A fond farewell from the swamp!

The last month has been a busy one (as always) and there have been many awesome things happening here in the swamp. A pile of photos will need to do justice to the many  events that have gone on as words are not enough 🙂

Our band students concluded their year musically with performances at schools, tours, and a final concert to bring to a close a year of amazing improvement, achievement, and growth. There is not likely another group who’s progress is so publically on display as the band. Thank you to Ms. Stennes and Mrs. Gaparic-Block for your work with this group.

We’ve had a lot of giggles on top of our learning as students and staff were able to engage in events in and around our city. Please note that the Stanley Cup is slightly taller than Ms Evans and that yes that is Mr. Norman singing karaoke with the karaoke club near the bottom of this group of photos. Some of Ms Wilson’s class demonstrated skills on the alley’s, while a few of Mrs. Scott and Mrs. Kowalyshyn’s class sold freezies to help fight off the heat and humidity of the swamp.

Our spring sport season ended with our softball team having another great season and our school wide track meet qualifying a number of students to participate in our multi-school meet here in June. Thanks to the many volunteers we had out to help run the meet and big thanks to Ms Evans for her work in running the day. Great job to The Gator Green sox under the tutelage of Mr. Lamb, Mr. Norman, and the mascot Ms. Evans 🙂

Our end goal for all of our Gators is Farewell and this year’s event was amazing. The gymnasium was literally transformed into an “Enchanted Forest,” where our grade 8s walked down memory lane and were celebrated for the years that they have contributed to building our community here at Argyle.

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As June winds down and the end of school is upon us, it is definitely a hard time of year in many ways. It is a time where we can look back fondly on another terrific year here at Argyle where we have seen tremendous growth and learning across our entire community. Collectively, we are richer for the experience of working together and investing in one another and in our greater community. It is also a time when we look ahead, we can see new challenges on the horizon, and new opportunities for all to continue to grow, learn, and change.

June is also a time where we say farewell to students and staff who will not return to Argyle in the fall. All of the best to our students who are not returning including our grade 8 class. A huge thank you to staff who are moving on to new opportunities as well including: Mr. N’koo (EA), Mr. Parker (EAL), Mr. Stoffel (Arts Ed), Ms Wilson (Gr 3/4), and Ms Mercado (EA). You have all made significant contributions to the betterment of our school and we thank you!

This will be my last post as your school principal. I, too, am moving on and I want to thank you all from the bottom of my heart for making the last three years some of the most memorable times of my teaching life. This is a community that cares about this place and the people in it. It has been an honour and a privilege to work with, and for, you. Argyle will always have a special place in my heart and you, the community, deserve the credit for helping to shape this place into the wonderful school it is. A huge thank you to our SCC for all you do to support Argyle and to make it the amazing place it is to work and learn for all of us day to day.IMG_1115We are going to try something new this year and have a window of time where students and parents can come in, drop off school supplies, and meet your teacher for the 2018-2019 school year. On Wednesday, August 29th, from 4:00-5:30 pm classrooms will be open and we encourage you to come by on that day to make our first official day, September 4th a little less hectic and stressful for all. 

Have a safe, restful, and relaxing summer Gators.

Fare thee well all!

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May the 4th be with you and so much more…

IMG_0822It is unbelievable that we are approaching the last days of May. The force/4th was a strong one this year around the Swamp with none stronger than the indomitable Mr. Stoffel. The young Jedi Stoffel was quick to fall under the leadership of this old, wrinkled, green, Yoda Panko.

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Ok, one of these photos was legit and the ears are legit on the other.
The last month was once again action packed and has set a course for our last month to finish off at warp speed as is always the case.

We have had many opportunities to see our Gators shine in the last month including on the stage with a number of band concerts and tours, at the Cup Stacking RBE championships, and even here in the Swamp as we hosted our annual Books Before Bedtime and Book Swap. Many thanks to our students, families and staff who have made all of these opportunities possible.

As mentioned previously, there are a number of things going on in the next month and we’d kindly ask you to note this document, our webpage where you can see a weekly at a glance, and our school calendar which can be found on the left side of the main page of the Argyle website as well.

