Point Grey / stəywəte:n PAC

Where Point Grey Parents Connect


Point Grey PAC June 2012 Newsletter

PAC News

At our annual general meeting on May 22, the following parents were elected: Esther Kwok (chair), Nancy Wang (treasurer), James Joyce (past chair), David Allman (DPAC rep), Keren Gertsman, Lisa Kilner and Evelyn Guo (members at large). Thank you very much to outgoing (or 'graduating') parents: Cynthia Devine, Scott Rose, Maureen Bayless, and Jean Hummel.

The F.O.R.C.E.: Parents who came to a recent PAC meeting will remember Barb Ohori, from the F.O.R.C.E., which supports families whose children may be suffering from depression, anxiety or other mental health issues. Barb would like you to know that the F.O.R.C.E. is presenting "In the Know -- June Social and Summer Survival Tips." She writes, "We are having a special event for our June 'In The Know' session and will not be broadcasting or viewing a parent education webinar. Instead. we are having a social for our summer wrap up and will be sharing "summer survival tips" ! Everyone is welcome and refreshments will be served. Please note that we  DO REQUIRE RSVP'S for this "In The Know". Please call or email me NO LATER than Tues June 12th if you are planning to attend. Our regular "In The Know ' webinar and parent support group will resume on Wednesday Sept 12th." barbara@forcesociety.com

Enrichment opportunities for students:

Science World Future Science Leaders:  $475. Over the course of the year, students will meet weekly to be mentored in numerous areas, including Biology, forensics, mathematics, technology, engineering, earth and ocean sciences, physics, life sciences and chemistry. The information night is Friday, June 22 from 6:30 to 7:30 at Science World. Application forms are available online: http://www.scienceworld.ca/futurescienceleaders

Things to do in the community

Thank you to Eugene Sayson for this list of free things to do in Vancouver. You can see the entire list here: westcoastadventurestv.com/free-events-vancouver

War of 1812 Experience at Canada Place
Date:  June 15, 2012 – March 2014
The War of 1812 Experience at Canada Place will commemorate the 200th anniversary of one of the major milestones on Canada’s road to becoming an independent country. Canada would not exist as we know it today had the American invasion of 1812-1814 not been deterred. The War of 1812 laid the foundation for Confederation and the cornerstones of many of Canada’s political institutions. Scheduled to open in June 2012, the War of 1812 Experience at Canada Place will be free to visitors, bring our nation’s history to life and interactively demonstrate how our past helped shape the world we live in today. Quick facts:
  • The War of 1812 Experience at Canada Place will be located on The Canadian Trail, Canada Place’s famed Promenade.
  • The Experience will begin with interactive components highlighting the start of the War and the spectacular battles over water.
  • The Experience will move into an interior space featuring an immersive attraction transporting guests right to the battlefields of 1812.
  • Period costumed staff and interactive kiosks will provide guests an opportunity to delve deeper into the details of the war and its legacy. 
  • This exciting free public exhibit has been made possible by the Department of Canadian Heritage who are supporting this initiative through their 1812 Commemoration Fund.
  • War of 1812 Experience will run for 21 months and will conclude in March 2014. A comprehensive free school program will be available for classes beginning in September 2012.
TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival
Date:  Friday, June 22, 2012 – Sunday, July 1, 2012
The festival will feature over 1800 musicians from Canada and around the world performing at over 40 venues citywide. There will be approximately 150 free concerts including Downtown Jazz Weekend at Robson Square on opening weekend (June 23-24), Granville Island Jazz, Jazz Around Town (Studio One Jazz, City Square Jazz, Tom Lee Music Stage, Jazz at Canada Place, St. Andrews United Church), North Shore Jazz, David Lam Park Jazz Weekend (June 30-July 1). Check the guidebook for all the free performances around Vancouver.
Burnaby Enviro Fest
Location:  Metrotown Civic Square next to Bob Prittie Public Library, Burnaby, BC
Date:  Saturday, June 9, 2012, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Take part in the free and fun one-day public event with environmental displays, face-painting, live music, prize-draws and free 200 veggie burger barbeque at Metrotown Civic Square next to the Bob Prittie Public Library. Prize draws including the City’s water conservation kits will be available. Free.

Co-Pilot Program by Air Time Canada
Location: Usually at the Boundary Bay Airport, Delta, BC
Date: Four to Six Times a Year, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

The Co-Pilot Program starts out with a fun and interactive day on the ground followed by 2 flights. On one flight, you will be the co-pilot (and fly the plane), and on the other, you will be an auxiliary pilot (observer & assistant). The Ground Day is a lot of fun. There's lots of group work, games, puzzles, and various outdoor activities. It even includes a free lunch (sandwiches, burgers, drinks, fries, salad, soup). The 2 flights take place on a different day. You and a partner will fly together to a nearby airport. There you will take a short break (and celebrate) before flying back. In one direction, you will be the co-pilot; in the other, your partner will be the co-pilot. As co-pilot, you will do all the radio communications (with Air Traffic Control), operate some of the instruments (radio, transponder, etc.), and do most of the flying. Participants must be 13 years old or older and weigh less than 170 pounds. The first course and two flights are free, but a small fee may be charged for materials.

