Lesson Plan: For Teachers: Pierre Trudeau, Then and Now
This activity is best suited for senior-level students of History and/or Social Studies who may already have some background in Canadian history. The task will focus on the CBC Digital Archives site along with any other relevant sources of information that teachers and students may wish to consult.
Students are to prepare a summary or
overview of Pierre Trudeau's political legacy and historical importance to
Canada, which they will present orally, in any format they wish, to the class.
Divide the class into groups, each one focusing on a specific period during or after Trudeau's political career:
1965-68 -Trudeau enters politics
1968-1972 - Trudeau's first government
1972-74 -Trudeau's second (minority) government
1974-79 -Trudeau's third government
1979-80 -Trudeau in opposition
1980-84 -Trudeau's fourth government
1984-92 -The years of retirement (1)
1992-2000 -The years of retirement
Students are to obtain as much information as possible about Trudeau's political life and activities during the period they are researching, and state why they think his achievements or actions during this time are of lasting political or historical significance. They should also explain how Trudeau's actions impacted on important events that were taking place in Canada and/or the world during the period they are studying. Each group should also choose at least one major achievement or activity of Trudeau's during their period that they think is politically and/or historically important for Canada today, and explain why they think so.
Students work in groups, using the CBC Digital Archives website or any others they find informative and useful, to prepare their presentations of the periods they are researching.
Have each group make its presentation to the class. As each group presents, create a list that names the significant political or historical legacy, of Trudeau's, that was chosen by the group as representative of its time period. The class as a whole can then make an overall summary of Trudeau's significance for Canada. Interested students can write a one-to-two page personal reaction statement explaining what they think Trudeau's importance is to young Canadians today, and why (or not) they believe him to be a significant figure in recent Canadian political life and history.