Madame Paquette

I would like to wish a happy school year to all the students and parents. I’m excited to be teaching French again this year.

Next week, we will be focusing on French Oral Communication which is comprised of Speaking and Listening. For some students, this will be their first time taking French. I will be using the DJ DELF Kit to help the students learn French in a more authentic way. It will be fun and interactive. Throughout the year I will be introducing Reading and Writing. Again, this will be with the help of DJ DELF.

This year, my goal is to help students become more comfortable with Speaking, Listening, Reading, and Writing in French. Please look for me at Meet the Teacher Night.

Early Years

Mrs. Roth and Mrs. Benbow

Hello Families!

We are so excited to have your children in our class this year!  We have had a great start getting to know one another, learning new routines, and welcoming both new and old friends back into the classroom.  This is a new space for many of your children, and are all doing a fantastic job settling in.  As we continue on in the month of September, we will focus on learning each other’s names, as well as how to recognize, spell, and write our names.  This will be accomplished through play, games, small and large group activities, working with manipulatives to build our names, as well as write our names with many different writing tools.  We will also count the number of letters in our names in order to compare the lengths of them and discuss the terms more and less.  Through play based learning, there will be many more learning opportunities that will arise throughout the month.  We will share as many of these new developments as we can through pictures on our class website!

We encourage an open dialogue between families and ourselves.  If at any time you have questions, concerns, or just have something to share, please do not hesitate to contact us!  Thank you for entrusting us with your precious children!


Mrs. Roth and Mrs. Benbow

Ms. Jardine

Welcome to Kindergarten Room 9!

Welcome back to familiar friends and to new friends too! Our friends have grown so much over the summer and I am so happy to see their smiling faces and curious minds back at school for another year in Room 9! Our big buddies are amazing at helping our new “little buddies” settle into our classroom routines, make new friends and to feel comfortable at school. We have explored the school by going on a letter hunt! This month we will learn and practice our classroom routines, familiarize ourselves with the school environment, create a number line and alphabet for our classroom, learn new songs, read new books, and of course, make new friends!

-Ms. Jardine

Grade 1

Maria Borys-Sike

Dear Family,

My name is Mrs. Maria Borys-Sike (pronounced “boris-sheekay”) and I have the honour of being your child’s teacher this year. It is my promise to offer a safe and secure (and happy) environment in which your child may grow and learn. To date we have 20 students though that may change this week with enrollments etc. This year will be an important phase in the academic development of your child.  It is my intention to provide learning experiences that will challenge your child to meet her/his full potential.

  •         A monthly newsletter and a monthly calendar will go home to keep you informed of events as well as our program focus. Please check the information and post these at home for a quick reference. These will also be posted on the classroom website.
  •         I encourage that a pair of indoor shoes remain at school to be worn in class and in the gym. If you do so, please consider Velcro or slip on shoes for quick changes. If your child cannot tie her/his shoes independently, I then ask that lace shoes not be worn to school.
  •         Star Student/Special Me: Each child will have an opportunity to share about her/himself. A name will be drawn each week (beginning mid Sept.) and a sharing bag will go home with information on items to bring and discuss.
  •         Home Reading: The most important educational activity you can do at home is read to and with your child on a regular basis. Sometime in October a Home reading folder will go home with a book selections and a book log to record books. It will go home Mondays and should be returned Fridays. An insert will provide important ideas on how to build reading skills. The book your child brings home will be at her/his instructional level.
  •         Our classroom website! I will have a class website up and running soon where I will post photos, updates, monthly calendars, newsletters etc.

In the next little while you will be receiving an email from Google classroom for you to sign up to receive email updates of posted content on our classroom website. You will be asked to join. You will need to enter your email and password and follow any remaining prompts to receive these updates. As well, I will be sticking a label on your child’s agenda that will have your child’s GAFE email/username and password (DOB: MMDDYYYY format) for you to log onto the classroom website so as to access and view its content. You will need to search “google classroom” and then login accordingly. You will not be able to click the email update to link you to the website, thus you will need to log onto Google Classroom to view content in further detail. The content will include photos of our learning, learning updates and any other tidbits throughout the year for you to catch a glimpse of our learning. Stay tuned!


