After the arduous, frustrating and violent return to Canada at the end of the war, men and women faced the challenge of reintegrating into Canadian society, finding jobs and leaving the wounds of war behind. Many groups faced discrimination, prejudice and searched for their place in the “new” Canada.
Teachers will split students into groups of 2-3 to analyze and summarize the following articles, in order to understand the various challenges many groups of Canadians faced at the end of the war and their return to life in Canada. Each group will share their findings with the class. Note: All articles are relatively short (1-2 pages).
- WWI Racism: Black, Asian, Aboriginal volunteers faced discrimination (The Star, August 9, 2014)
- Chinese Canadian Veterans: Battling enemies overseas, fighting racism on home front (Vancouver Sun, August 9, 2014)
- Aboriginal Canadians: First Nations Contributions to WWI and WWII: Lest we forget (CBC News, Nov. 11, 2014)
- Black Canadians: 100 Years ago today, Canada’s black battalion set sail for WWI and made history (CBC News, March 25, 2017)
- Japanese Canadians: New plaque honours Japanese-Canadian WWI veterans (CBC News, Aug. 5, 2016)
- Role of Women: Firing Lines: How three Canadian women became war reporters in WWI (CBC Radio, The Current, February 20, 2017)
Part B – Complementary Activity (optional)
Students will now explore the various groups discussed in the previous activity through research of their own to create a PSA video: A Minute in Canadian History. Teachers can first show examples from Historica Canada of Heritage Minutes. A suggested Heritage minute is Valour Road (WWI). Students will then choose one of the groups from the previous activity to base their video on. The focus of the PSA will be to inform their peers of the contributions of the group and their role or treatment during and after WWI.
Students can use the student guide to map out their video. Please note that there is no need to print this activity, as it can now be completed directly from your computer! To use the fillable function, be sure to download the PDF.
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