Ministry of Education
Provincial and Demonstration Schools Branch

Wolf News – March/April 2019

Date: May 10, 2019 | Categories: sir james whitney | Tags: newsletter

Principal’s Message

Greetings from the desk of Principal Janice DrakeHappy Spring!

As we head into the final stretch of the school year and the weather continues to improve, we have to constantly remind ourselves that there are still two months of school left, and busy months they are! The staff continues to provide many exciting opportunities for students to enrich their school experience through events such as school-wide events, class trips and activities especially our unique learning about our on-campus maple syrup production run by our amazing residence staff and students. Yet, our focus continues to be on student engagement and creating lessons and activities that provide opportunities for our students to communicate and collaborate, be creative, problem solve, and think critically. As always, I encourage you to talk to your child(ren) about school and the things he/she is learning, and maintain open lines of communication.

Good news! An exciting new centre for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing children and their families to interact and learn together! Play and Learning Centre from PDSB resource service opened on our campus. The grand opening was successful on April  23rd. The Centre Includes:

  • Qualified teachers on-site to provide language, mathematics and literacy rich learning opportunities for infants, toddlers and pre-school children who are deaf or hard-of-hearing
  • Parent engagement opportunities: workshops, networking and skill enhancement
  • Support using the child’s natural environment to enhance learning and development

The centre will be open from 9:30-11:30pm on May 8, 9, 15, 16, 22, 23, 29, 30, June 5, 6, 12, 13, 19, 20 and 26th. For more information or RSVP to book your visit, contact Rita Downie at or 613-967-2823 ext. 360.

We are looking forward to the Student-Led Conference this month with our students. If you do not have your child(ren)’s schedule, please contact either their teacher or Ms. Cathy Chesher.


I am thrilled to see how much has been growing at our SJW Learning Garden over the past three years!

It inspires me ever since it was set up and has inspired me to plant my own small garden in my backyard!

Hands-on experience surely opens our students’ minds and creativity as well as mine!

Flood warnings and watches have been issued and flood damage are in our catchment area.  Please be aware of the flood waters and high levels of fast moving water in your areas and be safe.

Enjoy reading this newsletter and if you have any successful stories that you wish to be shared in our June newsletter, please submit it to me before May 27th.

Principal Janice Drake

ASL News


We have launched a website to promote our 10th Annual ASL Literary Night event.

We are thrilled to announce that Samuel Supalla, a notable ASL storyteller all the way from Arizona, USA will be the feature performer for our ASL Literary Night Gala!

Please spread the word of our event and fundraising initiatives. Below is all the information you can download and share.

  • ASL Literary Night 2019 website
  • Event and fundraising flyer
  • Order forms
  • Charity Haircut video on YouTube

For more information or questions, please email Ms. Manktelow.

T-Shirt Orders are due May 15th!

Thank you for your SUPPORT and see you on Thursday, June 6!!


ASL literacy night flyer

10TH Annual ASL Literary Night Gala

June 6, 2019 from 6pm to 8pm
Sir James Whitney School – Auditorium

Featuring Samuel Supalla, PH.D.

A filmmaker and a linguist notable for his storytelling performances in ASL and particularly for his narrative in The American Literature Series: For a Decent Living.

Semi-Formal evening includes:

  • Students’ performance
  • Sam Supalla’s performance
  • Door prizes
  • Silent Auction
  • De’VIA Art Gallery and Refreshments

Visit our website for more information and support our fundraising initiatives.

ASL – English Interpreters will be provided
Admission by Donations Appreciated

Education Corner

Fractions in Action

From our math assessment results, fractions have been identified as one of the math skills that our elementary students need to focus on. Fractions are the most difficult math skill to learn; therefore, elementary teachers have been collaborating and focusing on the subject of fractions, as of November 2018 (Fractions Across the Curriculum)

We have also implemented adding Math to our Literary Stars of the Month program, to coincide with our other Literary stars; ASL: Comprehension, ASL: Construction, English: Reading, and English: Writing. The Math Literacy Star learning goals and success criteria were developed for March/April 2019. Students use those success criteria to direct their responses to the Math of the Month’s Open Questions, to have a chance to win the Literacy Star!

March 2019 Literacy Stars of the Month

Learning Goal:

We are learning to divide whole objects and sets of objects into equal parts, and identify and compare the parts by their fractional names (e.g., one half, two fourths, on third, two quarter).

Success Criteria:

  • I can divide whole objects into equal parts.
  • I can identify and compare the parts using fraction names.
  • I can use mathematical tools/strategies to represent fractions.
  • I can explain my thinking (problem solving strategies)
  • I can use math language.

