Canadian History in the Twentieth Century

Assessment/Evaluation Techniques

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Assessment/Evaluation Techniques

  • Informal teacher assessment through roving conferences with students as they work to address any concerns or questions students have.

  • Formal evaluation of the new symbol created using Appendix 6.2.1 and class discussion to set the criteria for evaluation.


  • Teachers may use a pre-determined outline of a coat of arms shield to help give direction to students with organizational difficulties – specially designated areas have certain symbols.

  • Some students may do their design on the computer.


Symbols of Nationhood.

Canada “From Sea to Sea” Series.

See complete list at beginning of unit.


Appendix 6.2.1 – Qualities of A Good Symbol

Appendix 6.2.1

Qualities of A Good Symbol

The following list can be used as a guideline for judging the quality of a symbol. You may add more qualities as you like.

1. Clarity of design - easy to reproduce

2. Clarity of meaning - easy to understand its roots and its intention

3. Meaning of colour - associative quality of the colour(s) used

4. Inclusion of subtext - has small components/aspects that add meaning or depth

5. Relevance to its origin - how it relates to the item being symbolized
Teachers discuss these qualities with students and together decide on the marks given for each criteria.

Activity 3: Technology Timeline

Time: 150 minutes


What easier way to compare lifestyles over one hundred years than by drawing a timeline to show the advances in technology? Students get a chance to see how Canadians contributed to those technological advances and how those changes have affected not only our lifestyles, but our work environment as well. The completed timeline compares Canada’s contributions to non-Canadian’s (or the world’s). Important social events are included as they impacted on our cultural development and national identity. As Catholics, the inclusion of Vatican II and the changes it brought about can be discussed in terms of the societal changes occurring throughout Western culture and the changes occurring here at home, especially with Canada’s French Catholic communities. Lastly, this activity encourages students to make value judgements on what is important and to organize a large quantity of information in a relatively small space.

Strand(s) and Expectations

Ontario Catholic School Graduate Expectations: CGE2a, 2b, 2c, 2d, 3f, 4d.

Strand(s): Communities: Local, National, and Global; Change and Continuity; Citizenship and Heritage; Methods of Historical Inquiry

Overall Expectations: CGV.04, CCV.01, CCV.02, CHV.02, MIV.01, MIV.02.

Specific Expectations

CG2.07 - investigate the political and economic challenges and opportunities that Canada faces as a result of international developments (end of Cold War, globalization of economy, advent of world telecommunications) and describe the effect of these challenges on Canadians;

CC2.01 - use visual displays effectively to show how technological developments have changed lifestyles through the twentieth century (e.g., cars, television, plastics, computers, biotechnology);

CC2.02 - describe the relationship between invention and the economy (e.g., the invention of the car and its effect on transportation);

CC2.04 - assess the scientific and technological innovations created by Canadian inventors (e.g., Joseph Bombardier, Sir Frederick Banting, Sir Charles Saunders, Eli Burton);

CC2.05 - compare how Canadians worked during the industrial era with how they work in the post-industrial era;

SP1.02 - compare economic conditions at different times in Canada’s history (e.g., stock market crash of 1929, World War II, oil crisis of 1973) and their impact on the daily lives of families;

MI1.02 - use who, what, where, when, why, and how questions effectively when researching historical topics and issues;

MI4.03 - express ideas and arguments in a coherent manner during discussions and debates or in graphic displays.

Planning Notes

  • Make the Canadiana Scrapbook Series available, if possible.

  • Create a list of inventions and technological innovations by Canadians and non-Canadians in non-chronological order to be distributed to the class. The book Canada’s Firsts is an excellent resource.

Prior Knowledge Required

  • Students know how to do a timeline by organizing data in chronological order.

  • Students are able to identify cause-and-effect.

Teaching/Learning Strategies

1. Prepare a handout for students to complete that identifies what life was like in the 1900s, 1920s, 1940s, 1960s, and 1980s. This connects to content already studied with more of a focus on the “common” Canadian and what life was like in our homes at those times. Students investigate the changes that occurred in the areas of food, transportation, clothing, hobbies, jobs, music, art, sports, and entertainment. Special attention should be given to inventions during that time that changed Canadian lifestyles.

2. Examine the list of Canadian inventions. Have students try to imagine our lives without each invention- could we do what we do today if it never existed? Discuss the social value and relevance of many inventions (e.g., pablum vs. nuclear reactors). Identify various jobs that exist today due to innovation and particularly what types of technological jobs now exist that didn’t one hundred years ago. Discuss changes to jobs due to technology (e.g., auto mechanics). If time allows and students are interested, investigate the life of a particular inventor (e.g., Bombardier) and how his/her curiosity/drive changed the world.

3. From the list, students create a 20th century timeline of inventions comparing Canada to the world. (The teacher distributes a list of important world inventions.) Have students circle or highlight what they consider to be the most important Canadian invention and the most important world invention and write two to three sentences explaining why.

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