Learners are innovative thinkers who are successful, confident, respectful and caring

Learning Commons

What is a Learning Commons?

A learning commons, formerly known as the school library, is a shared learning space that is both physical and virtual.  Like libraries, the learning commons supports a student-centered approach by providing quality resources and flexible space for instruction, social and collaborative learning, production and presentation.

Research shows that students who have access to quality school library services, whatever name it goes by, are more likely to exhibit advanced student achievement and literacy development.  Coalbanks Elementary is committed to providing this for our students.


Join us for a virtual tour of our Learning Commons!


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What is a Makerspace?

Makerspace is “a collaborative learning environment where students can come together to share materials and learn new skills...Makerspaces are not necessarily born out of a specific set of materials or spaces, but rather a mindset of community partnership, collaboration, and creation.” 

In our Makerspace we focus on using the principles of STEAM (Science technology, engineering, art and math) to meet curricular goals and student outcomes. 

Online Resources

Canadian Encyclopedia:  Provides accurate, updated information about Canada, its people, history, and culture.  Includes articles, images, maps, and videos, plus study guides and themed resources for parents and teachers.

Epic!:  35,000 books, learning videos, quizzes and more, for ages 12 and under. Contact your child’s teacher for more information.

Google Arts and Culture:  A comprehensive, high-quality resource of primary source materials for families, students, and teachers. Music, art, and culture from around the world is accessible through interactive exhibits, tours, and games from over 2000 museums and archives across 80 countries.

Hour of Code:  Learn to code with Code.org's free activities for all ages.

Lethbridge Public Library:  E-books, audiobooks, movies, and homework help available through a variety of online resources, free with your library card.

Meet the Animals:  Extensive database of animals from the Smithsonian's National Zoo & Conservation Biology Institute.  Search by name, type, or conservation status.

Rocky Mountain Book Award:  RMBA is Alberta's children's choice book award for children in grades 4-7.

The World Factbook:  Published by the US government for the CIA, this is an authoritative, up-to-date database of world countries.  Though created for adults, the information is invaluable for anyone and includes facts, maps, and photos, plus one page summaries of each country to print or download.

Just for Fun!

PBS Kids Engineering games: Here is a list of PBS KIDS games that all center around learning different science and engineering concepts, and build upon children's natural curiosity.

Dav Pilkey at Home:  How-to-draw demonstrations and read-alouds from the "Dog Man" and "Captain Underpants" creator, plus resources from the U.S. Library of Congress collections.

Wizarding World:  The official Harry Potter website has crafts, quizzes, puzzles, and articles sure to cast "a Banishing Charm on boredom!" 

Lunch Doodles with Mo Willems:  15-episode series of art doodle activities with author and illustrator Mo Willems.

Mrs. Lodge's Library Shelver Game:  Well, I think putting books in the correct order is fun . . .

NFB:  Watch short films from the National Film Board of Canada.  Some of my favourites are The Cat Came Back, Logdriver's Waltz, and The Sweater.

Peep and the Big Wide World:  I love Peep and his friends (especially Quack)!  Games, videos and scientific exploration for younger kids.  Available en Español!

Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History:  Virtual tours of the collections take you right inside the museum!

Tate Kids:  Make amazing art on the website of this world-famous British art museum.  You can even upload your creations to its online gallery!

Nasa Space PlaceNASA Space Place is a colorful and fun website that encourages kids to “explore Earth and Space!”


Book Trailer of the Week

Heads up, DOG MAN lovers! Watch out, readers of BAD GUYS! Robotic dog AWESOME DOG 5000 is in the neighborhood and he's. . . well, he's awesome.

Marty, Ralph, and Skyler might make the ultimate secret combo when battling alien-slime ninjas in their favorite video game, but in real life they're just regular kids. That is, until the three best friends discover Awesome Dog 5000, a robotic dog with very real power-ups. Awesome Dog can bark a sonic boom, walk at speeds over three hundred miles per hour, and fetch with an atomic cannon. Life for Marty, Ralph, and Skyler just got a major turbo-boost!

Attention, readers! AWESOME DOG 5000 is a wild action-comedy told through a mix of text and black-and-white illustrations, with a mystery to solve at the end. Can you handle the awesomeness?



  • Kindergarten and Grade 1 students may borrow one book at a time.  Grade 2/3 and Grade 4/5 students may borrow two books at a time.  Books may be borrowed for one week; the students will renew their books if they are not yet finished reading them. The students are welcome to come get a new book from the Learning Commons whenever they are in need of one. Whether books go home or stay at school will be at the discretion of the homeroom teacher. 

Lost or Damaged Books

  • Reminder notices are sent home with students before a book is deemed lost. If lost books are found in the same school year after payment has been made, a refund will be issued.
  • Normal wear and tear of library books is to be expected. However, books damaged beyond reasonable use (for example, books with missing pages, water damage, torn covers, and excessive marking or staining) will be removed from circulation and a replacement fee will be assessed, alternatively a student can donate a book.
  • Replacement fees can be collected for lost and damaged books via SchoolCash Online.  Should you be charged for a lost or damaged book, you will receive an email notice describing the reason for the fee and can pay for this online.