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Distributed for University of British Columbia Press

Transforming the Canadian History Classroom

Imagining a New "We"

We are all our history. Yet in Canadian classrooms, students are often left questioning how they can study a past that does not reflect their present. Despite curricular revisions, the mainstream narrative that shapes the way we teach students about the Canadian nation can be divisive, separating “us” from “them.”
Responding to the evolving demographics of an ethnically and culturally heterogeneous population, Transforming the Canadian History Classroom is a call for a radically innovative approach that instead places students – the stories they carry and the histories they want to be part of – at the centre of history education. Samantha Cutrara offers a practical and theoretical guide to creating a learning environment in which students can investigate the historical narratives that infuse their lives and imagine a future that makes room for their diverse identities. She explores how teaching practices and institutional contexts can support ideas of connection, complexity, and care in order to engender meaningful learning and foster a student-centric history education.
Drawing on student and teacher interviews and case studies in schools, this progressive study demonstrates how developing a sense of national identity in all Canadian youth can be grounded in the praxis and pedagogies of today’s history education.

215 pages | 6 x 9

Table of Contents

1 Meaningful Learning: Imagining a New “We”
2 The Canada of the Future: Complex and Connected
3 Students Speak: A Desire for Connected, Complex Canadian History
4 Teaching the Others in the Room: Limiting Connection, Removing Complexity
5 Meaningful Sites of Teaching: The Connection, Complexity, and Care of Teachers
6 Historic Space: Meaningful Learning in Canadian History
Notes; Bibliography; Index

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