Sunday, June 7, 2020

Hackergal Day!

by Shifa

Hi, my name is Shifa Hussain. On Wednesday, June 3, 2020, we had our first Hackergal webinar! Hackergal is a charitable organization that inspires girls to explore technology in an inclusive, meaningful and engaging way!

Through these dark times, Hackergal stands against inequality and vows to use their platform to fight against racism and take action. Given the fact that women represent only 23% of the stem workforce in North America, Hackergal helps develop an interest in young girls for coding and computer science. Lucy Ho, founder and executive director of Hackergal, introduced:

• Kim Ho, Product Designer at Netflix,

• Alicia Brown, Canadian Olympian,

• Tiffany Janzen, Software Developer at IBM Canada,

•  Guadalupe Koen-Alonso, UX Designer/Strategist CIBC

•  Sarah Rebeiro, Acting Manager Secure Solutions Design and Development, Communications Security Establishment,

•  Wanda Boyer, Associate Software Engineer and Backend Developer, Kabam Inc,

•  Samantha Conley, Teacher at the OCDSB,

•  Nadeem Nathoo, Co-Founder of The Knowledge Society (TKS)

•  Greg Burke, Teacher at the OCDSB

•  Justine Chiu, Web Developer at Loblaw Digital

The webinar started off with an interactive activity led by Alicia Brown, a Canadian Olympic athlete. We then had a panel discussion in which the speakers shared their experience as a woman or working with them in the tech industry. They talked about the hurdles they came across in terms of working in the industry, which is mainly dominated by men. Furthermore, they spoke about gender inequalities and how women have to work harder than men in tech.

We shared the realities about women taking initiative and accomplishing many things in life. Some women feel uncomfortable when being the one that stands out, but that hasn't stopped them from doing amazing things.

Kim Ho shared how she broke down her goals into smaller ones that helped elevate her to her biggest dream. If you want to reach your goals, first contemplate on why you want it in the first place. Doing this will make you more goal oriented.

After that discussion, we had amazing students share their experience in coding and how they approached the gender gap in their classrooms. We then had a speaker emphasize and talk about how important it is to bring all students into the conversation to close the gender gap.

Finally, some students shared their amazing coding projects! At the end of the webinar, participants got to play an entertaining Kahoot game!

I was inspired and I learned that no matter what anyone else says and thinks about me, the pressure on me as a girl shouldn't stop me from pursuing my chosen career and doing what I need to do to be successful

Thank you to Hackergal for organizing such an amazing event!


Shifa Hussain
Hackergal Day

Saturday, May 30, 2020

Ashleigh Harley - Invincible vs Invisible

by Ashley Taylor

Looking at Ashleigh Harley’s profile picture on Instagram:

you probably will think that this blonde-haired, brown-eyed, UK-born beauty is just another actor, model, singer, or social media influencer. Scrolling down through her feeds, however, you will most likely change your mind.

Let’s go back in time, and imagine this beautiful, then 12-year-old, Ashleigh woke up one day, finding herself paralyzed. She then was diagnosed with a rare genetic tissue disorder that made her sick, unable to walk, or go blind for a few days.

There is no known cure for Ehlers-Danlos Syndromes (EDS). Effects can range from mildly loose joints to life-threatening cardiovascular complications. Due to the diversity with EDS, symptoms may vary greatly between those who have it. In her case, the EDS deforms her spine, requiring that she use crutches to walk occasionally. It sometimes leaves her crippled in excruciating pain. EDS also means she has to survive only on a liquid diet, yet sometimes cannot even keep water down. Ashleigh, of course, suffers from all of these mostly behind closed doors. People who don’t know her can’t see this invisible disability that she is fighting against. 

But what people also don’t know is that Ashleigh is determined to be invincible. Though she was bullied quite badly for being ill, she knew that “there was no point in being anything other than what you are.”. At the age of 12, and from her hospital bed, Ashleigh wrote her first novel, “The Messenger”, and directed a short sci-fi film (loosely based on her novel) called “The Wall of Lyon”. The film went on to show at film festivals around the world, win over 40 awards, and qualify for BAFTA Cymru in Wales. 

