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Celebrating Student Success
Expanding Pathways for our Students' Futures
June 2021
Exploring Pathways
The Robert McLaughlin Gallery Hosts Durham Catholic District School Board Virtual Art Exhibit
The Durham Catholic District School Board (DCDSB) and The Robert McLaughlin Gallery (RMG) are pleased to announce a virtual art exhibit that premiered on June 17, 2021 and features student art.
The virtual art exhibition features over 180 pieces of art by students in Kindergarten to Grade 12. Over 40 schools across the DCDSB submitted student work as part of the Virtual Art Exhibit. The work that is shared as part of this exhibit includes sketches, paintings, clay, digital art and more.
The DCDSB has had a long-standing relationship with the RMG. The RMG has hosted an exhibit of DCDSB student art biennially for many years, however, during the COVID-19 pandemic this has not been possible. In March 2021, the RMG and DCDSB decided to move forward with the exhibit partnership, but shift to a virtual setting in order to adhere to health and safety protocols in place.
“We have seen a huge increase in student interest in visual arts during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our students are using the arts to express their thoughts, feelings, beliefs and messages that they may or may not be comfortable communicating in other manners” said Pat Costello, DCDSB Academic Services Consultant for Health and Physical Education and the Arts. “A virtual art exhibit was a way for students to share their creativity with their friends, families and community, along with natural connections within the Arts Curriculum.”
“We are thrilled to be able to support the Durham Catholic District School Board Student Art Exhibition with this beautiful virtual showcase of student artwork. While we look forward to being able to host this exhibition in person again in the future, we are so pleased to be able to celebrate alongside each of you. Congratulations to all the students and teachers who worked to make this possible – you have really outdone yourselves. Thank you for sharing your incredible work.” - Leila Timmins, Senior Curator.
The DCDSB and the RMG would like to acknowledge the many dedicated teachers who have supported student creativity and expression, and whose efforts have gone into creating this virtual art exhibit. We would also like to extend our sincere thanks to all of the students who had the courage to share their talents with us.
The DCDSB Virtual Art Exhibit can be viewed on the RMG website here.
Experiential Learning
COVID-19 Co-op: No Fear Home Placement is Here!
Kool-Aid Lip Scrub
Task 3 video with race car
Different times call for creative solutions and the coop students at Msgr. J. Pereyma have gone above and beyond. Unable to attend community placements has not prevented these awesome students from getting hands-on experience. As a class we instituted “home placement” tasks. Students choose from a list of tasks they can complete at home or come up with their own ideas. They must research their task, perform the task, record their learning, and present their task weekly. Students document their tasks using a variety of media including PowerPoint, Google Slides, TikTok videos, phone videos, and “before and after” photos. Tasks that have been shared include the proper way to wash your car, making homemade body scrubs, closet and bathroom organizing, preview of my favorite video game, bedroom clean-up, teaching guitar chords, cooking delicious shrimp scallopini and chicken wings, how to check your car’s oil, a tour of the car engine, job wisdom interview starring my brother, taking a nature walk, and how to properly do your laundry. Each student also received a model of their choice to assembly and share. Along with presenting, students are required to give meaningful feedback to their fellow classmates. Feedback requirements include giving a specific comment on what they thought was done well and one comment to provide a next step. Students use their recommendations to improve their next task presentation. Transferable skills they are strengthening include communication (expressing ideas, speaking effectively, listening attentively), research and planning, creative thinking, organizational skills, problem solving, and providing support for others…just to name a few! Each student will complete and present a total of eight tasks by the end of the quadsemeter. I could not be prouder of my imaginative students! Way to go Patriots!
  • Ms. Hansen-Ashton, Monsignor J. Pereyma Catholic Secondary School
DO’C Co-op in 2021 – Teaching, Pandemic Style!
Screenshot of students on Zoom
As virtual teacher’s assistants amid a pandemic, they have developed a variety of skills, abilities and experiences that will carry with them into their post-secondary and future career life. They are learning from experienced teachers who are doing an excellent job at navigating their own online classroom, while providing rich learning experiences to their co-op students.

