Hollyburn 150!

September 1, 2017 - 13 minutes read

Welcome to the 2017-2018 school year! I look forward to welcoming all of our returning students to Hollyburn as well as welcoming our new families who have chosen Hollyburn for their children.

Inspired by the summer Canada 150 celebrations, the Hollyburn staff has created a list of 150 reasons why we love Hollyburn. We believe this school is an excellent place to work and learn and here are our reasons why we can’t wait for school to start on Tuesday:

  1. We love learning.
  2. We have a great playground and field.
  3. It takes only 7 minutes to walk to the beach!
  4. Our custodian, Mr. Ben, sings and plays the ukulele and the guitar.
  5. We have a garden that grows healthy fruits and veggies.
  6. The Hollyburn hug!
  7. The Lt. Governor of British Columbia has come for a visit.
  8. We have staff and students from over 20 different countries.
  9. Over 12 different languages are spoken at Hollyburn.
  10. Hollyburn scored an 8.6 out of 10 on the Fraser Institutes Report Card on school performance (the provincial average was 6.0)
  11. Hollyburn students serve monthly lunches at the Northshore Lookout Shelter
  12. Our grade 6/7 choir is outstanding!
  13. Our Parent Advisory Council (PAC) is fantastic and organizes fun events like movie nights and a year-end carnival.
  14. Our grade 6/7 teacher Mr. Loewen rode to conquer cancer!
  15. Gratton, our librarian, always has the perfect book to read.
  16. Hartley, our Kindergarten teacher is a tri-athlete!
  17. Chess club.
  18. We have high expectations for our students.
  19. Our girls’ and boys’ basketball teams demonstrate fantastic school spirit.
  20. Math club.
  21. Settlement Workers in Schools (SWIS) have their office at Hollyburn and are always happy to help families new to Canada.
  22. Rubik’s cube club.
  23. Relationships are KEY at Hollyburn.
  24. Me-to-We club.
  25. Run club.
  26. We incorporate the First Peoples’ Principals of Learning in all we do.
  27. We know that we learn best by doing.
  28. Being active and moving is key to learning at Hollyburn.
  29. Ukulele Club.
  30. We have a collaborative, whole school approach to teaching literacy.
  31. Technology is integrated across subject areas.
  32. The girls’ and boys’ volleyball teams exemplify teamwork.
  33. Inquiry learning is at the heart of what we do.
  34. We educate heart, mind, and body.
  35. Best hot lunch program EVER!
  36. Family involvement is encouraged and important at Hollyburn.
  37. We have a strong band program and an amazing music teacher in Mrs. Randt.
  38. Connecting with the community develops stronger students and communities.
  39. Hollyburn is West Vancouver’s oldest school, built in 1912!
  40. We have students coding, even our Kindergarten students.
  41. We have a sister school in Japan, Kwansei Gaukuin, and they come to visit every year.
  42. This year we welcome coding robots to our classrooms!
  43. Speake and Ms. Forward are passionate scientists and mathematicians and love to inspire their students.
  44. We love inviting our parent “experts” in to teach us about what they do!
  45. Last year our classes took over 30 field trips to learn in more authentic environments.
  46. Our students supported the community by raising awareness and funds for The Terry Fox Foundation, Cops for Cancer, Jump Rope for Heart, and the Northshore Lookout Society.
  47. Miss Miller knew she wanted to be a teacher back when she was a high school student at Rockridge and volunteered in Mrs. Grimwood’s classroom.
  48. We have fun!
  49. We learn something new each and everyday!
  50. Our Twitter account is awesome @hollyburnelemen, follow us to see how awesome.
  51. We have amazing parent and grandparent volunteers.
  52. Our students were recognized provincially and nationally for their inquiry work with the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation.
  53. We have a great Track and Field team.
  54. Students are encouraged to take on leadership roles.
  55. We have a pottery kiln.
  56. We have a strong relationship with the Squamish Nation and enjoy learning with them.
  58. Our intermediate students are encouraged to “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD) to school.
  59. Gardening club.
  60. Our Ultimate Team won the spirit award last year.
  61. We are proud to house a Strong Start Centre for 2-5 year olds and their families at Hollyburn.
  62. Reading is one of our passions.
  63. Beck LOVES to make her students laugh.
  64. We love having special guests. Last year we welcomed a drum teacher, an a-cappella group, and an acting troupe.
  65. Last year we went skating, swimming, and snowshoeing.
  66. Three University of British Columbia teacher candidates completed their teaching practicums at Hollyburn last year.
  67. We recycle and compost everything!
  68. Kids learn and show their learning in many different ways.
  69. The Hollyburn Husky jersey is super cool!
  70. We are three blocks from Bean Around the World and Savoury Island Pie Company!
  71. Annual library book circulation of approximately 12 000 books!
  72. We have a great courtyard garden with a teaching amphitheatre.
  73. The mountains are in our backyard!
  74. WE Team raised $600 to help build the first Boys high school in the Maasai Mara, Kenya.
  75. We celebrate and embrace our differences.
  76. The wonderful photos in the foyer of students throughout the years.
  77. Our school has such a rich and incredible history.
  78. Hollyhouse provides before and afterschool care right inside our building.
  79. Our administrators aren’t afraid to go in the dunk tank.
  80. In the evenings our school is home to amazing Scottish dancers.
  81. We work with a knowledgeable group of occupational therapists, speech and language therapists, behaviour consultants, counsellors, and psychologists.
  82. Hollyburn staff love and support each other like family.
  83. Sometimes we have dance parties in the gym at lunchtime!
  84. Everyone works as a team.
  85. Hollyburn is just the right size so that we all get to know each other really well.
  86. Hollyburn has the best music concerts!
  87. Students, parents, and staff really care about each other.
  88. If you have a great idea, you will definitely be heard at Hollyburn.
  89. Hollyburn teachers and support staff are passionate about finding ways to bring out the best in each other.
  90. Tang just graduated with her Masters Degree in Education.
  91. Our school nurse is amazing at answering tough questions and supporting families.
  92. Our teacher librarian, Mrs. Gratton, hung out with Maasai warriors and helped build a school in Kenya with her family and WE Day founder, Craig Kielburger!
  93. Our students learned traditional Squamish weaving, stories, and language-Huy Chewx A to our community elders!
  94. A local family company provides our hot lunch.
  95. Many of our students walk or wheel to school each day.
  96. One Friday each month students get to sleep in while teachers come in early to collaborate and plan.
  97. We love inviting families into our classrooms once each term to learn along side us (Family Fridays).
  98. Our teachers are passionate learners and continue their professional development in order to bring new and exciting opportunities to the school (Discovery Education, physical literacy, the Coding Arcade, just to name a few).
  99. Hollyburn marches down to Ambleside Park with the WVPD and the Squamish Nation to mark and recognize Pink Shirt Day.
  100. Hollyburn Elementary school has a fantastic district leadership team that inspires and supports us.
  101. We love to find joy in what we do.
  102. We have three Kings at Hollyburn that are all related but none of them are royalty.
  103. Our new vice-principal Mr. Blackburn knows how to play the guitar!
  104. We welcome international students here at Hollyburn.
  105. Our band hosts an amazing pancake breakfast each year.
  106. The PAC organizes movie nights in the school gym.
  107. The staff all dresses up at Halloween.
  108. Students in our intermediate grades all have the opportunity to learn French.
  109. We love to show our school spirit!
  110. The students who participate in the WE Team are amazing!
  111. The staff is incredibly supportive of each other.
  112. Support for student literacy is second to none.
  113. We have the best common area with natural light!
  114. We like to expose students to new and exciting experiences.
  115. Many of our students participate in the Reading-Link Challenge
  116. We have breathtaking daffodils that grow in our flower boxes.
  117. Our amazing parents help clean out and organize the gym equipment room!
  118. Our students love to learn and play new tag games.
  119. We have beautiful chestnut trees that surround our school.
  120. Our teachers are confident and excited about embracing the new curriculum.
  121. We have an endless supply of Band-Aids.
  122. Our drop-off procedures at the front of the school are seamless and safe.
  123. Our sports balls are always pumped up.
  124. When you are not feeling well we have a cosy bed in the medical room to lie down upon.
  125. Ben always gets to spills and messes right away.
  126. We have bubbles and chalk.
  127. We have 6 swings in the playground and students are experts at taking-turns with them.
  128. Sometimes we have crazy hair days and pyjama days.
  129. We love to wear our Hollyburn blue t-shirts and hoodies.
  130. We have some technology experts at Hollyburn (both students and staff)
  131. Our ELL (English Language Learning) teachers help all our students who are leaning English as a second (or third) language.
  132. We are on a great bus route.
  133. Our grade 4/5 students have the opportunity to be playground monitors.
  134. We participate in the Mathimatica Centrum national math contest.
  135. The West Vancouver Museum often stops by for a visit and to share knowledge and bring artefacts to learn about.
  136. We can easily walk to the West Vancouver Community Centre.
  137. Loewen speaks French very well.
  138. Our morning announcements are fun and factual.
  139. We like to connect with the seniors at the Seniors’ Centre.
  140. Our school environment is warm and welcoming.
  141. Students all learn self-management skills by using their Hollyburn agendas.
  142. We have purple hallways!
  143. Students are successful.
  144. Our aboriginal education teacher works collaboratively with teachers, students, and parents.
  145. Our Code of Conduct provides students with structure and clear expectations for behaviour at Hollyburn.
  146. We have a close connection with West Vancouver Secondary School to ensure students have a smooth transition to high school.
  147. Our students love it here!
  148. We have lots of learning spaces for small group work.
  149. We embrace our diversity.
  150. The support we receive from the community and parents is second to none.