News, announcements, and reminders from the council, school, and community.

Talent Show Auditions

Tuesday April 3

Please note the audition days have changed: Juniors will now be on Tuesday, April 3 at lunch and Primaries will be Thursday, April 5 at lunch.

If you have a Junior student who will be scrambling now, tell them not to worry. If they present their idea and whatever they have to this point, it will suffice. We still have a few weeks to the show and a dress rehearsal.

The Talent Show will be on Wednesday, May 2 in the auditorium at Fern P.S. from 6:30-8pm.

Debate Club Starts Friday

Tuesday April 3

Debate Club is starting on Friday April 6 at lunchtime in room 204 (grades 4-6).

Everyone who signed up last term (and those interested in joining who missed the tryouts) should come along to Debate Club on Friday at lunch recess.

Please make sure you bring your signed consent forms. Students who need a form should please see Ms. Childs.

International Day of Pink - Wednesday, April 11

Monday April 2

Garden will mark International Day of Pink on Wednesday, April 11, 2018. The Day of Pink is the International Day against Bullying, Discrimination, Homophobia, Transphobia, and Transmisogyny across the world. 

The International Day of Pink was started in Nova Scotia when 2 straight high school students saw a gay student wearing a pink shirt being bullied. The 2 students intervened, but wanted to do more to prevent homophobic & transphobic bullying. They decided to purchase pink shirts, and a few days later got everyone at school to arrive wearing pink, standing in solidarity. The result was that an entire school took a stand and began working together to prevent homophobic & transphobic bullying.

The message was clear: anyone can bully, anyone can be victimized by bullying, but together we can stop it.

Wear pink on April 11 to celebrate diversity and raise awareness to stop homophobia, transphobia, transmisogyny, and all forms of bullying.

Fun Fair - Get Involved!

Monday April 2

This year's Fun Fair will be on Saturday, May 26 from 10am-3pm.

Ways To Get Involved

  • Help coordinate the student volunteers, who come from neighbouring high schools to help out for the day.
  • Volunteer to help run a station during the Fun Fair (BBQ, bouncy castles, games, bake sale, book sale, face-painting, and more).
  • Start saving your children's and adult books for donation to the book sale.
  • Donate a product or service to the Silent Auction - concert or sporting event tickets, art work, personal training services, wine, gourmet food baskets, unique experiences, gift certificates - it is a great opportunity to showcase your business.

Get in touch with us at to let us know how you can help.

The Fun Fair is our biggest FUNdraiser of the year. All of the money raised goes towards making Garden a better place for our kids to learn and grow. It pays for field trips, TSO School Concerts, Scientists in School visits, STEM equipment, musical instruments, phys. ed. equipment and so much more.

Movie Night Appreciation

Monday April 2

Our third movie night of the school year was a great success! 

Thank you to all the staff, volunteers, and patrons who helped support Garden Avenue Jr. Public School. 

Our last movie night of the year will be held in April/May - so stay tuned!

Garden School News - Week of March 26-30

Sunday March 25

Today Garden Staff and Students participated in Earth Hour between the hours of 2 and 3PM. It was a peaceful hour of powering down, once we found all the light switchesJ. In 2011, we saw our highest reduction in energy usage (29.9 %.) at schools and offices. In 2017, we came close to our best ever reduction in energy use at 28%. Can we improve upon that reduction this year?  Don’t forget to power down at your own homes on Saturday evening between the hours of 8:30 PM and 9:30 PM.  Let’s all do our part to help our Earth.

Once again we will be having our Garden Dance – A – thon because “it’s better when we’re dancing!”  It will be on April 13, 2018.  Students will be dancing up a storm to raise money for our school and for the Gord Downie & Chanie Wenjack Fund in support of First Nations reconciliation.  We have decided to donate half of the raised funds to such a worthy cause.  The pledge forms will be sent home on Monday March 26th so get those pledges forms filled and let’s dance, dance, dance.

Ms. Hardy

“The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.”
― William Shakespeare, As You Like It

Parent Week at a Glance - Week of March 26-30

School Council Meeting - Thursday, April 5 (New Date)

Sunday March 25

The next School Council meeting is on Thursday, April 5 at 6:30pm in the staff room. Please note the date change!: we had to move the meeting from its original date of March 29.

There will be a brief council update and then we'll use this time for a Fun Fair planning meeting, so all of the activity leads are asked to attend.

