Protecting Students p. 30 - JUNE 2019 THE PUBLICATION OF THE ONTARIO COLLEGE OF TEACHERS

 
Protecting Students p. 30 - JUNE 2019 THE PUBLICATION OF THE ONTARIO COLLEGE OF TEACHERS
JUNE 2019
THE PUBLICATION OF
THE ONTARIO COLLEGE
OF TEACHERS

Protecting
Students p. 30
The passage of Bill 48, the Safe
and Supportive Classrooms Act,
means better student protection,
enhanced teacher professionalism
and improved governance.
Protecting Students p. 30 - JUNE 2019 THE PUBLICATION OF THE ONTARIO COLLEGE OF TEACHERS
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Protecting Students p. 30 - JUNE 2019 THE PUBLICATION OF THE ONTARIO COLLEGE OF TEACHERS
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Protecting Students p. 30 - JUNE 2019 THE PUBLICATION OF THE ONTARIO COLLEGE OF TEACHERS
Protecting Students p. 30 - JUNE 2019 THE PUBLICATION OF THE ONTARIO COLLEGE OF TEACHERS
Contents
                                                                                                         Upfront
                                                                                                         At the College                                               6
                                                                                                         From the Chair                                               9
                                                                                                         Registrar’s Report                                          11

                                                                                                    26   Letters to the Editor                                       13

                                                                                                         Connections
                                                                                                         PS Poll; In Your Profession; In Your Classroom;             15
                                                                                                         Tools of the Trade

                                                                                                         Departments
                                                                                                         Great Teaching                                              22
PHOTOS: RAINA+WILSON (TOP); DANIEL EHRENWORTH (MIDDLE); ILLUSTRATION: MATEUSZ NAPIERALSKI/CO-LOOP

                                                                                                         Remarkable Teacher                                          26

                                                                                                         Features
                                                                                                         Protecting Students                                         30
                                                                                                         BIll 48 means better student protection, enhanced
                                                                                                         teacher professionalism and improved governance.

                                                                                                    30   Beyond the Classroom                                        32
                                                                                                         Ontario Certified Teachers use authentic learning
                                                                                                         to teach students real-life skills.

                                                                                                         Teaching LGBTQ Students                                     36
                                                                                                         Six steps to creating an inclusive environment for lesbian,
                                                                                                         gay, bisexual, transgender, two spirit and queer learners.

                                                                                                         Resources
                                                                                                         Reviews                                                     40
                                                                                                         Tech Class                                                  44

                                                                                                         Governing Ourselves
                                                                                                         College News: Investigation Committee                       46
                                                                                                    36   Case Study; Hearings

                                                                                                         Final Exam
                                                                                                         Lane Merrifield’s journey from frustrated student to    56
                                                                                                         tech wunderkind, Disney exec and Dragon’s Den investor.

                                                                                                                                 June 2019 Professionally Speaking   3
Protecting Students p. 30 - JUNE 2019 THE PUBLICATION OF THE ONTARIO COLLEGE OF TEACHERS
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                                                                                                                                                         EDITORIAL BOARD Jean-Luc Bernard, OCT; Chantal Côté, OCT
                                                                                                                                                         (Vice-Chair); Melissa Gaffen, OCT; Godwin Ifedi (Chair);
                                                                                                                                                         Nicola Powadiuk, OCT
                                                                                                                                                         PUBLISHER Richard Lewko
                                                                                                                                                         EDITOR-IN-CHIEF William Powell
    Update it today:                                                                                                                                     MANAGING EDITOR Kristin Doucet

    1. Visit oct.ca                                                                                                                                      SENIOR EDITOR (INTERIM) Melissa Campeau
                                                                                                                                                         COPY EDITOR Geri Savits-Fine
    2. Click on “Members” in the menu bar and
       then “My Account” to access your account                                                                                                          FRENCH CONTENT EDITOR Véronique Ponce
                                                                                                                                                         TRANSLATION Thomas Brouard; Geneviève Dubé; Pierre Ducharme;
    3. Click on “Contact Information”                                                                                                                    Mélissa Dufour; Luci English; Julie Fournel; Lori Hall; Pamela Lipson;
       in the left-hand menu                                                                                                                             Eleanor Paul; Véronique Ponce; Francine Tardif

    4. Click on “Edit” in the email section                                                                                                              CONTRIBUTORS Gabrielle Barkany, OCT; Nicole van Woudenberg, OCT;
                                                                                                                                                         Wendy Harris (reviews); Brian Jamieson; Stephanie McLean;
    5. Update your email address                                                                                                                         Michael Salvatori, OCT; Simon Young; Olivia Yu
                                                                                                                                                         CIRCULATION Kerry Walford
    6. Click the “Save” button
                                                                                                                                                         ART DIRECTION, DESIGN AND PRODUCTION
                                                                                                                                                         Studio 141 Inc.: Dave Curcio (President and Creative Director);
                                                                                                                                                         Hannah Browne (Associate Art Director); Jennifer Shaw (Studio Manager)
    It’s that easy!                                                                                                                                      Studio 141 Inc. contributors: Trevor T. Stewart; Rathan Vijearajah
                                                                                                                                                         COVER Daniel Ehrenworth
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                                                                                                                                                                               MAGAZINE C                                MAGAZINE C                                 MAGAZINE C                                MAGAZINE C                                 MAGAZINE C                                 MAGAZINE C                                 MAGAZINE C

                                                                                                                                                         Professionally Speaking is published quarterly by the Ontario College
                                                                                                                                                         of Teachers to inform its members about the activities and decisions
                                                                                                                                                         of the College. The magazine provides a forum for discussion of issues
                                                                                                                                                         relevant to the future of teaching and learning, teachers’ professional
                                                                                                                                                         learning and standards of practice.

    Do you receive multiple                                                                                                                              The views expressed in the articles are those of the authors and
                                                                                                                                                         do not necessarily represent the official position of the College.