Things to do for the community

Host Students from Quebec (A letter from the YMCA SWSE Program):

Dear Point Grey PAC Co-Chairs,

My name is Elise Buckley and I am a Vancouver Coordinator for the YMCA Summer Work Student Exchange (SWSE) program. We are currently looking for alternate host families and I am writing to ask if you might be able to include the below paragraph (a brief description of the program) in the next PAC newsletter.

The YMCA Summer Work Student Exchange (SWSE) program is currently looking for families to host students from Quebec for a 6 week period during the summer. Due to the reciprocal nature of our exchange program, some youth who would like to go on exchange are unable to do so because their families cannot host in return. In these instances, the YMCA turns to other volunteer host families to welcome a student for the duration of the exchange. The SWSE participants are enthusiastic 16- and 17-year-olds who are looking not only to develop their knowledge of the English language but also to become engaged in the Vancouver community. The program offers opportunities for the Alternate Hosts to be involved in activities and events, to network with other hosts, and to benefit from the continuous support of a YMCA Local Coordinator. Your involvement in the program ensures a youth is given the chance to experience a new language, a new community, and a new culture, all in an effort to build strong young people. For more information please call Elise Buckley at 778.986.3247 or apply now at www.applyswse.org<http://www.applyswse.org>.

Please let me know if promoting the SWSE program in the PAC e-newsletter would be feasible.

Thank you for your consideration, and I look forward to hearing from you.


Elise Buckley
Local Coordinator - YMCA Summer Work Student Exchange

Point Grey Secondary PAC March 2012 Newsletter

PAC News

Teachers’ strike: a Note

On Monday, the teachers at Point Grey will join all other teachers across BC in a three day strike. Although the school will be open for the other employees and the administrators, teachers will not be in their classrooms but will be outside the school in protest.

I vividly remember the last strike, in 2005, when my youngest son and I spent a little time walking the picket line with teachers at our school. What I remember was how hard it was on the teachers. All of them lost 2 weeks’ pay, whether or not they voted for the strike. Most of them fervently wished that they could be in the classroom with their students, instead, even when they felt that the strike was important to public education.

Some school communities were terribly divided after the job action. But our community came through it well; people were gentle with each other. One thing that I remember was that parents and students stopped by to chat with teachers, wish them well, and even to bring them treats. Teachers remember that to this day.

I hope that this time, we will come through it just as well. Our school has been incredibly lucky because teachers at Point Grey have dedicated themselves to figuring out how to keep things going for students as much as possible during the job action. Our students have had excellent support and even some enrichment opportunities like field trips, and the PAC has been lucky to have regular reports from a teacher rep, Ms. Inglis. If you have to experience a job action, I think Point Grey is the best place to be.

Please remember our teachers and their constant efforts for our children, and visit them on the protest line. Bring them cookies, fruit, or just a smile. If you’re driving by, stop and talk – or honk and wave. If you can’t come to the school, send them a supportive email.  If you have questions, just ask.


Maureen Bayless (PAC co-chair)

PAC Survey

Do you have 5 minutes to help us plan for next year? Please take our survey by clicking here.

The PAC is looking ahead to next year. We’ve had a big growth spurt this year and have accomplished many things, and now we have lots of energy to carry forward. Every parent and guardian is automatically a member of the PAC, so please help the PAC executive support the school in ways that are meaningful to you.

PAC Meeting: There will be no PAC meeting in March. The next PAC meeting will be Tuesday, April 17th at 7 PM in the staff room. That's a meeting that you won't want to miss because our guest speaker will be Barb Ohori, a parent representative from F.O.R.C.E. for Kids' Mental Health. This is a non-profit organization funded through the Ministry of Children, Health and Family Development. What makes F.O.R.C.E. special is that it's parents helping parents. Barb will talk about supporting children and families with mental health issues -- anxiety in particular. All welcome!

Programs for Kids During the Job Action: Do you have younger kids that will be looking for something to do during the job action? Grouse Mountain is offering a ski school for kids on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, March 5 to 7. As I write this, Eagle Awareness School is setting up whole-day programs during the strike as well. Phone them or check their website because they are still in planning mode. The lVancouver Circus School is offering one day Circus Day Camps, March 5th , 6th and 7th . Pick the days that work for you. Students will experience the thrill of trampoline, silks, juggling, and much more! Open to ages 6-16 at the New Westminster River Market, 810 Quayside Drive. 8:30am-3:00pm; $54/day plus tax. And, don't forget -- older students might like to spend a day on a university campus, sitting in on courses. (During the last strike, one of my sons spent an entire day in a program at UBC. He enjoyed it so much that he enrolled in it later.)

PAC Fundraisers: Don't forget that the PAC is still raising money for every department in the school. Please support our gift card program, Bean Brothers key tag program (you received it in the mail, hopefully), or just drop off a cheque at the school made out to Point Grey Secondary PAC. If you'd like to specify a department that you'd like it to go to, just include a note.

Fun Things to Do for Free in the Community

E-Fest at the Central Library. On Saturday, March 3rd, wander down to the Central Library for E-Fest, E-Fest is one of the events of National Engineering and Geoscience MonthCome and enjoy interactive exhibits, displays and meet the many company representatives, organizations and enthusiastic ambassadors of The Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of BC, APEGBCSee how the many facets of engineering affect our everyday lives!

