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Local Education

Red Deer Student Competes In North American Braille Challenge!

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By Sheldon Spackman

A Grade 4 student from Red Deer’s École Mountview School is now back from a trip to Los Angeles, California after competing in the Braille Institute’s 17th Annual Braille Challenge. Caden Johnson, a 9 year old from Red Deer, competed at the event in the “Freshman” category, which took place at the University of Southern California (USC) on Saturday, June 17th. It featured competitors from both the United States and Canada.

Officials describe it as the only national reading and writing contest in braille for students who are blind and visually impaired. An academic competition designed to motivate students and emphasize their study of braille, while rewarding their success with fun-filled, challenging events. This year more than 1,100 braille readers participated in one of 51 preliminary regional events across the US and Canada. Red Deer’s Caden Johnson placed first in the Alberta Regional Braille Challenge in Calgary on March 3rd to earn his way there.

For full results and more information on the Braille Institute’s 17th Annual Braille Challenge, click here.

To watch Caden’s interview with Todayville.com on May 10th in advance of the Braille Challenge, click here!

Local Education

RDC graduate travels to Ottawa for Student Innovation Showcase on Parliament Hill

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Red Deer, February 13, 2018 – Red Deer College graduate, Melissa Barritt, was part of a rare opportunity when she was selected by Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan) to be part of the Student Innovation Showcase on Parliament Hill.

The showcase, which took place on February 12 and 13, provided an opportunity for Barritt to display the project that she participated in while she was a student at RDC. “I’m so honoured to have been chosen to represent both this project and Red Deer College,” she says. “It meant a great deal to me to be able to connect with people from across the country and share how college students can positively impact community.”

In Barritt’s case, she was part of the RDC group, led by Sociology instructors Dr. Choon-Lee Chai and Dr. Krista Robson, who are involved in a project to assess settlement programs and services for immigrant women in central Alberta. In partnership with the Central Alberta Immigrant Women’s Association, the RDC team connects with immigrant women to learn about their settlement experiences and needs, with the intention of identifying the strengths and weaknesses of settlement programs and services.

By identifying these elements, the goal for the three-year-long project is to use the research findings to address practical issues within the community. “When we understand the settlement conditions of immigrant women, then we can work with our community partners to develop solutions,” says Dr. Chai. “As one example of an outcome from this project, we’ve developed a website that serves as a centralized information portal for all settlement services that people might require, so it’s another way to help make the transition easier and to make services more accessible for immigrant women.”

Students have been involved in several areas of this research, and Barritt was involved in a specific element called the Photovoice project, where she engaged immigrant women to take pictures of their settlement experiences and share their settlement stories. She first completed an extensive literature survey about the issues of settlement and integration faced by immigrants, and then she conducted in-depth interviews with research participants.

“I was able to connect and build meaningful relationships with these women,” she says. “In some cases, I was invited into their homes, so I really had an opportunity to see what their lives were like and to learn about their experiences. I could have read about the issues that immigrant women face, but this research experience allowed me to connect with the women and to provide listening support, gaining a much deeper understanding about their lives.”

Now that she has graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology, a University of Calgary collaborative degree offered at RDC, Barritt is pursuing a degree in Education to fulfill her passion to become a teacher. When she considers her future work with students, Barritt believes that her student research experiences will benefit her teachings in many ways. “I might have students from all backgrounds in my classroom, representing those from different cultures or socio-economic status or even refugees, and I need to show them by example what it means to accept everyone for who they are,” she says. “Because of this research experience, I will be more inclusive in my education, which will benefit my students.”

For Dr. Steve Lane, Associate Vice President Academic, Research and Student Affairs at RDC, this project demonstrates the wide variety of research activities taking place at the College. “The Photovoice project involved students through applied research that is practical and experiential, and it was also community oriented through our partnership with CAIWA,” he says. “It’s a great example of the variety of ways that applied research can be used to help people, and it demonstrates a research niche that we have at RDC. We’re already doing this type of positive work, and we look forward to expanding these types of opportunities in the future.”

 

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Community

Attention Parents! Kindergarten Registration Continues

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Entering kindergarten is an exciting time and a big step for children and their families. It is a wonderful time when children are encouraged to grow creatively, culturally, emotionally, intellectually, physically as well as socially. Parents and teachers work together to ensure transition from home to school as smooth as possible.

Registration continues

CLICK HERE for the ONLINE School Request Form.

Full day Kindergarten is being offered at the following schools:

  • Annie L. Gaetz Elementary – Full day and half day options
  • Barrie Wilson Elementary – English program only offering full and half day options; French Immersion offering half day only
  • ​Don Campbell Elementary – Full day only
  • Gateway Christian – Full day only
  • Mattie McCullough Elementary – Full days, with option of half days if enough interest
  • Oriole Park Elementary – Both English and French Immersion programs, full days only

Students will be able to attend on either Mondays & Wednesdays or Tuesdays & Thursdays with alternating Fridays.

Programming for young children is based on the following beliefs:

  • Kindergarten is to help children acquire early skills in literacy, numeracy, communication and problem solving
  • Kindergarten provides children the necessary skills and knowledge for future academic success
  • Parents are the most important partners in their child’s education.

The word kindergarten literally means “children’s garden” and recognizes that environment and education contribute to a well-rounded personality. It recognizes the education value of play and hands-on experience. It is meant as a supplement to the nurturing environment at home and encourages the involvement and cooperation of parents in the classroom setting.

While kindergarten is a time for learning, being with other children and developing new skills, it is also a time where the school can identify a child’s strengths as well as needs. This gives teachers an opportunity to start programming for the individual child and the group as a whole.

Learning in Kindergarten

Alberta Education develops the curriculum for Kindergarten in consultation with early childhood teachers. It describes what young children need to learn to prepare for Grade 1 and provides a foundation for future learning. More information is available by clicking here.

Teachers use the curriculum to plan learning activities that meet the Kindergarten children’s needs, abilities and to assess their educational progress.

The Kindergarten Program of Studies focuses on developing creative expression, early literacy, personal and social responsibility, physical skills and well-being, environment and community awareness, early numeracy, citizenship and identity, information and communication skills.

Family Oriented Programming Sessions

Family Oriented Programming provides an opportunity for parents and children to learn and spend time together! Classroom based and district based sessions are available to parents/caregivers and children who are attending our Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten programs and have identified delays.  The programs are designed to provide additional specialized programming hours for children and offer parents support in various areas of need.  Click here to view sessions.

 

 

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COMMUNITY CALENDAR

february, 2018

wed14feb - 4aprfeb 146:00 pmapr 4TRIPLE T -Act/Dance/SingYouth 6 Create Your Own Play!6:00 pm - (april 4) 7:45 pm

thu15feb - 5aprfeb 155:30 pmapr 5Art of Friendship5:30 pm - (april 5) 7:30 pm

wed21feb - 25All DayThe 2018 Red Deer Gem & Mineral Show(All Day)

thu22feb7:00 pm- 10:00 pmPaint Night7:00 pm - 10:00 pm

fri23feb - 25All Day2018 Central Alberta Film Festival(All Day)

sat24feb11:00 am- 2:00 pmInternational Mother Language Day Event11:00 am - 2:00 pm

sun25feb8:30 am- 3:00 pmRBC Training Ground QualifierCOULD IT BE YOU?8:30 am - 3:00 pm

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