This spring, St. Michael the Archangel CES in Woodbridge hosted its first ever Student Led Learning Walk. The Walk was developed by Mirella Rossi, a TCDSB Administrator, and is described as an “innovative, collaborative community-based leadership practice that documents learning and makes it visible and intentional for all.” During the Walk, students were able to share their learning journey with their peers, parents, and the community at large.
“Mathematics is not only a provincial focus, but it is also a Board focus and our school’s focus,” said Joeanne Bortolussi, Principal, St. Michael the Archangel CES. “When our school team of admins, teachers and support staff analysed our school data, we learned our students needed more opportunities to consolidate processes involved in the creative and critical thinking aspects of mathematics.”
Vince Galea, Vice-Principal, St. Michael the Archangel, explained the approach the school took in putting their school improvement plan in action. “This is not a stand alone evening of mathematics. It is a celebratory culmination of the work we have been doing all year with our ‘Thinking Thursday’ initiative where we believe that the best way to learn mathematics is to marry number sense skills concurrently with creative and critical problem solving skills in a collaborative learning environment.”
Walking the halls, students from Kindergarten to Grade eight explained the three act math task to their parents and guardians. It was very powerful to see students taking ownership of their learning, engaging their families in discussion, and leading them in trying out the various interactive math stations set up in the school such as ‘Tai-Chi-ometry’ and building challenges.
While the amazing work that staff and students went into preparing for the Student Led Learning Walk might be done, the school’s work in mathematics is not. “We continue to look for ways to challenge ourselves, our practices, and innovate,” said Bortolussi. “We want to give our students the best learning we can. Our staff have risen to the occasion and are driving the instructional program grounded in solid pedagogy and rooted in our Catholic faith.”