Some Important Upcoming Dates:

May 22nd – Gr 3/4-6 RJTW – PM
May 22nd – Grade 6 Band Tour
May 23rd – Gr 7/8 RJTW – PM
May 23rd – Memorial Cup Grade 4-6 PM
May 23rd – Carnival 530-800pm (Everyone please try to come and support our Grade 8 farewell)
May 24th – Gr 3/4-6 RJTW – PM
May 24th – Year End Band Concert @ SW 630pm
May 29th – Kinder Parent Open House 4pm
May 30th – Gr 7/8 RJTW – PM
May 31st – New Kinder Student Visit 1045-1130am
May 31st – Booster Juice – Healthy Hunger Lunch
June 1st – Grade 4-8 Track Meet at Sheldon Williams ALL DAY
June 4th – SCC Meeting 630pm
June 5th – Track Meet Rain Day if necessary
June 5th – Ready @ Argyle Softball 4pm
June 14th – Cougs in School Soccer Grade 1-6
June 15th – Staff Meeting/PD – no School
June 19th – Multi-School Track Meet at Douglas Park for Qualifiers
June 21st – 1:30 – Grade 8 Farewell
June 22nd – DQ Healthy Hunger Lunch
June 22nd – SRO Visit 230pm – Football and Freezies in the park
June 27th – Grade 5-8 going to Evraz Park
June 28th – Last day for students.
June 28th – Report cards go home.  Dismissal at 2:30pm.

This is a list that will be added to as we go, but, at least gives you a place to start for planning purposes.

As always, I welcome your input, feedback, and thoughts. Please drop me an email at mick.panko@rbe.sk.ca, call our main office, or stop by and chat.

Also, a reminder to check out our other online platforms including our Facebook Page, our Twitter Feed, and our website.

What do April Flurries Bring?

As the end of April nears it is amazing to see the snow melting, the sun shining, and the temperatures finally rising. It was certainly an abnormal March and April from a weather perspective but hopefully we are on the sunny side of it now. With our spring break happening in the last month it feels like time has flown by and we are just around the corner to our busy homestretch of May and June.

Our Gator staff have continued to do all kinds of engaging and educational things with ours students and we continue to celebrate the many areas of growth and achievement in our school. While the weather has been unpredictable, we have continued to have a lot of fun doing all we do.

Recently, our basketball teams wrapped up their seasons and both of our teams had wonderful seasons. I am so thankful that our students receive the leadership and coaching they do from Mr. Norman (girls team) and Ms Yee (boys team). Our girls team finished second in the city in the ‘B’ league, while our boys had an undefeated season in the Rec division. Our Gators represented our school, each other, and themselves with terrific sportsmanship and class all season long.

The only downer of the season for our Gator hoopsters was the dirty shellacking they took at the hands of the combined team of School Resource Officers and Teachers in front of the entire school. Better luck next time Gators 🙂 Just kidding the Gator Swamp was rocking and lots of fun as the students, teachers, and SROs battled it out on court in tightly contested battle. Thanks to Ms. Evans for organizing this fun afternoon.

This community continues to understand and demonstrate the importance of caring for those in need. In light of the recent Humboldt Broncos bus tragedy we participated in Jersey Day and collected donations on one day to the tune of over $1100 that was donated via the Broncos GoFundMe campaign. Thank you all for helping to reinforce this valuable lesson of caring for community and those in need.

One of the issues that we, as educators, are faced with regularly is understanding the difference between giving all of our students what they need (equity) versus everyone receiving the same thing (equality). As we make decision every day about doing what is right, needed, and necessary for every Gator I thought this image would be helpful for all of us to think about. We want to do what is necessary for every student to be successful and I feel this image is helpful in understanding this important idea.
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Many of you have participated in the Healthy Hunger lunches that have occurred at the school and we thank you for that. We are very happy with how they have gone overall but have a few wrinkles to work out. We have scheduled three more treats between now and the end of June for those of you who choose to participate:
– May 17th – Subway
– May 31st – Booster Juice (snack size smoothies)
– June 22nd – Dairy Queen (lunch and ice cream options)
If you haven’t yet signed up you can still do so at healthyhunger.ca

May and June are often two of our busiest months at school so I would encourage all of you to continue to use our website to keep up with all things going on Gator!

As always, I welcome your input, feedback, and thoughts. Please drop me an email at mick.panko@rbe.sk.ca, call our main office, or stop by and chat.

Also, a reminder to check out our other online platforms including our Facebook Page, our Twitter Feed, and our website.

Some important upcoming dates:

  • May 2nd – Robb Nash Show
  • May 3rd – Grade 7/8 RJTW Clinics
  • May 4th – Spirit Day TBA
  • May 7th – SCC Meeting
  • May 8th – RJTW Grade 4-6 pm
  • May 9th – Grade 7 Band Concert
  • May 9th – Grade 7 Band to Yorkton after concert
  • May 9th – RJTW Grade 7/8 pm
  • May 10th – Grade 8s Spartan in Training AM
  • May 10th – RJTW Grade 4-6 pm
  • May 11th – GGG School Dance PM
  • May 15th – RJTW Grade 4-6 pm
  • May 16-17th – Grade 8 Band Trip to Saskatoon
  • May 17th – RJTW Grade 4-6 pm
  • May 17th – Subway Lunch
  • May 18th – Staff Meeting/PD

 

Putting Spring on hold with snow, snow, and more snow!

