By Risa Gluskin


Students have to balance their current views on democracy and their historical perspectives on ancient Athenian democracy. Pepples were used to vote.


In the open-ended world of inquiry-based learning, “historical perspectives” is often the most open to debate, I find. In my current grade 11 world history class, which I’ve only known for about a month, we’ve had some pretty fierce discussions about it already. My yellow “presentism” card has come out frequently with students often challenging me on its use. I love that!

In grade 11 history I introduce one historical thinking concept (HTC) at a time. First, we do significance with Mesopotamian innovations, then we do continuity and change with Egyptian case studies of Hatshepsut and Akhenaton. Causes and consequences are introduced next with Egypt’s decline and the decline of the Indus Valley civilization. Primary source evidence is woven throughout.

Where does that leave historical perspectives? Over the years, I have found it harder and harder to keep it separate (not that I see HTCs as separate silos – I just introduce them separately for the sake of not overloading the students with all of the HTCs at once in the mixed level course). Historical perspectives may be the lynchpin that holds all the HTCs together.

By John Myers

 Assessment Process

In Part 1 my students (teacher candidates) identified issues in assessment based on their experiences as students and teacher candidates. Part 2 presents some of their findings. How well do you as experienced teachers recognize the challenges of improving assessment and evaluation practices we identify?  Taking nearly 1000 pages of their research and distilling it was easier than grading (already did that) as certain ideas were common to several to the questions investigated.

What in the following is familiar to you? What issues have you resolved to your satisfaction and that of the your students? Whet seems novel and worth a try?

By Barbara Brown and Lina Han


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Image from OISE: Diversity in Teaching: Intersectionality,


Les pionniers sont venus dAngleterre, dIrelande, et dAllemagne

The pioneers came from England, Ireland, and Germany.

Thus it began: the daily morning recital in my third grade class, telling us a story about how pioneers came to Canada and settled on the land. I learned about a peaceful arrival and settlement. I didn’t learn that they also bought, stole, separated, subverted…

I learned anatomy in grade six; I learned about the menstrual cycle. I didn’t learn about how this function, seemingly restricted to the realm of biology, has a social dimension in perception of women, how it uniquely impacts homeless women…

Grade eight approached; I learned (something very unmemorable) about Martin Luther King Jr; something along the lines that he was a hero, beloved by America. I didn’t learn that he was on the FBI watch list, called a terrorist, assassinated. I didn’t learn about Viola Davis…

By Sandy Kritzer

Sandy took up last month's editor’s challenge to submit photos of summer travels.


Photos courtesy of Sandy Kritzer.


Sandy image1

This is the old town at Bergen, Norway, where the German Hanseatic League basically ran trade in Europe from the 1200s to 1500s. It’s now a World Heritage Site. Many of the buildings are sinking and the supports are being rebuilt (you can see a couple of buildings with covers).

By Risa Gluskin

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Photo by Risa Gluskin

Welcome back. We here at Rapport hope you had a relaxing and refreshing summer. Perhaps your first few weeks of school have been like mine and you don’t even remember summer anymore! There’s always so much to do and learn.

OHASSTA had a very busy summer (see Rachel’s President’s message) and is preparing for a fabulous conference in November. The brochure of workshop titles will be out very soon – trust me, the offerings are incredible this year as we partner with the Association for Canadian Studies.

So, save the date and register soon: Thurs. Nov. 15 and Fri. Nov. 16 at the Four Points by Sheraton Toronto Airport: 6257 Airport Road, Mississauga

As always if you’d like to write for Rapport, please email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Meanwhile, enjoy this month's 10 blog posts.