2021-2022 Learning Bursts

Upcoming Learning Burst: February 10, 2022 (4:00-4:30pm)

We are excited to announce that we will be continuing to host the Learning Bursts for another year as they were such a success!

More information about our presenters, coming soon.

What are the Learning Bursts? These sessions are designed as a chance to have a quick burst of new learning provided by two NOIIE schools – complete with book prizes.  These events are offered free of charge and open to anyone interested in learning more about the impact of inquiry on the ground in BC schools.


Save the dates for the 2022 Learning Bursts:
April 7 (4-4:40)

Stay tuned for more information.

Read about our past sessions below. 

Past Sessions:

November 18, 2021

Barb Hamblett
Principal, Valleyview Secondary School
(SD 73 – Kamloops Thompson)

Barb When students returned to school in September, 2020, we worried about how they were feeling about being back at school. Most had not been in the building since spring break the previous year! We used a Spiral of Inquiry  to unpack what was going on for students and thought about what we could do to make things better. Students told us they were anxious and and afraid of getting sick with COVID so we set our sights on learning more about well-being through Jennifer Katz work in Ensouling Our Schools. We used the Famework for Well-being in chapter 7 of Katz book to check our progress along the way and help us uncover good practice that went beyond add-on structures. This year we will be spiraling into a deeper iteration of well-being for our students again guided by our new learning from Jennifer Katz as well as the important questions posed throughout the Spiral of Inquiry.

Personal Twitter: @BarbHamblett
School Twitter: @ValleyviewSeco1
District Twitter: @sd73news

Stephanie Lundrigan
Head Teacher/LSS Teacher, Stride Avenue Community School
(SD 41 – Burnaby)

At Stride, we are entering our third year of our Indigenous Inquiry – “What can local Indigenous stories teach us about self-regulation?” Self-regulation in this instance is similar to that of the Core Competencies involving understanding oneself, cultivating patience and perseverance and, perhaps most importantly, understanding how individual actions affect oneself and others. Our Inquiry has led us out into the neighbouring forest where the adults have inadvertently been learning along with the students. We have all strengthened our self-regulation and, as a result, are building our understanding of interconnectedness and reciprocity through the natural lessons provided by place-based learning. Over the course of the past two years, we have been able to cover a wide range of curriculum by using lessons directly found in nature and/or by utilizing nature’s unlimited and truly uncomplicated potential as an engaging classroom environment.

School Twitter: @strideSD41
District Twitter: @burnabyschools

April 8, 2021

Mia Moutray, Nechako Valley Secondary School (SD 91)

Middle Grades Educator (Grade 8), Network leader, Immigrant from Sweden, SD91 Ab Ed Teacher Lead, Yogi, Gardener, and Outdoor enthusiast.

I am curious about so many things, especially how to support a joyful, curious and collaborative climate at our school and in our district. I am also passionate about equity and how to more thoroughly bring in/out learners’ voices and use their feedback to build constructive youth adult partnerships to improve learning and belonging for all. Lastly, an ongoing personal and professional passion is to embed place- and land-based learning in all that I do for all learners to have a strong sense of belonging. The spiral of inquiry is now a mindset for me, a way of being and learning. I am deeply grateful for the network support and inspiration!

Nechako Valley Secondary School, Vanderhoof, BC,  Saik’uz Traditional Territory, SD91

Twitter: Mia Moutray @MiaMoutray
Twitter: School District 91 – @sd91bc

Sheila McGrath, Georgia Park Elementary School (SD 72) 

Planning for September, Georgia Park Elementary began looking for ways to support their learners in dealing with the stress and anxiety they were all experiencing during the pandemic. What strategies could they teach their learners? They wondered if they tweaked Forest School, their outdoor learning program, to allow students to spend additional time outdoors engaging in Indigenous ways of learning and mindfulness activities would it have a positive impact on students’ wellness and see them develop a deeper sense of place and connection to land? Join Sheila McGrath, vice-principal of Georgia Park Elementary, as she shares about Georgia Park’s Forest School journey and her passion for championing wellness and connecting learners with nature through place-based learning.

Georgia Park Elementary School, Campbell River, BC, SD 72

Twitter: Sheila McGrath @Mrs_S_McGrath
Twitter: School District 72 – @CRSD72

February 10, 2021

Sands Secondary School, Joanna Macintosh


Joanna has been an advocate for inquiry based learning for many years. She is going to discuss bringing the Spiral of Inquiry to student leadership service projects as a framework for creating positive change in the Delta School District. Students from three service learning inquiries will share their learning and their experiences. Inquiry topics including creating a peer to peer mentorship program to tackle negative social media experiences, antiracism and mental wellness will be discussed. Joanna believes that by empowering students to engage in collaborative inquiry, students will develop the competencies to influence positive change in the world around them.

Juniper Ridge Elementary, Sherri Hoffer

Juniper Ridge Elementary began its Spirals of Inquiry journey four years ago with a small committee that was committed to modelling the spiral framework throughout the year. My inquiry began with two primary teachers and myself as Learning Assistance Resource Teacher, looking at reading and asking ourselves if we were making enough of a difference for our at promise readers. Fast forward four years later, we now have 14 teachers (grades K-4) as part of our inquiry and many other teachers engaging in inquiries of their own.  Curiosity was sparked in other schools when our district brought the “Curiosity Cab “, a bus full of teachers from around the district to tour schools that had been engaging in the Spiral of Inquiry work. From there we have just begun a District Inter-school Spiral of Inquiry to explore their own curiosity with reading in their buildings. This framework has allowed us to focus our collaboration time and build a community where teachers are curious, continually reflecting and working as a team to explore their own systems.

Twitter Handle: @sherri_hoffer

November 18, 2020

Lindsay Park School, Michelle Iacobucci

Michelle Iacobucci will be joined by two teachers from Lindsay Park: Doreen Sharpe and Corissa Pasiechnyk. These two teachers have agreed and are excited about participating in the Network’s first mini-sessions. Both classroom teachers are passionate about place-based learning. Their focus this year is about how place-based learning can support all curricular areas, as well as have positive impacts on their learners’ social and emotional wellbeing.

Smithers Secondary, Nicole Davey

Nicole Davey will be joined by Julie Krall, principal from Smithers Secondary, who will share the work their grade 8 team has been doing around student centered transition. During the spring, the Smithers Secondary School grade 8 team reflected deeply on the needs of the incoming grade 8s, using the three big picture questions as a guide: What is going on for our learners? How do we know? Why does it matter?  After their discussions, they became curious:  Would creating a grade 8 class based on connection and place-based learning impact students’ sense of belonging?  Julie Krall, the principal, will share where they are at in their journey.