Celebrate Research Week at UBC – March 2-9, 2012:Celebrate Research Week showcases a week of diverse events highlighting areas of research and cutting-edge work that UBC’s faculties, departments, schools and partner institutions have to offer. These events include discussion forums, lectures, seminars, open houses, events for youth and kids, and symposia on topical and timely issues from every discipline imaginable. Free.

Spectacular 40th Anniversary Concert by A Little Night Music:
With Magee Concert Choir. Highlights include Mozart, Schubert & “This Is My Home”. Free
concert. Donations in support of Music Education are appreciated.
Magee Theatre, 6360 Maple St.  Monday, March 5, 2012, 7:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m.

Douglas College Career Exploration Fair: Thinking of a new career from hospitality to computing to criminal justice? Explore your options at the 22nd Annual Douglas College Career Exploration Fair. The Career Fair is held in the College's large central concourse and atrium. For more information, call 604-777-6171.
Location: New Westminster Campus, Douglas College, 700 Royal Ave., New Westminster, BC
Date: Monday, March 5, 2012, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
Location: David Lam Campus, Douglas College, 1250 Pinetree Way, Coquitlam, BC
Date: Wednesday, March 7, 2012, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.

Life Drawing Sessions: Enjoy life-drawing sessions where dancers will pose for sketchers. Part of the Vancouver International Dance Festival. Sponsored by Opus Framing & Art Supplies. Free and no registration required.
Location: Roundhouse Community Centre, 181 Roundhouse Mews, Vancouver, BC
Date: Saturday, March 5 – Wednesday, March 9, 2012, 12 noon – 1 p.m.

UBC Early Music Ensembles:
Location: Roy Barnett Recital Hall, Music Building, 6361 Memorial Rd., UBC, Vancouver, BC
Date: Thursday, March 8, 2012, 12 noon-1 p.m.
Free performance.

Reel Reads Movie Night – Gorky Park
: Murder, corruption and justice! When Inspector Arkady Reno is assigned a high profile case involving a triple murder in Moscow's Gorky Park, he uncovers a trail leading to the top levels of government. Based on a Martin Cruz Smith novel, this 1983 film was directed by Michael Apted and stars William Hurt and Lee Marvin. Free.
Location: Alice MacKay Room, Lower Level, Central Library, 350 W. Georgia St., Vancouver, BC
Date: Thursday, March 8, 2012, 6:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m.

The 5th Annual Spring and Norouz Festival
:The Canadian Iranian Foundation & North Vancouver Recreation Commission proudly presents The 5th
Annual Spring Festival (to celebrate Norouz or Iranian New Year). $1 admission.
International live performances and music; free children's activities; traditional Iranian food and drinks.
Location: Mickey McDougall Gymnasium, 200 East 23rd St., North Vancouver, BC
Date: Sunday, March 11, 2012, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

Thank you to Dr. Eugene Sayson for the information about things going on in the community. You can read his entire list here.

... End of March Newsletter ...


Point Grey Secondary PAC February 2012 Newsletter

PAC Meeting: Our next PAC meeting will be Tuesday, February 21st at 7 PM in the staff room. Please come so that you can hear the student council’s exciting plans for a community event. As well, we will have reports from Irfan Sheikh (principal) and a teacher rep, letting us know what’s going on in the school as well as updating us on the job action. Everyone is welcome!

Canadian Expectations for Teens: February 15, from 6:30 to 8 PM at Point Grey.

This workshop is for Chinese and Korean parents to discuss:

  • What it’s like for your teenager at school
    • Reasonable expectations around homework, curfew, friends, activities
    • A few practical tips to help communicate with your teen
To pre-register, email Andrea Arnot (SACY Parent Engagement Representative for Point Grey): andrea.arnot@vch.ca or call her at 604.713.5899 ext. 2588.

Bean Brothers Fundraiser! By now, you should have received your Bean Brothers key tag in the mail. If you visit Bean Brothers cafe bistro in Kerrisdale, please show your key tag to receive 5% discount. Another 5% will go to the school. If you did not receive a key tag, please let us know at pointgreypac@gmail.com. Bean Brothers would like you to know that there are many very healthy meal options on their menu, suitable for people on the go or for a family night out at a restaurant.

 School News!

The talented students in this photo are on Point Grey’s Improv team.  The team is made up of seven Gr. 10, 11 and 12 students.  They made it to the Semi Finals and placed second in their heat. They also had a lot of fun! 

Grade 7 Parent Information: Thank you to Esther Kwok for taking such great notes during our Grade 7 parent information evening. Are you curious about what school will be like for your children in Gr. 8? View Esther’s notes here.

Course Planning: Would you like to know the choices your child has for next year?  Course Planning information is on the school's website here.

AP Course Information:

Attention Grade 11 Students:  If you are entertaining the notion of taking AP Psychology next year and would like to know a bit about what the course entails, then come to Room 213 during lunch either on Monday 13th or Wednesday 15th of February. Bring your lunch and your curiosity.

