• JUser: :_load: Unable to load user with ID: 74
Thursday, 02 June 2011 11:57

Hays students will learn firsthand about the provincial government

Written by 
Rate this item
(0 votes)

By Susan Quinlan
Grades 5 and 6 students from Hays School recently won the School at the Legislature Competition (SATL) and will soon take their Social Studies classroom to the provincial capital, to learn about government firsthand.
Sponsored by ACCESS Television and the Alberta government, Hays’ students made the trip May 23-28.

Hays School Social Studies teacher, Ryan Anderson, said entry to the contest only required submission of an application.

“But we wanted to take it a step further, so we went beyond what the minimum expectations were.”

Anderson said the class of 10 students first brainstormed ideas, as to why their entry should be selected. They thought about what sets them apart from everyone else; that they’re a small class from a small rural community and that many are immigrants from Holland and Mexico.

“Many have never been to Edmonton, let alone to the Legislature, and would likely only see both if they won the contest. They said they wanted to go and have a chance to experience government … they said it’ll come to life for us there, instead of just learning about it in the classroom.”

The class then did a symbol assignment, identifying symbols which relate to government such as the Alberta flag, party symbols, the legislative building and so on.

“Students picked a symbol that meant the government to them, then went on to say that those same symbols would have more significance if they won.”

Each student then prepared a poster with his letter, a brief biography and the political symbol of their choosing.

A photo was then taken of each student holding his poster, and those photos were then assembled and forwarded as the class’ entry to the contest.

“The thing I was worried about was that these kids were convinced they were going to win and I thought, if this doesn’t happen, how am I going to pick up after this? … They were the motivation for it.”

Anderson chuckled as he realized he had nothing to worry about. He and seven of the students will now travel to Edmonton, along with education assistant Joan Wallace, on a Greyhound bus from Brooks to Edmonton, then use public transportation to get around the city, so they have a very independent experience, said Anderson. They’ll also stay on the University of Alberta campus and informally tour the campus as well.

During their stay in Edmonton, ACCESS Television will provide a fully-equipped classroom, contacts for interviews with Legislative Assembly staff, an opportunity to observe the Assembly in action, an extensive guided tour of the Legislature Building, and curriculum-based activities and educational materials.

ACCESS Television will cover up to $4,000 of expenses for the trip, including accommodation and meals, and the Legislative Assembly picks up travel expenses to and from Edmonton, said Anderson.

“The Parent Council chipped in for the evening extra-curricular activities.”

Those will include a trip to West Edmonton Mall’s waterpark, a couple

of rides at Galaxyland and tours of the Telus Science Centre and an IMAX.

Hays School is located in the

Hamlet of Hays. The school provides programming for students from kindergarten to Grade 9. There are approximately 65 students and 13

staff members at Hays School.

Read 1168 times

More Alberta News...