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                                                                                                                                                         Professionally Speaking is encouraged. Please credit the Ontario
                                                                                                                                                         College of Teachers and Professionally Speaking, June 2019.
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4   Professionally Speaking June 2019
Protecting Students p. 30 - JUNE 2019 THE PUBLICATION OF THE ONTARIO COLLEGE OF TEACHERS
College Council
  The College is the self-regulating
  professional body for                                                             CHAIR
                                                                                    Nicole van Woudenberg, OCT
  Ontario teachers. Membership
                                                                                    VICE-CHAIR
  is open to anyone qualified                                                       Tim Gernstein, OCT
  to teach in the province and                                                      MEMBERS
  required to maintain an                                                           Charles Dimitry Abraham, OCT; Diane Ballantyne, OCT;
                                                                                    Paige Bennett, OCT; Jean-Luc Bernard, OCT; Bob Cooper, OCT;
  Ontario teaching certificate.                                                     Chantal Côté, OCT; Irene Dembek, OCT; Elizabeth Edgar-
                                                                                    Webkamigad, OCT; Susan Elliott-Johns, OCT; Rebecca Forte, OCT;
                                                                                    Melissa Gaffen, OCT; Erin Glen, OCT; Mary Ellen Gucciardi, OCT;
                                                                                    John Hamilton, OCT; Godwin Ifedi; Jacqueline Karsemeyer, OCT;
  The College is trusted to regulate the teaching                                   Colleen Landers; Shannon Marcus, OCT; Marlène Marwah;
  profession by setting standards of practice                                       Michelle Miner-Seal; Mary-Anne Mouawad, OCT; Sara Nouini, OCT;
  and accrediting teacher education programs.                                       Alicia Nunn, OCT; Gerry O’Reilly, OCT; Tom Potter; Nicola Powadiuk,
                                                                                    OCT; Vincent Rinaldo, OCT; Jonathan Rose; Stéphane Vallée, OCT;
                                                                                    Ronna Warsh; Stephen Zimmermann, OCT
  The College also sets the requirements for
  entry into the profession, investigates                                           CEO & REGISTRAR
  complaints involving members and takes                                            Michael Salvatori, OCT
  appropriate disciplinary action.
                                                                                    DEPUTY REGISTRAR
                                                                                    Joe Jamieson, OCT

                                                                                    DIRECTORS
                                                                                    Chantal Bélisle, OCT, Investigations and Hearings
                                                                                    Roch Gallien, OCT, Standards of Practice and Accreditation
                                                                                    Richard Lewko, Corporate and Council Services
                                                                                    Linda Zaks-Walker, OCT, Membership Services

                        EXPAND YOUR QUALIFICATIONS
                  OCT accredited • Ontario-based and online programs • Competitive Fees
MASTER OF SCIENCE IN EDUCATIONAL LEADERSHIP                                              SCHEDULE A COURSES
• Exceptional preparation for emerging leadership opportunities.                         ABQ — Primary, Junior and Intermediate divisions
• M.S.Ed. is designed for candidates who aspire to lead educational programs             SCHEDULE C COURSES (one session courses)
  in both the private and/or public settings.                                            Adapting Curriculum for the Catholic School System
• This 12 course program provides foundational content in subject specific areas,         Teaching in the Catholic System
  research skills, leadership and change theories all with a 300 hour internship.        Mathematics 7 and 8
• Equivalency courses for completion of PQP Part 1 and Part 2.                           Student Assessment and Evaluation
                                                                                         Use and Knowledge of Assistive Technology
                                                                                         Teaching Students with Communication Needs/Autism Spectrum Disorders
Also offering:
BACHELOR DEGREE IN TEACHER EDUCATION IN ONTARIO                                          SCHEDULE D COURSES
                                                                                         PART ONE, PART TWO AND SPECIALIST:
• Two year program offered in the GTA.
                                                                                         Teaching English Language Learners
                                                                                         French as a Second Language
For more information, call 905.294.7260 or visit us online at                            Guidance and Career Education
www.niagara.edu/ontario.                                                                 Integration of Information and Computer Technology in Instruction
                                                                                         Teacher Librarian
                                                                                         Kindergarten
                                                                                         Mathematics Primary/Junior
                                                                                         Reading
                                                                                         Special Education

SEE MORE AQ COURSES AT                                                                   PRINCIPAL’S QUALIFICATIONS COURSES:
WWW.NIAGARA.EDU/AQ-COURSES                                                               PQP 1 and 2

                            905.294.7260 • www.niagara.edu/ontario

                                                                                                                June 2019 Professionally Speaking               5
Protecting Students p. 30 - JUNE 2019 THE PUBLICATION OF THE ONTARIO COLLEGE OF TEACHERS
AT THE COLLEGE

                                                                                             1

                                            PHOTOS 1 AND 2 Delegations from around
                                            the world visit the College each year to
                                            share and gather information on a range
                                            of education-related issues including
                                            professional practice, certification and
                                            accreditation. Recently, the College wel-
                                            comed educators from England, Australia,
                                            China (photo 1) and St. Vincent and the
                                            Grenadines (photo 2, clockwise from top left:
                                            Carmelina Martin, OCT, Kathy Anstett,
                                            Samantha Porter, Stefanie Muhling, OCT).

                                            PHOTO 3 The College regularly co-ordinates
                                            reviews of AQ guidelines to make sure they
                                            reflect the evolving needs of Ontario teachers
                                            and students. Then, writing teams step
                                            in to complete the next steps. Recently,
                                            the writing team working on revisions to
                                            the Kindergarten Additional Qualification (AQ)
                                        2   guidelines met at the College’s Toronto office
                                            to incorporate the reviewers’ feedback.

                                        3

6   Professionally Speaking June 2019
Protecting Students p. 30 - JUNE 2019 THE PUBLICATION OF THE ONTARIO COLLEGE OF TEACHERS
AT THE COLLEGE

                                                                                                  4

                                          PHOTOS 4 AND 5 The College’s Standards
                                          of Practice and Education Unit hosts an
                                          ongoing series of educational events as part
                                          of its Ethical Leadership Institutes. In March,
                                          College staff welcomed participants to a
                                          session focused on the ethical standard of
                                          care. Additional Qualification (AQ) course
                                          designers and facilitators who attended
                                          discussed a wide range of ways AQ courses
                                          can foster practices to help teachers support
                                          student well-being.

                                      5   PHOTO 6 This spring the College attended
                                          several events to raise awareness about
                                          how we protect students and govern Ontario
                                          teachers. Staff were on hand to share
                                          information and answer questions from new
                                          and soon-to-be parents at the Mama Expo &
                                          Fam Jam in Windsor, Ont. (pictured left) the
                                          Parent & Child Expo in Ottawa, and The Baby
                                          Show in Toronto.
PHOTOS: ONTARIO COLLEGE OF TEACHERS

                                      6

                                                              June 2019 Professionally Speaking   7
Protecting Students p. 30 - JUNE 2019 THE PUBLICATION OF THE ONTARIO COLLEGE OF TEACHERS
beyond

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FROM THE CHAIR

                         Self-regulation
                         Setting the direction for our profession.

