Think Like a Historian: Introduction to the Halifax Explosion

Note to Educators: Accommodations for Special Education, ELL and ESL students are included in these worksheets, and are identified as “modifications.” Visit t o view all the videos in the series and download additional free, bilingual educational resources. Other free, bilingual educational resources are available on Historica Canada’s Education Portal , and on The Canadian Encyclopedia . Two supplementary worksheet packages complement this education guide – the Ethel Bond Worksheets Package and the Arthur Lismer Worksheets Package – both of which can be downloaded on the Education Portal . Online Resources Message to Teachers To mark the centennial of the Halifax Explosion, and help educators and students think critically about primary sources, Historica Canada has created the Think Like a Historian series of videos and classroom activities. This education guide gives students an introduction to the Halifax Explosion and working with primary sources. Inspired by the framework developed by Dr. Peter Seixas for the Historical Thinking Project, Think Like a Historian: The Halifax Explosion complements Canadian school curricula from grades 4 to 12. This series invites students to deepen their understanding of the Halifax Explosion and its larger historical context. Investigating primary sources from the time of the Explosion offers students an opportunity to make sense of the events that took place and why they are significant today. You may want to use all of the lessons in a sequence, or choose the most relevant lessons as standalone activities. Activities 1 and 2 in the education guide provide an introduction and overview to the Halifax Explosion and are designed to provide background and context. Activity 3 provides an introduction to taking historical perspectives when analyzing primary sources. Activities 4 and 5 include exercises to complement and further explore the Ethel Bond and Arthur Lismer videos in this series. You may choose to have students complete the Ethel Bond activities and video, the Arthur Lismer activities and video, or both. Activities 6 and 7 provide an opportunity for students to reflect on their understanding of historical perspectives and significance, and what they have learned about the Halifax Explosion. The Think Like a Historian series was produced with the generous support of the Government of Canada. Historica Canada is the country’s largest organization dedicated to enhancing awareness of Canada’s history and citizenship. Teacher Tip: To complete the following activities, watch the accompanying videos as a class at least twice before beginning the activities. Students may want to watch the videos several times to familiarize themselves with the content. Turning on subtitles can help New Language Learners better understand the videos. Discuss any questions students may have about the videos after watching each one. The Gazette , 7 December 1917 (courtesy Toronto Star Newspaper Centre). Arrival of Hospital Ship at Pier No.2 Halifax , 1918 or later, by Mr. Arthur Lismer (courtesy Canadian War Museum/19710261-0924). Cover Images: The Globe , 7 December 1917 (courtesy Toronto Star Newspaper Centre). | Letter from Ethel Jane Bond to Murray Kellough, 16 December 1917 (courtesy Nova Scotia Archives/Murray Kel- lough fonds/2010-015). | Soldiers engaged in rescue work after the Halifax Explosion (courtesy Library and Archives Canada/Department of National Defence/PA-022744). | “Roome Street School”, 1917 or 1918 (courtesy Nova Scotia Archives/Halifax City Regional Library Collection/1983-212). | “Hour of Horror in Devastated Richmond”, sketch by Arthur Lismer in The Drama of a City: The Story of Stricken Halifax by Stanley K. Smith, 1918 (courtesy Baldwin Collection/Toronto Reference Library). Historica Canada Education Portal: The Canadian Encyclopedia: The Heritage Minutes: Historica Canada: The Historical Thinking Project: Library and Archives Canada: Canadian War Museum: Nova Scotia Archives: