Is your school working on Enrichment Projects, and if so, do only certain students get to participate or is it the entire school? What does school enrichment mean to you? Through my latest blog, you will be able to see exactly what it means to local Enrichment Lead Charlotte Loggie, a lady who is greatly respected for her work with students and within the Community.

What is your position within the School District and what does it require you to do?

“As the Enrichment Lead for the Anglophone North School District, my work takes me all over the District, into many schools, working with many teachers and students.  My role is diverse:  I help teachers identify and design independent projects for their above-ability students who need extra challenges; I work in classrooms bringing the theory behind differentiated learning to life in various subject areas; I consult with entire staffs to assist in the development of Schoolwide Enrichment Projects which provide rich learning experiences to staff, students and the surrounding community.  In the course of this work I engage with students and teachers from Kindergarten through to Grade 12.”

What was your first experience with School-wide Enrichment?

“One of the most exciting components of the Enrichment work in our District is the Schoolwide Enrichment Model.  The first venture into this field took place in 2009 when a small, rural school, serving Grades K-8:   Miramichi Rural, embarked upon this type of work to highlight the 50th Anniversary of the Escuminac Disaster, a local tragedy from 1959 which took the lives of 35 fishermen from the area.  Each student at the school (over 80 in all) took part in the project, adding their own unique learning experience to the final product.  Clusters (small groups of like-minded students headed by a teacher and a community expert) were developed to address individual strengths and interests, and these were presented to large audiences both at the school and at the wharf where many of the anniversary activities were held.  (The clusters were:  Cooking, Meteorology, Art, Journalism, Drama, Gardening, Scrapbooking and Beach Life).  External funding for the clusters came from Tourism New Brunswick, as many of the pieces of the project work would come to be part of Tourism displays and information.   The students learned much about an incident from many years previous:  the learning was often personal, since many students were related in some way to either survivors or victims of the disaster.  The local community benefited tremendously from this project as they, like the students, learned more about the tragedy, and saw the events unfold through the fresh perspective the student work brought to the story.  The students’ work was displayed at the school and at the wharf in Escuminac, and an extra viewing had to be arranged due to the number of people from the community who were anxious to view and hear the presentation.”

What types of technology were used during your Enrichment projects?

“Technology was an integral part of the project:  students made podcasts of the weather forecast and to tell family stories of the tragedy; videos using green screen technology depicting the media coverage of the event in 1959; dramatic presentations were filmed showing the unfolding of events that led to the disaster and the resulting loss of life; PowerPoint presentations were made about the valiant men involved in the rescue operations.”

What impact did this project make on students, teachers and the community?

“The life-long learning that the students of Miramichi Rural School engaged in through this project cannot be measured.  Their contact with and exposure to community people who acted as guest speakers and introduced the students to the importance of this disaster in local, provincial and national context will always be a significant milestone in their education.  Realizing that their work would be viewed by an actual audience of people who lived through the disaster, as well as people who were new to its story, such as potential tourists to our area, made the work even more compelling and real.  It is through projects such as these that the highest order thinking skills come into play, and all students engage in and benefit from best practices for both teaching and learning.  Schoolwide Enrichment brings together a golden trifecta of possibilities:  students, teachers and community all working together to tell a story, to teach and to learn in harmony, a unique and magic moment of pure education.”

After reading Mrs. Loggie’s experience with Schoolwide Enrichment, do you feel inspired to create unique projects within your school? Do you have a unique project you would like to share? Please leave your feedback on CoursePark at www.coursepark.com/smarteducation after registering for free.

I’d like to thank Charlotte Loggie for allowing me the time out of her busy schedule to answer questions. It is much appreciated!