Course information will be given to all students interested in these classes in Room 314 on Tuesday, Feb 14th and Thursday, Feb. 16th at lunch time. All Grade 11’s (AP Lit) and Grade 10’s and 11’s (Eng. Lit 12) should attend.

www.ontariosciencecentre.ca/innovationaward/ | Application Deadline: February 29, 2012
Presented annually by the Ontario Science Centre, the award was created to encourage and recognize young Canadian innovators. It provides students aged 14 to 18 a unique vehicle to share their ideas and get the word out to a much larger audience. In addition to cash and other prizes, the winner’s work will be featured in a professional animation on display in the Weston Family Innovation Centre at the Ontario Science Centre in Toronto.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012 is Pink Shirt Day. Take a stand against bullying -- wear a pink shirt!


Cool stuff to do for free!

Haida Carver: Clarence Mills

Location: Granville Island, Ocean Artworks Vancouver, BC

Date: Friday, February 24, 11 a.m. – Sunday, February 26, 2012, 4 p.m.

Watch Haida carver Clarence Mills as he transforms logs into monumental totem poles and works of art. Free.


Location: Granville Island, Vancouver, BC

Date: Friday, February 24 – Sunday, February 26, 2012, 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Some of the best BC Woodworkers exhibiting their work, sharing techniques and exploring new frontiers in the wood world. An exhibit of cabinets and wood sculptures, accompanied by presentations and hands-on demonstrations. Free.

Ri Channel: The place for cool science videos, blogs, podcasts, and classic Sagan movies. On Valentine's Day, learn about heart transplants! All for free, and all amazing, right here: http://richannel.org/

Canada-Wide Virtual Science Fair. This outstanding, free science fair is in its twelfth year now. Students from across Canada in kindergarten through Gr. 12 design their own projects and put them online, where they are viewed and evaluated by some amazing judges. There are cash prizes and certificates, but the best part is that students get to show off to the world what they’re really excited about. Apply by March 20th and submit your project by April 30th. For more information, email Larry Oberg: larry@virtualsciencefair.com

Family Science Days

Location: Vancouver Convention Centre, Vancouver, BC

Date: Saturday, February 18, 2012 - Sunday, February 19, 2012, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.

Visit Family Science Days during the Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Browse interactive tabletop exhibits, learn about cool science jobs, and have your questions answered by experts convened by AAAS! This FREE event is open to all, but organized especially for students in grade levels 6 to 12. At Family Science Days, you will be able to:

  • -Try space food
  • -Create an earthquake
  • -Touch live sea creatures
  • -Learn about alien planets and distant stars
  • -See the invisible- from the weather to electricity to DNA
  • -Launch your own rockets
  • -Meet cool scientists
Guitar lessons: James Taylor (the famous singer-songwriter) gives guitar lessons online: http://www.jamestaylor.com/guitarlessons/

Enrichment Opportunity: Exercise Your Brain! Become a solver! Win awards!
Innocentive (http://www.innocentive.com/) invites all creative thinkers (including parents and students) to come up with solutions for challenges posed by major commercial, government, and nonprofit organizations such as Eli Lilly,  NASA, nature.com, Popular Science, Procter & Gamble. It describes itself as “the open innovation and crowdsourcing pioneer that enables organizations to solve their key problems by connecting them to ... the world’s largest problem solving marketplace.”  You could become a problem-solver and win an award. In many cases, you don’t actually have to engineer the solution, you just have to come up with the idea.  Awards have ranged from $5,000 to $1,000,000 depending upon the complexity of the problem.

Thank you to Eugene Sayson for some of the information about free community events. You can view his entire list here.

.... end of February newsletter ....

Point Grey Secondary PAC 2012 January Newsletter

PAC News:


Canadian Expectations for Teens: This workshop is for Chinese and Korean parents to discuss:
  • What it’s like for your teenager at school
  • Reasonable expectations around homework, curfew, friends, activities
  • A few practical tips to help communicate with your teen

Don't miss this presentation and workshop on February 15, from 6:30 to 8:00 PM. To pre-register, email Andrea Arnot (SACY Parent Engagement Representative for Point Grey): andrea.arnot@vch.ca or call her at 604.713.5899 ext. 2588.

Math Department Presentation! The next PAC meeting will be at 7 PM on Tuesday, January 24th in the staff room. Our special guest will be Janet Letourneau, head of the Math Department. As course planning begins at the end of January, she will give parents a presentation about opportunities in the math department: enriched math, extra support, different math strands, math competitions and enrichment, and so on. Don't miss this rare and informative presentation!  The last time she presented to the PAC was in 2006!

Updated to add:
Thank you to Ms. Janet Letourneau for her very informative presentation on the math program, Tuesday, January 24th. Approximately 60 people attended this PAC meeting.If you missed her talk, please read our notes.

Bean Brothers Fundraiser. Many of you already enjoy coffee and/or meals at the popular Kerrisdale cafe, Bean Brothers. The owner, Arkady Draliuk, has kindly offered to help our PAC raise money. In the next week or so, all of you will receive a Bean Brothers key tag in the mail. If you show this key tag when you go for coffee, then you will receive a 5% discount off your purchase and another 5% will go to the PAC. This fundraiser doesn't cost you anything extra at all! Bean Brothers will soon be opening new locations at Hillcrest and Granville Island.

