Junior Tigers Update: October 21, 2021

CROSS-COUNTRY:

ISEA Cross Country Running Champions!
On Tuesday, October 19, our Tigers participated in the ISEA Championships. There were 13 ISABC schools, and 746 athletes, from across the Lower Mainland competing in this annual multi-grade championship meet. 

During the meet, there are actually 10 separate races as runners compete within their grade level and gender. Their results are combined to make a grade-level score. Each Tiger ran their very best, and York House was able to finish in the top three of each grade level. The Tigers finished:

  • 3rd in Grade 3
  • 1st in Grade 4
  • 3rd in Grade 5
  • 3rd in Grade 6
  • 1st in Grade 7

Grade level scores are then added together and go towards the overall Championship. As you can tell by our grade level scores, we were doing very well. Very well, indeed! In third place, with 247 points was Crofton House. In second place, with 234 points was WPGA. And… In first place, with 226 points…the YORK HOUSE TIGERS!!!

Congratulations and thank you to our Grade 7s who have now finished their final year of Cross-Country in the Junior School. Well Done to Lily, Jaime, Chloe, Samar, Ryan, Savannah, and Jane.

Finally, we would also like to acknowledge the amazing coaching staff who kept our team of 80 athletes organized and motivated. Thank you to all of our Coaches: Ms. Young, Ms, Sharpe, Ms. Ling, Ms. Abbott, Ms. Krahn, Mme Simsilevich, Ms. McCallister, Ms. Ryerson, Ms. Pearkes, and Ms. Waterhouse.

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SWIM TEAM:
Time to get Suited! On Tuesday, October 26 from 3:00 – 4:00 pm, our fabulous coaches have arranged for Team Aquatic to come to York House School so that you can get fitted for a great suit and be ready to swim your fastest. Fittings will be scheduled on an individual basis, and you must complete the sign-up form in order to get a scheduled time. The fitting will take place in the Dance Studio. Log in to myYHS to book an appointment.

Team swimsuits are not mandatory. The estimated cost of the swimsuit is $62.

VOLLEYBALL:
The volleyball season is winding down, but we still have a week or so to go. The Grade 6 team played their final game of the season this past week, and are looking forward to their intra-squad tournament on October 26. Our Grade 5 team has one more set of games on October 28 at WPGA. The Grade 7 teams are playing an exhibition match against VTT, here at YHS, on Thursday, October 21. 

Exploring Truth & Reconciliation

Canada’s first National Truth & Reconciliation Day was held on Thursday, September 30th. In the days leading up to this day, our teachers across the school worked to develop age-appropriate ways to honour this day as well as to commemorate the lost children and survivors of the residential school system in Canada. 

In the Little and Junior Schools

Last week at the Little and Junior Schools, teachers were focused on designing appropriate experiences around Truth and Reconciliation for students at all ages and stages. On Monday, the primary teachers did a read-aloud of a book of their choice and engaged in discussion and reflection. For intermediate students, classes watched the short film, Shi-shi-etko which is about a young girl who spends time with her family before going to residential school. This is also a lovely picture book which Little School teachers shared with their students. All of these stories create springboards for thoughtful discussion and opportunities for students to explore their feelings of empathy and compassion for their young Indigenous peers. 

On Tuesday, we had our Junior School Assembly which was run by our Grade 6 teachers, Kellie Young and Jacqueline McCallister. Their guiding question for the assembly was, “How can we demonstrate or practice Truth and Reconciliation as Junior School students? Each section of the assembly was a thoughtful presentation about how young people can take action on this issue that we all care about. 

Finally, on Wednesday, students watched the music video, “We Won’t Forget You.” Each teacher designed follow-up conversations about the video, and the Grade 6 teachers conducted their first Harkness discussion based on the lyrics of the song. Coming to understand what Truth and Reconciliation really means will be a process for all of us over time, and we are proud of the beginnings that our faculty have made this year. 

In the Senior School
To honour and build understanding of what Truth and Reconciliation means, Senior School student leaders, such as our Poet Laureates (past and present) and student executive members, and faculty co-built a series of seven experiences that students and staff could choose to attend for 60 minutes on Wednesday, September 29. The shared goals of the experiences were to help each of us define and commit to at least one act of decolonizing ourselves, to generate a shared understanding of what decolonization is in our school, and to be a catalyst for individual actions on September 30 and beyond.  

Students and faculty self-selected one experience to attend and thus each group was mixed-age, and varied in size. One experience was to listen to Robin Wall Kimmerer, author of Braiding Sweetgrass, read her book in our darkened theatre. Her work explores “how Skywoman’s gardens, known by some as global ecosystems, function.”  

In our STEAM Lab, participants investigated how First Nations and non-Indigenous partners have created effective place-based water filtration systems together, using RES’EAU’s Community Circle problem-solving model which “places community operators at the heart of the innovation cycle.”

Poets came together in an experience to investigate how poetry can help us process grief and trauma. They read the poetry of David Groulx, Rosanna Deerchild, and Abigail Chabitnoy and watched Shauntelle Dick-Charleson’s slam poem “I Was There,” about intergenerational survivors of residential schools before creating some poetry of their own, in response, with the guidance of YHS poet laureates, Millie (past) and Maggie (present).  

A large group elected to connect to the place where we are, as their experience, and walked in the rain together. They reflected on whose land we live and how this impacts us. In the Learning Commons, an experience took shape to watch, listen, and share thinking about Indigenous identity and representation in the arts. Participants viewed film excerpts to analyze stereotypes, and heard from Indigenous actors and playwrights on the importance of authentic representation before engaging with one another in discussion. 

Another experience offered a deep dive into oral history. Each participant shared a story of their own, from the past month, that created a strong emotional response for them; and each storyteller was a witness to others’ stories. Another experience was a gallery of items to analyze for potential cultural appropriation, which led this group into a discussion that investigated an article, a video, and their responses to these everyday items. 

Through these experiences we hoped to amplify the voices of Indigenous people, and to turn inward to self-reflect about how we can each engage with and be called to act with thoughtfulness towards reconciliation.