Category Archives: History

Vimy 2017 Day 1

Poverty, Agony, Distress & Want!

So here we are…Day One. Hours from departure. I’m at home getting all the last minute packing done before I head over to the airport.

I am so unbelievably nervous. If you know me, it’s nothing unusual and par for the course. Do you know how many times I have to “go” before a football game? It’s ridiculous! It’s just who I am; I’m a worrier. I was wake this morning just after 4am and could not fall back asleep. I think everything is ready and I’ve done my best to make sure all the “T’s” are crossed and the “I’s” are dotted. I just need to relax. I’ll check back in once we’re on our way to Toronto…maybe I’ll feel better.

Well, we’re sitting here in the secure area of the Thunder Bay airport, patiently waiting for our flight. The kids are just wired, as I’m sure I was…

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Vimy 2017 here we come!

It was Canada from the Atlantic to the Pacific on parade. I thought then… that in those few minutes I witnessed the birth of a nation-Brigadier General Alexander Ross, Commander, 28th Battalion, CEF April 9th, 1917

So here we are, less than 48 hours away from a great journey. The excitement, and anxiety, is palpable. On Wednesday, 23 students and 3 teachers from St. Patrick will be departing for an 11-day trip to Europe, the highlight of which will be participation in the 100th anniversary commemoration of the Battle of Vimy Ridge.

The last week has been insanely busy for all involved; all the last minute planning and meetings tend to be very stressful. On top of that, we have had a lot of media attention on what will be a once in a lifetime trip. On Friday, March 31st, local MPs Patty Hajdu and Don Rusnak came by the school to present travellers from both St. Patrick and St. Ignatius will small gifts for the journey. Also present was Lieutenant-Colonel David Ratz, who is the commanding officer of the Lake Superior Scottish Regiment (LSSR). Our students will be visiting graves of soldiers from the 52nd Battalion and the Lake Superior Regiment in Europe, units that are perpetuated by the LSSR today. You can read more about the media conference on TBNewswatch, CBC and the TBT News.

MPs Hajdu and Rusnak visit students from St. Patrick & St. Ignatius, March 2017.

All of the travellers will come home with many great memories from the trip. They will also take home many physical reminders as well. Anyone who visits Vimy Ridge is presented with the Vimy Pilgrimage Medal, which honours not only the sacrifice of those that fought there, but also those who have travelled to pay tribute to the fallen. The medal features the central image of the Vimy Memorial, which is the Spirit of Canada, or Mother Canada, weeping for her fallen sons. The ribbon bears the colors of the 4 Canadian Divisions who fought together at Vimy for the first time; red for the 1st Division, blue for the 2nd Division, grey for the 3rd Division and green for the 4th Division.

Vimy Pilgrimage Medal

Wifi permitting, we will be posting a day-by-day account of our journey on this site. Please follow us as we weave our way through the Netherlands, Belgium and France on this one-in-lifetime journey.

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The Latest-April 2017

Neither the life of an individual nor the history of a society can be understood without understanding both-C. Wright Mills

It has been another busy month in the Social Science Department.

On February 28th, the school hosted its annual open house for prospective Grade 8 students. In a break with past practice, department booths were located in their respective areas, as opposed to the gymnasium, which was designed to allow students and parents to see more of the school. Social Science was located in the North Hallway across from the music room and there was a fairly steady stream of traffic by our booth. In case you missed it, you can view our department brochure here: Department Brochure

Social Science Display, February 2017.

Learning with hands-on activities is continuing in our classrooms. Students in Ms. Bernardi’s Grade 9 geography class were able to physically create the process of the rock cycle and also eat it too. Utilizing chocolate, the students used heat, pressure and time to form the three different types of rocks; igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary. Once they had completed their “model,” they had the opportunity to savour their rock cookies as a snack!

The department trip to Europe to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge is now only days away. Twenty-three students and three teachers from St. Patrick will be joined by students and teachers from St. Ignatius as they make the pilgrimage for this once-in-a-lifetime event. It is estimated that 25,000 people will attend the ceremony, along with representatives from the government and the Monarchy. In addition to Vimy Ridge, the group will be visiting Amsterdam, Beaumont Hamel, Albert, Normandy and Paris. You can follow their progress via our website, or on Facebook and Twitter.

