Teacher Wellness – We Cannot Serve From An Empty Vessel

Crisp, white-tipped waves of turquoise water, come forth from the Atlantic Ocean to lovingly caress the soft, white, sandy beach along which I walk. Above me, puffy white clouds dance with the sun in a pale blue sky. Its rays warm my back, as waves chill my feet.   Palm trees, latched beach huts, and…

High Octane Professional Learning

As a Learning Strategies Teacher, my thoughts surround my students, all of whom are identified with a Learning Disability. They are the focus of the OECTA CLC Project: “How might technology be leveraged to increase independence among exceptional learners?” The team for the project is Leslie Cardarelli, Charlene Davidson, Sarah Faloon and me. Lynne Coletti…

Education for All: A Moral Imperative

My reflections this week on our OECTA CLC project stem from our discussion with Lynne Coletti, OCSB Principal of Student Services, on the importance of “moral imperative” in guiding educational practice. Our project inquiry is: “How might technology be leveraged to increase independence among exceptional learners?” The team for our project is Leslie Cardarelli, Charlene…

Think Different-Disruptors of the Status Quo

As a Learning Strategies Teacher, my thoughts surround my students, all of whom are identified with a Learning Disability. They are the focus of my participation in our OECTA CLC Project: “How might technology be leveraged to increase independence among exceptional learners?” The team for our project is Leslie Cardarelli, Charlene Davidson, Sarah Faloon and…

Learning Enabled- Leveraging Technology with Exceptional Learners

  The Ontario English Catholic Teachers Association (OECTA), with funding provided by the Ontario Ministry of Education, is supporting Collaborative Learning Community (CLC) projects during the 2016/2017 school year. These CLC’s allow teachers to explore and share solutions to common professional dilemmas through action research, by meeting with colleagues to develop resources, or to implement…

The Grace of Motherhood: A Christmas Reminder

This Christmas, take a moment to view the Nativity scene. Consider the young mother there, her husband by her side. See her kneeling on the plank boards. Knees cushioned by a sparse layer of hay, her hands bracing a feeding trough. Her newborn Son, the object of her loving gaze.   The mother you see…

Educating the Heart- Small Things, Great Love

As a child, I was mesmerized by the story of the Garden of Eden. I would close my eyes. Imagine a rich garden tapestry — lush green vines, aromatic flowers, a crystal-blue pool of water, rustling leaves in the wind. I would see Adam and Eve. Two lone inhabitants, symbols of Humanity, responsible for tending…

Why I Write

Now, in my writing space, I am taken back to my early childhood. As my fingers connect with the keyboard, I am an 8-year-old girl, sitting in my father’s silver Volkswagen Beetle. We are on our weekly, Saturday car-ride to Rockland, Ontario to visit my beloved grandmother. On this October, Indian summer day, it is quite…

The Good News For Teachers – Unity is Strength

On the Friday before Thanksgiving, the Ottawa Catholic School Board community annually gathers alongside the scenic Rideau Canal at the Shaw Centre, for Christian Community Day. On that day, the board’s 4000+ educators reconnect with each other, recharge, and are spiritually uplifted by music, words and images. It is a time of personal and professional…

Teach the Students You Have- All of Them

Our job is to teach the student we have. Not the ones we would like to have. Not the ones we used to have. Those we have right now. All of them. –Dr. Kevin Maxwell Who we are and whom we will become is determined by how our most basic human needs are met. Other than…

This School Year, Be That Teacher

There were wide eyes, excited faces, and hugs given to familiar friends and teachers. Parents snapped pictures to be posted to social media, buses were unloaded and class line-ups were formed. Last Tuesday, the excitement of the first day of school was palpable at Holy Family School. The enthusiastic bounce in the students’ steps towards…

Restore One Another

“Be kind to everyone, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle” (Plato)               My best friend recently asked me to come up with the name of a book or movie that best described myself. I thought long and hard about this, as no title initially came to…