Typing Game for Kids: Dance Mat Typing

If you want your kids to learn how to type, I recommend Dance Mat Typing!




CONVERGENT TOOLS: Dot Voting/Dots & Super Dots & The Matrix

DOT VOTING/Dots & Super Dots

This is a useful tool when you have a large group of people, the whole class perhaps. Review all the ideas generated, possibly on the whiteboard or numerous pieces of chart paper.

  • Give each student a number of dot stickers. Everyone should have the same number of dots.
  • Have everyone place a dot beside a great idea.
  • Look for clusters with the most dots or “Hits.” The clusters with the most “Hits” are the options that should be worked on first.
  • Try narrowing the criteria even for the dot voting. For example, which idea would cost the least, be the easiest to build or implement, etc.
  • Another option is to give out dots but also one SUPER DOT, so students can converge on what they feel is the very best idea of all. Powerful critical thinking!


A matrix creates a systematic way to evaluate many solutions against selected
criteria. Use a simple rating system to show how well each idea satisfies each criterion
( scale of 1 – 3, or what about emojis!!) Once the matrix is completed and each idea
rated, you get a sense of how the ideas stack up against each other.


Adapted by Melissa Reist

SuperPower Your School – Win $20,000 for your Eco Initiatives

Win $20,000 worth of technology for your school!

Does your school save the planet with its environmental programs? Here’s your chance to superpower your school with the latest technology!

The 2018 Staples Superpower your School Contest, brought to you in collaboration with Earth Day Canada, will run December 1, 2017 – January 31, 2018 and will recognize schools that are doing their part to protect the planet. Get ready, because your environmental initiatives could help you win 1 of 10 prizes of $20,000 worth of technology for your school. Please note – entrants must be an elementary or secondary school located in Canada that is either publicly funded or independent.

For more information about the contest, please visit earthday.ca/powereco.
If you have questions or would like to discuss your entry in advance email us at powereco@earthday.ca.

  1. STEP 1: Read the contest Eligibility and Entry Criteria to make sure your school qualifies to enter.
  2. STEP 2: Read the contest Rules and Regulations to learn about the contest details.
  3. STEP 3: Contact Earth Day Canada at powereco@earthday.ca to discuss your entry in advance (optional).
  4. STEP 4: Complete the entry form and submit online at staples.ca/powereco from
    December 1, 2017 to January 31, 2018.

Want to get a head start on your entry? Download the Pre-Entry Guide for a sneak peek at the entry questions and helpful tips!

Register Now!




Help refugees: Volunteer and donate

Many refugees will need extra help getting settled in Canada. Supportive social networks and service provider organizations are essential to the integration of newcomers, including refugees.

Through these networks and organizations, refugees can get information, find housing and jobs, improve their language skills, become civically involved, gain critical cultural knowledge and receive emotional and other support.

We encourage individuals, communities and businesses to welcome refugees and help them integrate into the communities.

Volunteer in your community

Consider volunteering with an organization that works with newcomers in your area.

Search our interactive map for federally funded organizations that may be in need of resources, visit Volunteer Canada’s website for ideas or seek out volunteer opportunities in your community.

Donate to help in Canada

New refugees have immediate needs, including furniture, clothing, food, dishes and much more as they resettle in Canada. Canadians can help by donating money to local organizations such as Sponsorship Agreement Holders (SAHs) that help support newcomers in Canada.

If you want to find out if an organization is a registered Canadian charity that can issue tax receipts, check the charities listings.

Local donations can go a long way. Not sure where to start?

In British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Nunavut, you can visit 211.ca or call 211 toll-free to find out how you can offer support for refugees. 211 is Canada’s primary source of information on government and community-based health and social services.

Consider donating through the

A few more ways you can contribute

Find out where the refugees are going

Learn which communities and service provider organizations across Canada are welcoming refugees.

Sponsor Syrian refugees

There are a few ways to sponsor refugees. Find out which way works best for you.

From Damascus to Toronto: Mohamed

Facing forced enrolment in the Syrian army, for a war he did not want to join, Mohamed fled to Lebanon, where his dreams of Canada took root.

