reaLITy @ PSS

2009 reaLITy

*Link to articles about the symposium in The Mirror:

The following excerpt was taken from

Penetanguishene Secondary School Hosts Literacy Symposium

On February 2, 2009, Penetanguishene Secondary School (PSS) will be hosting a Literacy Symposium for Grade 10 students.
At the symposium, award-winning author Joseph Boyden will be featured as the keynote speaker and local community members will host literacy-focused workshops. Boyden won the 2008 Scotiabank Giller Prize for his novel Through Black Spruce.
“The school is very lucky to have a keynote speaker of such calibre,” said Jaclyn Calder, a teacher at PSS and one of the event organizers. “He will be speaking to our students about the importance of literacy, and the workshops held throughout the day will connect literacy to the real world. This event will also provide fun and exciting practice opportunities for the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT) which takes place in April. It’s going to be a fantastic event for our students.”
After the keynote speaker students will choose three of the following workshops to attend:

– Bob Kain – Cartoonist/Illustrator

– David Dupuis – Author

– Debbie Levy – The Reading Room, Penetanguishene

– Jim Carlton – IT Department, Simcoe County District School Board

– John Gordon – Communications Director for ClubLink Corporation

– Leslie Gordon – Career Journalist

– Meg Whitton – Radio Announcer, 104.1 The Dock


2010 reaLITy @ PSS

Grade 10 Literacy Symposium
Preparing for the OSSLT by connecting literacy to the real-world
March 26th, 2010

Keynote Speaker: Drew Hayden Taylor

Award-Winning Author of The Night Wanderer (2007), Motorcycles and Sweetgrass (2010) among many other plays and novels.

9:45 – 10:30 Keynote Speaker, Drew Taylor
10:35 – 11:31 Workshop #1
11:31 – 12:35 Lunch
12:40 – 1:40 Workshop #2
1:55 – 2:55 Workshop #3
3:00 – 3:09 Wrap-up

Meg Whitton – Radio Announcer, 104.1 The Dock
Meg Whitton is a radio announcer for The Dock’s morning show. In this workshop you will have the opportunity to ask questions about the radio business. Can you think quick on your feet? Can you take news and summarize it into short clips? Get a chance to prepare a “break”! To see Meg’s blog go to Associated OSSLT Activity: Writing a Summary

John Gordon – Communications Director for ClubLink Corporation
Do you love sports? During his 30-year career in sports journalism, John Gordon has covered them all, especially golf. Author of eight golf books, Gordon is the former editor of SCOREGolf and Golf Canada magazines and is the on-air and online golf analyst for Rogers Sportsnet. Want to find out what Tiger Woods, Mike Weir, Phil Mickelson and Michelle Wie are really like? Well, here’s your opportunity to ask someone who’s “been there, done that.” This workshop will give you a look behind the scenes at major sports events and provide an opportunity to practice your own interviewing skills. Associated OSSLT Activity: Short Writing Task

Leslie Gordon – Career Journalist
Interested in journalism? Leslie Gordon is a career journalist who, at present, heads the tobacco-use prevention unit at the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit. She has worked covering the news as a reporter, editor, and managing editor for newspapers and The Canadian Press. Changing sides, she has also worked at making news as editorial manager for the Ministry of Transportation. Here, “disguised” as a bureaucrat, she had fun writing speeches for the minister and overseeing the development of educational and promotional materials to introduce graduated licensing in Ontario. Chances are, if there is something that must be communicated, she has been called on to either write it or edit it. In this workshop you will get the opportunity to become part of the news or advertising teams that write the captions that tell — and sell — the stories behind the pictures.. Associated OSSLT Activity: Writing a News Report

Drew Hayden Taylor – Author Drew Taylor, our keynote speaker will be running this workshop. Originally from the Curve Lake First Nations, in Central Ontario, Drew has spent the last two decades travelling the world and writing about it from the Aboriginal perspective. An award-winning playwright, author, columnist, film maker and lecturer, he has managed to bridge the gap between cultures by tickling the funny bone. For more information about Drew, please go to: Associated OSSLT Activity: Reading Dialogue

Tracy Bald – Aboriginal Healing and Wellness Coordinator, Metis Nation of Ontario – As the Aboriginal Healing and Wellness Coordinator of Metis Nation of Ontario, Tracy uses literacy and culture to reach out to others. If you are interested in the Metis culture and wellness, this session is a must! Associated OSSLT Activity: Reading Graphic Text

Bobby Fernandez – Librarian, Correctional facility/centre – In addition, to purchasing books and processing the public donations received, Bobby Fernandez also fields inmate requests for reading material and prepares library carts for the different units. The education program teachers bring their classes to the library where he helps them in-person with locating material for research assignments as well as encouraging them to explore educational/non-fiction materials. He is also involved in conducting reading/writing groups with inmates through a separate program that will conclude with the publishing of their work in a small anthology collection. After the busy work day, Bobby is also a mature full-time student who is in his last semester of his BA in Sociology and English at Laurentian University at Georgian College in Barrie. Associated OSSLT Activity: Reading Informational Paragraph

Bill Trayling – Clean Air Champions – Bill went to Vancouver 2010 Olympics with Clean Air Champions. During this time he blogged about his experiences. In this session you will get a chance to read blogs and start your own. Associated OSSLT Activity: Opinion Piece

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