Grade 8 History Inquiry Project – By Karisa Sharpe

The following document was written by Karisa Sharpe / Huttonville Public School / PDSB

Grade 8 History Inquiry Project – Karisa Sharpe.pdf



  • A) Use the historical inquiry process to investigate perspectives of different groups on some significant events, developments, and/or issues that affected Canada and/or Canadians between 1890 and 1914.
  • B) Write a report to describe your findings.
  • C) Create a presentation to share your findings with yours peers.

STEP #1:

Choose a topic you are interested in learning more about from the list below:

  • Industrialization and urbanization
  • New technology
  • Immigration / life of an immigrant
  • Chinese head tax
  • Residential schools / impact on First Nations
  • Working conditions
  • Role of women
  • Role of children
  • The Boer War
  • The Komagata Maru incident

STEP #2:

Create questions to guide your investigations into perspectives of different groups on some significant events, developments, and/or issues that affected Canada and/or Canadians between 1890 and 1914. Sample questions:

  • “What view did different groups have of the women’s suffrage movement? What arguments did people who opposed women’s suffrage use to support their position?”
  • “Why did different groups choose to immigrate to Canada? What did people who were already in Canada think of recent immigrants from different countries?”

STEP #3: Gather & Organize

Gather and organize information and evidence about perspectives of different groups on some significant events, developments, and/or issues that affected Canada and/or Canadians during this period, using a variety of primary sources) and secondary sources (e.g., historical fiction, textbooks, reference books)

STEP #4:Similarities & Differences

Describe the key similarities and differences in the experiences of different groups and communities in present-day Canada and the same groups Ms. Sharpe / Grade 8in Canada between 1890 and 1914 (e.g., the urban poor, the unemployed, workers, farmers, recent immigrants, First Nations and Métis, Québécois, African Canadians, Chinese Canadians, South Asian Canadians, Jewish Canadians, women, children, the elderly) Sample Questions:

  • “In what ways is the life of a new immigrant to Canada today different from that of an immigrant around 1900? In what ways is it the same? What accounts for some of the differences?”
  • “What programs or services are available for the urban poor today that were not available at the turn of the century?”,
  • “In what ways are the experiences of present-day farmers on the Prairies different from those of farmers at the beginning of the twentieth century? In what ways are they similar?”

STEP #5: Analyze Challenges

Analyse some of the challenges facing different individual, groups, and/or communities in Canada between 1890 and 1914 (e.g., increasing industrialization; restrictions on immigration of some ethnic groups; lack of political rights for women; working conditions in sweatshops), and compare some of these challenges with those facing present-day Canadians Sample questions:

  • “What challenges did a child in an urban working-class family face at the turn of the twentieth century? How do those challenges compare to those facing children today?”
  • “What are some differences in how immigrants were viewed then and how they are viewed now? What impact do economic circumstances have on people’s views of new immigrants?”

STEP #6: Analyze Groups & Individuals

Analyse actions taken by various groups and/or individuals in Canada between 1890 and 1914 to improve their lives (e.g., francophones in Quebec, First Nations and Métis, immigrants from Europe and Asia, African Canadians, women, workers), and compare these actions to those taken by similar groups today Sample questions:

  • “Why did some workers in this period join unions? What did the unions advocate? What are some similarities and differences in the concerns of unions in the past and in present-day Canada?”
  • “What were the major concerns of women’s rights groups at the turn of the century? Which women did women’s rights groups at this time represent? Who was included and who was excluded? How did the groups address their concerns? Are any of these concerns still relevant to women’s groups today?”
  • “What was the All People’s Mission in Winnipeg? What similarities or differences are there between its services and those provided to immigrants today?”

STEP #7: Communicate

Communicate the results of your inquiry using appropriate vocabulary (e.g., immigrant, industrialization, unions, strikes, sweatshops, reciprocity, suffragist, compromise, alliance) and formats appropriate for specific audiences (e.g., a photo essay on the lives of children from different regions and/or representing different groups in Canada; a speech written in the voice of a labour activist or suffragist and a response from an opponent) Sample questions:

  • “What format best enables you to present multiple perspectives on the issue you have been investigating? Are there visual elements that might be included in your final product? What is the best way to present them?”

3 thoughts on “Grade 8 History Inquiry Project – By Karisa Sharpe

  1. My teacher, mr. Miller finds all of his projects on this website. Currently, my class has 4 history projects due next week. I’m in grade 7/8. Please save my class from this utter hell that is Mr. Millers class. I go to Queen Elizabeth public school, in Sault Ste. Marie Ontario. My entire class is tired of him harping on the holocaust and all the people who died, the turn of the 20th century, and a bunch of pointless stuff that doesn’t even matter due to the fact that it happened 70+ years ago. My grandpa was 6 when it happened. This matters to grandpas, not the new generation, who has to make new things, revolutionize the universe, and get married and have children. None of those miracles happen because we harp on the past, they happen because we look into the future, and think of what is to come. Teachers, think about it, you hate history too.

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