Category Archives: Teaching History

The Complex Truth: Intersections between Day Schools and the Shubenacadie Residential School

On October 24, 2019, Active History commenced a series on education “after” residential schools with an article written by Clinton Debogorski, Magdalena Milosz, Martha Walls and Karen Bridget Murray. The series is open-ended. Active History welcomes additional contributions on related themes. By Martha Walls I am an historian who has studied the impact of Government of Canada policies and actions… Read more »

A Year of Inaction: Ontario Education and the TRC

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Evan Habkirk When the Conservative government under Doug Ford came into power in June 2018, they immediately began rolling back curriculum revisions by the Ontario Ministry of Education. Two subject areas affected by these actions were the new sexual education curriculum and the addition of increased Indigenous content to the social studies, history, geography and civics curricula. Although parents, educators,… Read more »

Education “After” Residential Schools

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Editorial Note: This article introduces a series of reflections to be published on Active History in the weeks to come. It is also an invitation for additional contributions that relate to the themes sketched out below. By Clinton Debogorski, Magdalena Milosz, Martha Walls, and Karen Bridget Murray We are settler-colonial educators writing to settler-colonial educators against the backdrop of “decades… Read more »

Why Blackface Persists and What Historians Can Do to Change It

Cheryl Thompson  Years ago, my former Banting-postdoctoral supervisor Stephen Johnson, Professor Emeritus at the Centre for Theatre, Drama and Performance Studies at the University of Toronto was to appear on a radio talk show to explore the question, “Why has there been a resurgence in the use of blackface in contemporary society?” The interview never took place because seemingly more… Read more »

Public Historians at the Playhouse

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Paul Ward On a cold Monday morning in late autumn last year, nearly 30 first-year undergraduate History students from Edge Hill University visited the Playhouse Theatre in Williamson Square, Liverpool, UK. They delivered informal short presentations about major historical events including Napoleon at Waterloo, the rule of Margaret Thatcher, the suffragettes, and other historical figures such as Marie Curie. This… Read more »

Public History Placement for the Undergraduate History Student

By Valla McLean, Tim O’Grady, Carolee Pollock, Allan Rowe As part of MacEwan University’s Public History offerings, the Field Placement course provides undergraduate students with a distinctive learning experience and offers local public history partners significant benefits. This successful course is built on four pillars: meaningful work, structured learning, an opportunity for networking, and an emphasis on the importance of… Read more »

Spare a Thought for the History Teacher

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By David Calverley As a secondary school history teacher in Ontario, I enjoyed the ActiveHistory.ca posts published in March by Samantha Cutrara and Rose Fine-Meyer. I agree that women’s history and gender issues are not well-represented in Ontario’s Grade 7 and 8 History curriculums. Lack of representation is also an issue in the Grade 10 History Curriculum. It is the… Read more »

More Voices, New Sources: Using Historical Documents to Diversify a Survey Syllabus

By Dr. Bathsheba Demuth I came to teach environmental history circuitously: trained as a Russian and American historian, the field was not part of my comprehensive exams. I was never a teaching assistant for an environmental history course—as close as I came was grading for a summer class on the history of energy. I read and wrote my way into… Read more »

OERs and Classroom Conversations about History

This is the fourth post in a series featuring short descriptions of papers and panels that will be presented at the Canadian Historical Association’s annual meeting being held at the University of British Columbia June 3-5. In most university curricula, conversations about our discipline begin in the first- and second-year classroom and are often profoundly shaped by our choices of… Read more »