Mrs. H. Shouftas

Dear Families,

Welcome Back To School! It has been great getting to know you child. So far students have been busy getting to know their classroom and grade 1 routines. We have learned how to use our agendas. Thank you for signing the agenda each day! We have completed an “All About Me” page. Students had fun writing about themselves. They then presented two facts about themselves to the rest of the class. So far, we have read many books and completed activities that go with them. Please read with your child at home each day : )

Thank you for sending in Kleenex boxes. They will come in handy when our little noses start running during the cold season. Also, thank you for sending in a bin for your child. The bin will be kept on top of your child’s hook to house extra clothes and winter items. This keeps our backpacks lighter! If you haven’t done so, please bring in a small bin for your child.

We have had a smooth start to the school year and I look forward to the days ahead! I look forward to meeting all the families at our meet the teacher night!

Mrs. H. Shouftas

Grade 2

Mrs. Gruber

I hope you all had fun and relaxing summer holidays!  I am very excited about teaching Grade 2 this year.  We have spent our first week getting to know each other, our classroom and new routines.  Next week, we will focus on Rules and Community Building.  So far, the class has been doing a wonderful job creating a sense of community in our classroom, hallway, and school.  As some of you may know, our hallway is shared with a Grade 5 class and a Grade 8 class.  The teacher’s have worked out a plan to ensure safe entry and exit procedures and so far it seems to be working well.  Our class has teamed up with Ms. Cater’s Grade 8s to participate in Learning Buddies.  We look forward to doing lots of hands-on, Inquiry-based learning together.  Thank you to those of you who returned the “Getting to Know You” form that I sent home on the first day of school.  Some of you forgot to include your email address on the back.  Could you please ensure that you send that to me as soon as possible either by email or written in your child’s agenda.  I am looking forward to seeing you all at Meet the Teacher night on September 12th.  If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me at the school (519-662-1734) or through email:  Looking forward to a fantastic year!

Ms. Gentile

Thank you for the warm welcome to Holy Family School, I am excited to be here! Our Grade 1 classroom is off to a great start! We  have spent a lot of time learning about the members of our new classroom family. We have read books and brainstormed how to be kind, like Jesus, so we can create a positive classroom environment where friends help each other, share, communicate and show off their gifts. I look forward to inspiring the love of learning this year, please stay tuned to the agenda for ways you can support at home.

Thank you,

Ms. Gentile

Grade 3

Mrs. Rice

Welcome back from hopefully a fun filled summer with family and friends!  I am very excited to be teaching Grade 3 this year at Holy Family Catholic School. This month, we are focused on learning rules and establishing routines in the classroom and school community as well as learning to be contributing students in the classroom and around the school. We are in a portable this year so it is especially important that the students act responsibly and respectfully and they transition from our portable to the school for special activities and washroom breaks. There is lots of learning in math and language that will be happening in our classroom this coming year and the students’ enthusiasm is already over the top! I do appreciate experimenting and exploring through hands on learning and allowing the students opportunities to shine in their own unique ways. We will be starting Paragraph Writing in Language Arts and Place Value in Mathematics, as well as learning procedure in Problem Solving. My goal is to get a Home Reading program established by October.  Mrs Afonso will be teaching the students Music, Drama and Dance as well as Phys-Ed and Health this year. I truly believe in acting as a partner with parents to ensure the children feel successful with their learning. The generosity already shown from families is overwhelming as many have contributed Kleenex, spoons and learning materials to our classroom. All of us in Portable 4 THANK YOU for that! Please feel free to contact me anytime or leave messages in your child’s agenda. I already know that I have an amazing class filled with super special children, and that excites me! On Sept 12th, I look forward to meeting you at the Open House!