                         BY NICOLE VAN WOUDENBERG, OCT
                         @Nicole_OCTOEEO

                         O
                                ne of my favourite places on Earth is Lake Louise,       committees. With the recommendations that Council
                                Alta. If you’ve been there, you perhaps share my         passed during our last meeting in March (see story
                                admiration for majestic mountains, roaming               in Governing Ourselves on p. 49), and pending Act and
                         wildlife and the sheer purity of nature. I find it calming      regulatory changes, there will be opportunities for many
                         and it allows me to reflect. As teachers, we search for         more licensed teachers to contribute their specialized
                         reflective spaces for ourselves and for our students.           skill set in setting the direction for the profession.
                         Our goal is to provide the optimal learning environment            As changes unfold, keep posted on Council’s work by
                         where students thrive.                                          visiting oct.ca, perusing the College’s monthly newsletter,
                           Anchored in our ethical standards of Care, Respect, Trust     Your College and You, and by reading the Governing
                         and Integrity, and our standards of practice, we exemplify      Ourselves section of Professionally Speaking.
                         what it means to be Ontario Certified Teachers. It’s not           If you find yourself in a quiet, reflective space, I encourage
                         surprising, then, that the teaching profession in Ontario is    you to consider how and what you would like to contribute to
PHOTO: MATTHEW PLEXMAN

                         allowed to regulate itself. Professional self-regulation is a   professional self-regulation. Serving in the public interest
                         privilege in that it recognizes the specialized skills, know-   on Council and committees reinforces the notion that
                         ledge and experience that Ontario-licensed teachers             members of our profession are capable of governing
                         possess, and the maturity of the profession to determine        themselves. PS
                         and abide by ethical standards and standards of practice.
                           Currently, there are 23 Council members who are
                         members of the profession serving on Council and College

                                                                                                                  June 2019 Professionally Speaking     9
REGISTRAR’S REPORT

                         Earning Trust
                         How do you demonstrate
                         trustworthiness in your practice?

                         BY MICHAEL SALVATORI, OCT
                         @Michael_OCTOEEO

                         C
                                are. Respect. Trust. Integrity.                             Our ethical standards offer a useful and sound
                                   The College’s ethical standards represent a vision     framework for ethical reflection and action that can
                                of professional practice at the heart of which is a       help us demonstrate our trustworthiness to parents
                         commitment to students and their learning.                       and the public.
                            College members, in their position of trust, demon-             The College’s public register (known as Find a Teacher
                         strate responsibility in their relationships with students,      on our website) also assists in providing evidence of
                         parents, guardians, colleagues, educational partners,            trustworthiness by featuring the impressive academic
                         other professionals, the environment and the public.             and professional qualifications of our members.
                            To be entrusted with the care of students is a privilege.       The proof in the trust pudding is our individual prac-
                         It’s important that we reflect regularly on how that trust       tice and our capacity to forge strong relationships
                         is earned and how we demonstrate trustworthiness as              with students and their families predicated on mutual
                         individual members and as a profession.                          respect. Use the professional standards resources
                            While preparing for a recent presentation to regulators       at oct-oeeo.ca/ProfessionalStandards to engage in
                         on risk management and mitigation, I read some of the            professional dialogue and to reflect with your col-
PHOTO: MATTHEW PLEXMAN

                         work of Irish philosopher and academic Onora O’Neill.            leagues on what trust means, how we demonstrate it
                         O’Neill suggests that we need to consider trustworthiness        and the power it has to inspire confidence in our work
                         when we explore the notion of trust in the public interest.      alone and together. PS
                         She defines trustworthiness as competence, honesty and
                         reliability. Trust is earned when an individual, a collective
                         or an organization demonstrates that it can carry out its
                         responsibilities effectively, consistently and with integrity.

                                                                                                                 June 2019 Professionally Speaking   11
2019 Annual Meeting
of Members
Thursday, May 30, 2019 | 5:30–7:30 p.m.

       Ontario College of Teachers
       101 Bloor St. West, 14th floor
       Toronto ON M5S 0A1

       RSVP: oct-oeeo.ca/amm-register

PANEL DISCUSSION: SUPPORTING STUDENTS’ MENTAL HEALTH
Join us for a panel discussion with:

•   Amy Cheung, MD, Associate Scientist, Evaluative Clinical Sciences, in the Hurvitz Brain
    Sciences Research Program at Sunnybrook Research Institute;
•   Susie Barraud, OCT, teacher and curriculum leader with the Toronto District School Board;
•   Andréanne Fleck, a social worker and Implementation Coach at School Mental Health
    Ontario; and
•   Delicia R, a Grade 12 student and member of the Toronto District School Board’s
    Students 4 Well-Being team.

Our panellists will provide you with medical, professional, social and student perspectives
on how to support students’ mental health.

CHAIR’S ADDRESS                                  MARGARET WILSON LIBRARY
Chair Nicole van Woudenberg, OCT, will           Attend the open house in our library. See the
report on Council’s activities from last year.   full range of services available to you, includ-
                                                 ing the online library catalogue, e-books and
REGISTRAR’S ADDRESS                              research databases.
CEO and Registrar Michael Salvatori, OCT,
will reflect on College initiatives from 2018.   ENGAGE WITH US
                                                 Have questions? Send us your questions in
COMMITTEE REPORTS                                advance at pollev.com/octoeeo.
Hear from the chairs of the Investigations,
Fitness to Practise, Governance and              LIVE STREAMING
Accreditation committees.                        Can’t attend in person? We’re live streaming
                                                 the meeting. Visit oct-oeeo.ca/amm-2019
                                                 and click on “play.” Please ensure your
                                                 computer or device has the minimum require-
                                                 ments to live stream.
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Tell us what                                                                                                                                                                       Professionally Speaking welcomes letters to the editor. We reserve the right to edit
                                                                                                                                                                                   letters for length and to conform to our publication style. To be considered for publication,

you think!
                                                                                                                                                                                   letters should be in response to an article or ad published in the magazine and include the
                                                                                                                                                                                   writer’s daytime phone number and registration number. Address letters to: The Editor,
                                                                                                                                                                                   Professionally Speaking at ps@oct.ca or 101 Bloor St. W., Toronto, ON M5S 0A1.

