Trustee By-Election for Ward 3

The Portage la Prairie School Division is in search of someone to fill a School Trustee position in Ward 3 via a by-election.

Nomination begins August 7, 2024 and election day is September 18, 2024.

Individuals interested in standing for Trustee can find further details regarding ward boundaries, geographical location, requirements, and the process at this link.

Ward 3 Trustee By-Election Information


A picture of the staff who attended the conference and the logo of Riding the Wave
Riding the Wave of Inspiration!

The 2024 Riding the Wave (RTW) Ed Tech Conference in Gimli, Manitoba, was a treasure trove of inspiration and innovation for educators from the Portage la Prairie School Division. Set against the stunning backdrop of Lake Winnipeg, this year's conference combined an idyllic location with a truly enriching program, offering a plethora of sessions and workshops that showcased the latest in educational technology. Here are some highlights and takeaways from our enthusiastic attendees:

## Embracing AI in Education

**Jenny:** Attending sessions with a literacy and numeracy coach has inspired us to integrate technology into coding for learning. We've already started designing activities for K-5 students using Dash & Dot and Bee Bot and are excited to expand these lessons to grades 6-8. We're leveraging AI to jumpstart our journey and make our lessons more efficient.

**Gavin:** I learned about various AI tools to enhance my business courses. This semester, I plan to incorporate computational thinking in teaching journal entries in Accounting Essentials 30S, helping students follow steps like Date, Debit, Credit, and Comment. For a detailed explanation, check out my plans [here](

## Innovative Literacy and Numeracy Strategies

**Sandi Shaw-Lyons:** My sessions were incredibly valuable, providing new ideas for integrating technology in literacy. We've started using Bee Bot and Dash & Dot for various literacy activities, from retelling stories to vocabulary building. Additionally, using loose parts with picture books for older students is another tool I'm excited to implement for fostering engagement and collaboration.

## Exploring New Platforms and Tools

**Andrew Duykers:** The sessions on broadcasting school news on YouTube, Minecraft EDU, and Virtual Reality were particularly impactful. Utilizing YouTube for school news can enhance communication skills and community engagement. Minecraft EDU sessions were insightful for teaching sustainability concepts. Despite VR making me queasy, its educational applications are promising, and I envision creating a virtual tour of Portage la Prairie.

**Andrew Metcalfe:** The conference's organization and location were impeccable. Highlights included using Makey Makeys to make maps interactive and incorporating coding and electricity into social studies projects. The Magic Math Pot of Gold session provided numerous engaging activities, particularly with a multiplication chart. Additionally, the website [NationStates]( is a fantastic tool for engaging students in political and social problem-solving.

## Enhancing Classroom Experiences with Technology

**Megan Sloik:** Sessions on Microsoft 365 Tools provided valuable insights for supporting EAL learners, goal setting, and documenting student progress. Jasmin and Joe's sessions on AI and its applications in education were particularly enlightening, emphasizing the importance of teacher expertise in refining AI outputs. I'm excited to explore various AI platforms, including ChatGPT, Gemini AI, and CoPilot AI.

**Kendra McKenzie:** The ability to create online courses through Brightspace was a significant takeaway. This will help us deliver English Language Acquisition Support to newcomers, creating accessible virtual courses for different education levels.

**Jasmin Phipps:** Connecting with other tech-enthusiastic educators was a highlight. I gained ideas for implementing AI, project-based coding, and social media into lessons. Learning about VR technology's affordability and applications was particularly exciting.

## Practical Applications of Ed Tech

**Stewart Akerley:** Highlights included discovering the website Polypad, which offers rich digital math manipulatives and games. I also gained new insights from a Minecraft EDU session, despite having used it before. These experiences will enhance my classroom teaching.

**Brady Nurse:** Key takeaways were the numerous applications of 3D printers in education, from math and science projects to topographical maps for social studies. Starting a news broadcast for morning announcements is another exciting idea we're exploring at CVS.

## Reducing Teacher Stress with AI

**Ashtyn:** The conference provided valuable insights into using AI to reduce teacher stress. Sessions on Interactive AI and Coding sparked ideas for engaging grade 8 lessons, such as creating interactive maps and incorporating coding into blood flow demonstrations.

## Engaging Students with Digital Tools

**Tim Pedden:** Sessions on digital literacy instruction, VR tours, and interactive government simulations were particularly valuable. Tools like School 360 and Nation States will help make learning more interactive and fun for students.

The 2024 Riding the Wave Conference was an incredible opportunity for our educators to explore new technologies, share ideas, and gain practical tools to enhance teaching and learning. A huge thank you to the PLPSD and the  PTA PD Committee for their support in making this enriching experience possible!

Compiled with teacher reflections 

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