Our school yard has once again taken on the familiar color of winter! The last few weeks have been filled with piles of the white stuff re-accumulating to assist in the spring formation of our actual Swamp. With the dump of snow it has been cool to see this community once again pull together to help each other out in many ways…I guess pulling and pushing in some cases with the number of cars we had stuck in, and around our school!

We have done as much as we can to keep ourselves moving, learning, and growing here at Argyle since our last blog…

A huge highlight for me, personally, was seeing our Gators rally together to raise money for the Z99 Radiothon in support of the NICU. In six short days our school collected over $1600 for this great cause that has impacted a number of our students and my own son. “Changing Babies’ Lives,” was a huge success and I would like to thank you all for your donations and support. Part of our campaign involved shaving my beard and head if student met some preset targets. We more than surpassed them because of this awesome community and I am now feeling the effects of snow and wind in a new and refreshing way.

A special thanks to Rylee Boutin and Colton Ahlquist for their help in taking the money to the radiothon and being “on air.” Also, a huge thanks to our Gator Gusto Group for the work they did in promoting, collecting, and counting. Finally, a gigantic shout out to Lois Young-Hamel, a parent, SCC member, and hair stylist by trade for your time and the “trim.” What a team!!!

Some of our students’ art work is being showcased at the division office and I would like to be able to show you the pieces that were selected for display.

Ms. Wilson’s class were the fortunate recipients of a visit from Saskatchewan Roughrider, Chad Owens. “The Flying Hawaiian,” spent the morning with our grade 3/4 class playing some games in the gym, doing some work in class, racing a student up and down the hallway, answering a multitude of questions, and posing for a pile of photos. Mr. Owens was a huge hit with our students, and staff alike. A few of the photos can be seen below.

Today is our second three way conference date of the year and I was once again reminded how awesome it is to have the support of families for our Gators who are growing and learning each, and every, day. Here are a few photos from our day including our amazing primary teachers.

I count myself so thankful for the opportunity to work here with amazing students, staff, and you – our community!

A staff member captured this moment that I feel captures what I would like for every Gator!!!
IMG_0560As we enter our spring break at the end of next week I am reminded again how fast time flies by when you are having fun.

As always, I welcome your input, feedback, and thoughts. Please drop me an email at mick.panko@rbe.sk.ca, call our main office, or stop by and chat.

Also, a reminder to check out our other online platforms including our Facebook Page, our Twitter Feed, and our website.

Some important upcoming dates:

  • March 27th – Grade 8 Farewell Photos
  • March 30th – No School – Beginning of Spring Break
  • April 9th – Classes Resume after Spring Break
  • April 9th – Create 5/6 PM
  • April 10th – SA Team Meeting
  • April 12th – Kinders and Grade 1 to Museum
  • April 16th – Create 5/6 PM
  • April 16th – SCC Meeting
  • April 17th – Principal’s Meeting
  • April 20th – Pizza Hut Lunch (Healthy Hunger website)

Is there a Winter Olympic event that a Gator would excel at?

frozen gator
There probably isn’t a lot of Winter Olympic events that Gators would do well at…I’m thinking luge and skeleton maybe but there are a number that are funny to think about – can you see a Gator in mixed curling? 🙂IMG_0338

If you are like most of our students and staff you have been engaged in the Winter Olympics from Pyeongchang of late. The Olympics are a culmination of preparation and training that is for many athletes a lifetime in the making. The Olympics are a global event where athletes compete against one another at one moment in time to see how they measure up. The reality is that in every Olympic competition athletes/teams achieve at a level that makes them happy, disappointed, or otherwise.

Recently, our students received a term one report card which may have elicited a similar response to these athletes feelings. A major difference for us is that our students have the opportunity to immediately work on what happens next. Our report cards are only a snapshot of where we are at and hopefully came with no surprises. We want to make sure that our Gators understand that we have the ability to be growing and improving in an ongoing way and that our learning, unlike a competition, is not final. If you have questions, concerns, or comments about the Report Card please reach out to your Gator’s teacher. We want to communicate with you in ongoing ways so that there is never surprises as to where students are at.

As always, there have been so many things going on in, and around, the Swamp and our students and staff continue to do things that are fun, engaging, and amazing!

