CBC Digital Archives

Lesson Plan: For Teachers: Debating Universal Daycare

History, Political Science
3 to 4 lessons
To examine the issues surrounding dual-income families and universal daycare, to support an opinion in a debate
Students will investigate both sides of the argument surrounding dual-income families and universal daycare in Canada and participate in formal or informal debate on the topic.

Lesson Plan

Before Exploring

Ask the students to brainstorm or explain the elements of a debate. Be sure students clearly understand all of the elements. Explain to students that they will be preparing and participating in a debate arguing either for or against the need for universal daycare in Canada.


Outline the Opportunity


Working in teams of four or five students will gather information on the topic of the daycare debate through examination of the topic Who Cares for Our Kids?: The Changing Face of Daycare in Canada on the CBC Digital Archives website. Students should focus primarily on the clips "The housewife and the working girl", "Callwood defends daycare", "Putting your child first", "The stay-at-home mom versus the Supermom", "The emotional upheaval of child care" and "Is daycare bad for boys?"

Be sure that students understand that they must be able to argue on both sides of the issue so they must gather information that supports both side of the arguments for and against dual-income families and universal daycare. Students can search beyond the site on their own time. Remind them to cite all sources.


Revisit and Reflect


Bring the teams together and hold a debating tournament based on the resolution: Be it resolved that the Canadian government should implement universal daycare. Each team should have an opportunity to debate both sides of the issue.




The top two teams in the debating tournament can hold a championship debate in which the rest of the students determine the winner.

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