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The Urban Academy Times
The Year of Community 
In This Issue
Literacy at UA
Exploring Shapes and Cityscapes
Mathematical Word Play
Gala Wrap
Bite Size UA

Social Media Social

2015/2016 Issue: 4
March Issue

We have had a busy start to 2016. Our annual Gala was held on Saturday, February 20th, and it was a spectacular success. I appreciated seeing so many of our families out to enjoy the dinner, dancing and fundraising for our school. Both the silent and live auctions were extremely successful, and the surprise auction item of headsets for future dramatic performances by students caught the attention of many bidders. Thank you to the Gala Committee for the tremendous amount of work and attention to detail to ensure that everyone had a marvellous evening.

Looking ahead at what is in store for the remainder of the school year, work continues on our proposed re-zoning for the site at 100 Braid Street. Our recent community consultation meeting with the Sapperton community went well. On Saturday, March 5th we will hold an Open House at Knox Presbyterian Church from 11am - 4pm to introduce ourselves to the local community and invite them to learn about our school. We would appreciate as many families as possible dropping by throughout the day so the Sapperton community can meet our families. We will have popcorn, cookies and coffee, balloons for the little ones and some of the design boards up for guests to look at.

Spring Break is fast approaching in mid-March, a wonderful time for students to recharge the batteries after a busy term preparing for, and sitting FSAs, Science Fair and at the younger grades, working through their Developmental Reading Assessments. As we head into April, an action packed month awaits us with student led conferences, parent teacher conference, French Appreciation Week and Artastic!, our annual art show. If the student art pieces up for auction at the Gala are anything to go by, we are in for a real treat at Artastic! this year.

Teachers continue to work diligently to prepare for the new curriculum coming in the fall. Our attendance at the two day FISA Conference in early February provided much food for thought and inspiration from a group of speakers dedicated to learning and teaching in a changing world.

Mrs. Cheryle Beaumont
Head of School
Literacy at UA

Literacy at Urban Academy is a part of each students' everyday learning experience. Teachers are preparing students to grow intellectually and personally through various elements of literacy instruction. UA teachers help students by focusing on three important elements of communication: 1) speaking and listening-allowing students to interact with one another, 2) reading and viewing-learning to comprehend and respond to text and, 3) writing and representing-learning to create information and imaginary texts. In more ways than one, these particular foundations help to prepare students to navigate and communicate in the real world.

Through these elements of communication, students learn not only to communicate effectively but to use language as a tool to critically look at the world around them. Teaching students to respond to what they hear as well as what they read and view is an important part of our literacy program. In addition, it is important for the program to cross over into other subject areas so that students can explore and critically think about other areas of the curriculum through literacy learning.

As part of Poetry Month, students from K to Grade 12 took part in a workshop with the performing hip hop group, Metaphor. Students learned about the elements of rhyme, encouraging new skills to articulate their thoughts and feelings through written and verbal expression. Following the workshop, with help from their teachers, junior students composed their own poems and haikus, with the Grade 3 & 4 classes hosting a poetry cafe for their families and peers. Uptown students wrote their own rap songs. On Wednesday, March 2nd, students will host at Poetry Celebration at Uptown. With their songs based on the themes of hunger and family the 
5/6's will be battling it out against the 7-10 performers, showcasing their song discussing identity. 

Literacy is about relating to others and developing social connections with ourselves, the people around us and the outside world. At UA enjoying a good book and sharing that with friends creates unique bonds that are everlasting. Our Buddy Reading programs, and time spent with our classes in the library, help students to enjoy reading for fun and to instil a love for the written word.

As the world is changing, literacy is now taking on a new wave of expansion. At Urban Academy we work to expand what it means to be literate by also including opportunities for our students to be media literate. Students are taught to safely navigate and communicate through an array of multi-media opportunities.

