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Two students in the gym on the first day of Catholic Schools Week. They had just filled out a small white heart with the heading: “I’m thankful I go to a Catholic School because …”.


Catholic schools are unique communities with different personal and cultural values than the corresponding communities found in public schools.


The 100th day of school for the 2017-18 school year fell in the middle of Catholic Schools Week. This did not go unnoticed. Children in grade 1 and 2  celebrated this momentous event with paper crowns.


To celebrate the uniqueness of our schools, Catholic Schools Week has become an annual event that builds an appreciation of the educational achievements and spiritual benefits of attending a Catholic school. It acknowledges the many teachers and students who work in these schools, and celebrates the opportunities that Catholic Schools have to offer.


Older students paired up in the gym with younger students on Monday February 12, the first day of Catholic Schools Week. They helped each other to make an anonymous Valentine card to be distributed two days later on February 14.


Catholic Schools Week for 2018 ran from Monday, February 12 to Friday, February 16.


Catholic Schools Week celebrations at IHMS began first thing on Monday morning with an assembly in the gym from 9:00 – 10:00 a.m. Students were asked to bring their crayons, pencil crayons or markers with them. Each student then made an anonymous Valentine card which was later distributed to another student on Valentine’s day.


K-8 students in the gym working on their Valentine’s Day cards


Since the students were already in the gym with pencil crayons and markers, they also participated in the creation of a Catholic School’s Week “banner”. Every student from K-8 filled out a small white heart with the heading: “I’m thankful I go to a Catholic School because …”. The white hearts were arranged in the shape of a banner on the gym wall.


Attending a Catholic school is a privilege, and not a right. IHMS students displayed gratitude for this privilege by expressing their thoughts on a tiny piece of paper in the shape of a white heart. With well over 200 students attending IHMS, these tiny hearts formed a large banner on the gym wall.


Tuesday February 13 was “Twisted Tuesday” for one period in the morning – from 9:35 to first recess at 10:15. During this time, every IHMS staff member did something completely different – they switched jobs with another staff member.


For one period in the morning on “Twisted Tuesday”, every staff member at IHMS switched jobs with another staff member. Of course, hilarity ensued.


For example, Grade 1 teacher Mrs. Zulyniak worked in the front office as the school secretary during this time, while the school’s real secretary, Mrs. Dudych, worked with Mr. Dedio in the Sadochok class. The school’s principal, Mr. Picklyk was scheduled to participate in “Twisted Tuesday” as the grade 1 teacher, but unfortunately had to bow out because of a prior engagement to show a new family around the school. Miss Rowe kindly volunteered to assume Mr. Picklyk’s job in the grade 1 classroom even though she regularly works with the grade 1 class in her duties as an EA (educational assistant).


More IHMS staff members working on another staff member’s job


Wednesday, February 14 was one of the busiest days of Catholic Schools Week. First of all, it was Valentines’s day. For as long as anyone can remember, Valentines’s day at IHMS has always been a NUT Day, in this case “Red,White, and Pink Day”.


Since Valentine’s Day was a NUT day, students and staff had the opportunity to wear either red, white, or pink clothing to school. As shown in the above photos, the most popular choice, by far, was red.


Since Wednesday was Valentines’s day, the anonymous cards that were made during Monday morning’s gym assembly were distributed to every student in the school. Some students also exchanged their own Valentine’s day cards, especially in the younger grades. Since IHMS is trying to promote healthier eating in the school, passing out candies or chocolates was prohibited.


More students dressed very colourfully in either red, white, or pink for Valentines’s day.


In addition to being Valentines’s day and a NUT day, Wednesday was also “100 Day” – the 100th day of the current school year. Because 100 is a large number for smaller kids, “100 Day” was only celebrated by grade 1 and 2 students. To do this, the downstairs teachers devised various activities to give their students a more concrete idea of how large 100 really is.


Grade 2 students with a flair for the dramatic on 100 Day

The highlight of this year’s Catholic Schools Week was a set of unique activities planned for Thursday afternoon called “Winter Fest”. All of these activities were team-based and inspired by this year’s 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. Every student from K-8 was assigned to a team, and each team was associated with a particular country participating in the 2018 Winter Olympics. Thursday was also a NUT Day, so students were asked to come to school that day dressed in the colours of their country’s flag.
The windchill was -30



Half of the Winter Fest activities were scheduled to take place indoors, and half were scheduled to take place outdoors in the playground. Unfortunately, the weather on Thursday afternoon was too cold for outdoor activities. As a result, the Winter Fest Olympics were postponed for almost 2 weeks to Tuesday. February 27.



Kindergarten students, who are celebrating Catholic Schools Week for the first time, happily posed for the camera on Valentines’s Day dressed in red and pink.


Friday, February 16, the last day of Catholic Schools Week, was an inservice day for the teachers at St. Paul’s High School. While IHMS teachers (and teachers from other Catholic schools) were busy attending the inservice, students had a day off from school. Since the following Monday was a holiday – Louis Riel Day – it was a long 4 day weekend for the students and a great way to finish off a fun and exciting week!

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