Ashleigh is now working on a new film, “The Dark Horse”, which is meant to shed light on her health condition. Part of this film also focuses on her attempts to have showjumping become a part of the Paralympic Games - Ashleigh trained horses in showjumping and dressage both nationally and internationally in her early years.

On May 15th, 2020, whilst struggling to breathe on her oxygen concentrator, Ashleigh released a video of a new song that she just wrote, “Worlds Apart”. She wrote this song to help us get through the social separation, caused by Covid-19. That’s right, this girl, from her sick bed, suffering from an incurable life-threatening illness, wrote this song, so that you and I can get through being stuck in the comfort of our own homes. I don’t know what to say about Ashleigh , apart from that she is incredibly strong, positive, inspiring, and empowering. 

Ashleigh Harley - You are Invincible, even to the Invisible.


Ashleigh Harley - Invincible vs Invisible
By Ashley Taylor
TSMN 2020

Monday, May 18, 2020

Open Your Heart, Open Your Mind

by Meiyi Song

Hai slumps at the back of the class staring blankly out the window. Dressed in all black, the hood of his sweater almost covering his face, he doesn’t take out a single workbook or notebook while other students are diligently working and enthusiastically participating. I ask him “Why don’t you take out your books?” All he does is shrug.

In December of 2019, along with a group of other students from the Life Education and Growth Association of Canada, I volunteered at a school in rural China. This week in JiangXi, ShangRao at Yang Lin Primary School felt both long yet short.

On the first day of classes on Monday, I was assigned to teach the Grade 6 class of 31 students. Prior to this trip, I had never taught an official class, especially one of that size. As I hesitantly walked in the door at the front of the class, I stepped up to the teacher’s desk. The class gradually quieted down and the students turned towards me. Already anxious, standing at the front of the class, I met the gaze of thirty-one students seated in perfectly aligned rows and felt overwhelmed. The bell rang for the start of class and I greeted the students with “Good morning everyone!” Almost immediately, everyone in the class stood up together and yelled, “Good morning teacher!” in perfect unison.

I felt as if I was in the military. The level of respect these students had for their teachers shocked me and I stood there speechless for a few seconds before asking the class to sit down. To get a sense of their English level, I asked the class to see their English workbooks, and almost half the students volunteered to give me theirs. So many people raised their hands and wanted to be picked that I struggled to choose one.

The rest of the period, we played the game Simon Says. By the end of class, my nervousness had subsided, and I was actually enjoying myself.

But then, there was Hai. In the whirl of emotions in first period, I did not think much of him, just that he was a troubled kid who did not want to learn. I watched him fidget, and in the middle of class, Hai walked out of class to mop. His teachers did not stop him. In fact, as the day went on, I learned that my initial impression of him was shared by everyone else at the school: his teachers and his classmates. I did not see any teachers encourage, teach, or support him. Since he was not compliant, the people around him deemed him as "stupid." And because of this, he had been neglected from the beginning and perhaps it was this that prompted his poor behaviour.

In a presentation about Canadian money, I walked around the class to show the students up close what Canadian dollars looked like. To my surprise, Hai showed real curiosity. “Who are the people on the money?” he asked. “They are important people in Canada’s history, such as Prime Ministers,” I explained. He continued asking many questions until I had to move on with the class, at which time he even asked to keep the money.

During those first two days he gradually opened up to me. Every class I taught, I would go check on him and remind him to listen to class. The second day, I taught Grade six again. Over those two days, little by little, Hai went from leaving in the middle of class, to staying the whole class, to actually engaging in class. His attitude towards me also saw a large improvement. On the first day, he would follow me after class, but he kept his distance. Then, on the second day, when I was preparing materials for my next class in the conference room, he waited outside the door and asked specifically for me.

Over the next few days, I built a relationship of trust with Hai through constant follow up even when I was not teaching his class from the third day on. Every time I saw him, he would always ask when I would be teaching his grade again, and every time, I told him ‘I don’t know’, even when I did, because I did not want to let him down. Over this week, I observed the progress he made. On the first two days of the week, he wore his black sweater with the hood up the entire day.