Cool School News:

Point Grey wins the CANley Cup! (food bank)

Congratulations to Point Grey Secondary! With an astounding total of 86,560 cans, the school came in first in the entire district. The CANley Cup trophy will be showcased in Point Grey’s school premises until the competition next year!

Lord Byng Secondary booked their spot in second place with 47,408 cans and Eric Hamber followed in third place with 27,997 cans. Johh Oliver brought in an awesome 17,820 and Gladstone was right behind with 15, 790. Congratulations and thank you to the 16 schools that participated in this valuable competition. You can read the full account on the Vancouver District Student Council's website.

Mathematics Contest Dates at Point Grey:
CNML Feb. 21,Gauss May 16

Gr. 9:Pascal Feb 23

Gr. 10: Cayley Feb 23

Gr. 11: Fermat Feb 23

Gr. 12: AMC Feb 7, AIME (Invitational) Feb 28, Euclid April 11

Community Enrichment Opportunities:

Physics Olympics! Announcing the 34th annual UBC Physics Olympiad! The UBC Departments of Physics and Astronomy and of Curriculum and Pedagogy collaborate to invite hundreds of high school physics students from all across the province to come to UBC to participate in this exciting event on March 12, 2012.  The web site for the event is: http://phas.ubc.ca/physoly/

Meet the Scientists at AAAS Family Science Days!

Visit Family Science Days during the Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Browse interactive tabletop exhibits, learn about cool science jobs, and have your questions answered by experts convened by AAAS! This FREE event is open to all, but organized especially for students in grade levels 6 to 12.

All Family Science Days events will take place on Saturday and Sunday, 18-19 February at the Vancouver Convention Centre in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

This community science showcase—featuring hands-on demonstrations and other family and kid-friendly activities—shines a spotlight on a broad range of educators working to promote an interest in science among the general public. For more information -- there's so much that couldn't fit into this newsletter -- check out their website: http://www.aaas.org/meetings/program/fsd/

TECH TREK – These Saturday workshops (Jan. 21, March 3, March 31) offered by the UBC Dept. of Computer Science, are a fantastic opportunity to learn from exciting guest speakers, presentations and hands-on activities (programming, robot building, designing games). Available to all high school students, and costing only $10.00 (!), you will need to register early to assure your participation. Visit the website, http://www.tech, for more info. and to register.

Toyota Earth Day Scholarship: Toyota Canada and the Toyota Canada Foundation in partnership with Earth Day Canada established the Toyota Earth Day Scholarship Program to help cultivate and nurture environmental leadership.

The Toyota Earth Day Scholarship grants 20 awards of $5000 each annually for the first year of post-secondary full-time studies in Canada. The application deadline is January 31, 2012. For more information visit the Toyota Earth Day website.

Free, Fun events (Thank you to Eugene Sayson for this information. You can find his entire list here.)

Public Ice Skating at Robson Square until February 29! (weather permitting)
Sunday-Thursday, 9 a.m.-9 p.m., Friday-Saturday, 9 a.m.-11 p.m.
 Skating is freeif you bring your own skates; otherwise, rentals are available (skate rentals $4, helmets $2). A concession stand, with snacks and warm drinks, is also available at the rink.

Chinatown Stories
Location: Alma VanDusen & Peter Kaye Rooms, Lower Level, Central Library, 350 W. Georgia St.
Date: Wednesday, January 11, 2012, 7 p.m.-8:30 p.m.
Come hear about forgotten Chinatowns and stories about growing up Chinese in Vancouver and in Mexico. Meet authors Rebeca Lau, Chad Reimer, and Larry Wong and learn more about the new book series Gold Mountain Stories. Free

Game Design Expo: Vancouver Film School Open House

Location: Vancouver Film School, 88 East Pender St., Vancouver, BC
Date: Sunday, January 22, 2012, 10:30 a.m.-5 p.m.
On Sunday, January 22, 2012, the acclaimed one-year Game Design program at Vancouver Film School throws its doors open, welcoming you into its halls to learn about Game Design, meet Head of Department Dave Warfield and a faculty of respected game industry pros, play games, and have fun. At this free Open House, you will:
• Enjoy a meet-and-greet with Head of Department and game industry veteran Dave Warfield
• Take sample Game Design classes (Game theory, game art, storytelling, designing in Unity and more....)
• Get a chance to see and play student games and meet their creators
• Experience an interactive display of blockbuster games graduates have helped create
Free, but early online pre-registration required

Introducing... James Joyce, PAC chair

Did you know that James volunteered to be PAC chair here at Point Grey while his son was still in Gr. 7? Yes, he put his hand up at the spring AGM, and we grabbed him! This is his second year as chair at Point Grey. But when he's not helping out with parent events or attending his son's hockey games, he has a most interesting job: driving movie sets and even movie stars around BC! (Kevin Costner, for example.) This photo is from the set of an upcoming blockbuster movie: That's James' truck, and he drove everything to the site and set it up.

end.... January ...... end

Point Grey Secondary PAC December 2011 Newsletter

PAC News

Thank you!

