Lockdown for Junior/Senior High: a curse or a blessing?

Ryan Duffett, HPS principal, left, and Derek Holte, standing technician smile for a photo while checking out the new 3D printers acquired for Hughenden Public School. ECA Review/Submitted
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Students in HPS will be using Google Meet to virtually attend classes. ECA Review/Gabe Sortland

As of Nov. 24, 2020 the Alberta Government announced measures in hopes to reduce the spread of Covid-19, and these measures definitely affect schools.

Here is what students heard: ‘Schools will be going into a second lockdown however, only Grades 7-12 will be going online.’

But the question many are asking is: Why leave Grade 6 and under at school?

As we saw in the spring lockdown, many parents are too busy with work to care for their kids and school them.

The Covid-19 pandemic also affects the work of daycares, sometimes forcing limits to attendance, and sometimes closing them altogether.

So the Alberta government decided that the best option was to continue allowing younger students to go to school.

It has also been determined that teenagers are worse spreaders of this virus than younger kids, and that’s why the teenagers are to be learning at home.

All students will be going back to school Jan. 11, 2021 if all goes as planned.

Hughenden Public School (HPS) Grade 9 student Dawsyn Bomersback feels the government has made the right decision.

“I feel like it’s a good idea. I am sad that I won’t get to see my classmates for a while again, but I’m hoping that this slows the spread and works out in the end,” said Bombersback.

“I think the measures they are taking are good for the community,” said student Alyssa Carson adding, “and I hope, like many other people, that this will bring the cases down so things can go back to somewhat normal.”

New 3D printer

In conjunction with grant dollars from A+ for Energy and the Battle River Foundation, our new 3D printers have finally arrived at Hughenden Public School (HPS)!

During the Covid-19 shut down last March, staff collaborated with an idea to purchase the printers.

After applying for grants from A+ for Energy and the Battle River Foundation, the school received $5,000 and $1,500 respectively.

Ryan Duffett, HPS principal, left, and Derek Holte, standing technician smile for a photo while checking out the new 3D printers acquired for Hughenden Public School. ECA Review/Submitted

“We are excited to incorporate more technology into our junior and senior high CTS programs as well as enhance the ability to deliver authentic hands on opportunities for mathematics and the sciences (among other subjects). 

Buzz is already generated around the school as students are able to peek in and see what’s printing.

Thus far, while getting to know the machines, Principal Ryan Duffett has printed a razor holder and a model of a cell.

“It has been fascinating to watch projects take shape over time. 

With projects that take longer durations, students can take a look in the iMac room and watch its progress,” said Mr. Duffett.

Using the website Thingiverse, they school is able to convert computer files to real life models.

“It is exciting that we have another way of increasing student engagement in their learning through kinesthetics, critical thinking and problem solving involving the use of 3D printers,” stated Ms. Susan Reynolds.

 

by Bryden Laing and Gabe Sortland

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