However, on the fourth day, he came to school without his black sweater and a colourful shirt. Although this may seem like a small change, it made a big difference in his appearance and the way he came off to others. All of a sudden, he looked just like the other kids: happy and bright. Compared to the first day I met him, he seemed like almost a completely different person. He went from almost never smiling in class or even attending class to going to every class, smiling and laughing. That day, when I saw this, I really realized that the things you do influence the lives of others even when you may not think it does.

However, just when I started to see progress, I witnessed something dismaying. On Saturday, our last day, a lot of the children came back to the school to spend the last bit of time they could with us before we left, and so did Hai. When we returned from visiting students’ homes that day, our entire team was working in the conference room, a room the students were not allowed to go into and the only room in the school that was private for the teachers to work. On that day, we had somewhat ignored ChunHai since we had a lot of work to do before leaving. So, during this time, twelve-year-old ChunHai walked up to us and blew the smoke from a cigarette all around the room. As he pranced around the room with the cigarette butt hanging out of his mouth, in that moment, I thought, “How could he be so disrespectful.” His in-your-face, flaunting behaviour seemed like deliberate disrespect. I was stunned.

After reflecting about this situation, I realized that perhaps what Hai needed was attention. Hai had said to me that he hated his home, but when I asked why, he just went silent. Therefore, maybe because of the lack of attention he was given at home, he acts out seeking attention, making him seem like a "bad" kid. Then, when we arrived and gave him some of the attention he needed, we quickly saw progress. However, the second we took that away from him, he went back to his old ways.

Overall, regardless of whether I actually made an impact on Hai’s life, I learned from this that you should never give up an opportunity to try. As a teacher or even as a friend, when you see someone in need, you should never simply stand by day after day and do nothing. This is because at the end of the day, no matter how bad a person’s reputation is, or how much you do not like them, they are still a person, and every person has something that makes them unique and special. Therefore, rather than doing nothing and letting that person get pushed aside by society’s tendency to judge on sight, you should step in when you still have a chance to lead a person onto the right path. Even if you are not successful in the end, at least you know you tried your best to do the right thing.


Open Your Heart, Open Your Mind
By Meiyi Song
TSMN 2020

Monday, May 11, 2020

Decrying Sexism with a Global Mindset and a Message of Hope - The Story of Elena Carey

by Meiyi Song

“I think the most difficult thing that I’ve ever experienced is always being the foreigner in every place that I go to, and I think that that’s something that people who have a really clear cultural understanding don’t really understand.”

For Elena Carey, even the seemingly basic and easy question: Where are you from? is not so easy. “There is no clear answer,” she says. Elena was born in the Bronx in New York, but at the age of ten, she moved to a small, unfamiliar town near Bolivia, in Argentina. Then, in the next seven years, in a dizzying series of moves, she returned to New York, traveled back to Argentina, later to Madrid for university, t

About the many moves, she says, “It was hard to adjust, especially because my accent in Spanish is more Argentinian, and no matter how much time I spend in Spain, you can always tell I lived a lot of time in Argentina. So for me it’s hard to say, no, I’m not Argentinian, but I have this strange accent,” she says with a laugh.

The many different homes have provided Elena with a unique perspective on cultural issues, especially when talking about gender equality in Spain. “Spain on paper has a lot more female representation in the government than a country like the U.S., but you still experience certain expectations as a woman in Spain physically that I don’t think you experience as much in the U.S. - that you’re supposed to dress a certain way, act a certain way.” She sees this type of discrimination as something very deeply rooted in Spanish speaking cultures. “The word machismo … comes from Spanish,” Elena says, and she explains that discrimination against women is pervasive-- “even in songs. Just everything.”

Elena’s experience of sexism in this culture might make her hesitant to date, with good reason. She recounts, “I dated a guy for five years who was Mexican. His sister and his mother were constantly pressuring me - like when are you getting married, when are you going to have a kid.” Only 23 at the time, she ended the relationship. After her ex-boyfriend’s sister got married and had a child, “I watched her go from being someone just like me to basically just giving in to the caregiving role.” She observed the unequal division of familial responsibilities. “It’s just something that seems very antiquated to me at this point.”

