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Monday December 2nd, 2013

Posted at 12:00pm

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Antonella Bridgen knows how it feels to be included and respected at her school.

“Although Prince Edward is a big school, I am friends with a lot of kids- even some Grade 8’s,” she says. “I got to know them during our Community Building days when I was younger and they still say hi to me when I see them in the halls.” Bridgen is among many Prince Edward Students who look forward to participating in Community Building days every school year.

Community Building days were implemented at Prince Edward in 2007, under the direction of former Principal, Robert Romano, with the goal of Prince Edward becoming a Tribes School in which all students feel included, respected, safe and valued. During Community Building days, students participate in a series of curriculum- based team building activities and build relationships to form a school community.

This year, Prince Edward’s first Community Building day of the school year was held on Friday, November 29th.

Throughout the Community Building day, students were placed into teams that consisted of students from a variety of grade levels from JK to Grade 8. Each team rotated through four different activity centres and complete Science, Math and Literacy activities through team building tasks. The day ended with a Prince Edward fundraising event, a grudge Suma match between Vice Principal Meredith McGrory and Teacher Chris Rousseau.

“It takes a great deal of thoughtful planning, but since the inception of Community Building days, I have noticed a real change in our students’ commitment to the school as a whole,” says Jackie Ward, Child and Youth Worker and one of Prince Edwards’s Community Building team members. “The students really get to know each other and form a bond and this bond carries on throughout the school year. Our older students have the opportunity to try out leadership roles and our teachers work with students they may not have daily contact with.”

Based on staff feedback and School Climate surveys, Prince Edward knows they have a winning Community Building formula.

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