Pictured L to R: Merrie-Rae Mitsopoulos, FMPSD; Alma Abugov, MindFuel; Cassy Weber, CEO, MindFuel; Fort McMurray Mayor, Don Scott; Kerry Barwick, Manager, Maintenance Services, Syncrude Canada; Sabina Bauer Lewis, MindFuel; and Doug Nicholls, Superintendent, FMPSD.

On October 19, 2018, representatives from MindFuel – Cassy Weber, CEO; Alma Abugov, Director, Development and Community Engagement; and Sabina Bauer Lewis, Stakeholder Engagement Advisor – spent the day meeting with teachers, learning coaches and science leads at Fort McMurray Public Schools District (FMPSD) and Fort McMurray Catholic Schools District (FMCSD) to deliver more than 40 donated Ignition Packs, thanks to the generous support of Syncrude Canada.

“In today’s tech-filled world, science and technology learning is foundational to student success, and it’s directly relevant to the work many Syncrude employees do. That’s why all of us at Syncrude want to do our part to ensure that students in Alberta, and their teachers, have access to the best STEM-learning tools available,” says Kerry Barwick, Manager, Maintenance Services, Syncrude Canada. “We all share a common goal: to set our kids up for success in school and in life. Each Ignition Pack includes interactive, hands-on tools using Alberta-based, real-world examples that are relevant to our environment, helping students to develop a sense of independence and autonomy while reinforcing the importance of problem-solving skills and critical thinking.”

That morning, 22 Ignition Packs were distributed to FMPSD teachers who were introduced to the contents of each Ignition Pack and explored how they can use the resources to teach a complete unit of science. In attendance were Doug Nicholls, Superintendent of FMPSD, and Fort McMurray Mayor, Don Scott, who thanked Syncrude Canada and MindFuel for the donation, calling it an “investment in youth” that is “helping the leaders of tomorrow.”

“The online resources are great. I love that the resources are tailored to Alberta and are therefore relevant to our curriculum.” – Emile Giroux, grade 6 teacher with Fort McMurray Public Schools.

Later the same day, an additional 21 Ignition Packs were distributed at FMCSD. As the Catholic School District learning coaches opened their Ignition Packs for the first time, they were asked to describe their thoughts in one word. Some of the comments they made included: “exciting”, “forward-thinking”, “awesome”, “phenomenal”, “beautiful”, “blended-learning”, and “interactive”.

“The hands-on learning activities are fantastic. They are engaging for students and fun for teachers to teach.” – Kelly van den Hoogen, learning coach with Fort McMurray Catholic Schools.

“Our trip to Fort McMurray was a great success. To see the enthusiasm and gratitude from science coaches, teachers, superintendent and mayor is just incredible. Supporting teachers by providing our award-winning learning resources, helps them do what they do best, which is educate and inspire our youth to become the STEM leaders of tomorrow.  We’re grateful for Syncrude’s support.” said, Cassy Weber, MindFuel CEO.

The next generation of MindFuel’s popular Science-In-A-Crate program, Ignition Pack is a permanent classroom resource that transforms science class by combining the best of 21st century learning, hands-on resources and digital components. Developed and tested by teachers for teachers, each Ignition Pack contains the content needed to teach a full unit of science, comprising more than 40 resources and 20-25 hours of teaching material. Ignition Pack is aligned with the Alberta program of studies and supports teachers to achieve deeper student engagement by using interactive lessons to help reinforce important skills like problem solving and critical thinking.

Since its development in 2012, MindFuel has distributed more than 230 Ignition Packs to teachers across Alberta. There are four separate Ignition Packs across three grade levels:

  • Grade 5: Wetland Ecosystems
  • Grade 7: Interactions & Ecosystems
  • Grade 8: Mix & Flow of Matter
  • Grade 8: Freshwater & Saltwater Systems

For more information on Ignition Pack, visit ignitionpack.com.

For more information, please contact:

Shannon McClennan-Taylor
Communications Advisor
Tel: 403.220.0077 x235
Email: media@mindfuel.ca

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