SpeakUp Project Grants for Students in Grades 7-12


2017-18 SpeakUp Project Grant applications are open!
Students in grades 7-12!
Apply by Thursday, December 7, 2017 – before midnight, EST.

What is it?

Student Voice aims to promote student engagement and success in Ontario’s schools by listening to and learning from students. Student Voice provides you, the students, with a variety of ways to share your ideas with your school, the education community and the ministry about what would help support your engagement in your learning. Student Voice can help you take action to shape your learning environment while you build your skills.

We want all students to be successful, and we need your ideas and actions to make this happen.

Check out this video to get an idea of what’s changing for Ontario students!

It all starts with you

Speak up! You have a voice, and we want to hear what you have to say about your education. Your ideas and actions are key in helping Ontario’s publicly funded education system reach the goals set out in its Achieving Excellencevision for education. We want to help you make your school a place where everyone feels welcome and where you are empowered to speak your mind, get involved and become active citizens and leaders.

Students told us that you want to:

  • share your ideas with government on how to strengthen student engagement and make Ontario’s publicly funded education system even better.
  • have a school culture where all students feel and know that they belong.
  • work as partners with your teachers, and participate in school decisions that will shape your lives and the lives of other students.

How can you get involved?

There are four main ways for you to get involved:

  1. Minister’s Student Advisory Council (MSAC)
    Each year, approximately 60 students in grades 7 to 12 from across the province are selected to form the council. MSAC provides advice on ministry policies and programs and also meets with the Minister of Education to share their ideas and perspectives.Find out more about the council.
  2. Students as Researchers (StaR)
    Students as Researchers training provides training for student-teacher teams from grade 7-12 in collaborative inquiry research. StaR teams are taught the fundamental components of social science research (e.g. ethics, research design and methodologies, data analysis, etc.).Students work together to identify and research an issue impacting the student experience (e.g. equity, student engagement, well-being or achievement, etc.). For example, teams could conduct research on questions such as: “What experiences engage students in math class?” or “What conditions help students

    Talk to your school principal if you are interested in participating.

    Check out what we’re doing to give students a voice.

  3. SpeakUp Projects
    SpeakUp Projects grants can help you, the students, get your voices heard and take action by leading projects that make a difference in your school. To date, thousands of students in grades 7-12 have actively led or participated in more than 10,000 projects in hundreds of schools across Ontario.Learn how you can start putting your ideas into action.
  4. SpeakUp in a Box
    SpeakUp in a Box is a “do-it-yourself” forum kit which contains everything you will need to run a student-led forum for 30 participants at your school. It includes facilitator tip sheets, a step-by-step forum guide and forum supplies. During the forum your peers share ideas about what can help students be more engaged in learning and school life.Watch a video about SpeakUp in a Box.

    Learn more and order your kit today!

This is your education. Speak up and get involved! Let’s all work together to ensure Ontario’s publicly funded education system remains among the best in the world.

Send your comments and ideas to studentvoice@ontario.ca.

See what students like you are saying and doing on Facebook to raise the student voice. Share your student engagement thoughts and activities by liking SpeakUp Ontario on Facebook and posting there.


Math – The Fractal Foundation Educator’s Guide

The Fractal Foundation

A fractal is a never-ending pattern. Fractals are infinitely complex patterns that are self-similar across different scales. They are created by repeating a simple process over and over in an ongoing feedback loop. Driven by recursion, fractals are images of dynamic systems – the pictures of Chaos. Geometrically, they exist in between our familiar dimensions. Fractal patterns are extremely familiar, since nature is full of fractals. For instance: trees, rivers, coastlines, mountains, clouds, seashells, hurricanes, etc. Abstract fractals – such as the Mandelbrot Set – can be generated by a computer calculating a simple equation over and over.

For a simple description of fractals, please download our “One Pager” (380Kb).

For more detailed info, please download our 20 page “Educators’ Guide” (7.5Mb).

Fractal Triangle – Fractal Foundation