Childcare is available. Email us at with the names/ages of the children requiring care.

Movie Night - Wednesday, March 28

Sunday March 18

March Movie Night is on Wednesday, March 28. Come out and enjoy the new Disney Pixar smash hit, "Coco"!

Doors to the gym will open at 6pm, the show starts at 6:15. We will be selling Pizzaiolo pizza (including vegan and gluten free options) for $2 a slice, and popcorn and drinks for $1. 

Everyone is welcome!


Garden School News - Week of March 19-23

Thursday March 15

What a wonderful day of skiing for our junior students at Snow Valley!!  The day was full of laughter and learning as student, teachers and parents skied the wintery slopes up near Barrie Ontario.   Thank you to all the teachers and parents who braved the early morning hour and arrived at school for a 7:00 AM bus departure. Thank you to all involved with making our ski day possible and for helping to create such a positive and magnificent day for all.

TDSB and Garden Avenue will be recognizing Earth Hour 2018 - Friday, March 23rd from 2-3pm.  During Earth Hour, we'll be using as little electricity as possible in the office, halls, classrooms, library and gym. Where possible, we will also be reducing our electricity usage over the weekend.  More information is available on the EcoSchools website at

Next week is March break and I do hope that everyone relaxes and enjoys spending time with their family and loved ones.  Have a wonderful Holiday.  We are looking forward to seeing everyone happy and healthy and ready for learning after the break.

Ms. Hardy

“The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.”
― William Shakespeare, As You Like It

Parent Week at a Glance - Week of March 19-23

Fun Fair - Saturday, May 26

Sunday March 4

Spring is around the corner and that means one thing: planning for the Fun Fair has begun!

Save the Date: this year's Fun Fair will be on Saturday, May 26

We are looking for helpers to lead the following tasks:

- Arts & Crafts Station: We need a lead to manage the Arts & Crafts Station. In past years, we've had button making, decorate-your-own tote bags, and cereal box mask construction. Let your creativity loose and design this year's activity, oversee set-up and help run the event. 

- Student Volunteer Coordinator: We always have grade 6 students from Garden and high school students from local high schools help us out at the Fun Fair. The coordinator will reach out to the local schools, coordinate volunteer schedules, and manage volunteers on the day of the Fun Fair.

- Tchotchke Wrangler: Every year, we collect your new & gently used trinkets and toys to use as prizes for some of the games at the Fun Fair. The Wrangler will be in charge of collecting and sorting the tchotchke in advance of the big day.

If you are interested in helping out with one of these areas, let us know at

Debating Club Intro Letter

Monday February 26

Dear Parents / Guardians:

All of the Junior students here at Garden are fortunate to have participated in several  in-class sessions, facilitated by parent volunteer extraordinaire Katherine Ball, aimed at introducing them to the art of debating. Katherine has graciously offered to run an additional set of lunchtime sessions for interested students. Your child has expressed an interest in being a part of Garden ‘s brand new Debating Club.

In order to provide our fledgling debaters with the best possible experience, spots in this club will be limited and interested students will be expected to attend one of two “auditions”, to be held at lunchtime on Friday, March 2nd or Friday, March 9th.  Students should come to the audition prepared to persuade the supervising adults that they are a suitable candidate for the club and will be asked to explain why debating is important. They will also have the opportunity to participate in a fun debating activity. After the auditions have concluded, permission forms will be sent home with selected students. The Debating Club will meet during lunch on Fridays, for six weeks, beginning on Friday, April 6th.

Please feel free to contact Ms. Childs with any questions: .


L. Umezawa, M. Chawla, and J. Childs

Video of The Lion King - Last Chance!

Sunday February 25

If you would like to purchase a digital download of The Lion King, please send $10 by email money transfer to with the password 'lionking'. 

The video of the entire performance will be available for download soon! You will receive an email notification when it is ready.

Pictures from The Lion King

Sunday February 25

The Lion King was a tremendous success!

We would like to capture memories of the show in a photo collage. If you have pictures of the show, or any behind the scenes action, please email them to us at

Garden School News - Week of Feb 26 - March 2

Sunday February 25

Thank you to everyone who supported and contributed to Garden’s production of The Lion King.  It really was a beautiful collaboration and whole community effort.

