The teacher support section of “The Governor’s Letters” website features four detailed Curriculum Challenge lesson plans and a Teacher’s Guide that includes three critical reading strategies to support students from grades 5-12 in the investigation of key historical events and concepts, using the Colonial Despatches and other primary and secondary sources.
The four Curriculum Challenges address important topics in the history of British Columbia and Western Canada, the history of Colonial British North America, and Aboriginal history. Each raises an important question that requires students to investigate historical evidence before arriving at a reasoned conclusion:
In pursuing these challenges students address such curriculum topics as: European-Aboriginal relations, life in the colonies, the Fraser Canyon and Cariboo Gold Rush, the Douglas Treaties and Numbered Treaties, creation of the Colony of British Columbia, justice in Colonial British Columbia, the Fraser Canyon War, and Governor James Douglas the so-called Father of British Columbia.
In addition to enhancing students’ understanding of Canadian history, the Curriculum Challenges develop students’ ability to think historically, notably in the areas of interpreting primary and secondary sources (including visual sources), identifying continuity and change, and analyzing historical cause and consequence.
The Teachers’ Guide introduces three general strategies to help students learn to critically read primary and secondary documents: