Library Grand Re-Opening

November 29, 2017 - 6 minutes read

The official Grand Reopening of our newly modernized Library space, held this month, marks the end of Phase One of the Ridgeview Library Modernization Project.

School libraries have always been an integral part of a school’s learning culture.

The Ridgeview Library Modernization project supports 21st century learning and provides a space for students to collaborate, engage in interactive learning, create and challenge ideas, and experience learning and discovery in a multitude of ways.

Modernizing our library aligns with current pedagogy shifts where learning has become more team oriented and collaborative in scope. It is now a space that can be utilized to its fullest capacity and is available not only for individual access, but for small groups of students, multiple class use, and staff and parent meetings.

Our new space combines private, traditional workspaces that suit some students, with comfortable furniture, ideal for others. A blend of formal and informal spaces help to create an environment where all students can have their learning needs met.

The Ridgeview library is home to wonderful book collections and continues to provide traditional and technical services. As our library evolves, we look forward to building on the latest in computer technology supports within this space. This includes extending our current Applied Design (ADST) programs including Robotics and Coding, and injecting additional MakerSpace elements into this new space.

Our new modern library will provide students with a large open space to tinker and explore materials in a self directed ‘makerspace’ type environment.

MakerSpace environments provide students space to learn in the STEAM subjects (science, tech, engineering, art, and mathematics). As students tinker and explore, they also develop the core competencies vital to the new information age: questioning, critical thinking, teamwork, collaboration, problem solving, and self-awareness.

Modernizing our library has created the conditions for invention and innovation, conditions necessary for success in the classrooms of today and tomorrow.

There are many people to thank for supporting this project.

Firstly, to Ridgeview’s Teacher-Library, Catherine Kennedy, thank you for your understanding in the necessity to modernize the library space to support new curriculum pedagogy. Mrs. Kennedy’s openness to work with staff, students, and community supporters has resulted in a beautiful and functional learning commons.

Teacher-Librarians and mentors, Wendy Cameron and Linda Tornroos, championed this project from the start. Together, Catherine, Wendy, and Linda worked together to rethink the library space, examine design, and review book collections to ensure resources available were the best and brightest and the space was flexible, neat and functional. Endless in their passion for literacy and learning, these three remarkable ladies demonstrate the importance of possibilities when you combine passion with collective, sustained effort. Thank you!

To all Ridgeview staff for their collective thinking on the functional aspects of the modernization project, creating a space with open design and function where students can create, innovate, and collaborate has been the result.

To our West Vancouver Facilities Personnel, and in particular to Leo Reyes for coordinating the project, Nick Mann for overseeing purchasing, Bryan Johnson for building and design, and to Wade Hickey, for encouraging all of us to dream big and create a space for students to learn skills and competencies for today and tomorrow. Thank you all for your support.

Thank you also to 2016 – 2017 Parent Advisory Chairpersons Nancy Saar and Nicole Clough for spearheading this project. Nancy and Nicole’s belief in the scope of this project and their designing lense was certainly beyond the scope of my expertise. Thank you ladies also for your commitment and drive for spearheading the financial fundraising to make this project happen.

Phase 1 of the library modernization project has topped out at $80,000. These funds came from many sources:

  • $40,000 from the recent 2017 Spring school Gala;
  • $7,000 from a Ministry of Education Learning Grant;
  • $10,000 from the BC Gaming Grant, and;
  • $23,000 from various Ridgeview fundraisers including the Hot Lunch Program, Bingo event, Halloween Skate, Card Project, and many other events.

Phase 2 of this project will include additional ADST and MakerSpace elements, additional small group workspaces, and continual revision of the book collection among other additions.  Importantly, this space will continue to evolve as students learning needs evolve.

So, to our Ridgeview parents and friends, congratulations and thank you for supporting this project.  Collectively, we have created a creative, open learning space where learners can develop skills necessary for a changing world.

Valerie, Ridgeview Principal