Thank you to every single parent who helped out with everything from costume making, to set design,  to lightening, to set up, to music and to everything else behind the scenes that I may have missed.  Thank you.  Your hard work is so appreciated.

Thank you to Mr. Goetz, Ms. Schultz, Ms. Hritzun and to our student teachers, Gina and Rachel, for all your help getting the students on and off the stage and keeping them focused and ready to perform.

A huge thank you to Ms. Zampiero, our fearless director, and Victoria Fuller, our assistant director, who worked tirelessly week after week, lunch after lunch and class after class preparing our grade 1 to 3 students for the big event.

Most of all thank you to each and every student who participated.  You are all amazing, fearless and talented.  May this be just the beginning of your adventures in musical theatre.  Can you feel the love tonight? I certainly can!!

If any parent has pictures especially of the full class could you please get in touch with School Council ( or the school office.  We are trying to make a collage of photos to preserve some of the memories of the night.  

Ms. Hardy

“The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.”
― William Shakespeare, As You Like It 

Parent Week at a Glance - Week of February 26 - March 2

Great Big Crunch - School Assembly on Thursday

Sunday February 25

On Thursday, March 1st, Garden Avenue students will be participating in "the Great Big Crunch" in the afternoon in the gym. The Great Big Crunch is a nation-wide FoodShare initiative in which people across the country take a bite out of an apple at exactly the same time. This event promotes nutritious, locally-grown food to our students in a fun and co-operative way. It is our fourth year participating in this fun event!

Please let us know if there are any allergies or other concerns with respect to this event. Each student will be given her/his own whole apple to bite into for the Crunch. Also, for this year, we're encouraging students to dress in their favourite apple colour if they would like (red, green or yellow).

Thank you for your continued support of our health and wellness initiatives!

Carrie Cox

Videographer at The Lion King

Monday February 19

We are so excited for this Thursday's performance of The Lion King by the primaries! One of our Garden parents, Neil St Clair, will be recording the performance using professional equipment. He will capture full audio and video and will provide a high quality, edited video for download so you can enjoy the performance again and again.

If you are interested in getting a copy of the video, the cost will be $10, and all proceeds will go to School Council. There will be a sign-up sheet at the entrance to the auditorium on Thursday night and the link to the download will be emailed to you when it is ready.


Kindergarten Registration

Monday February 19

2018/2019 Kindergarten Registration begins in February. To attend Junior Kindergarten in September, children must turn four-years-old by December 31. All registration is being completed on line so visit:

Our Kindergarten program provides young students with a rich and safe learning environment designed to give them the best possible start. At the TDSB, your child will have many opportunities to learn, build new skills and make new friends.

Lion King Show this Thursday 22 Feb at 6:30pm

Sunday February 18

Don't miss Garden Avenue Public School's production of

The Lion King

on Thursday Feb 22 at 6:30pm at Fern Public School
in the Stage Gym!

Starring Garden PS Grades 1-3 performers

Call time for performers is 5:30pm at Fern.

Click on these awesome posters made by the Grade 1's to see them full-size!

Lion King poster by Veronica (1) Lion King poster by Lauren (1) Lion King poster by Henry (1) Lion King poster by Henry (2) Lion King poster by Beatrix Lion King poster by Lauren (2) Lion King poster by Lauren (3) Lion King poster by Max Lion King poster by Veronica (2)

February is Chinese Heritage Month

Sunday February 11

Teachers open the door. You enter by yourself. - Chinese Proverb
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. - Chinese Proverb

The Toronto District School Board is proud to recognize Chinese Heritage Month (CHM) during the month of February. The theme selected by the CHM Planning Committee for the year is "Year of the Dog."

During this month, we celebrate the energetic culture and traditions of the Chinese community with students, staff and community members of the Toronto District School Board and the City of Toronto. The Chinese community is integral to the growth and success of the City of Toronto and Canada. Members of the Chinese community represent approximately 10 per cent of the total GTA population and form its second largest visible minority group. Canadians remember and appreciate the Chinese workers who helped build the Canadian Pacific Railway that united our country.

Chinese-Canadians will recognize Chinese New Year on Friday, February 16 with celebrations throughout the month of February .The Chinese New Year is also known as the Spring Festival or the Lunar New Year. This occasion is celebrated over many days which include a range of activities from fireworks displays, drumming, distinctive foods and arts and crafts.

