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Remembrance Through Making a Student Minute

  • Military History
  • Secondary – Junior

This lesson plan was created by members of Historica Canada’s teacher community. Historica Canada does not take responsibility for the accuracy or availability of any links herein, and the views reflected in these learning tools may not necessary reflect those of Historica Canada. We welcome feedback regarding the content that may be linked to or included in these learning tools; email us at

One of the biggest criticisms our veterans have of “younger” generations is their lack of remembrance. One could argue that the reason younger generations struggle with the concept of remembrance is a lack of personal connection. The intent of this project is to make remembrance personal for the students by having them produce a Student Heritage Minute. The research that comes with this project brings the identity and character of the deceased soldier to the students first hand.


1. Students will understand the significant role that Canada played in the First and Second World Wars.

2. Students will research the personal story of a local veteran. This research will personalize the concept of remembrance.

3. Students will understand the concept of total war.

4. Students will evaluate the relationship between national self-interest and international cooperation.

5. Students will produce/direct a Student Minute about their local veteran.


Time Allowance: 
3 weeks total (considering all aspects of project); 3 days for preparatory phase; 2 days for presentation

It is expected that students have acquired a basic knowledge of Canada’s participation in the First and Second World Wars through past study.

Begin a discussion about veterans of the World Wars. Ask questions such as, "Does anyone have a relative that fought in these wars? Do you know anything about them?" Encourage students to bring in pictures and artifacts from their family members. Discuss, share and reflect.

Invite the Legion to submit a list of servicemen who died in battle. Perhaps they have a wall of honour or remembrance.

Assign the students a name of a fallen serviceman they do not know.

View some of the Heritage Minutes in class. To stay within the subject matter, try to stick with military-themed minutes. This will give students a very good base for the production and direction of their own Student Minute.

Direct students to the some of the Resource websites for military and medical records on their deceased serviceman. Students are encouraged to contact any surviving family members of the veterans for additional information. Or, if studying veterans who are still living in the community, coordinate a visit between the student and their veteran.

Once students have gathered information on their soldier, they must produce their Student Minute. It is imperative that students keep their project under two minutes in the interest of evaluation. It is expected that a majority of the production and direction of this assignment will be done outside of class. Use school multimedia expertise; borrow digital equipment, cameras, etc. Local cable stations may be willing to assist.

Students will present their projects to the class as a measure of respect for their fallen soldier. Please invite any family members to attend the viewing if possible.

Formative evaluation should take place throughout the project. It is suggested that rubrics be used in assessment because of the subjective nature of this assignment. Please see sample rubric attached.


Supporting documents for this Learning Tool

File type File size Action
Rubric.pdf PDF 13.8 KB Download

Supporting documents for this Learning Tool