Lafarge Launches Learning Program for Grade 3 Students

Dec 17, 2017 | Education Initiatives

You may have seen school buses pulling into the Exshaw Plant this past year and groups of grade 3 students at the overlook posing for photos in front of a loader.

These young visitors were onsite as part of a trial resource education program developed by Lafarge Exshaw Cement Plant and Canmore Museum & Geoscience Centre. The Lafarge Learning: Alberta Rocks & Minerals Program was offered to over 300 students from 9 classes and six schools.

As part of the curriculum, students visit the Canmore Museum & Geoscience Centre, take part in a classroom-based lesson and tour the Lafarge Exshaw Cement Plant. Through a series of hands-on activities, students learn how to identify rocks and minerals, discover where they are found and mined in the province, and recognize past, present and future uses. Students learn the specific recipe for making cement, its economic impact, and gain an understanding of the importance of construction materials in our daily lives, from building homes to larger infrastructure projects.

Creating opportunities for education is an important part of what we do. It has been great to work so closely on this program with our community partners to help students from the Bow Valley learn more about the local geology and how it connects to building the communities we live in. It’s exciting to see the look on the children’s faces when they learn these rocks and minerals date back almost 300 million years.Jim Bachmann, Plant Manager

Throughout the program, students are taught about historic and current mining practices in the Bow Valley. They also learn about Lafarge’s cement manufacturing process, safety initiatives, environmental stewardship and sustainability Lafarge Launches Learning Program for Grade 3 Students activities. Each student is presented with a Lafarge Junior Geologist Certificate after the completion of the Lafarge Learning: Alberta Rocks & Minerals Program.

Lafarge Learning: Alberta Rocks & Minerals Program is aligned with Alberta Education’s Science Curriculum and the Teacher Effectiveness Framework model. Its aim is to increase knowledge of materials that comprise the Earth’s crust and build skills in classifying these materials. Grade 3 teachers at Elizabeth Rummel School said the partnership was the highlight of the year for many students.

“This partnership created an authentic and intellectually engaging program for all learners. It has been an amazing, hands-on opportunity for students and we look forward to participating in the years to come,” said Liz Wuitschik, grade 3 teacher at Elizabeth Rummel School. Next, Lafarge will develop and launch Lafarge Learning: Science, Technology & Society Program for Grade 7 Students to be trialed in 2017.