Wellness During the Covid-19 Crisis - by Grace

I am going back and forth on how I feel about the Covid crisis. It’s controversial. I know it doesn't seem like it, but it is, for different people and different perspectives. It’s different from anything else we have endured in the past because a war is at least more black and white, for some, meaning war was generally known as brutally awful. For me, a fifteen year old white girl who is relatively living comfortably during this time, brutally awful is not the feeling that comes to mind. For healthcare workers it definitely might be, or for people vulnerable or suffering from coved, but for the majority of us we are not necessarily “suffering” from this in particular. Now I say “in particular” because heck, we are humans, we always find a way to struggle. As a matter of fact, going back now, the Covid crisis is exactly what some of the population NEEDED. To slow down, to rest. The planet needed this, that’s for sure, and are thanking us every day with every sunshine inst

How I've Been Doing School - by Bella

Hi. I’m Bella, I’m 14 years old, and I go to Blue Sky School. But let’s back-track a bit. I was homeschooled until I was 12, then I went to public school for grade 7, and ended up pulling out within the first semester. This was in 2017. Then I went back to being homeschooled up until October 2018, when I found Blue Sky, and I’ve been here ever since. But now that schools around the world are closed or closing due to COVID-19, I’ve been doing online school. It’s kind of full-circle. Anyway, this is what an average online school day looks like for me. My hours:  On an average week, I do school through Google Meets on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 10am to 3:40pm. During these days I do what we normally do in person, because we’ve tried to translate as much of our in-person program to online. We have morning house meetings, independent work time (when we work on our goals or missions), lunch, numeracy, literacy and end-of-day house meeting. This is a pretty normal Blue Sky da

Looking for the Helpers - by coach B

Back in my day, school bathrooms were not the most inspiring of places. I think back in horror to the foul and inconsiderate things my peers would do to vandalize the bathrooms. The ceilings of my elementary school bathroom were caked with wet toilet paper balls (think: giant spitballs) and the walls were scraped and littered with writing. It was so chaotic and messy, that I recall being scared to go to the bathroom alone. Thankfully, things look a little different in the bathroom stalls at Blue Sky School. Every teacher and parent cherishes a bathroom break, but for me, there’s something particularly special about being surrounded by the graffitied walls at Blue Sky. The bathroom walls, “vandalized” with positive, uplifting, and encouraging messages, are a daily reminder of the values and habits that Karen and Shauna, our co-founders, have instilled in our learners. These little stalls are a microcosm of the work Karen and Shauna have tirelessly put into creating a culture that cel

Similarities of Tae Kwon-Do students and Blue Sky learners

I have been at Blue Sky School for a little over a year, and it has recently come to my attention that the core skills of Tae Kwon-Do and Blue Sky overlap in many ways. In Tae Kwon-Do, there are the five values, or as we call them, Tenets. The Tenets of Tae Kwon-Do are; Courtesy, Integrity, Perseverance, Self-Control, Indomitable Spirit At Blue Sky School, we also have values, or Ideals. We believe that the ultimate Learner will show all of these. The ideals of Blue Sky School are; Kindness, Curiosity, Responsibility  At first, you might not think that these overlap, but once we get into dissecting them, they all work together to create the best learner there can be. First, let’s tackle Courtesy . This one was the easiest to dissect for me. First of all, it’s a direct synonym for Kindness, as seen on Courtesy and Kindness can also be shown in very similar ways. In Tae Kwon-Do, courtesy is shown by saying ‘Yes Sir/Ma’am’, and standing straight with hands be

TEDx Conference Part 2 (Will's Part)

Top Ten Best Moments - Part 2 “Grace and Will at the conference” Intro The Power of a Dime - Frank O’Dea (Will) The first speaker to take the stage was co-founder of Second Cup and Officer of the Order of Canada Frank O’Dea. He started off his speech by talking about his youth and how he used to be homeless in Toronto. He said that it was a rough and sometimes violent existence. He shared about his drinking problems when he was homeless, saying that he would panhandle with his buddies trying to get enough for a bottle of wine and talking about what they would do tomorrow, “Tomorrow I’ll get a job, Tomorrow I’ll quit drinking, Tomorrow I’ll call my family” then having to choose whether or not to sleep inside or out. He finally realized that he had two choices, “Die or change.” That’s when he thought about an ad he heard in a shop that was about alcoholism that kept repeating a phone number. He went to the nearest payphone a

Important People in Suits Talking About Canada (Political Debate) - by Kiara

This debate, and politics as a whole, are serious business. But, seeing as I’m not a very serious person, I feel like it’s only fair that we get to make light of it. Now, I know that the title say that they were talking about Canada, and they sort of were, but it was really just a bunch of children that were piloting mechs shaped like business people arguing about who was the best. I’m not saying that normally, they’re not great, but the fact that Scheer and Trudeau couldn’t get over the fact that OH NO THEY WERE BOTH THERE kind of speaks for itself. I feel so sorry for the poor moderators. The day after the debate took place, we had a big discussion about it, and how each party leader carried themselves- specifically about what made each party special. Like I said before, politics are very serious, but after watching the debate recap, it was really hard to believe that those are the people in charge. It was funny, but filled me with an existential dread, and everytime

Waste-Free Shopping Excursion

How long does it usually take you to do your groceries? This past Sunday, it took us five hours and four different stops to get our groceries done! In this blog post I will share about starting phase two of my waste-free journey, purchasing zero-waste grocery products, and some big struggles we faced so far. This weekend when we were planning our meals for the week, we realized that while we are going waste-free we could simultaneously be supporting small local businesses. We started looking online for some kind of farmers market and we realized that there are quite a few in the Ottawa area. The one that ended up being most convenient for us was the Lansdowne farmers’ market, so we decided to try it! Then came Sunday, the day we tend to go shopping, and it was pouring rain but we went shopping regardless. We drove to the farmers’ market and when we got there we realized it was an outdoor market. It took a lot of will power but we got out of the car and did our groceries in the pour