Our School Plan Progress 2021-2022

Improving Student Learning

The Abbotsford School District’s Strategic Plan reflects our public commitment to BC’s new curriculum by working together to continuously improve learning for each student.

School Goals

Under the Framework for Enhancing Student Learning, all Abbotsford School District schools are required to develop a long term plan to improve student achievement, one that maintains a balance on the intellectual, social and career development of students. Each year, each school develops an annual plan and sets individual goals to improve student achievement. 

McMillan School Goals

After living and learning within the constraints of a pandemic for almost 2 years, McMillan staff recognize the role played by social emotional health and mental wellness in a student's ability to learn. Being "ready to learn" is critical to success in the academic classroom.  As such, we are committed to focussing on SEL practices that result in improved student self regulation.

Reading is an essential skill and it is a district initiative to have all students demonstrate core competencies and exceptional literacy skills by the end of Grade 3.  The Daily 5 structure allows students of all ages and levels to access both time to practice, as well as instruction at their own level. They are engaged in independent and supported activities that optimize opportunities to develop core competencies, and allow for differeing student needs and abilities.

Staff are dedicated to improving their skills in these areas. In our classrooms, you will see students reading and writing for a variety of purposes, with plenty of choice to pursue their interests. Teachers work with students to provide instruction at their own levels. Math skills are practiced in a variety of fun and real worl settings. We also allow for differing student emotional needs with a variety of break activities. Students are encouraged to monitor and communicate their own needs. Teachers will continue to pursue professional development that builds our skills in  trauma based instruction, mindfulness, emotion focussed learning as well as differntiated instruction both for numeracy and literacy.

What is a Learning Target?   If you own a GPS, you probably can't imagine taking a trip without it. Unlike a printed map, a GPS provides information about where you are, the distance remaining to your destination, and exactly what to do if you make a wrong turn. But a GPS can not do any of that without a precise description of where you want to go.  Think of learning targets in the same way. They convey to students the destination of the lesson - what to learn, and exactly how to demonstrate their new learning. And each child is able to set and assess their own learning goals for the day, week, month or year, as needed.

Why are "I can" statements important?  Simply put, it's a way to put the learning target into language students can understand.  

Teachers took advantage of a pro-d day to share their learning about the new ADST (Applied Design, Skills and Technology) curriculum with their colleagues.  

Currently, teachers have formed committees to build a library of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) resources that can be shared schoolwide, and will create unique learning opportunities through innovation, application, and creation in all classrooms.

Intellectual

Our students will learn key academic skills - like reading, writing and math - to encompass the knowledge and processes associated with intellectual development. As learners and meaning-makers, students take subject-specific concepts and content and transform them into a new understanding. 

Our celebrations of learning

Students at McMillan engage in a variety of activities to support learning in reading, writing and numeracy. Our classrooms are rich with experiences to teach skills, and develop competencies. Teachers are dedicated to learning and growing themselves, in order to meet the demands of the new curriculum, and the challenges of preparing students to be critical thinkers and life long learners.

Students have the opportunity to share their thinking, and consider options, during number talks. This kind of critical thinking is becoming a daily math activity in many of our classrooms. It's not just about the answer...it's about how you get there!

Buddy reading on Book Character Day.  What a great way to practice reading, share with friends and celebrate!

Human & Social

Our students will study personal and human social skills and as they relate to students' identity in the world - both as individuals and as members of their community. We are learning that personal and human social skills encompass the abilities students needs to thrive as individuals, to understand and care about themselves and others, and to find and achieve their purposes in the world. 

Our celebrations of learning

At McMillan, we are so proud of the caring and supportive community our students are a part of.  The work we do in school, with such things as the Terry Fox Run to raise money for cancer research, food drives for our local food bank and other fundraisers is supported by our very generous PAC and parent contributions.  The generosity of McMillan's families is beyond compare.

McMillan places a focus on inclusivity, and students are encouraged to work daily to ensure that everyone feels welcome and accepted at McMillan.

With this as the end goal, staff and PAC have worked hard to provide a wide range of opportunities for students to access opportunities to help others, and experience differences. Whether it be building a playground that all can enjoy,  learning to drum alongside their classmates, experiencing cultural differences through classroom learning and school wide projects, or finding ways to help others in the community, students are acitively engaged in learning about others, and sharing of themselves.

Students spent a week learning about Terry Fox, and had an exciting two days that included a drive by performance by Cops for Cancer, and their own Terry Fox Run

McMillan students honoured our first National Day of Truth and Reconciliation by wearing orange shirts, participating in a virtual assembly to learn more, and by creating a variety of tokens of acknowledgement. Students discussed how it might have felt to be taken from their families. Many classrooms focussed on the right of every child to be safe and cared for. To feel hope and excitement about their future.

Careers

Our students will succeed in a much different future from the one we envisioned 10 or 15 years ago. It is our responsibility to prepare all children for success in whatever life path they choose, connecting learning opportunities with future career possibilities. We know that real-life experiences - like community involvement, gaining business knowledge, and hands-on-learning - build better students and life-long citizens. 

Our celebrations of learning

As a part of the Yale family of schools, McMillan benefits from the support and mentoring provided by many Yale students. We have both peer tutors, and "Big Sister" mentors, as well as classroom volunteers, who come to McMillan weekly to support and encourage our students. McMillan students build relationships with these older students, share their passions and learn about options that will come to them in high school, the high school students are able to build their leadership hours while exploring their own interests in teaching and other human service careers. 

Grade 3 students learning about songwriting and preparing for the Christmas concert at the same time

Preparing for and learning about the Olympics. This is a McMillan tradition. Every four years staff and students engage in a school wide Olympic even to correspond with the winter Olympics. Students compete, study, share and learn about the Olympic sports, its athletes, Canada, and other nations.  

Grade 5 Students at McMillan preparing for, and presenting the Wax Museum! This year they became famous Canadian Athletes, to complement their learning about the Olympics.   What a great way to discover all the ways in which a person can achieve success, as well as developing an appreciation for our great country!

Grade 5 students have been working on a project to connect our actions to the continued existence of other species.  Following this class art project,  students individually researched an endangered species. This work will be put together into a class book.   More to come!

As we learn and practice reduce-reuse-recycle strategies, students become aware of the many issues involved, and the ways in which we can all contribute.

McMillan students had the opportunity to participate in a choir adjudication, thanks to our dedicated teachers, led by Mrs. Kitsul. Mrs. Kitsul is committed to providing all the students at McMillan the opportunity to experience music, as a choir, and in the form of annual musicals.  These opportunities give students a taste of what it takes to give a performance....from casting, to rehearsals, to set making and acknowledgements, McMillan students do it all!

Our Olympics Opening Ceremony brought the whole school together in our colour teams. Protocol matching that of the Olympics was followed, with teams entering the gym under their colour banners. Mrs. Wiebe addressed the athletes with words of wisdom about the spirit of the Olympics. This was followed by a review of Canada's past accomplishments at winter Olympics, and a video showing the different events. Finally, Mr. Hill and Mrs. Summers introduced our events, and connected them to the real life sports.  

Two weeks of daily competiton in different events were followed by an official closing ceremony. Check out some highlights of all the fun, team spirit and learning below.

 

Our torch relay
Highlights from the McMillan Olympics