Biennial General Meeting – September 17, 2017

CANSCAIP Sask Horizons’ Biennial General Meeting will be held on September 17, 2017 at 10 am at Queen’s House Retreat & Renewal Centre in Saskatoon. It will follow directly after the closing exercises of the Prairie Horizons 2017 conference.

The meeting is open to all Members and Friends of CANSCAIP who reside in Saskatchewan, and anyone else who is interested. All members are eligible to vote.

Download the 2015 Minutes and the 2017 Agenda. The 2017 Financial Report will be available at the meeting.


BGM Coming Up at Prairie Horizons Conference

The Bi-annual General Meeting of the CANSCAIP Sask Horizons will be held immediately following the closing session of the Prairie Horizons 2015 conference.

Where: St. Michael’s Retreat Centre, Lumsden

When: 10 am, September 20, 2015

We will review the events of the past two years and look ahead to what we might do in the next two. You can download a copy of the Agenda for 2015 BGM. A financial report will be available at the meeting.

SK CANSCAIP Meeting September 22, 2013

SK CANSCAIP Horizons held their bi-annual meeting after the Prairie Horizons 2013 Conference on September 22, 2013, at St. Michael’s Retreat in Lumsden.

The major result of this meeting was to create a monthly discussion blog on this website, to allow all of our chapter members to meet regularly and discuss issues related to writing, illustrating, and performing for children. The first discussion topic will be posted on October 15, 2013, right here.

For complete meeting minutes, download 2013 Meeting at PH (pdf).

Minutes – June 23 Virtual Meeting

The June 23 virtual meeting of the CANSCAIP SK Horizons chapter was held in the Elluminate virtual classroom of Linda Aksomitis at 7 p.m. Present: Linda Aksomitis, Chris Ewing-Weis, Glenda Goertzen, Sharon Plumb Hamilton, Jessica Eissfeld and Gillian Richardson.

The meeting began with introductions and sharing of writing related news.

Old business:
1. Report on the free WordPress workshop for CANSCAIP members held in Regina and virtually on June 12.
2. The WordPress workshop workbook will be made available to all members, along with a series of training screencasts to be created by Sharon Plumb Hamilton and posted to the CANSCAIP blog.
3. Approval for moving the World Book Day event to Family Literacy Day (January 27, 2011) was announced (funding from the Saskatchewan Arts Board).

New Business:
1. A free blog has been established for members at
2. Once set up all chapter members will be members of the blog and able to post/comment.
3. Suggestions for site development include: professional development, announcements, upcoming events, markets, critiques.
4. Chapter members who want critique partners on a particular project will email the membership outlining their request — subject line to be specific — critique request — to ensure members who don’t want to deal with extra email can just delete them unread.
5. Discussion of in-person meetings in Regina and Saskatoon, as there are sufficient numbers to warrant gatherings. Need a volunteer to organize the first one in Saskatoon in conjunction with the SWG AGM if possible. Also looking for a Regina volunteer to select a location and make arrangements — nothing formal is required.

Professional Development:
Linda demonstrated how she uses Diigo, a social bookmarking tool, to organize her research materials. Video tutorials are available at:

Next virtual meeting:
1. Will be held about the third week of September. Linda can open her Elluminate classroom for the meeting, but will likely be teaching Monday through Thursday and unable to be the chair of the meeting. One member will need to be designated as chair and set up with required privileges to conduct the meeting. A volunteer is required. Or, we could set up meetings through Skype, which would have the advantage of providing professional development on using this software (often used for virtual school visits, etc.), but a volunteer is required for that as well. Advise Linda if you’d like to volunteer!

2. Notification of the meeting date will be circulated by the first week of September.

Meeting was adjourned at 7:30 p.m.

Virtual Meeting, April 21, 2010

CANSCAIP SK Horizons Virtual Meeting
Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The meeting began at 7 p.m. in Linda Aksomitis’ Elluminate Live virtual office. Present: Adele Dueck, Chris Ewing-Weis, Dianne Young, Judith Silverthorne, Mercedes Montgomery, Glenda Goertzen, Gillian Richardson (guest).

Agenda Items/Discussion:
1. Tour of Elluminate Live for participants.

