Six-year-old Kyrin Graham is looking forward to Carnival

French-Canadian culture on tap at Millstream

Ecole Millstream elementary celebrates the French-Canadian culture at the only West Shore dual-track school in the Sooke School District.

Six-year-old Kyrin Graham is looking forward to Carnival.

The Grade 1 student at Ecole Millstream elementary in Langford plans to be up early on Friday (Jan. 23) so he can volunteer at the annual event along with his mother, Lia, who makes pancakes as part of this celebration of the French Canadian culture they both value so much.

“I think (Carnival) brings the French program and the English program closer, because it’s something that French Canadians celebrate and is huge within that community,” Lia said. “Having English students and everyone celebrate together brings it back to community.”

Among the highlights of Carnival are a visit by an expert in making maple syrup taffy, performances of traditional French-Canadian music, ice carving and the school-wide pancake breakfast to start the day.

Engagement with such culture was an important factor in the choice to enrol Kyrin in a French immersion school, said Lia, who does not speak the language at home.

School principal Julia Sahota said she is proud to provide that opportunity.

“We take for granted children don’t have all the experiences and exposure to all the things we are (as a nation),” she said. “The more we can expose them to things in their country and the cultures within their country, the better it is.”

Having grown up in Ontario, Sahota experienced firsthand tree-tapping for maple syrup and the other activities featured at Carnival. She hopes to provide a piece of that culture for the approximately 200 students and their families this Friday.

“It is a really fun celebration for students because, one, they all love eating pancakes, and two, they don’t know as much about French-Canadian culture,” she said. “It’s a part of every Canadian’s culture.”

Sahota said the excitement over the event is not only running through the school’s two French immersion classes – Kindergarten-Grade 1 and Grade 1-2 splits. “They haven’t had something like that, where they have all sat down as a community and broke bread together. The other part for me is that kids have that experience. It’s not all about books and reading and writing, it is about experiencing their lives in different ways, too. That’s what is really important.”

Just Posted

‘Not well thought out:’ Arizona family slams B.C. speculation tax

American family spends half the year in vacation home on Vancouver Island

Good things come in small, strong, fast packages

Sierra Gillis hopes to represent Canada one day in fastball or rugby

New UVic study to track decline of insects in Metchosin

Traps will be set to catch and weigh flying insects

Edibles sidelined in proposed amendments to Cannabis Act

Health Canada says edible regulation is still more than a year away

Paralympic dream for rider with cerebral palsy

Kim Scott’s goal is to represent Canada and won’t let anything, including cerebral palsy, get in her way

Family of B.C. wildfire victim wants better emergency preparedness for vulnerable people

Williams Lake’s David Jeff “fell through the cracks”

Senate backs bill to legalize recreational marijuana

Justin Trudeau reminded senators that his government was elected on a promise to legalize pot

Lower water pressure, discolouration expected Friday in Gorge-Tillicum area

McKenzie interchange work could affect water for up to a week

Mainroad crews cleaning up after winter

Motorists warned to be on the lookout for roadside workers

The most “Victoria” way to watch baseball?

HarbourCats fans can now watch games from double-decker buses

Where Canadians buy real estate abroad: report

Hot Spots: Top 30 home-buying destinations for Canadians in the Americas

Ban on grizzly bear hunt, new rules take effect April 1

Taxidermists, tanners will have to report on any grizzly bears or parts brought to them

BREAKING: Cassie Sharpe adds world championship to Olympic gold

Mount Washington skier defends her crown in France, wins overall halfpipe title

Most Read