Teachers' wish list: At our December 5, 2011 PAC meeting, parents were able to approve  $31,794  in items and resources for the school. Of this, $25,294 came from the gaming grants and will be used for student enrichment. The remaining $6500 was raised through our gift card sales and the movie night fundraiser. This money went directly to classrooms.

Thank you, everyone, for supporting the PAC's efforts. Your help benefits every student in the school. And it's never too late to donate! We hope to vote on another wish list in the new year.
Cool School News

Some wishes do come true...

Point Grey's new drama studio is up and running, after years of just dreaming about the possibilities. Here's a photo from the students' December 5th evening performance.

By the way, the drama studio could really use some risers and special theater seating. Donations are (always) welcome!

Would you like to play a game and help to find a cure for a disease like breast cancer at the same time? Solve DNA mysteries through the online Phylo project at McGill. (http://phylo.cs.mcgill.ca/) "Though it may appear to be just a game, Phylo is actually a framework for harnessing the computing power of mankind to solve a common problem: Multiple Sequence Alignments." Humans are good at recognizing patterns, and through a game, Phylo harnesses human talents to solve complex problems that computers have failed to solve.

Design your own 3D robot! Although this is not a free educational opportunity, I'm including it here because it's so cool. It's also the pet project of an Abbotsford Virtual School teacher, Bill Henderson, who is quite famous for both his online computer courses and his 3D enterprise, Offload Studios. He's created My Robot Nation, which is a website that allows you to design your own robot. For only $17.99 (about the price of a movie outing), the robot that you have designed will be printed in 3D in full colour, and then mailed to you. Of course, if you want a 5 foot tall robot, it will cost more. For more information, visit My Robot Nation.

In the Community....
Free, fun things to do: Are you looking for fun, seasonal thing to do with friends and visitors over the holiday season? Check out Eugene Sayson's list of mostly free holiday activities. His list includes public skating at Robson Square and the Kerrisdale and Britannia arenas, Celtic candlelight readings, concerts, the solstice lantern festival at Dr. Sun Yat-Sen gardens, a Chanukah celebration at the Art gallery, and much more.

The complete list can be found here, and the website is here. Don't be bored this winter!

Depressed? Anxious? Do you think that you might be depressed, but you aren't sure? This website (Mindcheck.ca) was designed with teens and young adults aged 13 to 25 in mind. It’s a website where young people can check out how they’re feeling and get connected to support early and quickly. It offers education materials, confidential screening tools (quizzes) for five conditions - depression, anxiety, stress, alcohol and drug use, and psychosis. The website provides links to self-help websites and information on how to access community services. It also includes sections for families and friends, and professionals who work with teens and young adults.

 UBC Physics and Astronomy: WOW Welcome Orientation for Women. January 5, 2012.

  • Are you curious about how the world works?
  • Do you want to acquire problem-solving skills that will help you throughout your career and life?
  • Do you want the chance to do real research into the areas that you find the most fascinating?
  • Are you interested in objects and their interactions from subatomic scales to the size of the universe?

If so, then physics and astronomy could be the right program for you. Join us at the WOW orientation - Welcome Orientation for Women - to learn more about the programs UBC Physics & Astronomy has to offer! Write  wow@phas.ubc.ca

...end of December newsletter...

November 2011

Point Grey Parent Advisory Newsletter November 2011

PAC News

The PAC is hosting a fabulous, fun-filled fundraiser for the whole family (and friends and neighbours, too): 

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2

Oakridge Theatre

Thursday, Dec. 1 at 6:30 PM

Tickets are available from any student council member or by E-Mail to pointgreypac@gmail.com.  If still available, tickets will also be sold at the door.

What are we fundraising for? Every year, the PAC fundraises in order to buy things from the Teachers’ Wish List. This year, the wish list is over $75,000 – and that’s the short list!  These are not luxuries. They include things like callipers for the new Math 10 curriculum, a computer for the Graphic Arts program (where 9 of the computers are too old to be repaired or used), current maps, repairs to volleyball and badminton nets that have become dangerous, ESL  resources, and a technology cart that can be shared by all the classrooms in the school.  Every department and program will benefit.

You can view the wish list on our PAC website.  Vote on the list at our extraordinary PAC meeting: December 5th at 7 PM in the staff room.

Many teachers spend their own money to provide things for our children. For example, an English teacher has donated 2 of her home computers to the department. A Planning 10 teacher buys class sets of markers and glue sticks every year, but they get used up by December.  One teacher spent $1,000 on specialized resources for an Advanced Placement class.  

As parents, we should help out as much as possible. Please help by coming to our Harry Potter movie night or simply writing a cheque for the PAC and leaving it in the office.  So far this year, we have raised less than $5,000. Please help us help our school. Bring your family to the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 movie night at Oakridge on December 1st. What a great way to get to know other people in our school community, too!

Pac meeting: The next PAC meeting will be Tuesday, November 15 at 7 PM in the staff room. Everyone is invited!

Chinese Parents' Information Meeting: Over 200 people came to the Chinese Parents' Information Meeting
on November 17th. This was an overwhelming success  and the meeting had to be moved to the auditorium. Mr. Sheikh's Power Point presentation may be seen here or by following the link at the top of this page.

