BHPA Events

Speaker Series

We want to hear from you!

Throughout each school year, at monthly council meetings and special events, Balmoral Hall Parent Association (BHPA) hosts a series of speakers who will inspire, educate, and motivate our school community.

If you or someone you know is interested in speaking to us, please contact us at bhpapresident@balmoralhall.ca.

Interviews with Past Speakers & News Archive

    • Zac Chase (October 19, 2018)

List of 4 news stories.

  • Grade 3 students at FortWhyte Alive (April 2019)

    MRS. MITCHELL'S SPOTLIGHT ON EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING

    By Elsebeth Kriening, BHPA Communications Chair

    On April 25, 2019, Balmoral Hall Parent Association (BHPA) was fortunate to listen to a presentation by Grade 3 Teacher Emily (Quinton) Mitchell '11. Emily shared how Balmoral Hall School's grades 3 to 5 educators have leveraged the resources available at FortWhyte Alive to create authentic learning experiences for their students.

    Emily began by showing attendees some photos of Grade 5 students from their fall experiential days, which focused on a weather unit, as well as photos from their recent spring experiential day. The focus of the latter changes from year to year, depending on the topic of May's Grade 5 Exhibition, and this year they explored environmental sustainability.

    As part of an energy unit, Grade 4 students created musical instruments out of items in the FortWhyte forest, with the goal of mimicking sounds heard in nature. Emily stated that she is consistently amazed by what our girls come up with. In the winter, the Grade 4s gain a practical understanding of different aspects of the rock cycle using water, snow, and ice. This helps them make several connections within a rocky landscape unit. By spring, they are studying the circle of life, a unit which focuses on birds. As FortWhyte is home to 160 different species, our Grade 4s make multiple visits. Their latest trips were particularly exciting. On the first day, the girls made nests for various biomes; small ones were placed in trees and larger ones on the ground. When they returned the next day, there were geese using one of their nests in the field!
     
    In Grade 3, our girls go to FortWhyte Alive five times: twice in the fall, and three times in the spring.

    The first visits focus on education within a home sweet home unit, with an emphasis on Indigenous perspectives. Students spend time in a teepee, listening to Indigenous stories, learning about the Seven Sacred Teachings, and playing Indigenous games. Emily shared how impactful it is for our girls to have this experience – how it deepens their understanding of how teepees are made, why different ones are built in various parts of Canada, and what the etiquette is for entering and walking inside them. They also go to see FortWhyte's bison, an animal that is sacred and respected by Indigenous peoples. Another highlight is free time in the forest, during which students can explore, play games, and pick up items that they have questions about.

    By April, the Grade 3s are immersed in a unit in which plants and soils figure prominently. During a trip to FortWhyte Alive in early April, our girls went on a nature walk to look for signs of insects, made insect homes, and went critter-dipping. They learned about various trees growing on the property and how they adapt to changing seasons. Aspens, for example, create a white powder that is a natural sunscreen. Students were also invited to try tree coring to see how old some of the specimens in the FortWhyte forest are.

    Read More
  • Dr. S. Trepel at Balmoral Hall School, February 21, 2019

    "SEDUCED BY SCREENS" — WHAT WE CAN DO

    By Elsebeth Kriening, BHPA Communications Chair

    February 21, 2019, Balmoral Hall Parent Association (BHPA) welcomed Dr. Simon Trepel, MD, FRCPC, to our school. Dr. Trepel is an expert on social media, smartphone, and video game addiction amongst children and teens.

    In the 1980s and 1990s, young people were outside for about 18 hours a week. Today, kids interact with nature less than seven hours per week. Many of them prefer being on a screen to any other activity. Some have three devices going at the same time! In 2005, the average age of exposure was 4 years old; by 2013, it was 4 months. A study conducted in 2016 determined that 92% of 1-year-olds had used a mobile device. Nowadays, 50–60% of 4-year-olds have a TV in their bedroom and own a tablet or a mobile device. Teens send 30–100 texts for at least one hour daily. The majority of North American youth spend more time on screens than sleeping, eating, going to school, or spending time with family and friends. Is there anything parents can do to reverse this trend? Or, is this "progress"?

    Read More
  • Mrs. Kellie Damphousse, Parent Association President, and Dr. Michelle Warren (November 2018)

    COMING TOGETHER TO SUPPORT STUDENTS' WELL-BEING

    By Maria Mathwig, Guidance Counsellor

    I would like to personally thank Balmoral Hall Parent Association (BHPA) for the wonderful presentation they organized for our school community on the topic of anxiety and children with Dr. Michelle Warren on November 1, 2018. As the new guidance counsellor this year at Balmoral Hall, I have a specific interest in mental health advocacy and promotional mental health programming. I believe equipping students with the skills they require in order to navigate life stressors with resiliency is one of our most important goals as educators.

    Dr. Warren normalized anxiety as something that we all deal with from time to time, highlighting that an anxiety disorder is when the anxiety starts to represent a repeated pattern that gets in the way of follow through with our normal activities.

    Some key points for supporting children and youth with anxiety shared in Dr. Warren’s presentation were as follows.
    • Ensuring that accurate information is provided to the people who interact with students the most (parents and teachers).
    • Equipping parents with parenting strategies that promote normal development and build independence (limiting reinforcement of avoidance).
    • Using mindfulness (awareness of the present moment and of our thought patterns) and centring practices.
    • Seeking out support using cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) strategies.
    Read More
  • Brenley Shapiro of Heads Up High Performance at Balmoral Hall, January 2018.

    HOW WE CAN INSPIRE GREATNESS

    By Jennifer Pawluk, Communications Specialist

    Brenley Shapiro, a Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist and Certified Mental Game Coach with Heads Up High Performance, based in Toronto, Ont., shared her insights for strong, powerful, and productive thinking with members of the school community last month as part of a series of workshops scheduled at Balmoral Hall throughout Wellness Week, January 29 to February 2, 2018.

    Her lunch-and-learn workshop with parents and faculty reflected the theme, "Inspiring Greatness," whether inspiring greatness from within or inspiring greatness within others. All participants gained valuable insights and understanding with respect to the role that mindset plays in generating success, as well as the key features involved in developing that mindset and breaking down barriers that impede it.

    Such was the focus of her talks with Middle and Senior School students, as well.
    Read More
Archive

Balmoral Hall School

Our mission at Balmoral Hall School is to inspire girls' imagination and courage to excel, to reach, to lead, to care.

We are a day and boarding school, offering an exceptional educational experience to girls aged 2 through Grade 12.