IN YOUR CLASSROOM
                                                                                                                                                                                   Faith-based practices in the classroom?
                                                                 Professional
                                                                 Practice                                                                                                          I am responding to the Professional Practice article in the March 2019 issue.
                                                                 Maintaining student attention levels in the classroom is
                                                                 often difficult for teachers; it affects both the seasoned
                                                                 and the new. After experiencing this challenge first-hand
                                                                                                                                                                                   I appreciate the ideas for helping students focus using exercise and breathing
                                                                 and trying various approaches throughout my career,
                                                                 I eventually landed on a technique that works well for me;
                                                                 it starts with getting to know your students’ character!
                                                                                                                                                                                   techniques. I am concerned, though, at the suggestion of yoga in the classroom.
                                                                    Once you’ve accomplished that, I suggest you try doing
                                                                 a physical warm-up at the beginning of each class,
                                                                 as well as incorporating mindfulness meditation and
                                                                 deep breathing exercises — this is what I’ve found has
                                                                                                                                                                                      Our country is multicultural and multi-faith. Society has started to include
                                                                                                                                                                                   some faith-based practices with the suggestion there may be health benefits.
                                                                 helped me handle my more rambunctious classes.
                                                                 (For instance, one combination is jumping jacks or
                                                                 lunges followed by yoga poses.)
                                                                    Every group and teacher is different, but if you begin
                                                                 with this approach, you can then fine-tune it to what
                                                                 will work best for you and your students within your
                                                                 learning environment.
                                                                                                                                                                                   Yoga is one of these faith-based practices. The foundations of yoga are in the
                                                                 DAVID PARMER, OCT
                                                                 TORONTO DISTRICT SCHOOL BOARD                                                                                     Hindu faith and the poses pay homage to Hindu gods. Having students participate
                                                                    HAVE A CLASSROOM IDEA TO SHARE?
                                                                    Send it to us at ps@oct.ca and your advice could
                                                                                                                                                                                   in yoga means they are taking part in religious practices of the Hindu faith. Some
                                                                    be published in an upcoming issue! Check out
                                                                    our Professional Practice Research archive at
                                                                    oct-oeeo.ca/research.                                                                                          other faiths strictly forbid the practice of participating in activities of another
Amp Up Your Eco-Education
                                                                                                                                                                                   faith. There was recently a case in the news where parents took an Ontario school
BY STEFAN DUBOWSKI                                                                                                                                                                 board to task for allowing yoga to be taught in their child’s elementary school.
                                                                                                                                                                                      It would be prudent to be informed about faith-based practices and the
You know the three Rs of environmentalism: Reduce, Reuse         How about Grade 5 math? Try Playing with Decimals, a
and Recycle, but how about Rethink? Resources for Rethinking     lesson in which students explore cost-of-living differences
(r4r.ca), a website with English and French lesson plans,        between developed and developing countries. Grade 8
books, videos and more, invites students to think compre-        arts? Try Antifreeze; Anti Fish, a play that illustrates the
hensively about biodiversity, climate change and other
matters of sustainability — either as a stand-alone subject
or linking it to topics such as math, social studies and art.
                                                                 relationship between storm drains and water ecosystems.
                                                                   If you’re not sure where to start, visit the Hot Topics tab
                                                                 for a calendar of environmental events like World Food Day,
                                                                                                                                                                                   possibility of inadvertently exposing students to practices that are not permit-
                                                                                                                                                                                   ted in their faith. We simply need to “Google” the origins of any exercise or
   The non-profit Learning for a Sustainable Future (LSF)        Waste Reduction Week and the COP 24: UN Climate Change
created the site and has teachers review featured resources      Conference, all of which you can use as jumping-off points
(which are matched to the Ontario curriculum), making it easy    for classroom activities.
to find material for all grades and subject matter. Simply use     The Ministry of Education’s elementary-level resource

                                                                                                                                                                                   practice we are thinking of incorporating into our classrooms.
                                                                                                                                 ILLUSTRATION: KIM SALT

the handy home-page, pull-down menu to search by level,          guide Environmental Education: Scope and Sequence of
topic and jurisdiction.                                          Expectations, explains that students require the knowledge
   For instance, are you teaching Grade 10 business and          and skills to understand the complex issues that affect the
commerce? If so, the site recommends Chew on This,               environment, both now and in the future. With Resources
a book on the fast food industry that outlines the environ-      for Rethinking, you will find a range of tools that will help
mental impact of large-scale meat production facilities.         students reach this increasingly important goal.

                                                                                                                                                                                   Valerie Downing, OCT, is a secondary and continuing education teacher
16 Professionally Speaking March 2019

                                                                                                                                                                                   with the Lambton Kent District School Board.

                                                                                                                                                                                   Mental health in the spotlight
                                                                                                                                                                                   I’m writing in response to the article “Supporting Students’ Mental Health”
                                                                                                                                                                                   in the March 2019 issue and the enclosed professional advisory.
                                                                                                                                                                                      As an elementary homeroom teacher, I am fully aware of the importance of
                                                                                                                                                                                   recognizing students struggling with their mental health, and providing a support-
                                                                                                                                                                                   ive environment that allows those students to feel safe and able to learn. I am also
                                                                                                                                                                                   increasingly aware of the same need to recognize and support the mental health
                                                                                                                                                                                   of teachers working with these students. I was particularly interested in the
                                                                                                                                                                                   section on page 4 of the advisory, which listed observable behaviours that could
                                                                                                                                                                                   be signs for possible concerns. I can go down that same list and recognize
                                                                                                                                                                                   behaviours frequently exhibited by many colleagues in the teaching profession.
                                                                                                                                                                                   In order for us to meet the needs of our students, we too, need to be mentally well.
                                                                                                                                                                                      I am positive that I do not need to outline the mounting pressures and demands on
                                                                                                                                                                                   teachers. However, there seems to be little, if any, focus given to the impact this is
                                                                                                                                                                                   having on teachers’ mental health. The only attention to this important issue came
                                                                                                                                                          PHOTO : DONNA GRIFFITH

                                                                                                                                                                                   on the last page of the advisory, asking teachers to be role models by maintaining
                                                                                                                                                                                   their own wellness. I am wondering about the possibility of using your magazine to
                                                                                                                                                                                   encourage teachers to make their own mental wellness a priority, and to feel the
                                                                                                                                                                                   support of a self-regulatory body as influential as the Ontario College of Teachers.

                                                                                                                                                                                   Jon-David Rodway, OCT, is an elementary teacher with the Toronto District
                                                                                                                                                                                   School Board and a registered psychotherapist with an active practice.

                                                                                                                                                                                   Editor’s Response: You’re absolutely right: Mental health is as important for teachers as it is
                                                                                                                                                                                   for students. In our June 2016 issue we published an article called “Toward Wellness” that
                                                                                                                                                                                   explored the subject and recommended resources and tools for support [oct-oeeo.ca/
                                                                                                                                                                                   towardwellness]. Because this is such a critical topic, we plan to revisit it in the near future.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         June 2019 Professionally Speaking       13
Ontario, meet your
Virtual Learning Environment (VLE)
The Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) allows you to extend your classroom into the
digital space by giving you the tools and support you need so you and your students can
learn whenever or wherever. The VLE is powered by D2L’s Brightspace and is provided at
no cost by the Ministry of Education to Ontario’s publicly funded school boards.

                       Easy to Use
                       Mobile-friendly and easy to use on any device in your
                       classroom, making your daily tasks easier.

                       Simple Communication and Assessment
                       Assessment and communication tools to share timely
                       feedback with parents and students.

                       Variety of Resources Available
                       Access Ministry-developed content aligned to the Ontario
                       curriculum. Integrates with educational resources, Google
                       Drive™ online storage system and Microsoft Office 365,
                       making it easy to create digital lessons.

It’s easy to get started with Ontario’s VLE; simply reach out to your Technology
Enabled Learning and Teaching (TELT) contact for quick access to the VLE.
You can find your TELT contact at www.D2L.com/Ontario.

Learn more at D2L.com/Ontario                                                                                                        K12Ont@D2L.com

 All D2L marks are trademarks of D2L Corporation. Please visit D2L.com/trademarks for a list of D2L marks. All other trademarks are property of their respective owners.
PS POLL
ILLUSTRATION: JEANNIE PHAN

                             The Watch List
                             Here are the 10 videos teachers found most engaging on
                             the College’s YouTube channel, courtesy of our latest poll.

