The current version of the Teachers’ Zone will not display optimally in your browser. Please upgrade it for the best experience.

Stories of Confederation


There are two types of activities: Package Activities and Object Activities.

Package Activities are project-based activities designed to accommodate one or more classes. These activities involve the use of historical thinking concepts while exploring the whole package, resulting in a more comprehensive experience.

Object Activities are short inquiry-based activities that typically take 5–25 minutes. These activities encourage students to think critically about the objects being presented, and to use historical thinking concepts.

Both types of activities were created with the guidance of educators from across Canada, and incorporate current educational theory and approaches.

Package Activities

Explore project-based Package Activities by scrolling down.

Activity 1: Making Connections

Working in pairs, read through the information presented in this package. While you read, think about how the objects (such as archival documents, photos and artifacts) represent events, inventions or people that are related.

Choose one object, write the name of the object in the middle of a piece of paper and then add a sentence or two about what it represents. Next, in a mind map, write down the names of other objects and explain how each one is connected to the first one. Try to use Historical Thinking concepts, such as cause and consequence, historical perspective, and continuity and change, to make connections between the objects.

For example:

Photograph bubble connected to three blue bubbles with text.

Activity 2: Create a Timeline

Read through the information given in this package. Working in pairs or small groups, create a timeline of events leading up to Confederation. Once your timeline is complete, think about the following questions:

  • What are the key events that led up to Confederation? If you removed one of them, do you think Confederation would still have happened?
  • Are there any perspectives missing on this timeline? What stories or perspectives could you add?
  • Moments in history and primary sources are considered historically significant if they result in change, reveal something important about history or occupy a meaningful place in the historical narrative. Is everything listed on your timeline historically significant? Explain why or why not.

Activity 3: “Winners” and “Losers”

Confederation was a contentious issue. Not everyone believed that it would be beneficial. In this package, we learn about some of these different perspectives. After reading through the package, make a list of all the groups of people who were impacted by Confederation. Using historical evidence found in this package and other resources of your choice, argue whether each group benefited from or was hindered by Confederation.

Object Activities

Explore inquiry-based Object Activities by clicking on individual objects below.