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Lesson Plan:

Ed Broadbent and Elections in Canada

Type: Assignment
Subjects: History, Political Science
Grades: Grades 9-10
Duration: 1 to 2 lessons
Purpose: To identify and examine the issues and personalities of a given federal election
Summary: Students dramatize one of the federal elections in which Ed Broadbent was involved.

Before Exploring

As a class, prepare a storyboard detailing what students know about the most recent federal election. Information should include the parties, leaders, main issues, and results in terms of number of seats each party won and its total percentage of the popular vote. Students should include all the main parties, whether they won seats or not, as the policies and issues raised by other parties can greatly influence the government.

Outline the Opportunity

Divide the class into groups focusing on the following federal election campaigns in which Ed Broadbent was involved as either a candidate or party leader. Have them visit Ed Broadbent: A Voice from the Left on the CBC Digital Archives website and review the relevant clips:

1968: A candidate in '68
1972 and 1974: Race for the leadership
1979 and 1980: On the campaign trail
1984: Broadbent on Bach and Billie
1988: The quest for Quebec

Have each group prepare and present a dramatization of the main issues, parties, leaders, results and significance of the election it is examining. Dramatizations might include a simulated television news broadcast, live interviews, or skits with students acting in the roles of various political leaders.

Revisit and Reflect

Have groups present their dramatizations to the class. Once the presentations are completed, ask students to discuss what they learned from the activity about election campaigns and what they think the significance of Ed Broadbent's role was in them.

Assessment Tip: Evaluate the group presentations of the various elections on the basis of originality, creativity, and the quality of the information presented.


Students can prepare a chart organizer on federal elections in Canada from 1968 using the following headings: leaders, parties, main issues, results, and significance for Canada.