Ms. Hershfield
Grade 1 Teacher
Exploring Shapes and Cityscapes
Students in Kindergarten have been exploring shapes. As an inspiration, they studied Wassily Kandinsky's art work Soft Hard, and students discussed the shapes and the colours used to create this 1927 painting.
This was an introduction to the warm colour red, and the cool colour blue. Using their colour wheels as a guide, the students discussed the difference between warm and cool colours. To showcase their knowledge of warm and cool colours the students created a collaborative painting.
Next, students recreated a picture of the downtown Vancouver cityscape through sketch. Using mathematical knowledge of 2D shapes, students then cut and traced shapes to make their own 2D Shape City.
Tying this in with their exploration of where food comes from in their Food for Life inquiry unit, students are learning about how food is grown, processed, distributed and sold. They have been reading books and watching the documentary How It's Made that airs on the Discovery Channel. After viewing the episode How It's Made - French Fries, the students discussed the process.
Using their experiences with building 2D Shape City and their newly acquired knowledge on how food goes from farm to table; the students built a collaborative Food in the Cityscapes. The students shared their ideas and problem solved ways to work cooperatively. They put together farms, factories, grocery stores, restaurants and houses to create their final project.

Ms. Dhaliwal
Kindergarten Teacher

Mathematical Word Play

This term our senior students have had the opportunity to translate mathematical equations into poetry and haiku.

Grade 6 has been exploring patterns and the Fibonacci sequence (1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, etc), a pattern often found in art and nature. Each student wrote a Fib poem or haiku using syllable counts from the sequence. They then created their own fabric artwork by sewing a golden spiral quilt piece on which their poem is inscribed with fabric paint.

there with a
wry smile; It's uneven,
twisted, contorted and crooked.
- Charlotte Wipp, Grade 6

During poetry month, students in Grades 7 & 8 wrote limerick poetry that corresponds to an algebraic equation that they first learned to solve.

Daniel wanted to buy eight books
207 dollars is all it took
Ended with fifteen
Dollars' what it seems
How much did he spend on each book?
Dan, each book how much did it cost?
Just minus fifteen from the cost
To buy just one book
Round 25's what it took
Number of books divide the cost.
 - Kayla Papania, Grade 8
(8x + 15 = 207)    
Gala Wrap
February 20th 2016 will go down in Urban Academy history as one of the most wonderful community building celebrations. The annual gala was a fantastic way to bring together families and friends, raise funds for Urban Academy programs and celebrate the school's 15th birthday, and that we did!

We are excited to share that the amount raised that evening going directly to Urban Academy programs totaled over $42,000 (final numbers still pending). The students will now have access to more technology, sporting equipment and classroom resources, as well as being able to help with the needs of fitting out a new school. An extra special thank you to the community who stepped up in droves to purchase wireless headsets for the students. This marked a significant contribution to Urban Academy's drama program!

We also thank everyone who donated items to the auction, attended the event, and our sponsors: Alpine Credits, Cambridge Uniforms,, Alexander Holburn Beaudin + Lang LLP and Envision Financial.

We have some photos listed below, but to see and download your paparazzi photos, please visit our Flickr Page.
The students at Urban Academy appreciate the enhancements to their learning that your contribution brings. Thank you for your generous support, we hope you had a fantastic time!

The 2016 Gala Committee


Event Update
Spring Break is almost upon us already. Fear not, we still have plenty of events planned before the end of the school year! Don't forget to mark your calendars with these upcoming dates:
March 2016
March 11: Last day of school before Spring Break
March 14-25: Spring Break
March 25: Good Friday
March 28: Easter Monday
March 29: School resumes

April 2016 
April 6: Report cards sent home
April 7 & 8: Parent teachers conferences
April 7 & 8: Student led conferences (formal)
April 8: early dismissal (12pm)
April 11-22: PAX Flower fundraiser
April 11 & 12: Staff appreciation
April 13: Artastic! Art Show
April 18: Pro D day
April 22: Run for Water assembly - junior school
April 25-29: French Appreciation Week