Kangaroos, Koalas and Wombats… Oh My!

Sophie_Tellier2I have been in Ballarat, Australia for a week now, and I must say that I am having the best time. Traveling all the way here wasn’t the most eventful part of this first week, though after finally meeting my wonderful exchange family it was definitely worth it. Out in Ballarat, my exchange family has a home in a small town called Skipton, which is where they harvest crops and take care of sheep for their wool. The Walker family was extremely welcoming, with a nice box filled with Tim Tams, an Australian flag and some Australian stuffed animals.

Ballarat Grammar School is an amazing school. It’s somewhat different from LCC, with many more buildings, a farm, a pool and multiple boarding houses. Though with many more differences, the people are just as friendly as back home. Over the weekend, I had the opportunity to visit the Ballarat Wildlife Park to see some kangaroos, koalas and wombats up close. I can easily say that a kangaroo is really as cute as you see in pictures. I hope the next five weeks won’t go by too quickly because I am having the most amazing experience.

– Sophie Tellier ’18, Exchange student at Ballarat Grammar School

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More Australian Adventures…

blog 2 pic 2I am now into my second week at Carey Baptist Grammar School and I have already made many friends. Although they live all the way across the world, Chloe’s friends are actually very similar to mine at LCC. We are mostly into the same music, movies, celebrities and more. The school itself is a little bit different than LCC. The hallways and lockers are outside but the way the teachers teach is similar. Their uniforms are also different; the boys wear shorts and the girls wear yellow dresses! They have a lot of electives like metalwork, fashion, food and more, which are very exciting to try.

This past week, I’ve been able to go to a beach in Sorrento with rock pools, participate in a school swimming carnival, go shopping in a mall in the city and even try kangaroo in my food class!

Overall, I have been trying many new things, making new friends and having an amazing experience. It is already going so fast and I am sad to say that my journey is already halfway done. This is a once in a lifetime experience that I know I will never forget.

– Danielle Cutler ’18, Exchange Student at Carey Baptist Grammar School 
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Headmaster’s Open Letter to LCC Staff

Dear LCC Staff:

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In the mid-1980s I started teaching at a very good Canadian independent school. That was the era of “chalk talk” and an expectation that teachers would mostly stand and deliver key content. The chalk and blackboards are gone and the world of education has changed. In fact, it has changed a lot. Yet, the general public and many self-appointed experts haven’t always noticed. I have – and I want to thank you all for adapting, innovating and being difference-makers in the lives of so many young children and adolescents. Whether it’s staff in critical support roles or teachers in the classroom, people working here bring a special professional passion to their jobs. A solid weave of skill, patience, care, and empathy are why so many children feel so comfortable and at home at LCC – even years after graduation.

So since I began working in education, what’s changed in the world of the LCC staff member? In no particular order, here are a few notable things:

iPads, laptops, Assaly Arts Centre, SMART Boards, Chamandy Arena, apps, rubrics, multiple teaching strategies, differentiation, welcoming crossing guards and receptionists, collaboration, LEAD Centre, Internet, character education, electronic academic reports, the cloud, co-curriculars, counselors, brain science, cross-curricular initiatives, debating competitions, environmental sustainability, resilience, helicopter parents, History Night, HIV-AIDS, stick-with-itness, tech bubble, bilinguisme, end of Cold War, teen anxiety, multimedia, LEED standards, globalization, Gestetner machines, multiple intelligences, admissions/business/advancement/IT/communication specialists, Exploratorium de Gaspé Beaubien, wellness, PREP, global citizenship, robotics, learning support, smart phones, “anywhere anytime learning”, email, Foire Équitable, Gulf War I & II, social media, Québec referendum, IT integration, IEP’s, advisors, arts education, faculty interns, YPI, Model UN’s, mindfulness, blogs, LCC Reads, DQ-Destiny Quebec Global Issues Conference, teaming, international student exchanges, Café Cabaret, 9-11, service learning, LCC TV, Innovation Centre, Webster Learning Activity Centre, experiential learning, Grandparents’ Day, turf field, Duke of Edinburgh leadership training, after-school care, open houses, CAIS national standards, QAIS advocacy, Round Square, IB, philanthropy, digital revolution……..

Yes, that’s a lot of change and there’s a lot more. Somehow you’ve all adapted, gained notable expertise and integrated impressive new skills into your professional toolkit at LCC.

What remains constant for our LCC students is the deep dedication of all the adults who work here. Our staff embodies the timeless values that are our foundations: respect/empathy, passion/excellence, collaboration/communication, professionalism, and a commitment to continuous growth. You build daily on these foundations to enhance the lives of children, girls and boys of all ages, no matter what their background or emotional mindset. Many of you might not even know how much you earn – but when it comes to our students, you should be very proud of how much you make, build, inspire, support, direct and guide. In today’s glossy world that’s truly special and meaningful. You’re amazing!

Thank you for making a difference in so many young lives!

With respect and appreciation,

Christopher Shannon
Headmaster

E-Books Versus Print: The Debate Continues

The Allure of Print

Now that we are able to do so much online, it can seem like print books are no longer useful. They’re heavy. They get dusty. They weigh down your backpack and fill up your locker.

Why lug those things around when you can read almost anything on a screen now? There are e-books, digital databases, online textbooks. La Presse recently stopped printing a daily paper (except on Saturdays). Now, the best way to access it is through its app, which the Toronto Star is also using.

But the allure of holding an actual book in your hands is one that tablets and laptops can’t duplicate. Books are tactile objects that you can touch and smell. You can fold the pages over and write in the margins.

People still love books. E-book sales are down, and sales of second-hand books are up. University students continue to prefer textbooks in print – even when they’re given the electronic version for free. They find that it is easier to focus on a physical textbook, it is easier to highlight, and there is less chance of distraction. And research shows that a well-stocked home library improves children’s academic achievement across the globe, regardless of their socio-economic status or the country they live in.

A solid 21st century school library should offer a combination of books, e-books, and databases to provide students with the information they need. As a librarian, not only do I believe that print and digital resources can peacefully co-exist, but that they complement each other. There are times, like when you’re standing on the metro or crammed into an airplane seat, that e-books just make more sense. But then there are other times, like a rainy day when you’re curled up with a cup of tea, when only a real book will do.

– Laura Sanders, LibrarianLaura_Sanders

Laura Sanders, the Head Librarian at Lower Canada College, received her Master of Library and Information Science from McGill University in 2013. She taught English Literature abroad for four years and enjoys reading in both print and digital formats.