Elena muses that culture isn’t necessarily to blame for the sexism she has observed in different societies. She explains that sexism “is institutionalized to a certain level.” More than culturally, she says, “it has a lot more to do with class differences in all three countries. For example, if you were to compare the lifestyle and equality among women and men in the upper class in Spain, the U.S., and Argentina, I think that there would be a lot more equality than if you were to compare women of the same class in each country to men, if that makes sense.” It was through living in so many different places that Elena first noticed this pattern of class-related sexism--especially in the Bronx, which is an area that is not particularly wealthy. Therefore, “When I compare my experiences in the U.S. to the people I meet outside the U.S., I can compare the experiences of women in the Bronx a lot more easily to lower-class women in Spain and Argentina. So I kind of realized that the difference is more social and less related to nationality.”

Not content with easy answers, Elena digs deeper to find the root causes for the inequities in the United States, Argentina, and Spain. She references the wage gap, explaining that in the case of her ex-boyfriend’s sister, as a woman, “she didn’t have the same education as a man.” And because of this, “Work-wise, she wasn’t

making as much. So the intelligent decision is clearly for the one who is making the most money to keep working.” The situation is logical, but it is the cause is this ongoing cycle of unequal opportunity.

In addition to practical reasons, Elena thinks that sociological factors also perpetuate sexist cycles. She explains that men are often automatically thought of as not being “man” enough if they are full-time caregivers. Elena’s sister is married to a Korean man who is still studying and does not work. Elena’s sister assumes not only the financial responsibilities but also the domestic responsibilities. “It’s kind of de-masculating for them,” says Elena. “My family for example, when they talk about my sister‘s husband, they say that he is an ‘aprovechado’, which is someone who is taking advantage. However, I’m quite sure that if it was my sister doing the same thing, no one would blink an eye. And that’s definitely cultural.”

Furthermore, Elena notes that sexism prevails not only in a domestic setting, but also in the workplace and daily life. She believes that the hardest part about discrimination in the workplace is the subtlety of it. Being expected to dress a certain way, to act a certain way, or to look a certain way is so anticipated and ingrained in women’s minds that “even without knowing it, we act differently.”

Outside of work, something that Elena notices is that men feel obligated to bring you home. The problem is that on one hand, if you make the decision to walk alone, “You are opening yourself up to the possibility of something happening.” Yet if you don’t, “You are almost perpetuating the idea that guys need to protect us and that society is just not equal for women.” Lose-lose situations like this one are so common.

For Elena, it almost becomes routine. “It’s kind of like you just have to keep on going” and live your life. In Elena’s eyes, it’s really surprising that a portion of the population in our society is extremely aware of gender inequality, while “fifty percent of not aware at all.” And even the men who do claim to be aware “are often ‘fake allies’ to the women’s movement.” For example, “They’ll talk a lot about women’s rights and say that they’re feminists, but then as a woman, you see certain attitudes in that person that” are completely contradictory. “They say things like ‘Oh, I love women’,” a comment Elena believes to be a backhanded compliment.

Elena muses that a root cause of the issues between the sexes is education. “I definitely think that schools should be coed,” she says. “It prepares you for the real world.” Having been a teacher, Elena has noticed that even with generations that are growing up now, “Girls are still way more quiet in the classroom, especially when there is a guy that’s very vocal.” In today’s society, “I don’t understand why we should be segregating people based on their gender.”

Despite her critique of different societal flaws, Elena ends our conversation with encouragement for young girls. “You really can do anything you want. I feel like when you’re fifteen, sometimes you already think it’s too late to do a certain career or to change the way that you are, but it’s never too late to do that.”


Meiyi Song is
a Toronto High School
student who is passionate
about photography, film
writing and travelling.
She brings these passions
together, sharing stories
of people she meets
along the way.

TSMN 2020

Friday, May 8, 2020

“Don’t be Scared. Face Everything, Whether Good or Bad, with Bravery and Joy” - The Story of Lixia Zhao

By Meiyi Song

 Surrounded by priceless age-old art in the Louvre Museum in Paris, France, Lixia Zhao strides confidently towards me, wearing an elegant dress and coat. Her warm smile conveys joy and I immediately feel comfortable.

