Facilitating student learning opportunities is what education is all about. The CONNECTIONS Program has been developed, and is facilitated by Alberta certified teachers and administrators. Using Career and Technology Studies (CTS) modules, nthe CONNECTIONS Program provides students with the opportunity to earn up to 5 credits. In some jurisdictions those credit earnings go directly, and in full to YOUR school. Schools can send 6 to 10 students, along with a teacher, to each week the program is offered. Generally, there are 2 or 3 fall sessions in the latter part of September until the end of October and 2 or 3 in March. The CTS modules covered are:
- ENS 1010 Introduction to Environmental Stewardship
- HSS 2030 Perspectives on Personal Relationships
- HSS 1080 Leadership Fundamentals
- HSS 1910 Project A
- HSS 1090 Speaking and Presenting
There are alternatives to this course bundle if a student has conflicting credits.
The work required of administrators is to learn a little about the program, and to provide support to teachers who have an interest in running the pre-trip and post-trip components of the program, and are willing and able to attend the four day on-site component of the program.
Substitute teacher costs must be covered by the school or school district. We ask schools to contribute $250.00 to assist with transportation costs and the rest will be covered by CONNECTIONS. Buses will be booked by CONNECTIONS
The teacher who chooses to participate in the program provides the structure and support to ensure that students complete the pre-trip and post-trip activities. This includes marking and facilitating, as necessary. Rubrics have already been developed, and are provided to teachers. The marking is NOT onerous!
- select appropriate students
- schedule regular pre-trip student meetings
- distribute appropriate documents, permission forms, risk assessments, etc., to admin, parents and selected students. (Some school districts require division office level permission for overnight trips.)
- mark pre-trip, on-line assignments (not onerous)
- attend the on-site component of the program with the students
- participate in the on-site activities. Teachers attending are NOT responsible for preparing or presenting material on-site.
- schedule post-trip student meetings
- guide students in completing their on-line work, and in implementing their final projects.
To support students in their final project - that of making a positive difference in their school - a CONNECTIONS facilitator meets with the students and teacher part way through the project planning, to offer suggestions and encourage students to get the maximum impact out of their project. After the project is completed, the facilitator returns to debrief the experience with the students and teacher. This helps keep the students focused on completing the project, promotes their individual self-reflection on the experience, and fosters their growth as leaders.
The CONNECTIONS Program can be offered as a timetabled, semestered course; in before and after school timetabled slots; or, as an extra-curricular activity in which students commit to working on the program about twice a week (pre-trip 12 to 15 hours, 4 days on-site (at Kamp Kiwanis), and about 12 to 15 hours post-trip). For more information on how the program can be offered in your school, contact George Taven at: firstname.lastname@example.org.