2. Introductions by participants

3. Discussion of the planned World Book Day event in April that had to be cancelled/postponed due to low numbers of registrations. Feed-back from some participating in 2009 in Regina that didn’t participate in 2010 included cost of bus transportation and need for a better fit with curriculum objectives for money/time invested. Discussed potential of moving event to other cities – would require buy-in by major stakeholders, e.g. a school board, group of teacher-librarians, etc. in order to be successful (2009 Regina event was successful due to hosting by two joined schools and sponsorship at the school level for bussing by the Catholic Board). If anyone has suggestions or contacts they were requested to share them!

4. Announcement of CANSCAIP SK Horizons conference for September 16-18, 2011 at St. Michael’s in Lumsden. Presenters to be announced shortly.

5. Discussion of what a WordPress workshop would entail and a brief demonstration of what would occur during the day’s virtual component. Members were enthusiastic about the potential. Workshop to be planned for June. The virtual workshop would be recorded for access by members at a later date.

6. Discussion of a schedule for future virtual meetings. General consensus to have one every two months, with one in June, then a summer break and resuming in September. Dates to be announced as Linda can confirm her schedule and the availability of the Elluminate Live office.

7. Judith Silverthorne outlined the potential for writers’ groups to also meet via Skype. She has been teaching Japanese to students in Japan and has found it very effective for distance communications.

8. Dianne Young asked if we can develop an online presence to share minutes/recording links and such additional things as a markets section. Linda will create a closed group wiki and distribute the access information to all members of the CANSCAIP SK Horizons chapter. This may not occur for a few weeks as Linda has a week press trip to Georgia for the first week of May. Linda will distribute the information once it has been created.

9. Dianne Young shared information about a children’s writers’ retreat in Bruno in July. There is no limit on participants. Arrival is on Monday, July 26 after lunch, with departure on Friday, July 30 before lunch. The cost is $177.00 for accommodations and meals. To register, send a $20 deposit to Dianne with a list of any special dietary requirements at: Dianne Young, Box 343, Martensville, SK, S0K 2T0.

10. Dianne indicated there’s also a children’s writers’ group that meets at the refinery in Saskatoon the first Monday of the month at 7:30 p.m. for anyone who wishes to attend. Contact Dianne for more info at:

11. The meeting closed at 7:45 p.m.

Regina Meeting – April 22, 2010

The CANSCAIP SK Horizons meeting was held April 22, 2010, at Houston Pizza in Regina. The purpose was a discussion of the World Book Day event that had to be cancelled/rescheduled in Regina, and how/whether to proceed, as well as to discuss the proposed WordPress Workshop that would be provided free to CANSCAIP members in Regina and virtually.

Members present: Linda Aksomitis, Jean Freeman, Glenda Goertzen, Alison Lohans, Anne Patton, Judith Silverthorne, Sharon Plumb Hamilton, and Maureen Ulrich.

Linda Aksomitis chaired the meeting. She read the following from one of the key stakeholders in the 2009 World Book Day event that was solicited after we received such a low number of responses to our advertising for this year’s event: Feedback from teachers who attended last year’s event indicates that the large group venue was not conducive to student learning. Travel time was also an issue; almost a half-day was required in order to get to and from the venue and attend the event. Teachers prefer school-based author presentations/workshops that target smaller groups and which address specific educational outcomes.

In an effort to address these concerns and come up with a proposal that fell within the parameters of the grant we have already received from the Arts Board (audience was to be teachers/students, and the prior year’s audience of 1800 students was provided as a goal for audience), we have a skeleton plan for a program that will include both in-person and virtual classrooms across the province. We are tentatively looking at Family Literacy Day in January as the date:

This the outline we’ll be starting with. All authors who had previously expressed an interest in participating will be contacted and given the first opportunity to continue with the planning/set-up, as this model requires that all participants share in preparation. We’ll be holding virtual planning meetings using Skype once participants are confirmed.

1. Each writer originally scheduled to participate in World Book Day will set up a local (to them) individual classroom visit (likely with the budget it will be 2 different schools, as we’ll be able to do 2 each since we won’t have travelling expenses to pay out, so it will be just author fees with our $5000).