                             1.	Chair’s Message                        6.   Council Election
                                 for the Annual Report
                                                                        7.	The Ethical Standards
                             2.	Registrar’s Message                        for the Teaching Profession
                                 for the Annual Report
                                                                        8.   Knowledge Keepers
                             3.	
                                Voices of Wisdom:
                                Learning from Elders                    9.   Acting on Our Ethics series

                             4.   Great Teaching series                 10.	OCT, Ontario Certified Teacher:
                                                                             A Professional Designation
                             5.   Pratiques Exemplaires series

                                                                                           June 2019 Professionally Speaking   15
IN YOUR PROFESSION

                                         Pop Quiz
                                         with Jenni
                                         Donohoo,
                                         OCT
         Memory Project
         speakers bring
         history to life.
                                         BY LAURA BICKLE
         Book a speaker
         today!
                                         “When teachers learn, students learn.” That’s the core sentiment behind
         thememoryproject.com/           Jenni Donohoo’s work as an author and consultant focused on professional
         book-a-speaker
                                         learning. She’s currently on contract with the Council of Ontario Directors of
                                         Education and has written three best-selling books, including Collaborative
                                         Inquiry for Educators: A Facilitator’s Guide to School Improvement.
                                           “Long gone are the days of one-shot, district-mandated, ballroom approaches
                                         to professional development,” says Donohoo. “When professional development
                                         isn’t done ‘to’ teachers — when teachers have a say in the what, how and why of
                                         professional learning — there is much more uptake.”
 A project of        With support          We spoke to Donohoo about professional learning and how teachers can ensure
                                         their learning delivers the greatest benefit for themselves and their students.

                                         What is the state of professional         such as time, research and tools.
                                         learning in Ontario’s education system?   The process works if you place trust
                   EDUCATORS'            We still have plenty to learn about how   in teachers’ ability to innovate together.
                                         to close students’ achievement gaps       Teachers are in the best position to
                   INSTITUTE             (among applied and academic streams,      impact school improvement initiatives.
                                         Indigenous students, English-language
                                         learners and students with Individual-    How do teachers determine what
     August 20th  2&st                  ized Education Programs).                 theories are worth implementing?
 Hilton Mississauga/Maoal              The desire to promote professional     We need to help teachers access reliable
                                         learning in Ontario’s education system    sources of research to inform their
         Two days designed               is increasing. Teachers are taking on     theories about what works best. Next,
     to impact your teaching of          leadership roles and they are being       teachers need time to try new approach-
       students with learning            given opportunities to lead the work of   es in their practice. Just because an
            disailities.                school improvement in authentic ways.     intervention worked somewhere for
                                                                                   somebody, we don’t know if it will work
                                         What advice do you give educators         in our schools or with our students.
                                         wanting to introduce collaborative
                                         inquiry to their school?                  How can the system support
                                         Find a colleague (or team) interested     professional learning?
                                         in developing a question related to       School districts would benefit from
                                                                                                                                PHOTO: CHALET STUDIO PHOTOGRAPHY

                                         student learning and willing to           identifying who is responsible for the
                                         experiment with different approaches.     quality of professional learning in
                                         Then, use evidence of student learning    school boards, and then hold people
                                         to evaluate the collective impact.        accountable for delivering high quality
                                            This needs to be facilitated from      professional learning.
                                         within, by teacher-leaders, and not         We also need to create opportu-
                                         from the district office. The district    nities for sharing the results from
 www.LDatSchool.ca                       office and school administrators need     teachers’ collaborative inquiries.
                                         to support it by securing resources,      Let teachers’ voices be heard.

16   Professionally Speaking June 2019
IN YOUR PROFESSION

By the Numbers:                                                                                    TWEET SHEET
Indigenous Studies                                                                                 Follow what's trending in the
                                                                                                   education Twitterverse.
Indigenous-focused learning in Ontario schools.                                                    Follow us on Twitter @OCT_OEEO

BY STEVE BREARTON                                                                                               Ophea
                                                                                                                A not-for-profit with the
                                                                                                                vision that all children val-
STUDENT RECOGNITION                                                                                             ue, participate in and make
                                                                                                                a lifelong commitment to
INDIGENOUS* STUDENT SELF-IDENTIFICATION, 2009–16:                                                               healthy and active living.

                                                                                                                              13.5K
                                                                                     40,597        @opheacanada
                                                                                                                              FOLLOWERS

                                                          33,509
                                                                                                             24% of young Internet users
                                                                                                             report being cyberbullied. Our
                               23,110                                                                        ConnectED resource supports
                                                                                                             educating kids on Internet
                                                                                                             safety, etiquette and more:
                                                                                                             bit.ly/1yXfEMc
     8,684                                                                                                   #cybersafety #onlinesafety

    2009–10                     2011–12                    2013–14                    2015–16
                                                                                                                OECD Education
Source: Ministry of Education, 2018. *Does not include students attending First Nation schools.                 The Organisation for Eco-
                                                                                                                nomic Co-operation and
                                                                                                                Development helps identify

GROWING INCLUSIVITY                                                                                             the knowledge and skills
                                                                                                                that drive prosperity and
                                                                                                                promote social inclusion.
ONTARIO STUDENT COURSE ENROLMENT IN
INDIGENOUS LANGUAGES PROGRAMS, 2006–16:                                                                                       92.8K
                                                                                                   @OECDEduSkills
                                                                                                                              FOLLOWERS
2006–07                     4,302
                                                                                                             Just released: Trends Shaping
2015–16                                 7,795            81% GROWTH
                                                                                                             Education 2019. Read the full
                                                                                                             report here oe.cd/Trends
                                                                                                             #TrendsShapingEducation
ONTARIO STUDENT COURSE ENROLMENT IN
FIRST NATION, MÉTIS AND INUIT STUDIES, 2006–16:

2006–07          1,134                                                           1,857% GROWTH                  Forests Ontario
                                                                                                                Non-profit registered char-
                                                                                                                ity dedicated to bringing a
2015–16                                                                                   22,195                vision of healthier forests
                                                                                                                to a new generation of
Source: Ministry of Education, 2018.                                                                            stewards, partners,
                                                                                                                teachers, and donors.

                                                                                                                              11.3K
ONGOING TEACHER EDUCATION                                                                          @Forests_Ontario
                                                                                                                              FOLLOWERS

981             AQs completed in 27 separate Indigenous-focused
                courses offered by the College since 2001.
                                                                                                             Our Focus on Forest resources
                                                                                                             have almost 100 activities to
                                                                                                             bring forestry into your class-

26
                                                                                                             room. All resources are curric-
                AQ courses related to Indigenous-focused
                                                                                                             ulum linked and available for
                learning accredited by the College as of 2019.                                               K–12. ow.ly/eVQK30nFa25

8               AQ courses related to Indigenous education currently
                under development by the College and other stakeholders.