Mrs. Schlotzhauer

Welcome Back!! I trust that everyone had some enjoyable summer moments! I am very pleased to be teaching Grade 3 this year and I have also moved, I am now in Portable 2.

We will be starting off the year with making inferences in our reading and sentence structure  with expanding sentences in our writing. The focus in math will be on place value and patterning. We are also going to begin with a science unit on structures and mechanisms.

Our library period will be on Tuesdays, please remember to return books on this day each week.

As far as supplies are concerned, your child should have a pair of running shoes that can be left at school for indoors and physical education periods. He/She should also have a pencil case with a glue stick and some pencil crayons or markers or crayons. A small box of kleenex for his/her desk would also be a good idea. You may also wish to send an extra change of clothes in case of an accident in a labeled bag that may be left at school.

Your child has received an agenda, please review with them on the proper use and care of this very important tool. In order to keep communication open and prompt, please check your child’s front pocket as well as the day page for any important notices, homework or letters from school and return it to school every day with your signature even if there has been nothing recorded or any notes sent home that day. New spelling words will also be added here. I will be checking for your signature and any notes from you on a daily basis.

For those interested I will be doing book orders again on a monthly basis. Please send a cheque payable to Scholastic Canada Ltd. or the correct change along with the order form and don’t forget to add your child’s name to the form.

Our three main class rules are:

  1. Have Respect (self, others, & belongings)
  2. Be Responsible
  3. Focus on Learning

Please refer to the class monthly calendars for special events. Please understand that during the course of a month, dates and events can suddenly change, often on short notice. I will do my best to keep you informed of any changes/additions that may occur after the calendar has been sent home.

I’m looking forward to meeting everyone at our Open House later this month.



Mrs. Schlotzhauer

Grade 4

Ms. Jarvis

Welcome back to another school year at Holy Family School!!! I am super excited to be teaching Grade 4 again this year and starting out in a new location…. Portable 3!

By next week we are going to be diving into curriculum.  Along with establishing routines and expectations in the classroom, we are going to be focusing on a few key areas.

In Writing, our first focus will be on how to write sentences with a strong focus on non-negotiables like capitals, periods and how to organize a page.

In Math, we will be starting with Number Sense and Numeration but throughout the year there will be a strong focus on how to answer multi-step problem solving questions and show our thinking in clear and concise ways.

Our first unit in Social Studies will be about Canada and its Provinces and Territories.

This year my goal is to challenge my students but create an open and loving learning environment with a strong focus this year on celebrating each students strengths.   I can’t wait to meet all of you at Meet the Teacher night on September 12th!!!

Grade 5

Mrs. Kalbfleisch

Another year begins at Holy Family and I am blessed with the chance to teach some terrific individuals beginning Grade 5. This month we will focus on routines in all areas and reminding ourselves of the components of success.

In Language, we will write anecdotally in journals and reflect on the elements of good writing including, the proper use of punctuation and review of the basics such as: periods, commas, capitals and spelling of familiar words.

In Mathematics, we will review and add on to our understanding of addition and subtraction, multiplication and how to effectively communicate both orally and in writing to get our thoughts onto paper.

In Science, we will begin to look at the human body and the system that make us healthy and functioning individuals. This will lead into some healthy living choices in Health and leading an active life in Physical Education.

Thank you for the chance to be a part of your child’s education, I look forward to the year and hope to see you at meet the teacher night on September 12th!

Mrs. Kalbfleisch (Mrs.K)


Grade 6

Ms. Mcleod

Welcome to a new school year! Our first week back together has been lots of fun as we adjust to being in the library for the first little bit! This month as a class, we are focusing on building our classroom (and school) community together, following rules and routines and being kind and respectful.

Within the curriculum we will be focusing on the following things:

Writing: sentences and paragraph

Reading: responding to short stories

Math: length and classifying whole numbers

Art: elements of art

Phys. Ed: cooperative games

Science: biodiversity

Social Studies: Canada’s Interaction with the Global Community in social studies

Thank you to many of  the families for your generosity in sending Kleenex, plastic cutlery and learning materials to our classroom.

