Our Learning

2020 - 2023 - Continuing our Journey with Social/Emotional Learning (SEL)

Over the past four years, Ferris has received innovation grants that supported our SEL committee with our goals to develop a cohesive school-wide approach to SEL that includes common language, explicit SEL instruction, connection with the parent community and measures to promote staff and student wellness.

Guiding Questions:

How will developing a cohesive SEL framework and increasing staff capacity with SEL instruction positively impact the social, emotional, and intellectual engagement of students? How can we support the growth of our students in the area of Personal Awareness and Responsibility?'

The following SEL indicators have been identified by Ferris staff as being areas of focus for growth:

1. Explicit SEL Instruction

2. Authentic Parent/School Partnerships

3. Student and Staff Wellness

Highlights of the work of the committee, the staff and the student population include:

  • A series of professional development sessions with district teacher consultants to work on SEL instruction
  • Collaborative work with Connie Easton (Curriculum Coordinator for SEL) on explicit SEL instruction
  • Resources purchased and distributed to support the teaching of SEL
  • A coordinated effort to incorporate our Social Responsibility HEART matrix into a broader SEL framework
  • School assemblies focussed on HEART (e.g. Pink Shirt Day, Earth Month)
  • Baseline data collected from students, staff and parents to be compared against future years
  • Two Parent sessions with the district coordinator for SEL to make connections with the parent community and promote SEL education

Please see the Action and Evidence Posts for highlights of the progress made at Ferris.

2018-2020--Beginning of the journey

What will we do to enhance our students' learning in the area of Personal Awareness and Responsibility?

A) Continue with whole school activities with a focus on H.E.A.R.T.   Our active committee of staff that make up our social responsibility committee help plan activities including:

Assemblies that have a HEART focus.  

Providing staff with ways of making new connections with students and also providing opportunities to provide students feedback with our HEART program.

Family teams (multi age groups) are also a focus of our social responsibility committee.  Family teams are a wonderful way to promote school community as it provides opportunities to make connections for both staff and students.  Leadership is also a focus of family teams. In 2019 we tried something new: Recess Playdates with Staff--where all the teachers went outside to play with students for a 15 min recess. 

A wide variety of Classroom Activities/Approaches/Initiatives to help develop students personal awareness and responsibility.

Parent education/communication through newsletters/PAC Meetings/Website

What are some specific actions we are considering taking?

-using an Inquiry Question: "How can we support the growth of our students in the area of Personal Awareness and Responsibility"--staff to explore a variety of programs, approaches, initiatives to support students.

-Leadership Convention (Gr. 6/7 Students) Sept 18th-20th 2018

What will we focus on in our professional learning to support our students' learning?

-networking group of 14 staff --  (SCERTS)= Social Communication Emotional Regulation Transactional Support (working with some of our students with special needs)

-collaborative teaching/grade groups-exploration and development of lessons, planning, approaches including but not limited to (Growth Mindset, Mindfulness & Mind-up, Superflex, Zones of Regulation, DARE, Outdoor Classroom and Learning Spaces, etc.

- Noon Hour Supervisors to use shared language and specific problem solving strategies during recess/lunch based on Ferris' expectations and school-wide values of H.E.A.R.T. and Behaviour Support from our ACT lessons