Extraordinary PAC meeting: A special PAC meeting to vote on the items we will buy from the Teachers' Wish List will take place on Monday, December 5th at 7 PM in the staff room. No other business will be conducted at this meeting. You are warmly invited to help us choose which items we will purchase with
our PAC funds.

An invitation from the Magee PAC!
Magee PAC is hosting Jesse Miller as their guest speaker, and invites Point Grey parents to come as their guests! Jesse Miller is in huge demand these days as he talks about the pros and cons of social media (especially Facebook). He will be speaking at the Magee PAC's November meeting: November 30th at 7 PM (Magee School). Check out his website: www.mediatedreality.com

Parent Event Organizer: The PAC could use a hand arranging for guest speakers who would like to come to PAC meetings. Are you interested in doing that? Please let us know: pointgreypac@gmail.com

Holiday Gift Cards! Don't stress over what to buy friends and family for Christmas or Chanukah. Place an order for some of our gift cards by November 30th and they'll be ready for you by December 8th. Browse our selection of cards for the Bay, Gap, Chapters, Winners, Cactus Club, Future Shop and more by clicking here or following the tab at the top of this page. And, don't forget our regular cards (Safeway, Stong's T&T, etc), available here.

Looking for:

Are any of these items lying around your home, unused? Teachers would love to have them!
Check for a full list on the Things Teachers Need page.

Portable stereo: A Home Ec teacher is looking for a portable stereo. "I like to play mood music when the kids are enjoying the meals that they’ve made: Italian opera during the Italian foods unit, for example." Should have an iPod dock.

Puzzles: The Life Skills program is looking for puzzles with between 300 and 500 pieces.

Television: The Learning Support teacher is looking for a 27 to 32" television. If you are replacing yours with a bigger one this holiday, keep this teacher in mind. Many of her students are visual learners who struggle with reading comprehension and they benefit from DVDs. Several departments would like wall-mountable flat screen televisions.

Cameras: The Art Department needs film SLR cameras. If you have switched to digital, please keep the school in mind!

The Stagecraft program needs tools, Film Studies is looking for good movies on DVDs (current releases and classics), and the English Department would like to have some gently used YA novels for its bookshelves.

School News
The counselling department has booked Safe On Line Outreach Society (SOLOS) for a presentation on January 30th 2012. The theme of the presentation is "Being Kind Online."

Andrea Arnot is a parent engagement worker for SACY (School Aged Children and Youth Substance Prevention Initiative). At our October PAC meeting, she invited parents to contact her if they have any concerns about drugs, alcohol, the internet, etc. Andrea.Arnot@vch.ca  or 778.808.5558

Student Enrichment

The Gulf Islands Film & Television School is a creative media epicenter where 1st time rookies, youth & adults, live with and are mentored by Canada's top media producers and industry professionals. GIFTS specializes in "learning by doing," offering short hands-on media intensive training programs and teen summer camps at its live in training facility situated on beautiful Galiano Island, BC. The high caliber training is widely recognized by filmmakers, industry and academics. They have a French immersion program. Scholarships are available.

Write a novel in a month! Track your progress. Get pep talks and support. Meet fellow writers online and in person. Find out more at NaNoWriMo.

Vancouver Sun Student Video Contest & Awards.  Would you like to make an animated video? Music video? Documentary? A feature? Or even a public service announcement? Contest is open until March. Winners receive $1,000 gift cards from Best Buy.
Aboriginal Youth Financial Management Conference Awards The AFOA-Meyers Norris Penny LLP Aboriginal Youth Financial Managements Awards are open to First Nation youth in grades 11 and 12. Winners attend AFOA's National Conference and participate in a special Youth program designed to introduce youth to careers in Aboriginal finance and management.
Canada-Wide Virtual Science Fair: Create a project, put it online so that it can be enjoyed by students across Canada and marked by knowledgeable judges. Win great prizes! Have fun.

Mathematics Contest Dates at Point Grey:
  • CNML Feb. 21
  • Gauss May 16
Gr. 9:
  • Pascal Feb 23
Gr. 10:
  • Cayley Feb 23
Gr. 11:
  • Fermat Feb 23
Gr. 12:
  • AMC Feb 7
  • AIME (Invitational) Feb 28
  • Euclid April 11

Introducing... Evelyn Guo, PAC Secretary : There's something very special about Evelyn Guo, the PAC's newest executive member. She's years (or even decades) younger than the other PAC members. She's also the first member of the PAC's executive who is not a parent, but the sister (and guardian) of a Point Grey student. She's enthusiastic, energetic and has a great deal to contribute. In addition to taking minutes, Evelyn also translates for Mandarin-speaking parents at our meetings. Thank you for volunteering, Evelyn! We're lucky to have you on the team.

Would you like to contact the PAC? Email: pointgreypac@gmail.com
We hope to see you at one of our PAC meetings!

