Volleyball All Stars!

The ICS All Stars have just completed their 2018 Volleyball season. Over 60 Girls and Boys from Grades 5-7 participated on the volleyball teams. The athletes exemplified what it means to be an All-Star, demonstrating excellent teamwork, determination and sportsmanship. Special recognition is owed to our Grade 6 and 7 girls’ teams who made it to the first round of the playoffs, but were defeated in close matches. Additionally, the Grade 7 boys were able to qualify for the final tournament and finished 5th place in the CISVA Championship! Well-done, All Stars! Thank you to our parent and teacher coaches for all their hard work with the athletes this season. Go All Stars!  

Grade Four Garden Buddies in Full Swing!

Garden Buddies is a program that offers the Grade Four students at Immaculate Conception School an opportunity for hands-on experimental learning that can be integrated into a wide variety of subject areas.  Students learn that healthy and sustainable living starts with our soil as they make their own compost and study the organisms working in it.  Teamwork, relationship with others, physical activity, and improved life-skills are all benefits from the activities of designing a garden plot, to building a trellis, to harvesting potatoes, to tending the gardens.  Best of all – we eat what we grow!  Good nutrition is reinforced as students are introduced to new tastes, smells and textures picked straight from the gardens.  Their produce is proudly made into delicious food by the Garden Buddy students to share amongst all the students at Immaculate Conception School. 

The weather in October was beautiful so we took full advantage and spent our time outdoors digging, hauling, chopping, snipping, lifting, watering, and tidying.  The cleanup job was enormous and it took incredible team work, lots of muscles, and willing spirits.  Our main job was to prepare our garden beds to plant our cover crop, which will protect them for the winter.  Before we’re able to plant the crop, we had to dismantle last season’s trellises (those were built by the former Grade Four class to survive a hurricane!)  We then had to clear away all the debris, chop it into little pieces, and add it to our composts.  Lastly, we had to thoroughly dig and turn over each bed.

As we anticipate cooler, wetter, winter weather, we have also worked hard to plant garlic and to put our garden beds to rest. Each student had the chance to plant a garlic bulb which will grow over the winter and into the next year coming to fruition in early-mid July.  If all goes well, the garlic can then be pulled, dried, and saved to sell at our annual Christmas Fair!

 Finally, we set out to protect our valuable topsoil in the garden boxes.  Farmers know that it is far better to plant a cover crop to cover their soil during the winter months than to rotate crops and leave the soil bare when not in use.  Cover crops have many benefits - they protect soil from erosion, they improve drainage and water retention, they add organic material and replenish nutrients back into the soil, they are a natural weed suppressant, and they increase soil microbial activity.  As a result of all this, they also reduce the need for use of herbicides and pesticides.  The Garden Buddy students planted a mixture of fall rye, crimson clover and field peas into their garden beds.  The fall rye naturally produces its own “chemical” that discourages weed growth, and the crimson clover and field peas fix nitrogen to their roots thereby replenishing the soil. We will wait and watch throughout the winter as our garden beds show us their winter look!

Stay tuned for Garden Buddy developments!








A Busy September at ICS!

Our first few weeks at ICS have been filled with so many different activities for the whole school to take part in. The Terry Fox Run, Orange Shirt Day, and our annual Walkathon all contribute to building the strong community found within our Little Blue School and in the wider world.

“It’s got to keep going without me” - Terry Fox, 1980

38 years later . . . ICS continues to support Terry’s commitment

to raise money for cancer research.

  Every Child Matters . . . ICS supports Orange Shirt Day.

Every Child Matters . . . ICS supports Orange Shirt Day.

Students and parents walk 10 km to Locarno Beach and back. Some of the funds raised support our sister schools in Haiti and Vietnam.

Celebrating a "New" School and a New School Year!

We are thrilled to be back in our seismically upgraded “Little Blue School” with familiar faces, and to be welcoming all of our new community members. We wish to express our immense gratitude to all those who have played a part in the planning, construction, moving, and putting back together of ICS these past months. Our first day of school was filled with the excitement of a ribbon cutting ceremony, a procession into the school, and the opening of the new intermediate playground.

