Surrey Center Elementary 23-24


Our community is deeply connected to and acknowledges that we work, play and learn on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the Katzie, Kwantlen, Semiahmoo and other Coast Salish Peoples.

The Surrey Centre community prides itself in creating a safe, welcoming, and inclusive environment for all learners. When you walk inside the main entrance, you will see a beautiful mural in the shape of an eagle with an image of each of the four school buildings that have been on this land.

This year we focused on inclusive community. As a staff we created a "We Belong Day" an evening dedicated to celebrating diversity, inclusion, and the strength that comes from our unique backgrounds and identities within our school community. The event was designed to be an opportunity for families to come together, appreciate the diverse talents of our students, and strengthen the sense of belonging within our school. The night was designed for families to explore and learn more about each other's cultures, traditions, identities, and experiences, reinforcing the idea that we all belong to one supportive and inclusive school community at Surrey Centre .

Each class hosted an interactive exhibit showcasing a unique project that highlights the theme of diversity and belonging. Few of the exhibits are below: 

1. Poetry of Belonging:  Each student writes a poem about the theme of belonging, acceptance, or diversity. These poems can be compiled into a booklet or displayed throughout the school during the event.

2. Sculptures of Friendship:  Using clay or other sculpting materials, students create sculptures that represent friendship and unity. These sculptures can be displayed together to form a visually striking representation of inclusivity. 

3. Mural of Inclusion: Classes collaborate to create a large mural that depicts scenes of inclusivity, friendship, and diversity. This mural can be displayed prominently in the school as a lasting reminder of the "We Belong" event.

4. Symbolic School Tree of Inclusion: Student leaders created a tree mural for families to add how they feel a sense of belonging at our school. 

Figure 1 Tree of Inclusion. Students and families add examples of what makes a school inclusive.

Figure 2 - Students and staff put on an after school We Belong Event to share the diversity and inclusion that takes part in school at Surrey Centre. Our 400 students made one hand with words that connect to inclusion.


Our school aims to cultivate critical thinking skills in students, empowering them to effectively acquire and interpret information. This learning plan emphasizes the importance of making thoughtful decisions about communicating ideas and encourages personal awareness for self-reflection on their efforts and goals. By prioritizing these skills, we prepare students for successful and thoughtful engagement in their academic and personal lives.

To support our overarching goal. As a school we are focusing on two curricular competencies to help develop the skills of communicating and self-awareness core competencies.

Students can reflect on mathematical thinking

Students can communicate mathematical thinking in many ways

For students to understand the curricular competency. We use SEL strategies to help students develop the ability to reflect on and communicate their mathematical thinking.

Our learners participate in daily regulation times after each outside break. Students are being taught explicit instructions through a variety of SEL programs to enhance their abilities to recognize, identify, and understand emotions, specifically before academic learning tasks begin. Developing emotional regulation is crucial to help students tackle mathematical problems that require persistence and resilience. It helps encourage growth mindset to understand effort and learning from mistakes are part of the problem-solving process in mathematics.

To communicate their understanding of mathematical thinking. We use regulation time as part of the class schedule, that occurs three times a day: First thing in the morning, after recess, and after lunch. The SEL strategy helps students to articulate their thought process and reasoning when sharing their mathematical thinking.

Expectations of Regulation Time:

Music playing is calm/soft/no lyrics which helps signal to the students and adults in the room that it is time to check-in and regulate (or practice a regulation strategy).

Students are quietly practicing or using a regulation strategy.

Slowly, as the students learn how to check-in and how to use regulation strategies, the amount of choice they have increases. You can decide what strategy to focus on in the beginning, and then slowly give them more control over their choices as they gain more experience with the Regulation Time process.

Regulation Time teaching progression:

Step 1 – Introduce what Check-ins are / how do we check-in? (self-aware)

Step 2 - Introduce what regulation is / what does it means to regulate?

Step 3 – Introduce new regulation strategy once per week or once per month / how do we regulate? (self-manage).

Step 4 – Consistently reflect on regulation time (what did you see that was expected or not expected).

Step 5 – Have students reflect on their own use of regulation time .

A paper with writing on it

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Our Focus 

We know that teaching Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) in schools is important for several reasons. These include improving academic performance, behaviour, positive relationships and future success as well as increasing the capacity for self-awareness and self-regulation.

Our cohort is a group of intermediate students who participate in daily regulation times after each break. They are also being taught explicit instructions to enhance their abilities to recognize and understand emotions, specifically before academic learning tasks in numeracy begin.

Learning Goals:

Self-Awareness/Communication: Students will develop awareness of their own thinking processes and be able to use this knowledge to regulate their learning during numeracy tasks. For example, they may use self-questioning techniques to monitor their understanding or identify areas where they need further practice. Additionally, this self-awareness will help improve students' ability to communicate their mathematical thinking clearly and effectively, enabling them to articulate their reasoning, strategies, and problem-solving processes

Emotional regulation: Students will develop strategies to manage their emotions during numeracy tasks, such as frustration, anxiety or boredom, by using techniques such as deep breathing or positive self-talk.

While our focus remains on numeracy, we find that by using social and emotional strategies helps enhances students growth


A small group of students has demonstrated significant progress in utilizing self-regulation strategies during complex numeracy tasks. Quantitative data indicate a marked reduction in task avoidance behaviors, with students increasingly engaging in challenging mathematical activities. Qualitative observations reveal a notable enhancement in self-advocacy skills, as students now confidently articulate their needs and seek assistance when encountering difficulties. The adoption of self-regulation techniques has resulted in improved focus, resilience, and problem-solving capabilities, which have, in turn, led to measurable gains in numeracy performance. This advancement has fostered a sense of accomplishment and self-confidence, enabling students to navigate and overcome challenges in their mathematical endeavours effectively.

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One particular student has shown incredible growth in their ability to stick with numeracy tasks over the year. At the beginning, they communicated they felt very anxious and often left the classroom during math class. They didn't finish their work most of the time. But now, they have gained more self-confidence and use strategies to help them overcome their worries. They complete a lot more assignments and only leave the classroom once in a while. This big improvement shows how they have become more resilient and sure of themselves, and they can now face difficult numeracy tasks with determination and confidence. As well, the student is able to confidently communicate their mathematical thinking around more difficult numeracy concepts when sharing online through their digital portfolio.  

Student using positive language to encourage themselves before assessment.  

 As a school, we are committed to advancing our social and emotional goals, particularly in enhancing self-awareness and self-regulation. Moving forward, we plan to investigate how these essential skills can further drive our growth in numeracy. For instance, we will examine specific self-regulation techniques that have proven effective in mathematical problem-solving and seek to apply these strategies more broadly across our numeracy curriculum.

Additionally, we acknowledge the significant potential of integrating these skills into our Language Arts program. We will explore how fostering self-awareness and self-regulation can enhance students' language and literacy development, focusing on areas such as reading comprehension, writing fluency, and critical thinking. By prioritizing social and emotional learning across all subject areas, we aim to create a cohesive and holistic educational approach that supports students' overall well-being and academic success.

This integrative strategy will involve professional development for educators, the implementation of evidence-based practices, and continuous assessment to ensure the effectiveness of these initiatives. Through these efforts, we are dedicated to nurturing resilient, self-aware learners capable of achieving their full potential in both their academic and personal lives.

Surrey Schools

Formed in 1906, the Surrey School District currently has the largest student enrolment in British Columbia and is one of the few growing districts in the province. It is governed by a publicly elected board of seven trustees.

The district serves the cities of Surrey and White Rock and the rural area of Barnston Island.

Surrey Schools
14033 - 92 Avenue Surrey,
British Columbia V3V 0B7