The History of Here
On March 29th, Ms. Ciraco’s Grade 10 Canadian History class spent the day at the University of Toronto Mississauga (UTM). Students began their day with a self-guided tour of the campus, followed by a tour of the library led by Yayo Umetsubo, a scholarly and communications librarian who specializes in the historical studies collections on campus. During the tour, students had the opportunity to hear about the UTM archive and viewed some of the recent acquisitions including regional maps of early Mississauga as well as the Streetsville Review collection from the late 1800s.
We looked at articles and adverts from the Streetsville Review that really gave us a snapshot of the time period. Some of my favourites were an article about the booming Canadian cheese industry, gold in Ireland, and the story of a fugitive.
Following the library tour, students continued their morning in the Maanjiwe nendamowinann building which is home to the Historical Studies Department. Here Professor Mairi Cowan and Professor Boris Chrubasik guided students through a two-hour workshop that focused on the analysis and interpretation of primary sources in history. Students had the opportunity to work in small groups with each professor and discuss the importance of asking questions of historical sources, highlighting not only what information the sources offer, but also what their limitations might be.
The afternoon included a private lecture from Professor Brian Gettler who offered students a look into his newly developed course ‘A History of Here’, which allows for the exploration of local archives and the history of Mississauga. Professor Gettler discussed a wide variety of topics from the Credit River Fishery and the Toronto Purchase, to the links between immigration patterns and wholesale imports to the introduction of pizza!
Next year, HNMCS will be continuing its collaborative relationship with the Historical Studies Department at UTM and will be offering additional workshop opportunities to students enrolled in senior history courses as well.
- Ms. Alessandra Ciraco, Social Studies & Science Faculty