Some of their responsibilities include working in small groups in Breakout Rooms to develop various literacy skills, assisting in running activity centers, teaching lessons such as art or math, and creating various types of media to be presented to the class. For example, Jaden created a beautiful Mother’s Day tribute video from photos collected from students and their mothers and shared it with the Kindergarten moms of students at St. Luke the Evangelist CS that brought some mothers to tears. Trinity, also at St. Luke’s, created a vibrant presentation of her cultural background during family heritage week that sparked many kids wanting to ask questions and share aspects of their own culture with Trinity and the rest of the class. Elisa has taken on a leadership role in creating and facilitating art lessons for her Kindergarten class at St. Jude CS and is teaching students to recognize the feelings associated with warm and cool colours. Alyssa is working hard at supporting Grade 2/3 French Immersion students at St. Leo CS in their French reading and pronunciation, using Breakout Rooms to offer valuable small group instruction and additional support to students.

While their classmates at DO’C are unfortunately unable to attend their placements due to the current Covid restrictions and period of remote learning, these girls have been extremely lucky to be given this opportunity, and are thriving in it. We are so fortunate to have so many teachers in our school board who have so generously offered up their expertise, commitment and time to support our co-op students who are wanting to become teachers or ECE’s, all while trying to navigate teaching primary students from home and all the unknowns that come with that (ex. “do not stick that up your nose!”)
Grade 7 Student from All Saints Participates in Eco Schools Young Reporters for the Environment Competition
We wish to congratulate Grade 7 All Saints C.S.S student Jeslyn Ang on her participation in the Eco Schools Young Reporters for the Environment (YRE) competition. Her submission, focusing on Climate Change Awareness, was creative, informative, and inspiring, and earned her a 2nd place finish in her age group and category.
YRE Canada is a national environmental journalism competition for writers, photographers and videographers that gives youth the opportunity to be part of the solution by producing creative and engaging environmental journalism. 
Participants (ages 11-14 and 15-18) investigate and report on environmental issues, and propose solutions, by using video, photography or writing.
Jeslyn’s achievement, as well as her involvement in All Saints Eco Team, proudly reflect our Catholic Graduate Expectations and Catholic Social Teachings. Furthermore, Jeslyn’s wonderful display of environmental stewardship has inspired our community to follow her lead and engage in meaningful work for social justice. Congratulations, Jeslyn!
Jeslyn A. with certificate
Students at Monsignor Phillip Coffey Developing Coding Skills
Photo of student working on coding video
Students in Grade 3/4 at Monsignor Phillip Coffey have been developing their coding skills working with their teacher Mrs. Collins and 21st Century Learning Consultant Ms. Closs. Students have learned to use the block base coding program called Scratch created by MIT. Students have had the opportunity to learn how a computer programmer thinks using algorithms, debugging strategies and creative thinking. The entire process engages students in using math concepts related to estimating, counting, time, geometry, and algebra.  Students have made animations related to food chains, space, video game design and "Choose Your Own Adventure" stories. Students have created many extensions and love showcasing their work. When approaching these tasks these young computer scientist's model growth mindset and risk taking which is a needed skill in this subject.  Mrs. Collins began introducing code expectations using code.org which builds the foundation for learning sequences as well as various code strategies.  She also held class discussions centered around topics of perseverance, positivity and problem solving.   The Scratch coding program then became an easily transferred skill which led to increased student engagement and many cross-curricular insights. Please see the following coding projects below that celebrate this student achievement that is innovative, and STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering Art, Math) based.

View games that students in Mrs. Collins' class created in Scratch here:

Below, you can view a "Choose Your Own Adventure" Coding Video from Delilah, a student in Ms. Collins' Grade 3/4 class.
Student Voice
Regional Arts & Media Program Students at All Saints Catholic Secondary School Thank Healthcare and Essential Workers at Lakeridge Health
Zoom screenshot of Media Arts students
Ms. Holowaty from Lakeridge Health in Ajax contacted All Saints Catholic Secondary School with a request for students to submit art and uplifting messages to healthcare and frontline/essential workers. Students across all arts disciplines in the Regional Arts & Media Program created videos, music and visual artwork to share with Lakeridge Health staff.