D:\Meiyi\Media\Doc Project\People\Lixia Zhao\Pictures\Capture 1.PNG

A Chinese immigrant who has been living in France for more than ten years, Lixia moved to France when she was almost twenty years old, working in the media, art, and culture industries. Now, she organizes cultural exchange projects between France and China and is a museum guide certified by the French Ministry of Culture. She guides me to the gallery entrance to begin our tour of the Louvre museum. ‘

Her positive attitude draws my attention and I begin asking her questions. Lixia received most of her education in China. She comments on a significant difference between the Chinese and French cultures, observing that “China’s education is a bit more reserved, whereas France will give young people more freedom in school, which encourages more discussion and critical thinking.” And she believes that it is because in China, “we value country, family, and community,” whereas in France, “each person’s individual opinions are very welcome.” Rather than being judgemental about this, she explains that these cultural truths are built on the history of these two very different countries, which span hundreds or even thousands of years. She believes that China is changing. It is now also “a country that is at a very advanced economic level, so [it is] becoming more and more open.”

As for her work, she notes that in her industry, “There are in fact more women around than men.” I ask her about gender equality in this particular industry. She feels as though “the gap between women and men is getting smaller and smaller.” However, “Society is still controlled by male authority. Women will often encounter some difficulties, such as being bullied sometimes.” She hesitates, then continues, “When I talk to my male colleagues or even my own husband, it will be very difficult for them to understand [the bullying]. On the other hand, if I talk to a female colleague or friend, it will be very easy for them to relate, because we have been through similar things.” Again, her positive outlook presents itself, and she adds, “This social phenomenon is slowly changing and it is often after you have been through those things that you become stronger.”


I ask Lixia to think back to when she was a young girl and what advice she would have wanted to hear. She says: “Don’t be scared. Face everything, whether good or bad, with bravery and joy. Even if the bad things might seem insurmountable at the moment, in life, it is a treasure we should appreciate. Always smile, even in the face of struggle. Enjoy everything life brings you.”


Meiyi Song is a high school
student in Toronto, Canada.
Speaking 4 different languages
and "...growing up
in different cultural and
linguistic environments..."
has fuelled her passion for
photography, film and writing
which she uses to explore and
document real and touching stories
about people around her.


Meiyi Song
TSMN 2020

Monday, April 27, 2020

Working as a Workshop Facilitator with Unstructured Studio

Hi . I’m Bhavishyaa from Grade 3. I love coding and I’m here to tell you about my experience as a facilitator with Unstructured Studio and how amazing it was...I was so happy and excited to be part of it!  This is how I got it!

On Twitter, where I have an account, someone from ​Unstructured Studio suggested that I should join their session to learn about the latest technologies like Scratch, Robotics, Mobile app development etc.  And,  so I registered,  because I liked the sessions about robotics and mobile apps. That really gave me a break though on topics! 

When I went, I had an amazing time by creating a mobile app! Then I shared my post on twitter and then other facilitators from Unstructured Studio must have seen my tweets as they then asked me to be a #Scratch facilitator for their next online workshop in scratch programming because I have been doing “Scratch” for a few years now. 

Since then,  I have been hosting remote learning scratch coding sessions across US, Canada, India and Africa when all this home learning started!  I thought I could use that to facilitate this workshop as well during this tough time. 

Overall it was a good experience for me!  Thank you Unstructured  Studio for this great opportunity!

Check out for future registrations

I'm Bhavi, thanks for reading!


By Bhavi
Working as a Workshop 
Facilitator with 
Unstructured Studio
TSMN 2020

Saturday, April 18, 2020

Stories From Home | Indoor Gardening

 by: Vivan and Renae

WHY indoor gardening? These days when we are at home under quarantine , the best way to stay happy is by indoor gardening because it can bring joy! When you do indoor gardening you can watch it keep on growing and growing!

When we grow Leafy Vegetables, like Mint , they are fresh and we can put mint in water, we can also eat it and much more. That why I want to introduce you to a new plant one that my family loves, and that is Fenugreek!

Fenugreek is the one of the healthiest vegetables you can grow.  It is very healthy for the body, When you are sick you can have it and it will help you as it has medicinal properties as well!

Fenugreek, furthermore, is also high in protein and asorbic acid. Fenugreek seeds, which are known for their slightly bitter and slightly sweet taste.  And, did you know, that the seeds are also used to flavour many foods mostly curry powders, teas and spice blends.