Despite the rough patch of weather, our students have maintained a pretty sunny disposition that has made February wonderful.
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Our grade 5-8 students were fortunate to have a visit from Saskatchewan Roughrider, and Red Cross advocate, Dan Clark who was with us as part of the ongoing anti-bullying campaign. Dan’s presentation was part of the “Be Someone’s Hero,” work  that continues to point students towards healthy behaviours and relationships and culminates on February 28th with “Pink Day.” I would like to thank the “Shops on Hill,” for their sponsorship of thirty Pink Day t-shirts that were given away to our students throughout the presentation.

This past week has been staff appreciation week (“Inspiration through Learning”) and once again we are so thankful for the many ways that our SCC and community have demonstrated care and appreciation for us. It is truly a gift to be a part of this community and, as a staff, we are grateful to get to do what we do with our Gators.

Another really cool event that has occurred was our SCC hosting the Regina Public Schools adaptation of the “Blanket Exercise,” for the community. The evening was eye-opening and very informative to those who were able to participate.  I would encourage all of you if you have the opportunity to engage in a Blanket Exercise if you can.

If you are a regular follower of our webpage you may have noticed a new regularly updated story entitled, “Week at a Glance.” The story will highlight important events going on each week and is easily viewed on a smartphone. Thanks to Mr. Corbin at Janzen for the idea! I am sure you will find this useful and we will make every effort to update it each week moving forward.

We are going to be trying something new to offer periodic lunches to our students/staff through a company called Healthy Hunger. We have two lunches planned, one for March 16th – Subway and a second on April 20th – Pizza Hut. Be watching for an information letter in the days ahead…let me know if you have questions after you have read the letter.

Beginning tomorrow we are on the February break (Feb 16th-25th inclusive) and I hope that everyone enjoys the chance to rest up and recharge.

As always, I welcome your input, feedback, and thoughts. Please drop me an email at mick.panko@rbe.sk.ca, call our main office, or stop by and chat.

Also, a reminder to check out our other online platforms including our Facebook Page, our Twitter Feed, and our website.

Some important upcoming dates:

  • Feb 19th-23rd – February Break – No school for students
  • Feb 26th – Argyle @ Grant Road Girls BBall
  • Feb 28th – Pink Day
  • Feb 28th – Grade 6 Safety Presentation
  • Feb 28th – Sheldon-Williams Open House for Grade 8’s 7pm
  • March 1st – Perry @ Argyle Girls Basketball
  • March 1st – Argyle @ Arcola Boys Basketball
  • March 5th – Grade 5/6 at Brier AM
  • March 5th – SCC Meeting 630pm
  • March 6th – Art Show Launch at Division Office
  • March 6th – 8th CREATE grade 5/6 PMs
  • March 8th – Hawrylak @ Argyle Boys Bball
  • March 8th – Ready @ Argyle Girls Bball
  • March 9th – PD/Staff Meeting –

“The road to success is always under construction.”

15446-Lily-Tomlin-Quote-The-road-to-success-is-always-under-constructionJanuary is a great month at Argyle. As staff, we often get the privilege of seeing the work done before our winter break come to fruition as our Gators come back refreshed and focused.  It is always heart-warming for me to hear from the adults in our building, and to see on my own, the great successes happening in classrooms and for individuals. This January has been no different in this regard as we have noted many students making huge strides and accomplishing great successes. This only happens through the combined efforts of our students, the direction of staff, and your support at home. We are all grateful that together we get to see our students develop and succeed.

A snapshot of our students progress will be coming home at the end of next week as term one finishes up. This is a great time to have some discussions at home about how things have been going and to set some goals for where our Gators will go in the five months remaining. As always, our staff would love to work with you to help set the course and are easily accessible through email, a phone call, or a visit. Every learner in this building is unique and it is of utmost importance that we work together towards the best outcome for each student. I know that many of you are in regular contact with teachers and your support truly makes the process easier for all Gators.

SW logoIt is hard to believe that our grade eights are already planning for next year and the transition to high school. We are so fortunate in Regina Public to have many awesome offerings and programs to meet the diverse needs of our learners. Sheldon Williams is the High School we feed into and they have a number of transition activities planned for our students highlighted by their open house on Feb 28th at 7pm and an Associate School Basketball Tournament/Registration Day on March 22nd.