Our Grade Seven students lead us in prayer during the first assembly of the year and a member of the Seismic Upgrade Committee gave a presentation to the students about the changes made to our school building over the summer so that we will be safe in the event of an earthquake.

We wish everyone a joyful 2018-19 school year!

Celebrating First Holy Communion!

On Sunday April, 29th, I received my First Communion. My mom, dad, friends and teacher were there. I wore a white gown. Father Paul was the priest. I received the Eucharist and it was great. Then, we had a big party in the gym. It was a fabulous celebration. I felt so blessed. 

Written by at Grade Two Student

A Visit to UBC's First Nations House of Learning

At the end of April, the Kindergarten students were fortunate to have the opportunity to visit the UBC First Nations House of Learning and the Xwi7xwa Library.  During this trip we participated in a variety of hands-on Literacy, Social Studies and Fine Arts activities. We also enjoyed an amazing tour of the Longhouse.  The children were fascinated by the spectacular house posts!

Celebrating Pi Day!

The fourteenth of March was a very special day for the grade sevens of Immaculate Conception School. This was because it was National Pi Day. As you may know, the most well known numbers and decimals of pi are 3.14, and the date was 3/14 (the third month, March and the fourteenth day). On this day, the Grade Sevens not only celebrated pi, but pie as well. There was a pi memorization contest, where one of our contestants had an astonishing amount of digits memorized: 122! There was also a no-hands pie eating contest of mini tart shells and blueberry or strawberry rhubarb filing, which got pretty entertaining. Another of the activities was “The Pi Hunt.” The object of the game was to find the circumference of a circular shaped  object by using string, and then measuring the string. Then, each group had to find the diameter of the object by using a ruler. Finally, we had to find the pi of the object, by dividing the circumference by the diameter. Whoever was the closest to the exact digits of pi, won. There was also regular pie for those who did not want to hurl mini pies down their throats. (I was one of them.) All in all, it was a very “filling day!” For those of you who celebrate a birthday on Pi Day, firstly, happy birthday, and secondly, I hope you enjoyed your pie over cake!

Studying Salmon

Over the past months, the Grade One students of Immaculate Conception School have been studying the life cycle and anatomy of different types of salmon. On March 12th, the Grade Ones, alongside their Grade Seven buddies, were able to take part in a once in a lifetime experience - the dissection of a sockeye salmon. A leader in the area of salmon enhancement took us through the intricate steps of a dissection. He highlighted the outer parts of a salmon such as the fins, mouth, eyes, and lateral line. Alongside our buddies, we drew a chart comparing and contrasting a salmon’s body with standard human anatomy. We also studied the salmon’s innards! Both classes oohed and ahhed at the fascinating sight of the salmon’s organs such as the swim bladder, heart, liver, as well as the long awaited brain.

Overall, both classes loved the intriguing sights and the interesting facts they gathered from an exciting day in Grade One!

Holy Thursday Retreat

On Holy Thursday, the community of Immaculate Conception school held its annual spiritual retreat. Family groups, comprised of students from each grade, gathered for opening and closing prayers in the church, planned and led by our Grade Seven class. In between the prayer services, the students participated in three breakout sessions focusing on the Triduum: Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and the Easter Vigil.

Our retreat leader invited parents and the Grade Seven students to reflect upon and explore the blessings of these holy days. The retreat was a spirit-filled experience for all of us!

Kindergarten students take their learning to the forest . . .

At the end of January, the Kindergarten students began a weekly Forest Exploration Program at Chaldecott and Pacific Spirit Parks.  Our goals for this inquiry journey were to explore the forest using our senses, gather student ideas and “wonder” questions, acquire new information to address our questions, share our discoveries, and develop an appreciation for the environment. 

Studies indicate that outdoor learning has physical, mental, cognitive and social-emotional benefits.  In addition, outdoor learning helps children to overcome adversity, to enhance personal and social development and to deepen their relationship with nature.