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Showing posts from April, 2016

Bicycle Safety is Important

Bicycle Safety:  Cycling is a fun, healthy activity and an inexpensive way to get around.
As the spring weather arrives, many of our students enjoy riding their bicycles. Make sure that you remember the safety rules and ride safely!
·A helmet can greatly reduce the risk of permanent injury or death in the event of a fall or collision. A helmet works by absorbing the forces of the crash, so if a helmet has been in a collision, it should be replaced even if there is no visible damage. To provide maximum protection, the helmet should fit level and square on your head. It should fit snuggly and not slip when you move your head.  In Ontario, it is the law that every cyclist under the age of 18 must wear an approved bicycle helmet.
·Clothing can improve or reduce visibility. Yellow and white stand out best at night; dark colours are difficult to see. Pedal reflectors and reflective material on wrists, ankles, heels, clothing and helmets help others see you.
· By law, all bikes must have a worki…


The character trait that we are focusing on this month is "fairness".  Our assembly will be on April 28th at 1:30 p.m. Mr. Kaiman's grade 6/7 class will be hosting.  

Children from each class that have displayed this character trait by showing understanding, acceptance and care in the way they treat each other will be honoured with a character certificate.

Parents are welcome to attend. 

Family Games Night May 5th

Join us for Westminster’sFamily Games Night
Thursday, May 5, 2016 6:00-8:00 p.m.
Come out to our Family Games Night sponsored by our School Council.  Enjoy some fun games, arts and crafts and much more with your family and friends!
 Games begin at 6:30 p.m. 
Limited Pizza for sale at 6:00 p.m. $2.00/slice
Snacks, Frozen Yogurt and Water for Sale
Admission: $2.00/person

Yearbook Orders are due!

Don't forget to order your Yearbook!  Orders are due April 29th. 

We are having a wonderful year at Westminster and now you can remember your friends, teachers and school events forever!  Our dedicated yearbook committee is currently working on our school yearbook so that all students and parents will be able to look back at the 2015/2016 year with joy for years to come.
This full-colour, professionally printed yearbook will include approximately 60 pages, with pictures of various assemblies, school events, student clubs and teams, class pictures, and much more!  Each child from grades JK-8 will appear in the yearbook with a special section for our Grade 8 graduates of course.  This yearbook is over 20 pages bigger than last year with an extra page of pictures for each classroom as well.  
See your children play, have fun, and learn at Westminster!These are the cherished moments that you do not want to miss! Each year is unique and can never be repeated. 
Ordering a Yearbook
If you are…

Happy Passover!

Wishing all those who celebrate Passover an enjoyable holiday with your family and friends. Chag Samech!

Junior Basketball Tournament

Our Junior Boys and Girls Basketball teams are excited about their upcoming tournaments! We thank our coaches Mr. Kaiman, Ms Morris and Ms Saccucci for coaching our enthusiastic athletes during practices and exhibition games. Now....the tournaments are here....Good luck Wildcats!

Our Boys Basketball team will be competing at their tournament on Friday, April 22nd, 2016.  

Good luck to: Jan, Jaden, Nate, Oden, Marc, Jamie, Arren, Anton, Adrian, Eitan S., Sante and Ethan.

Our Girls Basketball team will be competing at their tournament on Monday, April 25th, 2016.  

Good luck to:  Nicole, Aylin, Anne Marie, Sarah, Maya, Anisha, Michelle B., Michelle M. and Nivi

Earth Day and 20-minute Vaughan Clean-up!

WEAR GREEN FOR EARTH DAY! Its Earth Day on April 22nd and at WPS we are doing lots to celebrate our Earth!  We look forward to our Earth Day Assembly followed by our Vaughan Clean-up activities.  We welcome our special guest  Counsellor Alan Shefman to our Earth Day Assembly where we will be celebrating some of the Eco projects that we’ve been working on at Westminster this year.  For example, there will be a special video about the making of our beautiful “School of Fish” project which has been adorning our Kindergarten fences as well us presentations from our Eco Club and Kindergarten singers.  We will then all be going out for some "spring cleaning" of our school and adjoining community park.  Parents are welcome to join us too!   Everyone is encouraged toWEAR GREENto show our school spirit and love for our planet Earth

20-Minute Vaughan Makeover—Earth DayWith spring having officially arrived, much of the garbage that was covered underneath snow is now littering our school y…

WPS at the Youth Edtech Summit!