                                                                                                   June 2019 Professionally Speaking      17
IN YOUR CLASSROOM

                                                                  Professional
                                                                  Practice
                                                                  I use dance parties to transform my math units, no matter the
                                                                  strand. We use our bodies as learning tools and math manipu-
                                                                  latives. We breakdance our fractions. We learn angles as if we
                                                                  are inside a Pac-Man game. We explore geometric properties
                                                                  as if we are martial artists. The kids love it, and I love it!
                                                                     It’s based on a pedagogy by Canadian Amy Tepperman
                                                                  (check out her TEDx Talk at oct-oeeo.ca/tepperman).
                                                                  Science and experience tell us that getting students to move
                                                                  more throughout the day has an undeniable impact on their
                                                                  excitement about learning and their attention span. What’s
                                                                  particularly special about dancing the math curriculum is
                                                                  the movement isn’t separate from the learning — it is the
                                                                  learning. It isn’t a break, it’s the lesson.
                                                                     Dance parties are another tool to help teach diverse
                                                                  types of learners; and best of all, they’re fun. Because let’s
                                                                  face it: learning isn’t fun all the time, but when students are
                                                                  more engaged and keen, they retain more of the lesson too!

                                                                  TYLER BOYLE, OCT
                                                                  BLUEWATER DISTRICT SCHOOL BOARD

                                                                     HAVE A CLASSROOM IDEA TO SHARE?
                                                                     Send it to us at ps@oct.ca and your advice could
                                                                     be published in an upcoming issue! Check out
                                                                     our Professional Practice Research archive at
                                                                     oct-oeeo.ca/research.

Education in the Cloud
BY STEFAN DUBOWSKI

Here’s a simple but effective way for OCTs to help students       to be the best free digital resources, including apps, videos
across the globe: share your expertise in LearnCloud              and PDFs for those topics. You can visit the LearnCloud site
(learncloud.rumie.org), an online repository of digital           and search by age group, subject and language to get a sense
educational resources, with the goal of bringing high-            of the topics the organization focuses on. Rumie gathers
                                                                                                                                    ILLUSTRATION: ROBERT SAMUEL HANSON/EYE CANDY

quality learning material to children who otherwise               those recommendations and downloads the material to
wouldn’t get to access it.                                        tablets that work without web connections. Then the group
   The idea comes from The Rumie Initiative, a Toronto-           distributes the tablets to children and teachers, who get to
based non-profit group working to bring electronic                use the content you helped select.
material to communities worldwide. As Rumie points out,             According to U.S. social media agency We Are Social,
millions of children can’t access the web, which means            about 47 per cent of the world’s population doesn’t use the
they can’t benefit from the many high-quality lesson plans,       internet. That leaves a significant number without a way to
activities and other educational resources online. Rumie          learn online. LearnCloud program manager Vanessa Kenalty,
developed LearnCloud to help bridge the digital gap.              OCT, says her organization is scaling up to make a difference
   The organization connects with education groups where          — and you can, too. “We need teachers and educators
web access is hard to get, to find out what topics and material   to help reach learners around the world,” says Kenalty.
the children there would benefit from the most. Then Rumie        “We welcome high-quality learning resources designed
invites teachers like you to go online and find what you deem     for any age on any topic.”

18   Professionally Speaking June 2019
IN YOUR CLASSROOM

Apps Analysis
BY STEFAN DUBOWSKI

DragonBox Algebra 12+                      Montessori French Syllables                 The Enemy

Here’s a solution for students 12 and up   Parlez-vous français? This app helps        This immersive documentary helps high
who want to take a different approach      six- to eight-year-olds respond with a      school students understand how war
to algebra. Developed by a high school     confident “oui!” Players mix and match      affects individuals. The app presents
teacher and a cognitive science PhD,       letters to practise the elements of         stories from fighters on opposite sides
this app involves learning and earning     French-language pronunciation. Once         of a conflict, using augmented reality to
rewards. Goal: Isolate the dragon in a     they know the basics, they move on to       make it seem like the soldiers are in the
box by sliding picture cards across the    games in which they hone their listening    same room, listening to what their
screen and balancing the two sides.        and comprehension skills. Options           enemy has to say. The soldiers become
As the game progresses, those cards        include different typefaces like the        more than combatants, paving the way
become mathematical symbols, and           OpenDyslexic font. Excellent for children   for conversations about curriculum
soon players are solving for X. This 12+   in any of Ontario’s French-language         pillars including empathy and global
version tackles algebra problems for       streams, from core to French-language       citizenship. There’s a brief explanation
middle and high school students,           schools. Note the instructions are in       of how the app works, plus descriptions
involving parentheses, positives,          French, so beginners may need a bit of      of the wars for context. Best experi-
negatives and fractions.                   help from a bilingual adult.                enced on newer tablets and phones.

         DEVICE Apple, Android                      DEVICE Apple, Android                       DEVICE Apple, Android
         SOURCE Apple App Store,                    SOURCE Apple App Store,                     SOURCE Apple App Store,
         Google Play                                Google Play                                 Google Play
         RATING 4+, Everyone                        RATING 4+, Everyone                         RATING 9+, Everyone

    LOOK FOR THESE
    STORIES AND MORE IN
    THE NEXT EDITION OF
                                                                            Inspire your
    Professionally                                                          students to be
    Speaking:                                                               active citizens!
       • T
          echnology in
         the classroom

       • U nderstanding
          learning difficulties

       • T
          eaching through
         the decades
                                                                     Download the new free and bilingual civics
       • E
          xercising professional                                  education guide from the Citizenship Challenge:
                                                                     www.citizenshipchallengecivics.ca
         judgment                                                       A project of                  With support from

                                                                                         June 2019 Professionally Speaking   19
TOOLS OF THE TRADE

                                                 Speakers’ Corner
                                                 Do your students break out in a cold sweat at the mention of class presentations?
                                                 Try swapping that anxiety for enthusiasm with the help of engaging tech tools.
                                                 With practice, they can calm those jitters and become confident communicators.

