Canadian and World Studies

Canadian and World Studies

The Canadian and World Studies Department at St. Peter Catholic Secondary School offers a wide range of courses at the locally developed, workplace, open, academic, applied, college and university level. We offer courses in geography, history, civics, law, politics, social studies and First Nations, Metis, and Inuit Studies. The teachers involved in the department offer our students rich and rewarding learning experiences. We focus on the inquiry process where there is a partnership between the teacher, student, parents and our community partners. As stated in the Ministry curriculum documents , one of our goals is to help our students “… to be critically literate in order to synthesize information, make informed decisions, communicate effectively, and thrive in an ever-changing global community.”

We work with a variety of community partners in order to enrich our learning opportunities for our students. At St. Peter’s, our classroom is just not limited by the school. Our partners include the Toronto Zoo and the School of Education and Professional Learning at Trent University. Our community partners also come into our school as part of our Speakers Forum which examines a variety of themes which link back to the local, provincial, national and global community. In October 2021, through our partnership with Indigenous community members like Shannon Kimewon, our students participated in the Kairos Blanket Exercise which provided an authentic examination of Canada's treatement of its Indigenous Peoples and the need to actively engage in the goals of reconciliation.

Our students go on field trips which bring life to what they learn in our classroom. Our law students participate in simulated court experiences and trips to law courts in Peterborough and Toronto. The history students have been able to experience our course through the trip to Ottawa where they visit the War Museum, the Supreme Court, the War Memorial and Parliament. Students enrolled in the Civics course have a variety of speakers and local experiences that bring out the meaning of citizenship. For instance, in September 2021, our students participated in this year's Student Vote. In our grade nine geography program we try to allow for our students to experience the outdoors and new cultural experiences.

Our grade 9-10 students compete in the annual Canadian Geographic competition. In May 2019, Jake Douglas placed 2nd in the National Competition in Ottawa.

Our geography classes attend an annual trip to the St. Lawrence Market and Ripley’s Aquarium which is linked to their studies in class. The geography students also experience trips in our local community like Jackson’s Park.

Department members have also taken St. Peter students on past international trips to places like Italy, Greece, and Vimy Ridge.

The anthropology, sociology and psychology courses offered in the department allow for a different experience for our students. Students enrolled in those courses are challenged by the curriculum which is linked with a variety of guest speakers.

What we do in our department reflects back onto the Catholic Graduate Expectations. We feel at St. Peter that our students will become self-directed, responsible, lifelong learners who work collaboratively with others while at the same time being discerning believers in our Catholic faith community.

historical thinking set of posters

Students competing in the Geography Challenge- teacher Reg Hartwick (left) and student Jake Douglas (2nd from right)

Grade 9 students at Ripley's Aquarium

Subject Associations

As a member of the various subject associations, we want our students to be able to answer the questions:

What’s where? Why there? Why Care?


OAGEE (Ontario Association for Geographic and Environmental Educators) https://oagee.org

OHASSTA – AESHO (Ontario History and Social Sciences Teacher Association) - https://ohassta-aesho.education/en/

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