PGB isn’t just loved by our students. Our classroom teachers, principals and administrators all sing its praises. They see the many benefits of the program and how it enhances their overall curriculum. Here are just a few samplings of the things that some of them had to say.
Karen Tanod is a grade 4 teacher at Montcrest, where she has taught for the past 15 years. This is her second year hosting the program and she is an avid fan. Karen feels that Grade 4 is the perfect for grade to introduce PGB. It teaches many integral skills for the first time, such as public speaking. It’s also an age when students start to think outside of themselves and come to a better understanding of how different life may be for others. When asked what she enjoys most about the program, she responded, “I love how it is driven by the students own interest or it may becomes so, even without them realizing it.” She also enjoys the follow up discussion component of each lesson, where students have the opportunity to both ask and answer questions. “The discussion captures what the program is truly about.” It gives students the opportunity to reflect upon what they have learned and relate to how it applies to themselves.
Pam Segal is currently a grade 6 teacher at Allenby PS. She experienced the program for many years while she taught grade 5. Pam misses the opportunity of having the program in her class. “I wish I could continue the program with my Gr 6 students!” The thing Pam enjoyed most about the program was the opportunity for her students to experience what is being taught through the various activities. She recalled a former student teaching about a parent’s illness, which, at the time, was directly affecting this student’s family life. Pam saw how deeply the significance of this “real” experience was felt by her students and the impact that it made upon them all. As Pam fondly recounted, “It’s the lessons that carry on outside the classroom which make this program so special.”
Jill Block is the lower school principal at WillowWood School, where PGB has been running for the past four years. She loves that PGB gives students a sense of being part of a community and seeing beyond that community. “The program is multilayered,” she says. “It’s not just about academic insight. This program teaches things that are intangible, like inclusion, understanding others and embracing differences.” Many of these philosophies are reflected in WillowWood’s own vision, along with that of many other schools.
If there is a common thread among all these views, it’s the notion that this program enriches the curriculum across a variety of different school settings and school types; for its appeal is truly universal. Regardless of the student’s grade, background or academic ability, all students are enriched by these inspiring lessons that teach the fundamentals of compassion, kindness and humanity.
We give them all an A plus!