Judging Date: Thursday February 28
Award Ceremony at Terrific Kids Assembly: Friday March 1

Fractions in action

Math is seen and used everywhere…including our Physical Education program.

Noah’s goal for this bike ride activity was to collect flags as he rode around the course. This activity requires cardio and coordination. In this picture, Noah was able to get 8/13th’s of the flags.

After the activity, he and his peers had the opportunity to discuss how many flags he had retrieved, in a fraction format.

Fractions in action

With this pizza activity, Miranda displayed her understanding of ‘whole’ and ‘parts’, using fractions. Our kindergarteners were introduced to fractions, focusing on ‘halves’,  when preparing snacks: cutting fruits, etc.

Fractions in action

Math is integrated in Science as well. Owen and Myla, first graders, look at pictures of the moon and analyzed amount of moon showing in fraction format. They coloured their moons in fractions and wrote the fractions in numbers. Fun fact: Did you know that March’s moon is called a Worm Moon?!

Fractions in action

Kaila includes fractional terminology in her poster explaining how she measured and divided a piece of paper into a different number of parts.

Earth Week Webinar

April 29th, 11:45-12:45 EST

Earth week

We were very excited that our students of Grade 6, 7, and 8 were invited to participate in Earth Week Webinar on the 29th of April 2019. The purpose of this webinar was to encourage Deaf students to learn and love STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). We listened to a panel of four Deaf professionals, who are working in the field of STEM, sharing their experiences and passion in their careers. Steven Forney works with drones at University of Alabama; Johanna Lucht is working in a team designing a “fast” airplane at NASA and she was the first Deaf engineer to take an active role in the control room during crewed flight tests; Sachiko Flores founded CorpsTHAT, which provides conservation corps and outdoor programs for Deaf people; and Jo Bempong focuses on developing a program that helps battery last longer at Texas Instruments. Indeed, their jobs are incredibly fascinating!

Not only this, but they shared their experiences as Deaf people in a hearing world and explained how they communicated with them. Also, they explained how important it is to encounter countless obstacles and failures and learn how to problem solve them and become more creative. Their passion and determination got them to where they are today!

Tips and advice they provided for our young students were: participate in after-school clubs such as Robotic Club; do scientific experiments both in home and school; follow and focus on your passion; expect the unexpected; follow APPs such as Code Block, Khan Academy; and explore whatever you are interested in.

After the webinar, our Grade 7-8 students discussed what their passions are: acting, developing video games, mastering in magic, playing professional football, marine biology, and so on. They were mostly fascinated by Mr. Forney’s job which is to develop virtual flying where you put on googles and see as if you are flying over the forest. We discussed possible inventions: creating a projector out of a phone, making a video of sheep jumping over a fence helping those people who struggle with sleeping, creating a hologram, and so on. As you see, ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE!!

Parents, encourage your children follow their passion and provide them with opportunities to “grow” their passion and experience.

Provincial Ball Hockey Tournament

March 6, 2019

World Down Syndrome Day

March 21, 2019

Maple Syrup

March 2019

K-1 Team

Read the K-1 Team’s Newsletter

SJW Residence

Read the Residence’s Newsletter

OSD-SJW Archives

Maple Syrup Tapping 100 Years Ago

We just discovered OSD had tapped trees for maple syrup in 1918 and 1919 in The Canadian issues.  The tapping was likely discontinued in 1920 when many of the maple trees in front of the original were taken down to make room for the Main school (completed in 1923). The below 2 photos were found in Harold Tait’s photo album which he donated to the OSD-SJW Archives. He was a student at OIDD-OSD from OSD from 1907-1918. The photos were taken in 1918.

The residence students and staff who are now making maple syrup were thrilled at the find. They were curious if the school had ever produced maple syrup in the past.

Donna Fano, OSD-SJW Archival Volunteer

Upcoming Events

May 2019

  • May 6-10: Education Week
  • May 13-17: Student-Led Conferences
  • May 15: ASL Literary Night T-shirts Order DUE!
  • May 20: Victoria Day
  • May 21-June 3: Grade 3 & 5 EQAO
  • May 23: SJW Learning Garden Opening Ceremony

June 2019

  • June 5: Grade 9 Math EQAO
  • June 6: 10th Annual ASL Literary Night Gala
  • June 10: Samuel Greene Day
  • June 13: National Indigenous Day
  • June 13: School Council BBQ & Wrap Up
  • June 20-24: High School Exams
  • June 25: Elementary Graduation & Awards
  • June 26: High School Graduation & Awards
  • June 27: Kindergarten End of Year Party/Family Day