Just a friendly reminder to please initial your child’s agenda every night.

Important Dates for September:

Thurs Sept 12- meet the teacher night

Fri Sept 20- PD Day

Thurs Sept 26- Picture Day

Fri Sept 27- Terry Fox Day

Grade 7

Mrs. Hurren

Welcome Back! We are excited to be spending our first couple of weeks together learning about how our classroom will run and celebrating our individuality and the unique gifts that each one of us will contribute this year. We are looking closely at our classroom learning expectations and have put a strong focus on building community and listening to our student voices. Ask your son/daughter to share with you some of our student-created classroom mottos. We are stretching our brains early by having some good conversation around the importance of prayer and are using our daily meditation as a time to slow down and listen to what God is saying to us.

We are eager to get into some serious grade 7 learning, focusing on reviewing reading strategies and descriptive paragraph writing in Language and exploring operations with whole numbers in Math. In our first Science unit we will be exploring life systems – look for more information to come home about designing an ecosystem! Don’t forget to check out our Google Classroom often. Here you will find information about the happenings in our classroom as well as student resources, assignments and due dates.

I look forward to seeing families at our open house on September 12th!

Portable One Shout Outs: ‘Hurren High-Fives’ to all Grade 7’s for falling so quickly into routine – keep up the good work!

Math Challenge: List all of the factors of 48.

Grade 8

Ms. Cater

Ms. Cater’s September Monthly Message

Welcome Back!  I hope everyone had a wonderful and relaxing summer.  I am extremely excited to be back at Holy Family School teaching some wonderful grade 8 students this year!   This promises to be a very busy and exciting school year for the grade 8’s, loaded with many opportunities for academic development, spiritual growth, and social interaction. I encourage and invite all students to get involved!

In September we will focus on classroom routines, organization skills, community building, and respect.  In Language, we will review and practice reading strategies using various texts.  We have also discussed letter writing and the students are currently writing a letter to me.  Grade 8 Math can be very challenging at times, so we will begin in September with a major review of important concepts.  Then we will dive into our number sense unit with a major focus on number patterns and integers.  In Science, we will begin with our “Cells, Tissues, Organs and Systems” unit, learning about plant and animal cells, diffusion, the parts of a microscope, and many other concepts.

A few important reminders:  Please check D2L with your son/daughter on a regular basis, I will post information and assignments on the website often.  Our class community brunch will take place on Thursday, September 12th and I am looking forward to meeting everyone on at Meet the Teacher night!

Special Education

Mrs. Mash

September ~ Special Education

Time for a fresh start!

Welcome back to another school year. Staff are busy collaborating in order to provide your child with the best academic experience possible. For teachers of students on an Individual Education Plan (IEP), that means gathering information in order to develop an education plan for this school year. Parent IEP Consult Forms were sent home on September 5th. Please return the completed form with up to date information by Wednesday, September 18h, 2019. Your input in the development phase of the IEP is valued and important as we begin to plan for your child’s programming. Term 1 IEPs will be sent home on or before Tuesday, October 15th, 2019.  If your child has a Special Equipment Amount (SEA) claim, please ensure that take home privilege forms (if applicable) are submitted to the school before items are brought home. Chromebooks are to be brought back to school each day. These tools are essential to student learning and success. Please ensure that they are fully charged each and every day.

Let’s have a great year!

Mrs. Mash 🙂

Planning Time

Mrs. Afonso-Magolon

News from the desk of Mrs. Afonso-Magolon

Dear Family,

Welcome to the 2019-2020 School Year! I hope you all had a safe and enjoyable summer.  I am sure it flew by, as will this school year. Please be sure to read the letter sent home with your child.


