Wait what? Week 3 already?

Holy guacamole, it’s week three already?! This week, we were hard at work continuing our lessons on Physical Health and Mental Health, with a special focus on  substances use and abuse including cigarettes, drugs, inhalant and alcohol, as well a bullying!

We started off the week with some great lessons on bullying in the primary classes. By now, we’ve become quite well acquainted with the students at Ikusik, who simply love laughing with us and, of course, at us, both during our lessons and outside of classes. In the last two weeks teaching at Ikusik we’ve learned that while students may eagerly call out our names on the streets, in the supermarket (the Co-op), or in the halls, it isn’t always so simple to get their attention in the classroom, and we have found ourselves having to be quite creative in our teaching strategies and activities.

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No Bully Bingo!

For our bullying lesson, for example, in the primary classes we learned all about the “don’ts” of physical, verbal, social and cyber bullying and all about the “do’s” of refusing and reporting bullying through skits and scenarios. Although yours truly’s acting chops may not have been Oscar worthy, the skits certainly made the students laugh, and hopefully encouraged them to recognize, refuse and report bullying situations that are occurring around them. We also kept students interested through the promise of an exciting “No-Bully Bingo” at the end of the lesson. This special edition of Bingo featured various terms that we had learned during our bullying lesson, and students LOVED learning and revising terms this way.

As for our lessons on substance use and abuse, your P.E.s felt particularly inspired and decided to invent a board game. Okay, okay, so it may not be the next Monopoly… or be played at your next family game night… but (!!) it certainly kept the students in Salluit learning and entertained! The way it worked is that students, divided in teams of 2-3 rolled a dice, moved their pawn the corresponding number of tiles, and then answered the question on that tile. These questions addressed various myths and facts on cigarettes, drugs, inhalants and alcohol consumption, and their effect on one’s body, social life, and overall physical and mental wellbeing.

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Hard at work on our board game for our lesson on substances!

Every once in a while, teams would land on “special tiles” that would ask them to respond to hypothetical scenarios, and even to learn and practice the recovery position! We also ensured that the “tiles” could be modified so as to accommodate the various age groups, concerns and needs. For example, the “junior” edition of our game (grades 5 and 6) has a stronger focus on smoking, while the “high school” edition includes questions more closely tied to alcohol and drug use. Overall, the game was a great success! Our only issue? We still don’t have a name for it! If any of our readers, family members, friends, fans (!) are feeling creative, we’d love your help in naming our game!

On Tuesday, it so happened that we weren’t signed up for any classes in the afternoon. We quickly turned that frown upside down and decided that we should use this time (and one of the rare no-snow-storm-days) to head out and explore the mountains surrounding Salluit. We hiked for a few hours: just enough to explore, not quite enough to get lost! In fact, we made sure that we always kept the water in sight so that we could find our way home. Tired after a long hike, we showered quickly and made our way back to Ikusik for 6:00, for an evening of basketball, volleyball and hockey. The teachers were hosting their parent-teacher night and many parents and students were invited to participate in sports and play games. While one P.E (not saying who) may have been slightly more skilled than the other (okay, okay, we’ll come clean… Emily is definitely the superior athlete), playing sports was another great way to bond with the students!

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On Thursday, in addition to having a great day teaching, we also held our very first girls night! The event included baking (healthy carrot cupcakes with maybe not so healthy – and very, very green – frosting) , crafts and jewelry making. Funnily enough, the girls at Ikusik insisted that Thomas was more than welcome to participate in girls’ night given his long luscious locks.

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What is more, it seems Thomas had come to Salluit prepared with a special girls night playlist on his iPod which featured a little S Club 7, a little Aqua, and a whole lot of T-Swift, which the girls loved. It was a really great evening of fun and laughter, and we were lucky to be joined by many teachers! We really look forward to hosting another G.N.I (girls night in) and boys night in the coming weeks!


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On Friday, we finished off the week right with another great visit to the Boys Rehab Centre! As usual, we were impressed by the boys’ questions and interest in our lesson on substance use and abuse. We had great fun teaching and playing our game and look forward to a great lesson on sexual health and healthy relationships with them next week.

Well… that’s a wrap friends! We are excited for another great week here in Salluit!

Thomas and Emily

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