School and community news – Sipekne’katik

Story submitted by Sharon Culbertson, A.Ed., B.A., M.Ed.
Acting Vice Principal

At LSK our first concern is for the physical and mental well-being of our staff and students. With that being said, our community has decided that it would be best for our students to return to on-line learning. This process began on Tuesday, April 27th. The situation will be audited weekly so that everyone can return to a safe in-house learning environment as soon as possible. On Monday, April 26th, many of the staff returned to work as normal. Since some of our teachers travel from the hot-spots, it was recommended that they stay home and let their educational assistants gather up Chromebooks and supplies for parents/guardians to pick up. They worked effectively and quickly to make everything ready. Thank you to all the educational assistants
and other staff for helping each other out.

Here is a little recap of things that happened during the month of April. Our guidance office welcomed Tara who is doing her work placement with Bryan Brooks. They are working together to ensure that our struggling students receive support, especially during these trying times. Our mental health is so important for our successes. Welcome Tara. And speaking of Bryan, he has
been very busy with some of our high school students with the creation of lobster traps. There was a slight lull in the production, but now that they have their supplies, the production has ramped up.

Next, our students have been learning about trapping and dressing animals so that they can utilize every part of the animal. Our students who set snares were able to taste rabbit stew and the fur will be utilized to create
mittens. Rabbits weren’t the only animals that our students were able to skin and dress. Coyotes and beavers were also brought in. The beaver meat was used to create a stew and after listening to some of the students, they truly enjoyed the meal.

Our annual Science Fair was conducted virtually. Congratulations to the following students:
Grade 4

– 1st– Tomas and Judah;

2nd– Dakota;

3rd– Jayden and Colsyn

Grade 5 & 6:

1st– Zahara and Kaleirah;

2nd– Treasure and Bella;

3rd– Keon and Dreyden

Grade 7 & 8:

1st– Kingston;

2nd– Jessy;

3rd– Harmony

Highest Average: Kingston (grade 7)
Cultural: Treasure and Bella (grade 5)
Environment/Technical: Rory Brooks (grade 6)
Well done to everyone who won and to all the students who participated. Thank you to the judges: Tabetha Stephens, Rae Williams, Kelly Oliver, Robert MacIntosh, Robert Watson, Desiree Gillis, Meredith Conrad, Morgan MacDonald and Steve DeLisle.

As the weather warms up, our students are spending more time outside. Many are enjoying the puddles, while others are enjoying the chance to play basketball or throw the football around or just enjoy the warmth of the sun. We are lucky to have the cultural walking trail located nearby. The walks are not only getting our students outside learning about nature, but they are enhancing the vocabulary of our Mi’kmaw language. Thank you, Greg and Elle.
Another part of nature are plants. Since the older students received the opportunity to learn about how to trap and utilized animals, our younger students are learning about plants. Many classes have started their plants from either seeds or cuttings. Some of the plants are foods and some are medicines, like tobacco and sage. In an effort to encourage the growth of these plants, our students in Skilled Trades are working on building a green house. Thank you to Kelly and Velvet for creating the proposal to make this happen, and thank you to Jon for supervising the construction.
Earth Day was celebrated by a lot of outdoor education, virtual guest speakers and some of our female staff wearing their ribbons skirts. These skirts were made during our last professional day. Under the guidance of Michelle Glasgow, ten of our ladies received the opportunity to create their own unique skirt. Thank you, Michelle, for conducting the workshop and thank you Carol Howe for ensuring that our machines were threaded and running.

Unfortunately, there aren’t too many things planned for the month of May. This is due to the uncertainty of our in-house learning. We are not sure how long we will have to learn virtually. I can say one thing for sure, our staff are doing everything in their powers to ensure that our school will be ready and safe for the return of our students. Special shout out to the teachers who will be conducting their classes online, to the support staff who will be joining the online classes, to the kitchen staff who are using this opportunity to deep-clean the kitchen, to the custodians who are sanitizing the building, to the students who participate in the online learning, to the parents/guardians who are supporting their child(ren)’s learning, to administration who are
keeping everyone updated and to our community for their understanding and ongoing support. This is truly a wonderful community to be a part of!!