Read more:

Black History Month

Thursday February 1

February is Black History Month: a perfect opportunity to open up conversations around Black Canadian experiences, allyship and anti-oppression. Kids aren't too young to understand basic concepts and learn new histories!

Ontario's Black History Society has great resources and links to events and more

The ROM has debuted a new installation called HERE, WE ARE HERE: Black Canadian Contemporary Art

Great books for school aged kids

Great books for older kids

What will you be doing to celebrate, educate and support Black History Month?

Save the Date - The Lion King - Thursday, February 22

Sunday January 28

Save the  Date - The Lion King has been re-scheduled for Thursday, February 22. The performance will be in the auditorium at Fern Avenue Jr. & Sr. P.S. More details to come!

Walk to School Day - February 7

Sunday January 28

Garden Avenue Jr. Public School has been participating in an school traffic management study, together with the TDSB, City of Toronto and Green Communities Canada. The goal of the study is to increase the number of students who arrive at school on foot, by bike or by scooter, and to make drop-off and pick-up safer for any students arriving by car. The group has been studying walking routes, traffic patterns, parking availability, and facilities for bikes and scooters, and will make recommendations and plans of action in the coming weeks.

Mark Wednesday, February 7 in your calendars as Walk to School Day - we're hoping to get as many students as possible using their own two feet to get to school!

If you are interested in joining the traffic management study, or have any ideas or concerns to share, please send an email to

Garden School News - Week of Jan 22-26

Sunday January 21

Principals are often asked how we decide whether it's too cold to allow our students out in the schoolyard for recess.

Fresh air and exercise are important for children. It keeps them physically fit, and helps them stay alert all through the school day. Parents can help by making sure their children come to school prepared to spend time outdoors. Hats, mitts, boots and a warm jacket are important to keep students comfortable during lunch and recess.

But extreme cold can be dangerous, and parents want to know that their children will be safe. When the temperature is predicted to drop below -15C, the City of Toronto may declare a cold weather alert. Schools are very sensitive to the needs of our students and pay close attention to the weather, especially when the wind-chill is below -20 C.

The TDSB Severe Weather Protocol is flexible, so that every principal can make a decision that meets the needs of his or her school. It sets guidelines for when to allow students outside for recess, when to make outdoor breaks shorter, and when to keep students inside altogether.

Canadian winters can be wonderful but when the weather is cold, school staff keep one eye on the thermometer and the other on the needs of our students - a perfect balance of fun and safety.

Ms. Hardy

“We learned about honesty and integrity - that the truth matters...that you don't take shortcuts or play by your own set of rules...and success doesn't count unless you earn it fair and square.” Michelle Obama

Parent Week at a Glance - Week of Jan 22-26

Garden School News - Week of Jan 15-19

Sunday January 14

Welcome back!!  We survived the first week.  What a week of crazy up and down weather.  Please ensure that your child is wearing appropriate clothes for the weather out of doors.  This includes boots, snowpants/splash pants, hats, mitts etc.  Having a spare pair of clothes (especially dry socks) in your child’s back pack is always a great idea during the next few weeks of unpredictable weather.

Mrs. Bell Is starting her Lego Club this month for all students in grades 1, 2 and 3.  There is only enough room for forty students so it will be on a first come first serve basis.  Mrs. Bell handed out forms today to interested students but if anyone needs a form please come and see Ms. Bell as soon as you can. 

After much consultation we have decided to postpone our production of the Lion King from its original scheduled date of February 1st.  This will allow our primary students to fully prepare for the production.   We are planning to reschedule for the end of February or beginning of March.  We have over ten parents working on costumes and Ms. Lawson has offered to support with sets.  To that end she will be working in the gym Wednesdays after school beginning on January 24th.   As soon as we have established the new date we will let everyone know.  Hakuna matata :-)

Ms. Hardy

Parent Week at a Glance - Week of Jan 15-19, 2018

Ward 7 Meeting at Garden - January 30

Saturday January 13

This month's Ward 7 meeting will take place at Garden Avenue Jr. P.S. on Tuesday, January 30 from 7-9pm in the school gym. The agenda includes an update on the recently released Enhancing Equity Taskforce report.

Ward 7 meetings happen once a month during the school year and include representatives from all of the schools in Ward 7, and offer an opportunity to hear about TDSB initiatives and issues affecting the Ward ( Robin Pilkey is the Trustee for Ward 7, and also Chair of the TDSB.