Lesson plans

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Bring Canada’s capital into your classroom with these free, bilingual teaching resources.

The Gathering Place

The Gathering Place: An Exploration of Canada’s Capital is a resource for teachers of grade 5 to 8 Social Science and History. The lessons and activities explore:

  • Canadian culture, identity and symbols
  • Government, citizenship and democracy
  • Canadian stories, heroes and celebrations

Additional resources by theme

Note: SMART Notebook® lessons are available for many activities. Please visit the Classroom Connections website.

Theme 1: A capital idea

Students explore the attributes, roles, functions and characteristics of Canada's capital and begin to understand how our nation’s capital serves as a physical and metaphorical gathering place for all Canadians.

Note: SMART Notebook® lessons are available for activities 1, 2 and 4 of this theme. Please visit the Classroom Connections website.

Theme 2: Gathering where?

Students examine what makes a capital city unique and explore the factors and historical context that affect how a capital city is chosen. Additional resources include:

Note: SMART Notebook® lessons are available for activities 1 and 2 of this theme. Please visit the Classroom Connections website.

Theme 3: Exploring our identity

Students explore the concept of Canadian identity and the role of the national capital in representing the shared vision and common values that connect us as a diverse and regional nation. Additional resources include:

Students explore the attributes, roles, functions and characteristics of Canada’s capital and begin to understand how our nation’s capital serves as a physical and metaphorical gathering place for all Canadians. Additional resources include:

Note: SMART Notebook lessons® are available for activities 2 and 3 of this theme. Please visit the Classroom Connections website.

Theme 4: Celebrating our stories

Students explore Canada’s capital as a place where Canadians gather to remember the past; share stories about this land and its people; and celebrate their heritage, common values and accomplishments. Additional resources include:

Commemorations in Canada’s capital

This video is an additional resource for The Gathering Place: An Exploration of Canada’s Capital.

Transcript | Watch on YouTube

Note: Smart Notebook lessons are available for activities 1 and 2 of this theme. Please visit the Classroom Connections website.

Theme 5: Making decisions

Students examine the role of our national capital in decision making and creating change for citizens, while exploring the actions and outcomes of youth making a difference. Additional resource:

Canada’s Capital treasures

These seven lesson plans explore how some of the Capital’s most inspiring commemorations, heroes and symbols contribute to our sense of personal, community and national identity. The activities meet the curricular objectives in Social Studies, History and Geography programs in provinces and territories across the country. Five of the lesson plans also feature a media literacy activity.

Through engaging activities, students in grades 6 to 9 will identify significant people and events in Canada commemorated in the following treasures:

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