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Teaching Heritage

Learning about local heritage is a time-tested activity with many positive outcomes, not the least of which is the development of local pride and a feeling of identity and rootedness in the community.

Equally importantly, studying local heritage nourishes curiosity about broader historical questions, and provides students with the opportunity to develop the tools of historical inquiry using resources that are close to home. The following resources will assist in this valuable and rewarding activity.


Teacher’s Guides and Resources

Many communities have a surprising amount of primary source material available for studying a wide range of topics.

Many resources are available to help educators and others use source materials to good effect. Participation in heritage fairs or the recording of family histories are two common projects, but there are other possibilities.

  • Manitoba Department of Education, Social Studies page. Here you will find the Social Studies curriculum for Manitoba students, and also links to various resources.
  • THEN/HiER is a Canadian organization dedicated to improving history teaching and learning at all levels. Its website provides a range of useful information.
  • Multiple links to websites about aspects of Canadian history, organized by topic, may be found at History Trek: A Canadian History Site, developed by McGill University.
  • The Historica Dominion Institute is dedicated to the nurturing of Canadian identity and citizenship through the study of history. In addition to links to online resources, the Historica website seeks to advise about methodologies for teaching Canadian history, including how to use primary source materials, on its Benchmarks of Historical Thinking page.
  • Montréal’s McCord Museum provides Eduweb, a site dedicated to making historical research a part of the classroom experience. It suggests activities, includes links to web resources, and provides examples of students’ work for reference.
  • A Manitoba organization dedicated to the Red River, Rivers West, provides materials on the natural and cultural heritage of the Red River, designed to work within the Manitoba curriculum for grades 4–6.
  • Veterans Affairs Canada provides information for research on Canada’s war history.
  • Historic Resources Branch’s Heritage Fair Exhibit Guide.