                                                 BY MELISSA CAMPEAU

                                                 1. Popplet Free for lite version!                                   5. Pro Metronome Free!
                                                 When speakers really know their stuff, it comes through in          Are your students speed reading through presentations?
                                                 their presentations. For students in the planning stages, this      That’s a classic case of beginners’ nerves. Luckily, a little
                                                 whiz of a tool helps them brainstorm, create mind maps,             awareness training can sort that out. During practice, students
                                                 colour code, and organize their ideas and images — paving           use this intuitive app to choose a steady beat to follow, then
                                                 the way to more interesting and informed presentations.             adjust as necessary until they hit just the right rhythm.
                                                 Grades: K–12 | Visit: popplet.com                                   Grades: 4–12 | Visit: eumlab.com/pro-metronome

                                                 2. Prezi Free trial!                                                6. FlipGrid Free!
                                                 Snazzy templates and intuitive controls make visually               Public speaking becomes NBD (no big deal!) when you do it all
                                                 interesting presentations a piece of well-designed cake. The        the time. With FlipGrid, teachers share a thought-provoking
                                                 best part? When it’s time to present, the flexible format —         image or video and students record their spoken responses. It’s
                                                 speakers zoom in on any point, at any time — makes pres-            less formal, but still great practise! Classmates offer feedback
                                                 entations more like conversations, putting everyone at ease.        right in the tool and students can chart their own progress.
                                                 Grades: 8–12 | Visit: prezi.com                                     Grades: K–12 | Visit: flipgrid.com

                                                 3. Public Speaking with Andrew Johnson                              7. PromptSmart Free for lite version!
                                                 US$2.99 (Apple App Store), US$3.89 (Google Play)                    Do you have a future CBC news anchor in your class? Create a
ILLUSTRATION: ROSE BLAKE/BERNSTEIN & ANDRIULLI

                                                 It’s amazing how focused relaxation can nix butterflies and         mock newsroom to find out. Have students cut and paste their
                                                 steady anxious minds. This app uses guided meditation to            scripts into this tool, then use the class tablet as a telepromp-
                                                 boost confidence and retrain the mind so students can               ter. Voice recognition software listens in, adjusting the pace of
                                                 relax and even enjoy the opportunity to give presentations.         the scroll to match the speaker.
                                                 Grades: K–12 | Visit: oct-oeeo.ca/hivebrainitunes;                  Grades: 4–12 | Visit: promptsmart.com
                                                 oct-oeeo.ca/hivebraingoogleplay
                                                                                                                     8. YouTube Free!
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                                                 It’s, um, hard sometimes to, y’know, cut out filler words. To fix   bottomless trove of amazing examples right at your fingertips.
                                                 that, this app listens to students as they practise and alerts      From Rick Mercer’s hilarious rants to Barack Obama’s soaring
                                                 them every time an “um” creeps in, bringing focus to all the        orations, students can study what works and why, then try to
                                                 extra bits that get in the way of effective communication.          weave those bits of magic into their own presentations.
                                                 Grades: 9–12 | Visit: oct-oeeo.ca/AhCounter                         Grades: 9–12 | Visit: youtube.com

                                                                                                                                               June 2019 Professionally Speaking   21
22   Professionally Speaking June 2019
GREAT TEACHING

                             The Write Stuff
                             Nicole Chen, OCT, helps her students tackle
                             challenges, gain confidence and find their words.

                             BY STUART FOXMAN

                             W
                                       riting isn’t a spectator sport. However, Nicole Chen, OCT, turns it
                                       into one for her English class at Francis Libermann Catholic High
                                       School in Toronto.
                               Several times a year she sets up her laptop and projector, and asks students
                             for a topic. Maybe something like “Should we have part-time jobs while in
                             school,” or “Should school uniforms be mandatory.” On the spot Chen starts
                             composing, while the students note what she’s doing.
                               After, they discuss what they observed: how Chen started writing just to get
                             ideas out, reorganized her thoughts, used synonyms to avoid repetition, read
                             aloud to hear how the sentences sounded, kept tightening her copy and
                             checked for errors.
                               “This shows that even though I’m an experienced writer, I go through a
                             process,” says Chen.
                               The exercise speaks volumes about Chen, suggests Domenic Mastrullo, OCT,
                             head of the school’s English department. He says she finds a way to model
                             desired behaviour and techniques and helps students understand they shouldn’t
                             be intimidated by a blank page. She also conveys that it’s OK to make mistakes
                             and have false starts. That’s how you learn.
                               “The activity becomes transformative,” says Mastrullo. “The students get to
                             see the flaws and the triumphs.”
                               Chen received a Certificate of Achievement in 2018 for the Prime Minister’s
ONLINE EXCLUSIVE             Awards for Teaching Excellence. The 21-year veteran teaches Grade 9 English,
To view our Great Teaching   as well as English-language learners (ELLs) in levels A, B, C and D.
video archive, visit           Those are the classes, but Chen teaches something more. She manages
oct-oeeo.ca/GTvideos         to weave in lessons about self-confidence, leadership, being in the moment,
                             respect and responsibility. Her goal is to help students not only acquire skills,
                             but become the most successful version of themselves.

                                                                         June 2019 Professionally Speaking   23
GREAT TEACHING

Nicole Chen, OCT, knows Shakespeare can be daunting, so she has students focus on the emotion and themes in the work, instead of words.

  “We all have something inside us            from there they write a short poem.           compared to learning a new language
that can be inspiring to other people,”       She also has students share their             for real. Chen has taught ELLs since
says Chen. “Be kind, be caring, be            works in a poetry café, with hot              2014, and calls it her most rewarding
smart and make good choices.                  chocolate, cookies and presentations          teaching experience. Her mother
Someone will notice. The smallest             that run from group dramatic read-            came to Canada from Germany at
thing can make a difference.”                 ings, to slam poetry with musical             age 14 with zero English skills. Chen
  She tweaks the curriculum to feed           accompaniment, to rap.                        knows how tough that is, and helps
student interests. The environment,              Like poetry, Shakespeare can be            students feel welcome and comfort-
for example, is a passion for both            daunting. Chen explains that under-           able in their new home.
Chen and many of her students. She            standing every word of Shakespearean             That means focusing on more than
led the effort to get the school              language isn’t vital. After all, Shake-       the academics. To really get to know
Platinum-level eco-certified (as rated        speare was writing for a different            the students, Chen has them write
by Ontario EcoSchools). She designed          audience at the time. “It’s our job to pull   journals, share stories, and relay the
an English course with an environ-            out the emotions and themes he wrote          pros and cons of being in Canada.
mental slant. Students write green-           about. Words and sayings change, but          Discussing their cultures and their
themed poetry, produce videos about           emotions are universal,” she says.            paths to Canada helps the students
protecting Canada’s water supply,                She uses shakespearience.ca                empathize with each other and realize
and study sci-fi/dystopian stories            to provide workshops, and also                what they have in common.
with plots about the world going to           relies on “Shakespeare in Bits” via              It’s important for Chen to acclima-
war over water.                               mindconnex.com (character mapping,            tize the students. Outings to places
  “You’re pulling on themes that are          animated re-enactments, sound-                like a pioneer village (to show what
                                                                                                                                          PHOTOS: MARGARET MULLIGAN

relevant to today’s issues,” says Chen.       tracks and more resources) to make a          life was like for new Canadians way
  Keeping things current is always            play come alive. Chen has students            back) or local art galleries immerse
critical. Coming into English, many           translate selected passages into mod-         the students in some of Canada’s
students think the poetry unit will be        ern language and slang, and get silly         history and culture. Even teaching
hard. Chen makes it fun. In a newer           by trading Shakespearean insults. The         about unfamiliar celebrations like
assignment, she has students choose           content becomes more approachable.            Halloween can matter. Elizabeth, a
emojis to express a situation (some-             At first, Shakespeare can seem like        former student from Syria now in
thing they do anyway, every day), and         a foreign language. That’s nothing            Grade 11, loved learning that tradition.