2. The visits will focus on one of the author’s works (generally requiring that previous to the visit the classroom group read/share the book), but be delivered in a 40 minute workshop format. (Our experience/research indicates teachers are “hungry” for tips on the writing process and helping kids get started writing — so I might offer the workshop on writing rhyming poetry to go with the new SK ABC book I’ll have out by then, and incorporate the content with social studies as kids study Saskatchewan at various levels through grades 1-5).

3. The in-person author visit will be hooked to a variety of virtual schools via Skype. These schools will have received the same package outlining the workshop as the in-person school, so will include the pre-reading activities, instructions for the day and the follow-up activities, so they can participate virtually (maybe each school can also ask a question/etc at appropriate points in the workshop). At a rough estimate of having 24 presentations with 1 in-person and 4 virtual groups, this will target 2400 students across the province.


Two motions were passed before the closure of the meeting:

Anne Patton moved we pay expenses (including presenter fees and room rental) to provide an in-person/virtual workshop free of charge to CANSCAIP SK Horizons members on using WordPress. Seconded by Alison Lohans. All in favour.

Alison Lohans moved we pay mileage and meeting room expenses for the in-person meeting held in Regina on April 22, 2010. Seconded by Sharon Plumb Hamilton. All in favour.

Linda moved the meeting be adjourned at 6:20 p.m.

CONFERENCE MEETING – September 19, 2009

CANSCAIP First Saskatchewan Meeting, September 19, 2009
Attendance: Linda Aksomitis, Judith Silverthorn, Dianne Young, Adele Duek, Sharon Hamilton, Sandra Davis, Catherine H, Paula Jane Remlinger, Myrna Guymer, Pat, Marie Powell, Jo Bannytyne Cugnet, Sheena Koops
Minutes: Sheena Koops
1. Welcome from Linda Aksomitis.
2. Why does Saskatchewan have a chapter of CANSCAIP?
a. Non-profit number
b. Funding
c. Set up for the two-years from now conference.
d. Need more structure for Prairie Horizon’s Conference
e. Read from letter from Quebec chapter of insight into their organization (fairly informal with no official president; however, there is someone “in charge” and “second in charge”)
f. Want to apply for grants, and other deadlines are coming up
g. Group Consensus: “Steam Away” Nod to Judith and Linda for taking initiative.
3. When did Prairie Horizons Conference Begin?
4. CANSCAIP has just gotten their national charitable status
5. “I move that all members and friends of CANSCAIP be allowed to vote in CANSCAIP SK Horizons meetings” Dianne Young. Seconded by Sharron Hamilton. (All in favour.)
6. Anne Patton moves that we officially set up the group CANSCAIP SK Horizons and give bank signing authority to three executive members with two signatures required, Dianne Young seconds. (All in favour.)
7. I move that the CANSCAIP rep also serve as the CANSCAIP SK Horizons president, moved by Paula Jane Remlinger. Seconded by Anne. (Vote: All but one in favour.)
8. Linda Aksomitis continue as rep and now take on the role of president of CANSCAIP SK Horizons.
9. I propose that we have two more positions: secretary and treasurer. Moved by Judith Silverthorn. Seconded by Jo. (All in favour)
10. Sheena nominated by Catherine and Jo seconded. All in favour.
11. Judith nominated by Sharon and Anne seconded. All in favour.
12. How much money do we have? Approximately $500.00
13. Will there be chapter fees? No
14. Further organization will be done by committee, project by project.
15. Projects:
a. Prairie Horizons Conference Chair: Jo
1. Jo has volunteered to be on the 2011 conference planning committee
2. Sharon Hamilton and other 2009 committee members will act as consultants. (Each new committee member will be provided with CD from former 2009 committee.)
3. Discussion to continue reaching out to Alberta/Manitoba/BC to enrich the dialogue and community
4. More committee members will be added at Sunday’s closure meeting
5. Date also needs to be set this weekend.
b. World Book Day in April 23rd Chair: Judith
1. Successful experience last year
2. Want to make it an annual event.
3. Make it bigger and maybe even spread across Saskatchewan
4. Committee: Judith Silverthorn, Sharon Hamilton, Linda Aksomitis, Alison Lohans,
5. Committee will set criteria for participation in World Book Day
c. Asked everyone if there are any other projects. Nothing mentioned.
16. Next meeting in two years at next fall conference in 2011.