All About Our School!
Millen Woods Public School is the newest school in Waterloo! We opened in January, 2011, welcoming 350 students and 33 staff members. In September 2015, the school will have approximately 390 students from Junior Kindergarten to Grade Six.
Beginning in September 2012, our Kindergarten Program became full days every day for JK and SK students.
There is a Jacob Hespeler Child Care facility attached to the school, providing care for toddlers, preschoolers and also extended care for school-aged children.
At Millen Woods we are Mariners, and every year we set sail on a voyage of learning!
Our motto is:
I use my head, my heart, my hands
The choice is mine to make.
When we SAIL we are:
Showing respect, Always positive, Including everyone, Loving to Learn.
Our students are fantastic! They live by the motto, “There is always room for one more”, and they strive to include everyone in their activities. The students come from many different parts of the world, and represent a wide variety of cultures, religions and customs. When our students complete Grade 6 they move around the corner to Lester B. Pearson Public School. They attend Bluevale Collegiate for their secondary school education. Students who continue in the Partial French Immersion Program attend Kitchener-Waterloo Collegiate.
Our staff is comprised of dedicated professionals who are proud of Millen Woods, and committed to giving each child a sound foundation for learning. Our intent is to recognize the growth and development of the whole child…. intellectually, physically, socially and morally. Teachers and Educational Assistants have undergone TRIBES training which enables them to lead effective community circle meetings with their students and to set the highest possible standard for respect and collaboration.
We are committed to offering current and challenging instruction in the area of technology in order to prepare our students for the world of rapidly changing and expanding knowledge. Critical thinking and problem-solving are foundational to our program.
We believe in a strong partnership with parents and the community as we strive to build solid academic strengths and socially responsible students.
Regular English instruction is provided to all students from Junior Kindergarten to Grade 6.
Core French is provided to students from Grades 1 to 6.
A partial French Immersion program is available, beginning in Grade 1.
A Special Education School-Based Team of classroom and resource teachers works at Millen Woods and is dedicated to assessing and providing modified programs for children with special needs.
Our Early Intervention teacher works with our Grade 1 classes ensuring that students develop the skills to be strong, successful readers and writers.
Enrichment is available to all students through classroom accommodations and special withdrawal programs for selected older students.
Facilities and Resources
Millen Woods PS is located in the Eastbridge area of Waterloo and is surrounded by quiet streets and suburban homes. The school has two stories with a large double gym and a beautiful spacious library on the main floor. The school is barrier-free and fully wheelchair accessible. Classrooms are organized in a pod arrangement with computers and digital technology throughout the school. The school has wireless access in all areas and sound-field systems in every classroom. Our school yard has two soccer fields and a large grassy area. The playground backs onto a natural wooded area, which creates a beautiful vista in all seasons. In 2012, School Council commissioned Earthscapes to design and build a naturalized playground featuring a ship climber, compass rose, and island hideaway seating area. In 2013 a butterfly, centipede, and inchworm were added in the Kindergarten area.
Millen Woods PS has established a dynamic School Council that meets on the third Wednesday evening of every month. Its mission is to “support and enhance learning for all students through the cooperative efforts of parents, students, staff members, and others in the community.” In addition to being an advisory group to the administration, School Council organizes fundraising initiatives such as the Magazine Campaign, Pizza Days, a spring Dance-a-thon, and the Fundscrip Gift Card Program. Council funds many enhancements to Millen Woods’ academic program, including a primary Home Reading program, JungleSport experiences, and hands-on enrichment experiences through the Scientists in School program. In 2014 Council focused on adding high-quality Orff instruments to our music program. Recently Council purchased Lego-Mechanics kits for enrichment activities, Chrome Books to enhance our digital literacy goals, and portable display boards for featuring student artwork.
Millen Woods Public School is fortunate to have many hard-working volunteers. We are very grateful for the support with class trips, and with programs such as Strong Start and Home Reading.
Millen Woods has been honoured with the coveted Gold EcoSchool award! Ontario EcoSchools is an environmental education program. It has been designed by school boards to incorporate environmental education and responsibility into the school setting. We have met the high standards for energy conservation, waste minimization, school ground greening and ecological literacy set out by EcoSchools Ontario. In 2015 we were awarded an Eco-Schools grant which we used to purchase of bird houses and also two scooter racks in order to promote active travel to school. We are very proud of our students and the larger community for ongoing efforts in the area of environmental responsibility.
Measuring Student Achievement and Success
Many different assessment and evaluation strategies are used by staff at Millen Woods, including regular testing, class participation, class work, individual and group work, self and peer-evaluation, as well as feedback conferences and portfolios. Pupil and program assessments and evaluations are ongoing as teachers strive to maximize student achievement.
EQAO assessment is scheduled in the spring of 2016 from May 25 to June 2.
School Success Plans and Initiatives
Our current School Success Plan, 2015-2016 focuses on two overall goals:
- During learning, timely, ongoing, descriptive feedback about student progress is provided based on student actions and co-constructed success criteria.
- continued demonstration of respect for one another, for adults, for members of diverse cultures, and for the environment.
We are exploring ways to engage students through open-ended critical questions and inquiry learning.
Teachers are working on providing students with descriptive feedback through all stages of the learning process.
Clubs and Activities
Millen Woods’ students love to get involved! In the 2015-2016 school year, students are participating in the following extra-curriculars:
- Eco-Schools Club
- Chess Club
- Monday Mixer – Board Games Club
- Kodaly Choir
- “Electric Singing” Club
- Recorder “Karate”
- Library Club
- Basketball Club
- Running Club
- Debate Club
- Environmental Club
- Science Fair
- Creation Convention
- Ski Club
- “Me to We” Leadership Group