begin to turn some of our attention towards planning for another fruitful year of home learning.  Here are a FIVE IMPORTANT UPDATES to keep in mind as you plan:



  1. Updated Comprehensive Grade Level Resources Pages for K – 9, PLUS all new Grade 10 – 12 Resources Pages

  2. Updated Suggested Homeschooling Resources Pages

  3. We now have THREE comprehensive curriculum vendors in BC who have prepared Curriculum Options for HCOS students:

  4. New Unit Study Kits and Curriculum Correlation Packages

We now have Unit Study Kits for Grades K – 7, and so far this year, we’ve added:

5.  Our Overdrive Digital eBook and Audio Library has dozens of new books for you, and don’t forget to check out the great selection of curricular resources available to you in our L4U Physical Library!


NEW Gr. 8 Curriculum Correlation Packages Available August 1st in the L4U Physical Library

The purpose of the Curriculum Correlations Guide is to outline how a specific curriculum aligns with BC’s standards, showing you which sections of the material to complete.  Please note, these are NOT Unit Study Kits. (Unit Study Kits for Grades 8 and 9 are coming later in the fall once our Curriculum Writer, Rachael Rennie is back from maternity leave).

These Guides have been designed to help you prioritize your time and effort, assisting you in addressing the relevant content and core competencies.

The Curriculum Correlations Package may be borrowed from our L4U Library, and includes the Curriculum Correlations Guide, AND the necessary curriculum. We recommend that you complete these Packages in consultation with your teacher so that your student’s learning style and needs can be addressed.

Correlations Guides for Social Studies

These Guides use the “Romans, Reformers, and Revolutionaries” curriculum by Diana Waring.  You may borrow the Curriculum Correlations Package from the L4U Physical Library, which includes the Guide, and the required curriculum.

Correlations Guide for Science

This Guide uses “God’s Design for the Physical World:  Heat & Energy” by Answers in Genesis.  You may borrow the Curriculum Correlations Package from the L4U Physical Library, which includes the Guide, and the required curriculum.

Also New!

Correlated Grade 8 Science Resources in L4U Physical Library


Find all available resources on our Grade 8 web page

Coming Soon!

Grade 9 Curriculum Correlations Packages


L4U and Overdrive Offline

L4U will not be available today July 12 between 11am – 2pm due to maintenance.

Overdrive is down July 13 due to an upgrade in our server with L4U.  Thanks for your patience as we resolve the issue.

July 17th Overdrive is now working!  Thanks for your patience as we resolved the issue.

Your learning commons team.

New Grade 7 Physical Unit Studies in L4U!

Chemistry: Matter and Elements Unit Studyelements

Dive into the complex world of chemicals, compounds, elements, reactions, and crystals. This kit will serve as a terrific introduction to the remarkable world of chemistry. Design your own experiment, grow crystals, create amazing chemical reactions, analyze unknown substances, and much more!


Creation and Evolution Unit Studyearth

This unit is designed to explore the various perspectives on the creation of life on earth. Students will be able to grapple with challenging books, conduct research, and develop and support their own opinions and understandings, all while completing engaging projects and activities. Become a philosopher, design and build an ecosystem, engineer a biodome, and explore God’s fascinating creation!


Energy and Electromagnetism  Unit Studyelectro

There is an entire world of energy out there just waiting to be explored! This unit will introduce students to the fascinating world of renewable energy sources, as well as the concept of electromagnetism. Build your own electromagnet, become an engineer and solve a global power challenge, design a new energy source, build a solar oven, and much more!


Fossil Record and Climate Change Unit Studyfos

Did you know that our earth is home to billions of fossils? This unit will introduce students to the fossil record, climate changes through time, and the incredible biodiversity on our beautiful planet. Explore our world through experimenting, researching, reading, viewing, and creating! Become a travel agent to the past, bring fossils to life, and even try creating your own fossils!
This engaging unit features a variety of excellent digital and physical resources which look into the amazing world of fossils, as well as exploring the eras in which these fossils walked the earth. Students will be invited to explore this subject through reading, interactive assignments, videos, games and websites. They will conduct research, defend their beliefs, and practice writing strong, well-supported opinion pieces.

These unit studies are available to book for 7 weeks in L4U.  Book early to avoid disappointment!

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