November 2011..........end ..........November 2011

October 2011 Newsletter (archived)

Point Grey Parent Advisory Council Newsletter October 2011
This is the first-ever Parent Advisory Council (PAC) newsletter. We’re hoping that soon all parents will be looking forward eagerly to our updates.  Please send us info that you’d like to see included!
PAC News:
Job Action: During the job action, the PAC has sponsored a “Random Acts of Cookies & Fruit” campaign to keep community spirit high. Parents have been dropping off baked goods and fruit in the staff room. You are warmly encouraged to join in! Just drop some goodies off in the staff room with a friendly note.

Field Trips: The PAC will be covering the costs of some field trips that would otherwise be cancelled due to the rule that teachers can’t collect fees during the job action. In some cases, teachers pre-paid for these trips using their own credit cards last spring and then found that they couldn't collect fees from students due to the job action.

Gift Cards: Our PAC’s major ongoing fundraiser, the gift card program, offers everyone an amazing opportunity to support the school without spending any extra money.  Under the program, you simply buy pre-paid cards for groceries and other retail products that you would buy anyway, from stores like Safeway, Stong’s, Choices, IGA , T&T, Chevron, Shoppers Drug Mart and Starbucks. The PAC receives between 2% and 8% of your gift card purchases, depending on the retailer. If all families purchased cards from the PAC, we’d be able to provide the school with new equipment and resources. For more information and order forms, please click here.

PAC Meeting:
The next PAC meeting will be October 18th at 7 PM in the staff room. We’ll be electing 3 parents to the School Planning Council. Please put your name forward if you’d like to help with the school’s growth plan.  Once again, Point Grey’s teacher rep, Sue Inglis, will update parents on the job action. Many thanks to Sue for all of her help.

Grad Committee:
Is your child graduating this year? Join the grad committee! Last year's committee chair, Andre Rowland, will speak to interested parents on October 26th at 7PM in the gym. Seed money for the 2011-2012 grad committee is being provided by last year's committee, which provided memorable grad events and a dry grad celebration and also donated a few thousand dollars to the school's technology fund.

Cool School News:
Dramatically New and Improved -- The Breezeway Theatre!
A spacious former shop room with a modern industrial look is being transformed into a home for Point Grey’s lively drama program. For years, drama students have been squeezed into Rm 215, an ordinary classroom where they couldn’t kick up their heels without kicking a classmate. Thanks to  donations from an unnamed parent and drama alumni, Rm. 215 is now an art room, and drama students have moved into the vastly bigger Rm. 404. If it looks more like a warehouse than a theatre right now, it’s only because the stage is under construction.  Soon, it will be spectacular. Ms. Correia says she is hoping to present a play with the theme of change in February of 2012 to mark the momentous occasion. The drama department is hoping to raise a little more money for audience seating and for a tiered unit that can be moved on and off for performances.

Me to We: Fifteen Point Grey Secondary students will be attending the Me to We event on October 13th at Rogers Arena. Speakers include Mikhail Gorbachev,
Shaq, Hedley, Mia Farrow, and Down with Webster.

Student Council hosted a very successful Clubs Day on  October 6th. There was a great deal of enthusiasm as students signed up for new and established clubs.

Take Our Kids to Work Day:
On November 2nd, parents of Grade 9 students will be taking their children to work with them. Other parents across Canada will be doing the same thing. It's all part of The Learning Partnership's 17th annual Take Our Kids to Work program. This is your chance to show your child why you come home so tired or inspired every evening, and to give them a glimpse into the working world. If your child has a passion for a different kind of job, this is your opportunity to ask someone else to mentor your child for the day. (Your optician or your gardener, for example.) There will be no classes for Grade 9 students at Point Grey that day because they will all be getting a glimpse of future possibilities.

Student Enrichment Opportunities

Enrichment Opportunity: Exercise Your Brain! Become a solver! Win awards!
Innocentive (http://www.innocentive.com/) invites all creative thinkers (including parents and students) to come up with solutions for challenges posed by major commercial, government, and nonprofit organizations such as Eli Lilly,  NASA, nature.com, Popular Science, Procter & Gamble. It describes itself as “the open innovation and crowdsourcing pioneer that enables organizations to solve their key problems by connecting them to ... the world’s largest problem solving marketplace.”  You could become a problem-solver and win an award. In many cases, you don’t actually have to engineer the solution, you just have to come up with the idea.  Awards have ranged from $5,000 to $1,000,000 depending upon the complexity of the problem.

Postcard Writing Contest. "
Some say brevity is the soul of wit. Well, here's a chance for you to be profound and brief and witty with TeenRC! That's right, it's time for another writing contest, this time, with a short story or poem short enough to fit on the back of a postcard--a snapshot of narrative potential." Check out Teen Readers Club, a space created by librarians for teen writers and readers. Teenrc regularly features live chats with (live) authors.

Introducing... Scott Rose, PAC Virtual Member at Large
Students aren’t the only people who go to school online these days. Scott Rose is Point Grey’s first Virtual PAC member. He has been actively involved with the PAC and Mini School for several years, but because he works across the border, it’s not possible for him to attend many PAC meetings in person. But this doesn’t stop him from being an extremely useful member of the executive. Scott fields questions by email at all hours of the day, and can be counted on for expert tech advice as well.

Would you like to contact the PAC? Email: pointgreypac@gmail.com
We hope to see you at one of our PAC meetings!