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Two Oxford County schools help launch Education Week activities

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Two Oxford County schools are getting ready to launching Education Week in their districts.

Emily Stowe Public School in Norwich will be launching education week for the Thames Valley District School Board (TVDSB) Monday with an assembly while St. Mary's Catholic High School will kick off Catholic education week for the London District Catholic School Board (LDCSB) with their Spirit Awards.

Lisa Munro, principal of Emily Stowe, said the school's morning assembly will celebrate innovation in learning.

"What we're trying to do as a school - and as a board as well - is to be innovative in our teaching and learning practices," Munro said. "For example, we use an inquiry-based learning approach and that's sort of the way people do business, if you look into Google and some big companies. That's how we're prepping students for their careers in the 21st century."

Munro added the school is trying to use technology as a form of creation, with some students demonstrating their learning through iMovie and creating their own "TED" talks.

Emily Stowe is also going to be visited by authors Lee Edward Fodi, the author of The Chronicles of Kendra Kandlestar series, and Michael Ulmer, the author of M is for Maple, while all students and staff dress as their favourite storybook characters or as their dream careers.

The students of Emily Stowe are excited for the upcoming week, Munro said, as they have been preparing hard to showcase learning in their school for the TVDSB at the assembly.

"I think we celebrate every day that we're in school," Munro said. "But I think, like everything, this is an opportunity to showcase learning and bring it to a forefront and formally celebrate."

Paul Lamoureux, principal at St. Mary's, said Monday night's Spirit Awards will honour students who exemplify the seven traits expected of the Catholic graduate.

"(It's) that they live up to our board's motto and our board's vision," Lamoureux said. "So inspired Christ, learning together (and) serving together - are they living out that?"

St. Mary's has nominated Deijanelle Simon, a Grade 12 student, for the Spirit Award for St. Mary's.

The Catholic education week this year has a theme of exploring paths of joy, with each day having a significant saying.

"The first day is walking together and sharing stories," Lamoureux said. "The second day talks about "¦ exploring paths of joy. The sixth looks at welcoming others to the table. The seventh recognizes Jesus and the breaking of the bread, and the last day is just proclaiming the good news.

"So each day in our school system we have days designated to live out those messages," Lamoureux added.

Lamoureux said this is the first time St. Mary's has hosted the Spirit Awards, which he said is an honour.

"It's an honour because you have everyone from London coming to visit you," he said. "We've always had to travel to London or the surrounding areas, now everyone from London is coming to visit us. So we're preparing our house. We're getting the decorations, we're going to have food, music and entertainment, and we're opening our building to everyone.

"I'm excited because I want to showcase St. Mary's. I want to show everyone what the best-kept secret is all about."

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