Secondary Lessons

Title: Lesson 1 — Values, Issues & Perspectives

Summary: In this lesson, students watch an experiment about how our beliefs shape our perspectives during the ‘Minds On’ activity. They review the concept of a civic issue and the factors that shape one’s political perspective. Afterwards, students participate in a political spectrum activity to develop a sense of their civic self-image and better understand how beliefs and values influence opinions and perspectives. In the ‘Consolidation’ activity, students reflect on why it is important to respect others’ perspectives and opinions.

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Title: Lesson 2 — The Political Spectrum

Summary: In this lesson, students use the political inquiry process and the concepts of political thinking when reflecting on civic issues and ways to address them. In the ‘Minds On’ activity, students consider different perspectives on the minimum wage debate. Afterwards, students investigate their political leanings by answering a political spectrum quiz, reviewing the associated terms and applying their understanding. In the ‘Consolidation’ activity, students reflect on the aspects of their personal identity that affect their political orientation.

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Title: Lesson 3 — Governance and Democracy

Summary: In this lesson, students analyze leadership styles and decision-making processes by participating in a space survival exercise. In groups, students communicate their opinions and consider others’ opinions, while reflecting on the collaborative process and power dynamics. Afterwards, students discuss government types around the world and how they differ with respect to decision-making processes and citizen rights and freedoms.

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Title: Lesson 4 — Democratic Principles

Summary: In this lesson, students explore what democracy means and what the implications are for them as citizens. They consider their own definition of democracy and those of their peers, before interpreting and analyzing key democratic principles. In groups, they consider how they can support or uphold democratic principles through their own actions. In the culminating activity, they consider how democracy relies on the political action of individuals and groups.

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Title: Lesson 5 — Government in Canada

Summary: In this lesson, students compare the federal, provincial and municipal levels of government, including leadership roles, elected officials and division of responsibilities. Students learn how government and political decisions impact individuals and communities on a local, national and global level.

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Title: Lesson 6 — Provincial Government

Summary: In this lesson, students explore the role of each branch and get a better understanding of the areas of responsibility of the provincial government. Students deepen their understanding about how government affects them and how political decisions impact local, national or global communities, and reflect on how they can  influence government by voting in elections.

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Title: Lesson 7 — Rights and Responsibilities in a Democracy

Summary: In this lesson, students discuss the rights they have at school in a Placemat Activity. Together they create a class charter and reflect on the responsibilities that go along with their rights. Students review the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and then create a Mind Map to draw relevant connections to their lives. Afterwards, students consider the responsibilities associated with the rights and freedoms they have in Canada. In the ‘Consolidation’ activity, students reflect on low voter turnout and the significance of voting in elections.

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Title: Lesson 8 — Universal Suffrage

Summary: In this lesson, students reflect on democratic rights in Canada, as well as the importance of equality, political tolerance and citizen participation in a democracy. After reviewing an overview of history of voting rights in Canada, students form groups to investigate the actions of individuals and groups that contributed to universal suffrage and improved accessibility to voting. In the culminating discussion, students reflect on the importance of exercising their right to vote and protecting minority rights.

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Title: Lesson 9 — Active and Engaged Citizenship

Summary: In this lesson, students review the concept of objectives and results and hear stories from other Ontario youth that have taken actions on issues that matter to them. Afterwards, they examine an issue of importance to them and establish an action plan to achieve specific objectives.

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Title: Lesson 10 — Elections in Ontario

Summary: In this lesson, students learn about the election process in Ontario. After learning the basics, students work in groups to research a candidate or party running in their school’s electoral district and present this information to the rest of the class. Students reflect on the similarities and differences between the candidates and/or parties, and assess which they would support and why. Overall, students cultivate the skills and attitudes that foster civic engagement and develop their civic self‑image.

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