Students in the Media Arts program share some of the pieces they have created for staff at Lakeridge Health in Ajax below.
The process of creating this video was an absolute joy. There were several setbacks regarding the technical side of the project, but in the end, I had a great time. I chose to create a video of myself reading a handwritten letter I wrote, because I thought it would be more heartfelt than a simple traditional letter. It felt amazing putting my feeling into words and knowing this video will be shared with the healthcare workers of Lakeridge Health puts a large smile on my face. I am very proud of the hours I spent working on this video and I hope my hard work can create a positive impact on our incredible healthcare workers.
  • Chloe W., Grade 10 AMP Media Arts student at All Saints Catholic Secondary School
Jaida holding her poster
Consider the role of a superhero. What is their job like? Well, they both save lives and risk their own. Their job may take a toll on their body and mind. Lastly, being a superhero takes an incredible amount of strength and skill. Now replace the word “superhero” with “nurse” in that same description. Not much of a difference, right? You don’t need superpowers and colourful spandex to save lives. Nurses have done just as much in scrubs with a mask and some goggles. They have the courage to work in the hospital knowing they could get sick or worse. Yet they continue to work because they care for the community. That is the message I wanted to convey with this digital illustration.

  • Jaida W., Grade 9 AMP Media Arts student at All Saints Catholic Secondary School
Whenever Ms. O’Leary comes to me with an opportunity, I never turn it down. I was eager to get involved in this special project to show our gratitude to Lakeridge Hospital for all their efforts throughout Covid-19 pandemic. Ms. O’Leary offered me the chance to produce and lead a team of AMP Media Arts students. This leadership role is something I have been interested in developing as I move towards my final year of high school and the AMP program. I facilitated several Zoom meetings for my team where we brainstormed ideas, answered questions, and shared the progress they were making. Overall, it was a delight producing the project and leading the group.
  • Jada L., Grade 11 AMP Media Arts student at All Saints Catholic Secondary School
Evan holding poster
Evan H., Grade 9 AMP Media Arts student at All Saints Catholic Secondary School
Grayson holding poster
Grayson S., Grade 11 AMP Media Arts student at All Saints Catholic Secondary School
DCDSB Asian Heritage Month Resources
Elementary and secondary students from across the Durham Catholic District School Board were involved in a variety of learning experiences during the month of May in honour of Asian Heritage Month, a time to acknowledge the varied contributions of Asian-Canadians and their rich culture.  
To support continued learning about Asian countries, interactive digital maps were created in both English and French. Grade Seven students from Mr. MacDonald’s class in the Durham Catholic Virtual Elementary School and Grade Seven/Eight French Immersion students from Mme Liivoja’s class at St. John Paul II skillfully produced the maps which have been shared for use by all students across our system.  
Secondary students from across the DCDSB also collaborated to create a student voice video highlighting their responses to important questions relating to their Asian heritage. The videos share responses in both English and French that represent their reflections on how best to promote inclusion and combat anti-Asian racism, along with their role models of Asian descent. A special thank you to Mr. David St. Jean who helped to produce the video project.  
All Saints Catholic Secondary School Named Number One Secondary School in Terry Fox Fundraiser
All Saints Catholic Secondary school was named the number one fundraising secondary school across all of Ontario in the Terry Fox Virtual Run, which raises funds for cancer research. All Saints Catholic Secondary School raised a total of $23,440 CAD. Congratulations to All Saints Student Council, staff, students and families who made this possible. All Saints wants to express their gratitude to Ms. Dion for working tirelessly to keep the tradition of participating in Terry Fox alive!

All Saints Student Council created the video below to share with their fellow students about the results of their collective fundraising efforts.
English as a Second Language
Students at Sir Albert Love Celebrate National Indigenous History Month
Daniel and Samuel with their projects
As June is National Indigenous History Month, English Language Learner (ELL) students at Sir Albert Love have been participating in learning about the Indigenous Peoples in Canada while making connections to their home country. Daniel (Grade 2) and Samuel (Senior Kindergarten) are brothers who were born in Ecuador but made Canada their new home in late 2017. They came to Canada speaking only Spanish. They quickly became a part of the Sir Albert Love community. 