Nine of our tech savvy students joined Ms. Parekh and Mr. Tamblyn at the Youth Edtech Summit ("YES") on April 19th.

YES is a student centered forum where YRDSB students and staff get to experience a multitude of different methods for engaging technology in their personal learning. This is an exciting leadership opportunity for students to learn and share their understanding around the curriculum and technology. They get to experiment and demonstrate cool ways to use technology in their learning while having creative learning sessions with and for other students. 
Inspire and Create sessions were offered by students for students on a wide variety of topics encompassing the meaningful and purposeful use of technology tools, devices and software. Our WPS students were mesmerized with the many examples they saw at the summit and had lots of fun trying them out and collaborating with other students from different schools.  
We look forward to seeing them demonstrate what they learne…

School Council Meeting Wednesday, April 20th

We look forward to seeing many of you at our School Council meeting at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday April 20th.

We will have a special presentation regarding the new Health and Sexual Development Curriculum by our Westminster teachers and Principal. We will give you an overview of the new Ministry updates to the Health Curriculum and how it will be taught in each grade. 

For more information about the curriculum expectations, you are welcome to go to the Ministry website and the YRDSB links below: 
HPE Parent Guide:
Myths vs. Facts:
YRDSB page:

Ontario Ministry of Education: 

Secondary School Survival Kit Workshop

Parents Engaged in Education are hosting a free event for families in Grades 7-12 on April 30th at Mary Ward Secondary School.  One of our keynote speakers will be Mr. Noah Morris from the Ministry of Universities, Colleges and Training discussing post secondary planning and financing.
In addition, we will have an Exhibitor Fair of educational partners relevant to this grade level.

We are attaching our flyer for this event once again.  There was a problem with the original link that has now been repaired.  Parents may register at:

Parenting and Life Workshops Available at JF&CS

EFFECTIVE PARENTING- A four session group to help parents learn what they can do to raise a happy, motivated and well behaved child. For parents of children ages 2 to 10 years. Topics include: how to nurture self-esteem; encourage problem solving; increase communication and set appropriate limits and discipline. Thursday May 12/16 from 1- 3 p.m. at 9600 Bathurst St.- Lebovic Community Campus OR Tuesday May 17/16 from 7 to 9 p.m. at 4600 Bathurst St- Lipa Green Centre.
NEW- All About Moods; Understanding Anxiety, Depression and Learning Disabilities – This is a one session workshop for parents, caregivers and professionals who want to learn more about anxiety and depression in children with learning disabilities; when to be concerned; approaches to treatment and the connection between learning disabilities and mood. Tuesday May 17/16 from 7 to 9 p.m. at 4600 Bathurst St. – Lipa Green Centre.
CHANGING YOUR ADHDitude: LIVING WITH ADULT ADHD- A 4 session group for ADULTS who have been diagn…

Cross-Curricular Learning 2/3

Cross-curricular learning is combining skills from different teaching strands, like math, writing, art and even cooking so that children can see the real-life connections for what they are learning at school. This is a common strategies for us in all grade levels. Here is one example that was shared with us from the grade 2/3 classes:
Before the March Break, Ms. Lazer's and Mr. Clark's classes studied Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory in order to prepare them for when they entered  our class "chocolate contest". Both classes had to decide on the ingredients of the chocolates they would create, decide the number of chocolates in their box, create an array for the chocolate to go inside the box, design an original lid and write a persuasive letter to the judges of the contest in hope that their chocolate idea will be selected. 
This cross-curricular unit incorporated math, language and art. These grade 2/3 children are really excited to see if they will be the big wi…

Thornhill Star Gazing Night

To all our stargazers....come on out and stare at the stars with your family and friends....

Telescopes will be available to view the Moon, Jupiter and various "deep-sky wonders". A local astronomer with a "sky pointer" will be on hand to trace out constellations.

When: Thursday, April, 14h, 2016

TIme: from 8:30 p.m.

Where: Pomona Mills Meadow, east of St. Volodymyr's Church

15 Church Lane, First north on John Street, just east of
Yonge Street, Thornhill.

Dress warmily in case of
inclement or overcast condition

Rain or Cloud Day: Thursday, May 12st, 2016

Cadence music comes to Westminster

On Wednesday April 13th, at 9:00 a.m. Westminster will be welcoming a musical performance by the a cappella singing group CADENCE.  The show is part of our Arts/Athletics initiative for 2015/2016.  
CADENCE amazes audiences with their ability to create a full range of instrumental and vocal sounds using only their voices! This Juno-nominated a cappella quartet illustrates that the voice is the most versatile of all instruments. Tight harmonies, instrumental imitation, high energy and a splash of choreography combine in an energetic and accessible performance for all ages.

