Activity 4: Heroism Under Fire
Duration: 2 lessons
Students will express the meaning of heroism in a medium of their choice.
To support and express an opinion
History, Social Studies, Media Studies
Discuss with students the nature of heroism and complete a brief organizer
on the board noting the qualities the class believes are associated with
heroism. Ask students to suggest historical and contemporary figures whom
they consider to be "heroic." Do the people mentioned match
the qualities on the board?
Outline the Opportunity
Direct students to the CBC Halifax Explosion Web site. Have them read
carefully the site. Provide them with the download sheet Heroism Organizer
to keep a written record of their research and analysis. From their review,
they should select examples of individual and/or collective heroism. Remind
them that they may not always know the identities of the heroes, and that
the content may not indicate that certain actions were heroic. Students
must use their own judgement when identifying examples of heroism.
Using the information they have gathered, students
will express the meaning of heroism through any medium of their choice
(music, poetry, essay writing, video, visual arts, drama). They should
use details from the site to inspire and inform their work.
Revisit and Reflect
Have students share their work with the class. You might set up a classroom
museum where students can display their visual or written work and where
there are set times for the performance of videos, songs, poetry, or dramatic
As a class, discuss the question of heroism with
respect to more recent tragedies such as the World Trade Center attacks.
Do students believe that they have the qualities of heroes? Can one ever
know in advance how one will act in a crisis or emergency? What is the
most heroic act that they have witnessed? How might the actions of heroic
Canadians in 1917 influence Canadians today?
Students can complete the project Heroism in Sports on the CBC
Radio and Television Archives Web site.