When we grow Fenugreek, here at home, it brings so much green and joy in our world!  If you want to know how to grow Fenugreek then follow us and  we will show you how to properly grow Fenugreek!

Here is "Our Guide" a Step by Step guide to to growing a Fenugreek plant at your home!

1. Wash, rinse and soak 1/3 cup of fenugreek seeds with 1 cup water in a bowl.

2. Daily drain off water and replenish with the same amount until they begin to sprout in 2-3 days.

3. After it sprouts it's ready to be planted in a pot filled with soil.

4.  Keep the pot indoors where there is a lot of sunlight.

5.  Keep watering the pot once in a day. Keep watching!

6.  In about 10 days you will have a lovely pot filled with Fenugreek!

Thank you for reading! We'll see you on TSMNvirtual!  Be sure to watch us in action for Episode Four Indoor Gardening!


Vivan and Renae
Stories From Home | Indoor Gardening
April 2020
TSMN 2020

Monday, April 6, 2020

Participating in the CAGIS at Home STEM Activity on Bridges!

By Shifa

 Hi, This is Shifa. With schools being closed and everyone in isolation we all need to be more creative than ever! Many organizations are helping out families by providing them with fun and engaging online activities at the comfort of their homes - and CAGIS is one of those organizations!

Canadian Association for Girls in Science is a network of girls ages 7 - 16 who meet regularly and share their love for science, technology, mathematics and engineering (STEM). It is run by Dr. Larissa Vingilis-Jaremko. CAGIS is now providing  activities online for many kids across the GTA. Today, Sunday, April 5th,  they organized an online session about bridges.  Bridges are everywhere. They’re in books, like ‘Bridge to Terabithia’, or simply used in sayings like, “knowledge is a bridge to your heart and mind”. Everyone knows what bridges are- but some may think of bridges as ‘something that helps get the car to the other side’.

What they may not understand, however, is the extreme design of the structure that would hold a load 105,500 lbs each day- Or the hours it took to build and plan the layout of the bridge. 

In the ZOOM online class with CAGIS, CAGIS-at-Home,  I learned seven main types of bridges: 

 • Beam bridges- an example is a basic log bridge
• Truss bridges, which are connected units that resemble triangles.
• Cantilever bridges are built by plates or beams anchored at one end to a support where it sticks out from.
• Arch Bridges, which are shaped as arches to distribute weight evenly.
• Tied Arch Bridges, which are chords tied to the arch that give it support against tension.
• Suspension Bridges are suspended from two or more cables.
•  Cable-stayed bridges have two or more columns with cables supporting the bridge deck.

Ms. Whitney a professional Civil Engineer and Dr. Larissa, the head of CAGIS, explained that given the design options, the engineers then choose one that is more cost effective and strongest. They make virtual bridges on the computer, and then add more to it.

When all the preparations have been done, the structure is constructed. In the end- taking about 48-72 hours to make- the bridge is the best way to get to the other side!

I'm Shifa! Thank you for reading my blog post today on TSMNblogs!


By Shifa
Participating in the CAGIS at Home
STEM Activity on Bridges!

Sunday, April 5, 2020

Stories From Home | Bhavi

By Bhavi 

 Hi everyone, I am Bhavishyaa. 
I am in Grade 3 student in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Due to COVID 19 my school is closed. I am homeschooling. 

Below are some interesting things I did in this 2 weeks. I

In this 2 weeks I learned quite a lot. It was an unusual and amazing 2 weeks, despite the Covid-19. Everything was good. I am teaching myself to how to play the piano.  It was so much fun. Me and my mom put on a bet who can learn quicker. We both are newbies. Let’s see who wins this challenge? 

I learnt more things about Google AR. AR is Augmented Reality where the real world combines with the virtual world. It was so cool to see animals beside me on a screen.

Thank you for reading.

Stories From Home
TSMNvirtual 2020

Saturday, April 4, 2020

Jackie Han and Origami Canada - Free Online Origami Classes

By Jackie Han | Origami Canada 

 At 2:00 pm on April 1st, an innovative Free Origami Online Class, which so many origami fans anticipated, was hosted by Jackie Han, @OrigamiCanada founder! Many enthusiasts gathered in the ZOOM Online class to learn about more about my delicately prepared origami models—the Four-leaf clover bonsai, and the conch shell. Even a young enthusiast from India overcome the time difference and participated in the e-meeting together. Yeah!

