On February 2, there were robot pictures all over E.G. Wahlstrom Elementary School in Slave Lake.
“The buzz was everywhere,” says principal Kristoffer Herbert.
On February 8, a robot voice made an announcement on the loudspeaker and students got a bag with all of the letters of the book title. As a class, they solved the mystery of the book that all of them would be reading over the next month. At the end of the day, each student and every staff member received their own copy of The Wild Robot by Peter Brown.
The pictures, and other hype were part of the lead-up to ‘Two Schools, One Book.’ This is the second year that E.G. Wahlstrom has done this literacy project. This includes fun quizzes, prizes, and assignments to do with the book.
“We’re upping it a notch,” says Herbert. Instead of one school. This year, there are two schools involved. École Routhier School in Falher is on board.
The schools are on opposite sides of the High Prairie School Division. E.G. Wahlstrom (east) has Grade 3 to 6 and École Routhier (west) has K to 6. At both schools, there are activities and reading each day. Once a week, classes meet virtually with partner classes at the other school.
“It’s kind of neat,” says Herbert. There are similarities and differences between the two communities. Falher is a French farming community and some of the classes are French immersion.
The main industries in Slave Lake are forestry and oil and gas.
Two Schools, One Book runs February 8 to March 11. Last year, the Town of Slave Lake mayor, Icedogs hockey players, and other community members came into classes to read a chapter. This year, the hope is to do something similar, but virtually.