CEO Message for Teacher Appreciation Week 2022

This year marks my return to the classroom as a teacher for the first time in… well, let’s say it’s been a while. Currently, I am teaching an online class to 15 students who opted for this course. The students, who range in age from 9 to 16, are culturally diverse and are even dispersed along the gender spectrum. Firstly, I had forgotten what it was like to interact with such a diverse group and how varied the personalities and interests are. I had previously taught high school English for over 12 years, and I loved most every moment, but as I
teach this online class, I remember how drained I often felt at the end of the day, and I was much younger then. Beyond the preparation for the class and the actual physical demands of teaching a class, being aware and sensitive and responsive to young and inquisitive minds takes something out of a teacher. It is undoubtedly exhilarating at times, frustrating at others, and certainly puzzling at others. Any teacher who has not asked themselves at some point why they are doing this to themselves is lucky. Teaching requires a wide range of skills and qualities I don’t believe are required in most any other vocation, and teaching is most definitely a vocation. If you don’t love teaching, you really shouldn’t be anywhere near a classroom.

Of course, teaching online means even more preparation, more skills, and heightened communication skills. Part-time technology fiend, social media specialist, subject matter expert, communications guru, teaching online is not for the faint of heart. And it is not for all teachers, even though most were pushed into the virtual classroom during the pandemic. Many realised this online setting did not suit them, or they were not able to adapt to the different requirements.

Somehow, and almost miraculously, the teachers who are part of the LEARN Virtual Campus make it look and feel like they have been doing this for a long time (and yes, I am aware that they have been, but it is not polite of me to mention this). While it may appear to the uninitiated as effortless, it is nothing of the sort. The LEARN teachers are excellent, not by chance, not by circumstance, but as a result of hard work, dedication, and a commitment to excellence. Moreover, they are engaged in continuous professional learning and they are models for teachers everywhere.

I salute them all. I thank them for their love of their students and the devotion they bring to each class. Nothing of this quality is accomplished without the requisite love and devotion. Well done, team, and congratulations!

Michael J. Canuel, Ed.D.

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We’re so happy to welcome you to the Virtual Campus!

Enjoy our 10th Annual teacher welcome video, a Virtual Campus tradition.

Teacher Carpool Karaoke
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Grateful Memories of Times Together

Happy Teacher Appreciation!

I am so grateful to work with positive, brilliant, professional, hard-working, and very FUN people at LEARN. Thank you to the Dream Team for all that you do for our students AND for each other!

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Out of this World CEO Message for Teacher Appreciation Week 2021

LEARN Intergalactic CEO Log:  Star Date 022021

I am a galactic explorer with a home base here on Earth, and I just returned from Mars last week.  Wow!   So much has changed since I left last January; in fact, I find myself a little confused and disoriented now.  For example, I still can go to the Depanneur or Home Depot; however, I cannot go after 20:00, and I might not be able to buy non-essentials like underwear or shoes.  The good news though is that vodka is still in ample supply.  I confess that after a year of abstinence, a cold Stolly is most welcome.  The sad news is that everyone is wearing a mask, or most everyone, and everyone has to keep a certain 6 feet of distance.  Hospitals are overflowing, and morticians are doing a booming business. 

The biggest surprise is that teachers almost everywhere are now teaching online, but it is being called Emergency Remote Teaching, ERT.  Actually, most of these teachers have never taught online before, nor have they any idea really of how it can be done effectively. 

Luckily for them, for students and for parents, the team of intrepid educators at this organization called LEARN have come to the rescue.  The people there have been teaching online now for ages, but more importantly they have been doing it in an exceptional fashion.  Students are engaged and motivated, and they succeed on so many levels while developing 21st Century competencies.  These LEARN teachers are models, exemplars, and just darn good people.  I can attest to this because both parents and students have written to tell them so.  Many teachers look to them for guidance and support, and they always deliver.   I can tell you I did not find any like them on Mars, or in between, even on some of the asteroid belts which were a real pain to navigate.  I have secretly observed what they are doing these days, and I am taking notes because not only are they working hard, but they seem to be having fun.  Their hard work and fun show up in their interactions in their online classes, and when I lurk in the background as they have their Twitter Chats, I can see how these educators/teachers are devoted and empathetic and maybe just a little crazy (but the good sort of crazy)!  

I plan on going to the dark side of the Sun soon, and I can assure you that I will tell everyone there about the LEARN Virtual Campus teachers and how they are stars in their own galaxies, that they shine bright, that they are blazing forth into a future made better by their work, and that I am honoured to have moved through their cosmic dust.

Space ship drawing

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Happy Teacher Appreciation Week 2021

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Welcome 2020 Virtual Campus Students!

Click to view the welcome video from your teachers!

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What you’ve been waiting for: Appreciation messages from your students!

Click on image for Teacher Appreciation FlipGrid!
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In honour of Teacher Appreciation Week…

Dropping in on your classes, hearing you talk with care about your students, discussing new ideas for your courses, chit-chatting in Slack, and seeing you interact on Twitter, etc… All of those things make me feel a certain way… Like having a dance party!

Is this what Florida Geogebra was like, Audrey?

Happy Teacher Appreciation Week! Dianne

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Appreciation from Kristine

Dear Audrey, Kerry, Natalie, Peggy, Stephanie & Dianne,

Although you know how much I love words, they seem inadequate at the moment to express my appreciation for each of you and what you do. As educators, you excel at supporting your students in their lives and their learning. As colleagues, you have mastered the art of collaboration, open-mindedness, experiential learning and patience 🙂 I value you, I treasure you and I am grateful to work with you daily.

Short and sweet. In the words of Shakespeare… well sort of:

Thanks; all the rest is mute.

xo K

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Teacher Appreciation from Michael

Once again this year I was invited to say a word to our online teachers in recognition of their outstanding work, dedication, and professionalism.  I was asked to comment on how they are an asset not only to our organization, LEARN, but to all of our English community of Quebec.  It was also suggested that I mention how beyond their work as exceptional educators, they were simply and undoubtedly good people who really enjoy what they do and that together with the entire Virtual Campus team, they make up a formidable ensemble worthy of the title, “Dream Team”. 

But to be honest,  I could think of nothing more than just one word.  Thanks.

Disclaimer: All above suggestions are Michael’s own. 😉
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