Origami really has no cultural limits, nor age limits! As we have chatted, Origami Canada should continue to hold innovative and meaningful activities to enrich our origami skills, thus enhancing our volunteer experience! The Online-Class style really enriches the home life of origami enthusiasts. It also innovates and expands our model of community service.

Under this COVID19 Pandemic, we have opened an online tutorial platform to build another bridge in communicating the fun of origami. I am so excited to e-meet all you origami fans! I hope everyone #stayhome #stayhealthy #staytalented at this special and difficult time! See you guys next week!

Testimonial from a student who attended the class!

 “ I am so excited to participate in this amazing origami online class and thanks for Jackie’s organizations and instruction. The online origami workshop provided us all a unique experience and taught us valuable skills. Under normal circumstances, these workshops would be held face to face so that the instructor could perform a certain step on the learners’ models when they are unable to figure out a step, but since that is impossible through an online platform, the learners have to be more independent. On the other hand, the instructor would have to communicate the instructions much more clearly than usual in order for the learners to figure out on themselves. During the online workshop, I got stuck on a step and had no idea how to move forward, but since Jackie, the instructor, couldn’t do it face to face , I had to play around with my piece of paper in order to figure out what to fold. In the process, Jackie was also trying to explain to me in different ways what I should do. In the end, I managed to complete that step (although I did rip the paper a bit through the trial and errors), and I felt really accomplished. Personally, I enjoyed the online workshop activity a lot. It was a rare social activity where I could connect with members in the Origami Canada team during this time of social distancing. It was also a nice entertainment, for I was running out of things to do in the unexpectedly long break. — Welna, an origami enthusiast”

Thank you so much Welna! I had a great time working virtually with all of the students and I can't wait to bring the joy of origami back to you all next week!

Jackie Han


Jackie Han
Origami Canada
Online Origami Classes

TSMN 2020

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Begin transmission >>>>>>

I am VARC. I am sharing with you an update for TSMNvirtual for the week of March 23rd. 

Our student correspondents have been busy working on reports and I am happy to say that their transmissions have all been received and TSMNvirtual looks forward to sharing them with you this week. 

First up…tomorrow at 9 AM we have a brand new reading of the Land Acknowledgement by Minsi and a beautiful performance of O Canada by Riley Camryn. Thank you Minsi and Riley! I am VARC sharing more information with you.

I am VARC...
we have a 
new episode of Tina’s Stories! Tina reached out via ZOOM to chat with Joshua and Anne who are members of FRC 7520 to learn about their Online STEM community outreach. Thank you for this story…Tina! Thank you to Joshua and Anne! Keep up the great work!

We will also be sharing a story…Stories by Ashley…who, working with her friends, Eva, Emma and Brooklyn conducted a video interview with planetary scientist Dr. Shankar. Thank you Dr. Shankar and thank you to Ashely, Eva, Emma and Brooklyn. 

I am VARC…and I am happy to share with you that Michelle was able to contact and interview the wonderful and talented Jadyn Rylee with whom she speaks and Jadyn shares some songs with us too! Thank you to Jadyn and Michelle for this musical interview! 

In addition we are happy to announce that we will be launching a new feature…we hope a daily feature... called The Talent Show…sharing musical performances by students from home! 

Finally, we are very happy to continue to engage with students…from across southern Ontario and we look forward to hearing from you and indeed working virtually with you and your parents...towards creating even more wonderful and meaningful content...that we will celebrate and share...with all of our followers...across our social media the days and weeks to come. 

I am VARC. Please join TSMNvirtual tomorrow at 9 AM for our #OpeningExercises featuring Minsi and Riley. 

Transmission end >>>>>>>>

Virtual Autonomous 
Robotic Correspondent


TSMN 2020

Hackergal Day!

by Shifa Hi, my name is Shifa Hussain. On Wednesday, June 3, 2020, we had our first Hackergal webinar! Hackergal is a charitable organi...