This week we were very fortunate to have a visit from the teachers of a new offering for the 2018-2019 grade nine class – the Balfour Arts Collective. Check out their offerings and some media regarding the program via their website, Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Another terrific offering for the sports minded student is the Martin Academy (Twitter). Visit the Argyle webpage for more information including Open House dates and other pertinent information.19598668_1730102403716591_6688020550639749355_n

Our two Gator basketball teams have tipped off their season and both teams are looking forward to successful seasons ahead. A special thanks to Mr. Norman and Ms Yee who are leading our girls and boys teams respectively. Our boys have already played a couple of games and our girls recently played an Argyle alumni squad (pictured below). Go Gators!
26992568_1730101773716654_3518404501218619268_nRegardless of our pursuit be it in the classroom, on the basketball floor, or any other arena of life it is important to remember that “the road to success is always under construction.” It can be hard to give ourselves permission to not be great at something, however, we need the reminder we need to keep working, growing, and learning.

As always, I welcome your input, feedback, and thoughts. Please drop me an email at mick.panko@rbe.sk.ca, call our main office, or stop by and chat.

Also, a reminder to check out our other online platforms including our Facebook Page, our Twitter Feed, and our website.

Some important upcoming dates:

  • Jan 30th – RPS Community Engagement Meeting (formerly AGM) 7pm @ Harbour Landing School
  • Jan 31st – PM Skating Grade 5-8
  • Feb 2nd – Term 1 Report Cards Issued
  • Feb 5th – SCC Blanket Exercise 630 pm Argyle Library
  • Feb 6th – Grade 5-8 skating PM
  • Feb 7th – OE trips – Grade 7/8
  • Feb 9th – Imagine No Bullying Presentation Grade 5-8 1pm
  • Feb 12-16th – Staff Appreciation Week
  • Feb 14th – Gr 5/6 Evans OE trip
  • Feb 16th – Teacher Convention – No school for students
  • Feb 19th-23rd – February Break – No school for students

 

Welcome back and welcome to 2018!

IMG_0227“Well the weather outside is frightful…”

Oh wait that was supposed to be in our mid-December post, but I digress, we came back to a couple of days of mild weather (including rain) which has transitioned into multiple days in a row of frigid temperatures that have kept us inside for the entirety of our days.

freezing

Our school yard and surrounding area have been transformed into somewhat of a skating rink so we want to remind everyone to be extra careful in their coming and goings.

Thankfully a crew from the division office has been able to come out and sand large areas of the school yard, our parking lot, and surrounding areas. Add this to the diligent work of Mr. De la Cruz with our sidewalks and we are doing all we can to stay upright! I heard someone say the other day “we need to walk like penguins” and I like the picture of this. The very same day a student here at Argyle asked if penguins have knees? Think about it…

Things at school have started the calendar year off well otherwise and we are excited about the awesome learning opportunities that are upcoming. It has been cool to see the grade 7/8 classes creating games (including a French Escape Room) with Mme. Desnoyers and they certainly could help us during our indoor recesses.

It has also been special to be in some of our youngest classrooms and to see the huge steps of growth our students have taken since coming together in September. There is something heart-warming about seeing students learning and even more when they see it themselves. We are so thankful to get to see this “magic” happen regularly here at Argyle and it is definitely a highlight of being in education.

Looking back to right before the break I would like to thank and congratulate Mr. Norman, Mr. Lamb, and their classes for the outstanding job they did with Argyle Cardboard Arcade. The event provided some great entertainment for our school and community, but more importantly, gathered over 2500 items of clothing, 650 items of food, and over $200 donated and raised for the Salvation Army and the Regina Food Bank.

It was also cool to just see our school community rally together and enjoy many fun activities leading into the break (including our grade 2/3 classrooms delivering cards to our neighbourhood, school wide caroling, and the regular laughs that we share in the Swamp).

I would like to take this opportunity to welcome to our Gator team, Ms. Alicia Hendrick who is teaching in the area of Arts Education. We are really excited about having her and our students are going to definitely enjoy her passion and joy in their classrooms.

Our School Community Council has a meeting coming up on January 22nd for anyone interested in coming to check that out (the meeting this month is our one meeting a year offsite and will be at Roots – in Orange Tree) at 630pm.

The Regina Public School Board is also hosting a community engagement forum on January 30th at 7pm in the new Harbour Landing School if you are interested in checking that out.

Some other upcoming events here at Argyle:

  • Jan 26th – PD/Staff Meeting – No classes for students
  • Jan 30th – RPS Community Engagement Meeting (formerly AGM) 7pm @ Harbour Landing School
  • Feb 2nd – Term 1 Report Cards Issued.

As always, I welcome your input, feedback, and thoughts. Please drop me an email at mick.panko@rbe.sk.ca, call our main office, or stop by and chat.

Also, a reminder to check out our other online platforms including our Facebook Page, our Twitter Feed, and our website.