Canada & the First World War: An Introduction
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Developing an historical understanding of the twentieth--‐ and twenty--‐first centuries requires, first and foremost, an understanding of the First World War. The root causes of such historically significant events as the Russian Revolution, the rise of Adolph Hitler, World War II, the Cold War, American superpower status, the Yugoslav civil war, and contemporary ethnic and military conflicts within the Middle East, each stem in part from the consequences and legacy of the “war to end all wars.” This resource package provides educators with 6 lessons that serve to explore the main causes of World War I and the impacts of the war on Canada and Canadians. Specifically, students will explore the main causes of the war; the Canadian reactions to the outbreak of war; technological advancements throughout the war; French--‐English relations and the conscription crisis; the human cost of war; and the Treaty of Versailles. Students will explore these topics through the inspection of geographic maps, political cartoons, Canadian artwork, films, oral histories, newspaper excerpts and other forms of differentiated instruction. Each lesson is grounded in one of the Big Six Historical Thinking Concepts developed by Seixas and Morton – historical significance, evidence, continuity and change, cause and consequence, historical perspectives, and the ethical dimension. By the end of the six lessons students will have gained an introductory understanding of World War I and Canada’s role within the global conflict.