More than 70 students from grades 4 to grade 9 took part in this years South Island Regional Fair at the Royal B.C. Museum on Friday morning. The inquiry based learning project gave kids a chance to chose their own topic, figure out what they wanted to learn and present their findings in a creative way.
Jacob Jull, a Grade 4 student from Glenlyon Norfolk School, chose to learn more about the evacuation of British Children during the Second World War because of two personal connections to the topic.
“One, this man in the photo here — he is my great grandpa Herald,” says Jacob, holding up an old black and white photo. “I also chose it because I am English and I immigrated to Canada with my family in 2016.”
Jacob spent about an hour and half every day for three months on the project.
“This project is historically significant because while all this was happening, children were away from their families for up to five years and only able to see their siblings once or twice a year and only if they were evacuated as well, this really shaped their culture because it changed people’s opinions on children’s rights.”
The project was complete with a slide show, a replica suitcase that children would have had with them, a profile on someone who stayed in Victoria and a National Film Board movie that was on the news during the time.
Elise Beiderwieden, another Grade 4 student from Glenlyon Norfolk school, chose to do her project on Munro’s Books. Focusing on a few big questions Beiderwieden wanted to know the story behind the building, what has changed and what has stayed the same over the years of business.
“When Jim [Munro] died, presents came from all over the country,” says Beiderwieden when asked the most interesting things she learned while doing this project. “People respected him enough to send presents.”
Sylvie Erickson from École Willows Elementary School chose to do her project on how the fur trade affected the ecosystem. Her project explained how humans were impacted by the over hunting of beavers and sea otters through a big poster and showed the stages of fur hat designing through clay sculptures. Erickson even played a song on her keyboard titled Land of the Silver Birch.
The projects will be judged and selected students will get the chance to attend the B.C. Heritage Fair which brings students from all over the province together to share knowledge and attend a four-day camp at the University of Victoria.
Sarah McLeod, teacher librarian at Glenlyon Norfolk School, says this is a great project to give students the tools they need early on to be great researchers in the age of information.
“They are so knowledgeable about looking at primary sources, secondary sources, they know what an archivist is, they know what to look for as critical thinkers and they can ask great questions and talk to experts about what they’re interested in learning about,” she says.
Students will find out early next week if they’ve been selected to go to the provincial fair.
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