Vimy 100 backpack and jacket, March 2017.

Please check back soon as we will posting details before and during our trip to Europe for the 100th Anniversary of Vimy Ridge.

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The Latest-February 2017

If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten-Rudyard Kipling

With the arrival of exams, another semester is drawing to a close for the students and teachers in the Social Science Department. One of the highlights of the semester has been our work on an inter-disciplinary task revolving around climate change. Students in some classes were asked to view the documentary “Before the Flood,” which was hosted and produced by Leonardo DiCaprio. They were then asked to write letters describing their thoughts on climate change, what they are doing to combat its effects and what they would ask of their elected officials regarding this issue. Their questions and ideas will form the nucleus of a video that will be created to address this important topic.

As we move closer to spring, the pace of preparations for the department excursion to Europe in April are increasing. Travelling together with St. Ignatius, 23 students and 3 teachers from St. Patrick will be in France on April 9th to take part in the 100th Anniversary commemorations of the Battle of Vimy Ridge. We will be joining thousands of Canadians from across the country that will be on hand for the event. Flight itineraries have already been received for this 11-day, once-in-a-lifetime trip and excitement is building. More updates will be forthcoming and people will be able to follow their journey via the department website.

St. Patrick students at the 95th Anniversary commemorations, April 2012.

St. Patrick students at the 95th Anniversary commemorations, April 2012.

Be sure to check back regularly for the latest news and information.

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The Latest-December 2016

Those who have no record of what their forebears have accomplished lose the inspiration which comes from the teaching of biography and history-Carter G. Woodson

November is always a busy time at St. Patrick, and in particular for the Social Science Department. November is Veterans Month, where we take time to remember those who fought in the defence of Canada, especially those who gave their lives. The focal point of this month-long event is the annual commemoration of Remembrance Day on the 11th.

This year our Vimy 2017 travellers, under the direction of Mr. Battistel and Ms. Caza, helped organize the prayer service held in the auditorium with the assistance of our chaplain, Ms. DeBruyne. Meaghan Dougherty was the master of ceremonies, while Breaden Fediuk read the poem “In Flanders Fields.” Ms. DeBruyne led the assembly in prayer and Shayna Badiuk sounded the Last Post and Reveille. The school band, under the direction of Mr. Soderlind, played beautifully throughout the service and also featured a great vocal rendition of “O Canada,” sung by Shaelynn Moorman.

Remembrance Day 2016

Remembrance Day 2016

Be sure to check back regularly for the latest news and information.

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The Latest-November 2016

I don’t think you should ever run from history. You should learn from it and embrace it-Doc Rivers

October was an exciting month for the students and teachers in the Social Science Department.

Ms. Hallarn’s Grade 9 Geography class paid a visit Fort William Historical Park for some fantastic hands-on activities. Their experience began with Life in A Wigwam. Students learned about daily and seasonal lifestyle of the Anishnawbe people. They also had an opportunity to see up close the furs that were used to barter for goods. Students then continued their cultural experience by making a traditional craft with leather.

Afterwards, students ventured outside using GPS units provided by FWHP for a scavenger hunt. They gathered in teams to locate waypoints to correctly answer clues about Fort William History and had to avoid decoy questions as a challenge.

Fort William Historical Park, October 2016.

Fort William Historical Park, October 2016.

Fort William Historical Park, October 2016.

Fort William Historical Park, October 2016.

Fort William Historical Park, October 2016.

Fort William Historical Park, October 2016.

Fort William Historical Park, October 2016.

Fort William Historical Park, October 2016.

In April, 23 students and 3 teachers from St. Patrick will be travelling to Europe to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge. Preparations for this event began several years ago, and with the trip less than six months away, the pace of planning has accelerated. Students will soon be involved with our school’s annual Remembrance Day activities.

Be sure to check back regularly for the latest news and information.

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The Latest-October 2016

A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots-Marcus Garvey

This year plans to be an exciting one for the students and teachers in the Social Science Department.