Mrs. Springer, their English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher, took advantage of the virtual learning platform to create a lesson that was engaging and relevant to them both. The lesson explored the rich Indigenous History of Canada. Subsequently, there was a lesson based on comparing the Ojibwe (Ontario) to the Tsáchila (Ecuador). The students examined these groups with a focus on clothing, shelter, food, and art/culture. Daniel and Samuel were motivated to learn about the history of Canada and their birth country, Ecuador. As a celebration, they created art based on Indigenous art/culture. 
Adult and Continuing Education
Register for Summer School Programs with Archbishop Anthony Meagher Catholic Continuing Education Centre
Registration is still open for summer school credit courses and non-credit programs for students in elementary and secondary school!

Students who are in Grade 8 and will be attending a DCDSB high school and wish to register for a Grade 9 summer credit can take an online high school credit through the Reach Ahead Program (July 5 – 28, 2021). Courses offered include Introduction to Business (BBI 1O), Exploring Family Studies – Transition to High School (HIF 1O) or Expressions of First Nations, Metis and Inuit Cultures (NAC 1O), or U.P. (Ultimate Potential) Math (GLS 1O).  
The Literacy and Math including French Immersion for Grades 6, 7, & 8 online summer program is designed for students who would benefit from additional practice and assistance in literacy and/or math to ease their transition into the next grade. Students will participate in engaging lessons to meet their individual needs and learning styles. This program is non-credit and available July 5 – 16 and/or July 19 – 29, 2021.
When asked about their experience in the program last summer, one student who participated in the math program wrote that “I loved it! I learned so much about Algebra, Geometry and Everything! I also had lots of fun just being with other people” while another student in the literacy program said that “it really improved my language over the course of these 2 weeks”.
Interested in the arts? There are limited spots remaining for the online Summer Clinic for the Arts and Media Program (C-AMP) Students can strengthen their literacy skills while experiencing areas of the Arts offered through the All Saints Catholic Secondary School’s Regional Arts and Media Program. Registration may still available for Musical Theatre and Dance C-AMP. Click here to check availability and to register.

The OSSLT Preparation Program for Students in Grade 8 to Grade 11 is a new non-credit summer program offering.  Students will engage in activities and practice questions to enhance their literacy skills and prepare for the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test. Health and well-being and fun activities will be incorporated throughout the program! This program will run online on July 5 – 9, July 12 – 16, July 19 – 23 and July 26 - 29, 2021. Students can choose one or more weeks. 
Interested in learning another language? We offer free online summer Elementary International Language classes for students in Grade 1 - 8. There are 23 different languages to choose from! The classes will run from July 5 – July 30, 2021.  
Are you a Grade 8 student starting high school in the fall? The Head Start Program is available to all Grade 8 students going into Grade 9 at one of our Durham Catholic District School Board high schools and will run August 23 - 26, 2021. The program involves a review of literacy and numeracy skills and provides students with a preview of the Grade 9 curriculum for Mathematics and English. Study skills, health and well-being, and digital literacy are also integrated into the program. Meet new friends and have fun!
Students who took the program last year shared what they enjoyed most about the program:
  • “I like how well it prepared me for high school.”
  • “I liked how the teacher shared a lot of information about the school and classes”.
  • “The lessons on Study Skills was very useful.”
  • “The teachers were really friendly.”
Parents and students are asked to check out our summer school program offerings and registration details on the Archbishop Anthony Meagher Catholic Continuing Education website: Grade 6, 7, and 8 Summer School Programs.
Secondary School Courses (for Credit)
The links below will take you to course lists and program dates:
Students wishing to upgrade marks for courses that they have completed and passed may do so in credit recovery. Registration forms for summer school credit courses are available through the school guidance office.
For any questions about the non-credit literacy/numeracy programs, please contact cont.ed@dcdsb.ca or call (905) 683-7713 and for questions about the Reach Ahead High School Credit Program, please contact credit.reg@dcdsb.ca or call (905) 438-0570. 
All summer school information can be found on our website www.con-ed.ca.
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Durham Catholic District School Board
650 Rossland Road West,
Oshawa, ON
Phone: 905-576-6150 | Visit us at dcdsb.ca