Our School Goals – 2022/2023


This is our Framework for Enhancing Student Learning School Plan
 2022-2023. (A Plan is required by the Ministry of Education for every school in British Columbia.)

“Q’shintul/Mill Bay Nature School – is moving into its fifth year – presently for children ages 4 to 12,
and growing to include 12 to14 year olds – situated in the Warm Land of the Cowichan Valley – the beautiful, traditional, and unceded territory of the Hulq’umi’num’ People who have lived in this place for 10,000 years. We have taken root – over the past four years of our enactment – in a developing relationship with the Cowichan, Malahat, and Penelakut Peoples – walking together with our Elders-in-Residence Tousilum and Sulsa’meethl George – and seek to co-create an equitable place that honours the natural rhythms of this place, the lessons learned over millennia, and the structures of a Village (community) that centres, honours, and ultimately serves the Xe’ Xe’ Smune’em – our sacred children. We enact the First Peoples Principles of Learning because they reflect the natural rhythms of a healthy, sustainable ecosystem – and we see this in the development of children with strong voices, respectful hearts, and flexible, thoughtful minds who are known and know others – even as they struggle with and learn from diverse ways of being and seeing and knowing. The staff is committed to an emergent curriculum which flows from provocations, questions, challenges, and the living of life in a community of people; they may begin in the mind of a child, an adult, or a Hulq’umi’num’ elder. An attention to emergence requires nimble and agile responsiveness, and a willingness to walk together – Q’shintul – as we discover and learn. The staff are also encouraged to develop Core Competencies (described in the B.C. Curriculum) within themselves and the children: critical, creative and reflective thinking; personal development; social understanding and engagement; and robust, expansive communication skills – because we know how critical these are for lifelong engagement in an ever-changing, unpredictable world. At Mill Bay Nature School, learning is intentionally embedded ineverything we do – Clan organization, loose parts, schedules, activities, field studies, rhythms, experiences, inside and outside design, Village meetings, fundraising, and on and on – and we invite each one to take up a spirit of playfulness and inquiry whilst knowing (through research) that deep abiding relationships precede a willingness to take risks, step out of our comfort zones, and try new things. Our morning soft-starts have a feeling of a family reunion, and our restorative justice circles (always-in-the-making) end with a movement towards forgiveness – blowing the problem away even as we own what we did to another. We like being together here; it’s hard, muddy work, invigorating, messy, and inspiring.”  (Continue reading below)

MBNS – School Goals – 2022-2023