We will be involved in many great hands-on activities and events that will engage students in the learning process. The highlight of the year will take place in April, when a group of our students and teachers will be travelling to Europe for the 100th Anniversary commemorations of the Battle of Vimy Ridge. https://stpatssocialscience.com/excursions/vimy-2017/

Be sure to check back regularly for the latest news and information.

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The Latest-May 2016

History should be studied because it is essential to individuals and to society, and because it harbours beauty-Peter N. Stearns

April has been a great month for learning opportunities in the Social Science Department. Ms. Cavar’s and Mrs. Caza’s Law class participated in Law Day at the courthouse. Students, for the past month have been working with practicing lawyers to prepare them for their participation in a mock murder trial. Despite a stellar defense, the jury convicted their client. The judge however, felt that it was a wrongful conviction, so we may have grounds for appeal!

Mock Trial 2016.

Mock Trial 2016.

Mock Trial 2016.

Mock Trial 2016.

In Mrs. Caza’s Civics class, we were honoured with a visit from Grand Chief Alvin Fiddler, of the Nishnawbe Aski Nation.  He spoke to our class about indigenous history, culture, and governance.  It was an amazing experience for our students.

Alvin Fiddler visit, April 2016.

Alvin Fiddler visit, April 2016.

Alvin Fiddler visit, April 2016.

Alvin Fiddler visit, April 2016.

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The Latest-April 2016

History never looks like history when you are living through it-John W. Gardner

It has been an exciting month in the Social Science Department.  We had the privilege of welcoming back Max Eisen, a holocaust survivor, to speak at our school.  In Max’s very moving presentation he describes how in the spring of 1944 he along with 60 members of his family were sent to Auschwitz concentration camp.   He describes how through chance alone, he was able to survive.   Except for himself and two cousins, all of his family was murdered.  Forced to go on death marches he was finally liberated at Ebenesee concentration camp on May 6th, 1945.  

 

Max Eisen, March 2016.

Max Eisen, March 2016.

 

Max with students, March 2016.

Max with students, March 2016.

In addition, in Mrs. Caza’s class, WWI came alive with many hands on activities.  Mr. Epp and students from the faculty of education visited and engaged students with many activities that soldiers would have performed during WWI.  Code breaking, morning role call and the creeping barrage were a couple of the activities.  The “Screaming Beaver” platoon was successful in winning the top prize for performing exceptionally in all of the given tasks.  To top off the afternoon, we even had a special visit from the illustrious, Sir Sam Hughes!  Also this month in Mrs. Caza’s class students went back in time to the front by playing the board game, No Man’s Land and the interactive video game, Over the Top.

WWI activities, March 2016.

WWI activities, March 2016.

WWI activities, March 2016.

WWI activities, March 2016.

Be sure to check back regularly for the latest news and information.

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The Latest-March 2016

We are not makers of history. We are made by history-Martin Luther King Jr.

It has been a very busy February in the Social Science Department with the start up of the new semester.

Ms. Hallarn, who after reading the OECTA September 2015 article by Peter Cameron, a teacher at St. Elizabeth School in Thunder Bay and a Professionally Speaking magazine article from December 2015 (Nino Ricci an acclaimed Canadian writer) was fired up to integrate these ideas into her two Gr. 9 Academic Geography classes. Her classes were assigned two students and a person of their choice to send an inspirational message or personal compliment to. The caring messages were anonymous to demonstrate the fact that you never know whose lives you may have touched. Excellent work building community and celebrating Catholicity!

Kindness message, February 2016.

Kindness message, February 2016.

Mrs. Caza’s Civics class has also had an exciting February. Students were learning about the different systems of government and their benefits and drawbacks. Each student was assigned to a group that was either a democracy or an authoritarian system and they were given toothpicks and marshmallows and the task of seeing who could build the tallest tower. Democracy prevailed with the tallest tower! Mrs. Caza’s class also had a visit from our local M.P.P., Bill Mauro, who talked to the students about his role as an M.P.P., and the importance of civic engagement of our youth. Students asked questions about the issues that Thunder Bay and the province were facing today.

Democracy tower, February 2016.

Democracy tower, February 2016.

Bill Mauro visit, February 2016.

Bill Mauro visit, February 2016.

Be sure to check back regularly for the latest news and information.

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