Inquiry questions from Ms. Nelson’s English class bulletin board. These are all very good questions, pulled from a book they are studying, but then shared on the wall aside others. It’s neat how students pull distinct thoughts from the very same reading. Great work!

Reflecting on 10 days at Riverside

Now that I’ve been here for a little over two weeks, I’d like to share how I feel about Riverside. The first words that come to mind are ‘amazed’, ‘connected’, and ‘purposeful’.

AMAZED… it’s very cool that the students here understand what’s expected of them, but that they also embrace the elements of membership at Riverside that connect them to their digital world rather than minimize it. The school day is that much more relevant to the way learners engage with each other and their surroundings. There’s an amazingly nearly-universal understanding of that concept.

CONNECTED… the staff make each other feel connected to the collective. The staff and students have a connection, including the Edublog world where there is seamless sharing of almost everything kids post in classes. Wow. Kids are in the foyer before and after school, and seem to feel very protective of and connected to their school. Even though teens don’t usually describe things that way, there is a trust in Riverside that they appreciate.

PURPOSEFUL… there’s a feeling of solid foundation of purpose to the decisions students and staff make to keep Riverside going. The other night, we saw students demonstrating technology to parents of next year’s Grade 9’s. Message received! We do things purposefully here, and the great part is that most of our work is student-driven. It’s a lot easier to wake up in the morning when you feel that sense of purpose.

Eduwalk: Experience the learning

To get to know Riverside, I’m taking daily Eduwalks to different parts of the building. Eduwalk = Educational Walkabout – what’s being investigated by our students? What technology is tweaking their interest today? Mostly, it’s a chance for me to learn from how teachers and students learn here.

Today: eduwalk took me to a Science 9 class where the students were delving into 6D’s with Mr. Robinson and Mr. Horton. the 5th D caught my eye with the whole idea of Deploying, or Publishing as we like to promote here at our school. Quoting a staff member: when we publish, we not only take ownership for what we just did but get to share it to the world, as well as demonstrate all the development our ideas underwent.

I’m blown away by the refinement the students feel their ideas deserve just before hitting the Publish button!



Hello, Riverside!

I’m thrilled to join the amazing staff & students of Riverside! I will try do my part in keeping up the traditions students and staff have come to depend on and appreciate about the school. Mr. Ciolfitto has left an awesome legacy of care, innovation, and spirit. I hope I can help with maintaining a great place to come to work or study each day.

Mr. Ciolfitto has already inspired me: for the first time in a few years I have resurrected my blog, and will attempt to regularly use it for another effective place for idea-exchanging. Can’t wait to browse other people’s blogs. 🙂

Investigate – Connect – Construct – Refine

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