24   Professionally Speaking June 2019
GREAT TEACHING

She dressed as a clown and trick-or-          Torio, now in year two at the University
treated with her little brother. “I felt      of Toronto. “Back then I was trying to
more at home, starting to belong              understand how to control my emo-
here,” she says.                              tions, so my actions would not merely
   Language acquisition breeds
self-assuredness. While Chen says
                                              be dictated by my feelings. Do I stay in
                                              my head or take a step back? Mindful-
                                                                                                  Searching
accents are beautiful, many students
are concerned about theirs. “They
                                              ness allowed me to be more rational,
                                              more in control over my emotions,
                                                                                                  for creative
want to fit in,” she says.
   So she brought in a speech therapy
                                              more intentional.”
                                                 Another former student, Kezia
                                                                                                  activities
expert to run pronunciation labs. Eliza-      Johnson, recalls an exercise where
beth, who found some pronunciation            she rolled a grape in her mouth. Chen               Since 2006, Nicole Chen has
frustrating (the letter “r” in particular),   had her think about the taste and                   mentored teacher candidates
loved the sessions. “I’m more confi-          texture, and reflect on what’s in-                  from university programs
dent,” she says.                              volved in getting that grape from a                 and colleagues through the
   Chen successfully advocated for an         farm. Johnson became more contem-                   TCDSB’s New Teacher Induc-
international student representative          plative and appreciative of what she                tion Program. She says these
on student council, and says her goal         was consuming. The mindful lessons                  lessons will serve new (or
is to help ELLs be leaders. That can          linger, says Johnson, in her second                 any) teachers well.
mean formal leadership positions,             year at York University (biology and
but she thinks of it more as finding          education). Instead of worrying about               1) Be over-prepared.
the leader within.                            the next class or assignment, she                      Teach right until the bell rings.
   Her students show determination            savours the present moment.                            Chen says many behavioural
simply by learning English and making            Chen’s former principal, Lisa                       issues occur when students
a place for themselves in Canada.             McGuckin, OCT, says the mindful-                       lack enough to do.
Chen says successful ELLs inspire             ness effort recognizes something
their families and those who come             fundamental. “We might be teaching,                 2) Set your expectations
next. That’s leadership. Mastering a          but students might not be learning.                    for respect from the start.
new language opens possibilities. Stu-        Knowing how students feel supports                     That means listening when
dents know they can achieve, and can          a better learning environment,” says                   others talk, disagreeing
draw on that well of positivity. That         McGuckin. “Nicole is the total                         without belittling, and
also spurs leadership.                        package when it comes to being                         devoting your full attention
   Teachers want to help their students       a great teacher. She knows her                         (like abandoning the phone
have full minds; Chen is also focused         curriculum, loves her job, respects                    during class).
on helping them to be mindful and             her students and creates the en-
to bring their full attention to the          vironment for excellent learning.”                  3) Have a system that lets
moment. She points out that students             Last summer, Chen co-wrote a                        all students be heard.
can’t learn or express themselves well        mindfulness and social/emotional                       Be disciplined about en-
when their minds are racing. Mindful-         learning course, which three Toronto                   suring students take turns
ness can unclutter their minds, expel         Catholic District School Board schools                 speaking. Those who love
negative emotions and reduce stress.          are offering this year. Her dream is to                to talk can dominate a class.
   “You can make decisions more               have the course become part of the                     Have students write ques-
easily because your mind becomes              Ontario curriculum.                                    tions down (it helps with
clearer, more focused,” says Chen,               She encourages teachers to learn                    shy ones), and collect
who trained in mindfulness. During            exercises to become more mindful                       those to share.
class she routinely has students do a         themselves. That will help them to
few minutes of exercises like mindful         observe and react without judgment,                 4) Connect everything
breathing, which involves deep, slow          take a breath, become calmer and be                    to the real world.
breathing with visualization, as soft         more present for each student.                         Find out what students are
music plays. (She recommends                     “Isn’t this what teaching is supposed               into as fodder for discussions
mindfulnesswithoutborders.org for             to be?” says Chen. “When students                      and assignments. Share news
ideas.) Once students know tech-              feel they’re being paid attention to in                stories that relate to the
niques, they can practise them on             this way, they’ll respond positively.” PS              theme of studies.
their own to get in the right frame of
mind for learning.                            The Ontario Certified Teacher featured in this
                                              profile has been recognized with a teaching award
   “Mindfulness allowed me to be in           and exemplifies the high standards of practice to
the present,” says former student Kim         which the College holds the teaching profession.

                                                                                                  June 2019 Professionally Speaking      25
26   Professionally Speaking June 2019
REMARKABLE TEACHER

An Early Start
Citytv Breakfast Television co-host
Dina Pugliese says her Grade 1 teacher was an
early role model and a major inspiration.

BY BILL HARRIS

I
   f imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, then Dina Pugliese paid the
   ultimate compliment to Carolyn Catania, her Grade 1 teacher at St. Charles
   Catholic School in Toronto.
   Pugliese currently is the co-host of Breakfast Television, which airs weekday
mornings on Citytv, and many viewers admire her style, grace, demeanour and
professionalism. Morning TV is a tough job; getting up hours before dawn every
day and presenting the best version of yourself to the world. But Pugliese says
Catania was a great early role model, to the point of literal mimicry.
   “Whenever my sisters and I were done our homework, we would play school,”
says Pugliese. “I would always pretend to be the teacher, and I would take on
her name. I’d say, ‘I’m Miss Catania,’ and my sisters would be my students.
   “I’d be handing out papers, or I’d say here’s a pop quiz, and I’d carry books
like she did,” she says. “To me she was like a celebrity. She was my idol.”
   Pugliese describes herself as “a devil at home and an angel in school” in those
days, explaining that while she competed with her sisters for attention at home,
in school she always focused and did her best to impress her teachers. When it
came to Catania, though, Pugliese remembers her as being consistently kind, no
matter what kind of students were in her class.
   “Whenever I had to go to her with a question, she made me feel like whatever
I had to say was important,” says Pugliese. “She was truly present, giving you her
ear and time, answering as best she could, despite whatever was going on in the
classroom with all the other kids.” She adds, “She really took the time to give you
a generous and thoughtful response.”
   Pugliese doesn’t know if Catania ever knew how much she admired her and how
lucky she felt to have had such a positive experience at the very start of her years
in school. “She raised the bar and she stayed with me. She instilled in me not only
a love of the arts but also the importance of kindness and leading by example,” she
says. “She was a model of that behaviour every day. When you were in that class-
room, it was just her little magical bubble of learning and kindness and giving.”
   Catania, who is now retired and living in King City, Ont., is originally from Toronto
and graduated with an Honours degree in psychology, with minors in history and

                                                June 2019 Professionally Speaking    27
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