Milverton Public School Grade 7 and 8 students have been exploring their futures in a variety of ways with elementary school staff and the AMDSB Student Success/Pathways teachers. Staff and students have been working with community partners, connecting with local secondary schools and exploring possible pathways to help students make informed decisions about their future. Learning about future career paths starts early and the intermediate learners are having fun exploring pathways in a variety of ways.
Through community partnerships, students develop a greater sense of belonging and understand more about the work within their own backyards. This year staff has organized experiential learning for Intermediate students utilizing the expertise of Milverton staff and their community partners. On these elective days, students are able to select and explore a variety of interests such as lacrosse, bird watching, drawing, knitting, photography, science, culinary arts, volleyball and other interests. Special events like these increase student engagement and allow students to explore their interests in greater depth with hands on activities.
Grade 8s have also been working with the secondary schools to learn about course selection and elective options in their Grade 9 year. Students participated in a transition day at Listowel District Secondary School and parents were invited to a Grade 9 Parent Open House at LDSS in December. On February 5, Stratford Central SS and Stratford Northwestern SS are hosting an open house and information night in the large gym at Northwestern from 6:15 to 8:30pm. SNWSS staff are also coming to Milverton to speak with students about their school and course selection. Throughout the school year, Grade 7 and 8s students have also been working on My Blueprint, a comprehensive education and career/life planning program designed to help students make informed decisions about their future. Using this program, students are able to link their account to a family member to encourage discussions at home, create educational portfolios, select their secondary courses, explore various career options and ultimately learn more about themselves as learners and future workforce members.
Resume writing and STEAM challenges are other ways that learners gain a better understanding of pathways. Foley artistry connected to sound engineering was a popular STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Math) challenge in December and currently students are exploring and critiquing resumes. By comparing, organizing and writing resumes, students learn career terminology while organizing and developing documents for a specific audience and purpose.
The feedback has been positive for all parties involved in these activities and Milverton feels very fortunate to have such great community partners. Next, students and staff are looking forward to more pathways exploration, continuing to build community partnerships, resume writing and exploring trades and careers through hands on learning.
Submitted by Lorri Weber (AMDSB Grade 7/8 Student Success/Pathways Teacher)