Chilliwack students map out Canada with help from CPAC

Giant floor map used to teach about democracy, history and people of Canada

Chilliwack Mayor Sharon Gaetz speaks to students who researched B.C., Chilliwack and specific members of local government, for their project on civics at Unsworth elementary. (Jessica Peters/ The Progress)

Chilliwack Mayor Sharon Gaetz speaks to students who researched B.C., Chilliwack and specific members of local government, for their project on civics at Unsworth elementary. (Jessica Peters/ The Progress)

Unsworth elementary students have been exploring every corner of the country over the past few weeks, with the help of Canadian Geographic and the Cable Public Affairs Channel (CPAC).

Their research culminated into a final public presentation called Democracy Day, held last Thursday in the school’s gymnasium. The school’s Grade 5s and 6s had a chance to show off what they’ve learned about the nation, its history and its people. In the centre of the gym was a giant, 24 by 36 ft. floor map — large enough to show the tiniest dots of land, and thinnest slips of river water. And surrounding the map, on the walls of gym, were well-researched projects, drawings, maps, photographs, family histories, and biographies that sum up what Canada, its provinces and territories mean to each student.

The project was led by teacher Kelly Urban, who worked with both Canadian Geographic and CPAC to bring the giant map to the school. It’s a part of the CPAC project called Route 338. Anyone can go online and research each of Canada’s 338 anytime. For Chilliwack-Hope, the stunning photos of city councillor Chris Kloot were used. There is brief information about MP Mark Strahl, and a “fast fact” that Strahls have been in Parliament for this riding for 22 years. The Chilliwack-Hope page includes information on the environment, history, culture, economy, and more.

And as part of the project, teachers across the country can access the giant floor map along with lesson plans to help bring the Route 338 website right into their classrooms.

Part of Unsworth’s Democracy Day included a visit by Chilliwack Mayor Sharon Gaetz, which pleased the student who was tasked with researching her. She spoke to the students as they sat on the map, and then toured around the gym to hear what they’d learned.

Avrianna Cools, for example, dove into the subject of the Charlottetown Conference, September 1864, as part of her research into Prince Edward Island.

“Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island wanted to merge their railways into a single unit, but they didn’t have enough money to pay for it,” she explains. “They asked Canada, but Canada refused. So they fundraised.”

Her classmate Nathan Strong continues the story from his project, explaining that the railway project put the maritimes into debt. The British landlords had borrowed too much money, and Canada eventually offered to pay them to join the growing nation. That happened on July 1, 1873.

There were also students who learned that their grandparents worked the land in rural Saskatchewan, and students who learned about trailblazing female politicians in Canada’s far north. All students in the school had access to the map, from the projects on display last Thursday, right down to the kindergarten students who compared the sizes of lakes, provinces and oceans to their own bodies.

CPAC says they created the project with Canadian Geographic as “part of our efforts to contribute more actively to Canadian’s understanding of their democratic system and to educate and engage our youth as we believe that education is key to maintaining a strong and healthy democracy.”

To learn more about this riding, the Route 338 project, and how to bring the map to your classroom, download a Canada quiz app, or see lesson plans, visit route338.ca. The map is available on loan free of charge for a 3-week period throughout the school year and by special request during the summer.


@CHWKcommunity
jpeters@theprogress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

A giant map fills the floor of the gym at Unsworth elementary school, as parents, teachers and students talk about research projects that line the walls. (Jessica Peters/ The Progress)

A giant map fills the floor of the gym at Unsworth elementary school, as parents, teachers and students talk about research projects that line the walls. (Jessica Peters/ The Progress)

The CPAC floor map is available free to schools for three-week periods.

The CPAC floor map is available free to schools for three-week periods.

Just Posted

South Surrey nurse Brittany Williams has been involved with the Burn Camp since 2013. (Contributed photo)
Burn camp ‘really puts things in perspective,’ says South Surrey nurse

Brittany Williams’ experiences hoped to boost Hometown Heroes Lottery fundraiser

Motorists breaking travel rules can be fined $230 for failing to follow instructions or $575 if the reason for travel violates the essential travel health order, at this Highway 3 check area near Manning Park. Photo RCMP
RCMP begin stopping drivers on BC highways – checkpoint at Manning Park

Four checkpoints are set up Thursday, May 6 around the province

Dr. Bonnie Henry B.C.'s provincial health officer, updates the COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, April 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
Province ‘ramping up’ COVID-19 vaccination effort in hard-hit Surrey

‘Door-to-door’ registration program in the works, says Dr. Bonnie Henry

Serena Deol, Jaspreet Deol, Madison Sweeney and Tanveer Pannu (pictured clockwise from top left) are Surrey United soccer players recruited to the University of Fraser Valley. (submitted photos)
Surrey United soccer quartet sign to play for UFV Cascades

Three of the university’s recruits are Panorama Ridge Secondary students

John Paul Fraser, executive director of the BC Salmon Farmers Association. (Screen shot)
Salmon farmers warn Surrey jobs on line as feds end Discovery Islands operations

344 full-time jobs at risk in Surrey and 1,189 B.C.-wide

Protesters attempt to stop clear-cutting of old-growth trees in Fairy Creek near Port Renfrew. (Will O’Connell photo)
VIDEO: Workers, activists clash at site of Vancouver Island logging operation

Forest license holders asking for independent investigation into incident

A worker rides a bike at a B.C. Hydro substation in Vancouver, on Friday, April 16, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
BC Hydro report raises safety concerns as pandemic prompts jump in yard work

Incidents involving weekend tree trimmers, gardeners and landscapers have risen 30% since the pandemic hit

Starting Tuesday, May 11, B.C. adults born in 1981 and earlier will be able to register for a vaccine dose. (Haley Ritchie/Black Press Media)
BC adults 40+ eligible to book COVID-19 vaccinations next week

Starting Tuesday, people born in 1981 and earlier will be able to schedule their inoculation against the virus

Parks Canada and Tla-o-qui-aht Tribal Parks dig the washed up Princess M out from sand along the south shore of the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. (Nora O’Malley photo)
Rescue attempt costs man his boat off Pacific Rim National Park Reserve

Coast Guard response questioned after volunteer responder’s speedboat capsizes in heavy swells

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Al Kowalko shows off the province’s first electric school bus, running kids to three elementary and two secondary schools on the West Shore. (Zoe Ducklow/News Staff)
B.C.’s first electric school bus making the rounds in Victoria suburbs

No emissions, no fuel costs and less maintenance will offset the $750K upfront expense

The Aquilini Investment Group has agreed to a proposed contract of five years to run the Abbotsford Centre. (File photo)
Proposal to run Abbotsford Centre offered to Canucks ownership group

Planned five-year contract to cost city $750K annually, starting Jan. 1, 2022

Road sign on Highway 1 west of Hope warns drivers of COVID-19 essential travel road checks on the highways into the B.C. Interior. (Jessica Peters/Chilliwack Progress)
B.C. residents want travel checks at Alberta border, MLA says

Police road checks in place at highways out of Vancouver area

Victoria police say the photo they circulated of an alleged cat thief was actually a woman taking her own cat to the vet. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Photo of suspected cat thief released by Victoria police actually just woman with her pet

Police learned the she didn’t steal Penelope the cat, and was actually taking her cat to the vet

Most Read