Physical Education & Healthy Living

This month the children will…

  • Learn about the importance of daily physical exercise
  • Focus on following safety rules, listening and following instructions
  • Demonstrate spatial awareness by finding personal spaces
  • Practice and discuss appropriate personal hygiene that promotes personal, family and classroom health

The Arts

This month the children will…

  • Participate and explore the element of shape in dance
  • Follow some simple dances and will use their imagination to find different ways to move to music
  • Share and present a few “Me Bags” per week, so don’t worry if your child talks about it at home and you have not yet received one.  Remind your child they will be getting one soon.  More information about the “Me Bags” will be attached when it is your child’s turn to share.
  • Participate in singing and join in actions to familiar songs and new songs
  • Explore beat in music by playing different games, clapping the beat of a song, marching to the beat and using instruments


Physical Education & Healthy Living

This month the children will…

  • Learn about activities that improve heart and lung health
  • Maximize safety by dressing appropriately, warming up and being aware of personal space
  • Be encouraged to participate vigorously in all cooperative games
  • Perform a variety of locomotor movement without equipment
  • Discuss ways to maintain good health

The Arts

This month the children will…

  • Develop an understanding of role/character by engaging and presenting various drama experiences
  • Be reminded about the importance of voice projection and eye contact when speaking to an audience
  • Sing in unison and use relaxed and controlled breathing when singing
  • Use instruments to play and sing simple songs that reinforce the element of beat


Physical Education & Healthy Living

This month the children will…

  • Learn about the health benefits of being physically active and improved cardiorespiratory fitness
  • Identify factors that contribute to their personal enjoyment of being active
  • Participate actively and share strategies for engaging in cooperative games
  • Maximize safety and describe how to respond to accidents and injuries including concussions.
  • Learn and share about safety guidelines in various situations.  There will be a focus on internet safety.

The Arts

This month the children will…

  • Develop an understanding of role/character by presenting various drama experiences
  • Sing in unison and in tune songs from a variety of cultures
  • Keep the beat to various types of music and use symbols to represent sounds


Mrs. Afonso-Magolon


From Mrs. Valant’s Desk

First of all, I want to express how happy and excited I am to be back for another great year here at Holy Family!

This year I will be teaching Ms. Jardine’s JK/SK class, Mrs. Shouftas’ Gr. 1 class and Ms. Sike’s Gr. 1 class. I will be responsible for instruction in Physical Education, Drama, Music and Dance.

Some important things to remember:

*Students need a pair of indoor running shoes (and ideally a pair of outdoors too!) to participate safely during activities in the gym and also out on the school yard. Ballet flats, crocs, flip flops or fashion boots are not acceptable or safe forms of footwear during Phys. Ed. classes either in the gym, on the school yard, or on the creative playground.

*If a student is unable to tie his/her shoes independently, velcro, curly laces, etc. are necessary as laces that continually untie on their own are a safety hazard for your son or daughter, as well as for those boys and girls who are also participating actively in our class.

*Students are encouraged to wear comfortable clothing for our scheduled Phys. Ed. classes.

Phys. Ed. days scheduled in the gym are:

Ms. Jardine’s JK/SK class: Tuesdays and Thursdays

Mrs. Shouftas’ Gr. 1 class: Mondays and Tuesdays

Ms. Sike’s Gr. 1 class: Tuesdays and Wednesdays

Phys. Ed.

Our focus this month will be to learn how to use our bodies safely in our gym space (proximity to one another), to be mindful of those around us.

We will engage in more cooperative games so that the children learn how to listen to and follow instructions to ensure their understanding of an activity and to ensure their safety and the safety of their classmates.

The Arts

During the next month, our focus will be on Music and Dance as they compliment each other very well.

In Music, we will:

  • experiment with instruments and movement, and learn how the beat can change from one piece of music to the next, ie. music can speed up or slow down, some songs are quicker and some songs are slower
  • recognize how the beat is consistent and does not change (like a heart beat or ticking of a clock)
  • learn and identify the difference between beat (consistent) and rhythm (follows the notes or lyrics to a piece of music).

In Dance, we will:

  • learn and demonstrate creative and different ways we can move various parts of the body during dance
  • Use the Groove Method to learn about levels (high, medium, low) and space (use of body to make big or small movements) in creative movement
  • recognize how beat and tempo influence how we move to a piece of music (graceful hands, heavy feet, etc.)

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me at the school at 519-662-1734.

It’s going to be a great year!


Mrs. Valant

Music – Ms. Kroetsch

Dear Families,

Welcome Back! I hope you have all had a wonderful start to the school year so far! I am excited to be returning to Holy Family as the Intermediate Music Teacher for 2019-2020.  Music classes for grade 7 and 8’s are on Friday mornings for the duration of the 2019 – 2020 school year.

As a music educator, I am very excited to have an opportunity to share a music classroom with your son or daughter this year.  Our first few months will focus on rhythmic awareness through djembe drumming activities, as well as exploration of time signatures, rhythmic composition, ear training and above all – a clear awareness of how to participate as an effective and contributing member of a classroom music community.  We will also continue to explore staff notation in preparation for the band program.

As part of the music curriculum, the intermediate band program will run from November 14th until the end of January.  At this time, students will receive music lessons twice a week on one of the four instruments provided by our school board (trumpet, trombone, flute and clarinet).  More information about this program will follow later in the year as we approach the beginning of band.  Should you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me at your child’s school, or through school board email.  I look forward to a year of new music adventures and learning here at Holy Family.


Ms. Kroetsch – Intermediate Itinerant Music

Principal’s Message

Welcome to another year at Holy Family, the home of the Guardians!

First off, I would like to offer my thanks to our custodial staff, Mr. McPhate and Mrs. Gromeder for their work over the summer to have the school in perfect shape for the return of the students and staff. Mrs. Mauer has been working hard to make the school start up smooth and stress free. She continues to organize the student registration documents to ensure our students safety and effective home communication. Hopefully your child(ren) experienced a calm and organized first day. This is in no small part to their teachers and ECE’s who have been working in the school over the last few weeks to plan and prepare for their arrival.

We continue to grow! Our current enrolment is 326 students.   We have added a fourth JK/SK classroom and will see a portable arrive sometime in October. We have a few new staff members. Mrs. McClory and Mrs. Roth are joining the JK/SK team, Mrs. Brockelbank is with us until March as a Planning time teacher and Mrs. Mitchell has joined us for a month and a half as an Educational Assistant.

The year ahead offers many exciting opportunities for our students; both in the class and out. Holy Family has a solid foundation of academic success and student engagement. It is our goal to always look forward and seek ways to improve our students’ school experience. We know that the world changes quickly and the skills and knowledge students require for the future is ever evolving.   We will focus on innovation, problem solving, building social and emotional skills as well as strengthening our student’s numeracy skills and ability to acquire information, form opinions and communicate their thinking.

I encourage each of you to have daily conversations with your child about what they have learned at school. Ask to see their work to understand who they are a reader and writer and how they are improving throughout the year.  Research shows that parent and teacher communication increases student achievement. Ask your child’s teacher about assignments. Ask your child to bring home their notebooks, class work and assignments. This will give you a good indication of their use of class time, organization and quality of work. Inquire about their learning skills; Independent work, problem solving, initiative, Responsibility, collaboration, self regulation and organization.  These are often indicators of current and future success.

It is with pride and excitement that we continue to have families seek out Holy Family to provide a faith based education for their children. This is the fundamental purpose of the separate school system. With the leadership of Father Steven will continue our monthly masses and adoration of the Eucharist. Please feel free to join us. One way to promote and ensure the legacy of Catholic Education continues is to make sure our students see the influence and importance of their faith each day. They will be the future generation to continue and support the Catholic School System. When asking what they have learned in school, include how they practiced and experienced their faith and what they learned in religion class.

These monthly messages are one way we as a staff seek to encourage and increase home school communication.  Please ask your child’s classroom teacher questions and bring forward concerns as they arise.   I encourage you to follow us on twitter – @hfsnewshamburg and keep up to date on important messages and dates through our school web site.

I look forward to an exciting year.


Vic Longo