CADENCE loves performing for children, and all their performances and educational activities are based on these principles:

• Singing is universal: every culture in the world sings.
• Singing is inclusive: it is something we can all do, no matter how “talented” or
experienced we are.
• Singing is unlimited: any sound, any instrument, can be recreated with the voice.
• Singing is fun: If you don’t believe us, just watch us w…

Westminster's Intensive Comprehension Project ICP

Over the last few weeks our school has been participating in an innovative project in an attempt to increase the comprehension skills of our students. We call it ICP, Intensive Comprehension Project.  At Westminster we believe that all our students are everyone's responsibility and we all work together to support their academic, social and emotional growth. 

With that view in mind, all students were grouped according to the comprehension skill that they have been finding most challenging i.e. summarizing, literal comprehension, reflection, interpretation or metacognition awareness. We mixed up and combined students from different classrooms and grades in same-ability, cross-grade groupings, at the primary grades, junior grades and intermediate grades. We created smaller groups taught by different teachers that they may not have worked with before (Mrs. Joseph, the principal even taught a group!). For four lessons we focussed on providing clear explicit instruction on the reading st…

Excellent Mental Health Presentation

Yesterday we had the pleasure of hearing Michelle Cassidy speak about mental health and how we can reduce stress for our children.  She spoke about brain research and what happens in our brain when we are anxious or in an escalated state. She explained that for children to feel less anxious and be able to self-regulate they need us to be calm, consistent and reliable with our own reaction. She spoke about the plasticity of the brain and how we can change how we react to things and grow new neuron pathways that more quickly lead us to positive emotions. She gave us ideas of how to do this by providing more opportunities for our children (and ourselves) to see their world in a positive view.  Strategies such as calming techniques like deep breathing, movement breaks and mindful meditation were shared. She also gave us suggestions to make gratitude lists, random acts of kindness and ensuring we have dedicated family time to make positive connections.
Many of these strategies we are teachin…

Final Fruit Face-Off Salad

For our final Fruit Face-Off today our students needed to think back to all the fruits they tasted during since our Fruit Face-Off days began.

Instead of 2 fruits today, students' received a fruit salad with a bunch of familiar and unfamiliar fruits.

Inside this fruit salad were some, but not all, of the fruits you have been given to try since day 1.

The challenge was to write down 2 things:

1. The fruits that are inside the fruit salad.
2. The fruits that are missing from the fruit salad.

Students who figured out which fruits were inside and not inside their fruit salad cup, wrote down your answers and sent it down to the office for a draw. The winning answer will win the prize for their whole extra fruit day of their favourite fruit next Monday for their whole class!....

.....and the results are in... the winning class for the extra Fruit day of their choice is......Mrs. Einhorn's 1/2 class!!! Congratulations enjoy your fruit treats kids. 

We want to thank our School Co…

Remember to come to our Mental Health presentation Wednesday!

April 6th. 7:00-8:30 p.m. Westminster PS 

For all families with children of all ages, 

Come and hear dynamic mental health specialist, Michelle Cassidy speak about mental health and wellness issues that affect our children and how, as parents, we can help.

Come get tips and strategies for what you can we do to reduce stress and anxiety
for your children and your families today!  See you there. 

“Caring for the mind is as important and crucial as caring for the body. In fact, one cannot be healthy without the other.” (Sid Garza-Hillman)

Child care age 4-12 available. Thank you.  

April's Fools Day!

Although it's not a legal holiday, April Fools' Day is celebrated all around the world as a day filled with practical jokes and general silliness. You may want to be a little more cautious or skeptical on April 1, since family members, friends, neighbors, co-workers and even teachers may try to tickle your funny bone with a practical joke or a hoax of some kind.

So how did this tradition of craziness begin? In truth, it remains a mystery, although there are many theories about how April Fools' Day got started.

Some believe that April Fools' Daywas the result of a desire to celebrate the turning of the seasons around springtime. In fact, many cultures have historically held such celebrations around the beginning of April. For example, the ancient Romans had a festival named Hilaria on March 25. The Hindus celebrate Holi, and the Jews celebrate Purim around this time of year.

Although we can't really pinpoint how or when April Fools' Day got its start, people the wo…