First Contact, Pioneers, Ancient Civilizations, Medieval, Aboriginal, Canadian History ALSO Adult Education (55+ or senior demographic) ABOUT LIANNE HARRIS As the Social Studies Resource Specialist Consultant for the Toronto District School Board and curriculum advisor for Upper Canada College, Lianne Harris has honed her many years of teaching history into an engaging, dynamic experience. To date, she has taught over 70 000 students and teachers and in 2003, she was selected by W.O.M.A.D. as one of Toronto’s Women of Influence. Appearing on TV and interviewed many times on the radio, she has been the keynote presenter at many professional, academic and organization events. WHAT ARE THE PROGRAMS? Social Studies (or History) 'In-Class' Field Trips for grades 3 to 8. Dynamic workshops and presentations transport the learner into new places and eras–a fascinating journey to different cultures, ideas, concepts and customs! Connections are solidly grounded in understanding the events and social history of the past to the relevancy of today. Always teaching in authentic period clothing, students can see and touch countless objects from Lianne’s personal collection of antiquities, authentic artifacts, and rare collectibles. Each presentation–like an ‘in-class’ field trip–is engaging, participatory, insightful, and of course, fun. FOR ADULT EDUCATION (55+ or seniors) please scroll to END OF DOCUMENT
Ontario Ministry of Education Curriculum-Based Presentations (half day and full day)
Presentation: ‘First Contact’
Drawing on both the Aboriginal and Early European experience, this presentation explores those crucial first years when these two cultures were struggling to understand each other's unfamiliar ways. Students will be introduced to ways in which the First Nations helped the settlers survive by medicine, an introduction of strange and unknown foods, indigenous farming and hunting practices, and unfamiliar transportation methods. In return, the Europeans brought with them highly prized trade goods, new foods, and new ideas. At times friendly, and at times not, students will learn about the vastly different ways these two cultures communicated with each other and why their perceptions and approaches set them both on a learning curve still felt today.
Students will be offered a chance to see and touch a mixed array of both authentic aboriginal artifacts and pioneer trade goods including pemmican, authentic animal-gut snowshoes, moccasins, wild animal skins and furs, authentic Hudson's Bay blanket, native medicines, copper kettles, iron pots, textiles, clothing and trapping equipment, and more.
The 18th and 19th centuries were a period of great innovation, experimentation, and discovery. Students are introduced to The Harris Log Cabin and the fascinating world of the early settlers, revealing the pioneers’ love of the curious…and even the bizarre! Starting with 'morning', 'before noon', 'the wedding' and 'evening', we explore what pioneers would have done, used, celebrated, and had for leisure time–all in a day's work. There are group 'games', opportunities for students to be volunteer helpers, and demonstrations on trap setting, clothing, and proper etiquette. The pioneer program examines the immigrant experience, age/gender roles, the difference between rural and urban folk (behaviour, dress, mindset), and innovations that only could have come about by changing one's environment. It's fun, interactive, with lots of brain food! (beyond 'milking cows and hauling hay').
Wearing a 19th-century costume (ahh, but no 18-inch waist corset!), Ms. Harris invites the students to see first-hand a full array of authentic and antique clothing, shoes, accessories, pictures, grooming aids, household goods, medicines, toys and children’s wear–all belonging to her family.
Presentation: ‘A Medieval Journey’
Let's go beyond knights and battles to the heart of the medieval world and look at life for all people around the world. This medieval presentation is designed to introduce students to the significant contributions of the medieval world, especially from an international perspective. Students are introduced to Europe in comparison to Central America, The Middle East, Africa, India, China and Mongolia, where the outstanding contributions of each culture are appreciated.
For this presentation, Ms. Harris dons a royal 13th-century costume. A display table with such medieval worldwide paraphernalia as armour (I would never disappoint any budding knight), wax seals, writing tablets, rings, trenchers, hats, costumes, brooches, cloth, herbs, money, kitchenware, grooming aids, and educational tools allows the students to see, smell, and touch the middle ages!
Presentation: ‘Ancient Civilization’
Who met their friends at shopping malls, vacationed in trailer homes, lived in six- storey apartment buildings? Who ate pizza? Used a curling iron? Toronto students? Not so! Class participation reveals some of the more curious elements of Ancient life with an eye on Egypt, Greece, Rome, as well as the significant contributions of Phoenicia, Babylon, Greece, India, Persia, and Asia Minor. Learn what influences still shape our lives now and what ideas, customs and habits we still practice thousands of years later.
For this presentation, Ms. Harris dons ancient garb from various cultures (your pick or mine). A display table with such classical paraphernalia as writing implements, statuary, grooming tools, clothing, weaponry, household items, food, games, authentic coins and household wares, grooming aids, textiles, and archeological finds allow the students to see and touch the ancient world!
Presentation: ‘Vision Quest: A View of Native Canadian Life’
Come explore the exciting life of the First Nations peoples! How did the Woodland aboriginals work, tell jokes, prepare food, spend leisure time and receive guests? How did they dress, discipline their children, enforce their laws, and raise their families? Learn the intricacies about how First Nations peoples approached birth, marriage, courtship and death, how they communicated with sign language, pictography and ways they recorded their history. Importantly, the Native contribution to Canadian life is explored.
This workshop explores the cultural, social, religious, and everyday customs and habits of the First Nations people. Students learn about the intricacies of Native life, with content and concepts going beyond what is usually found in the history books.
An informative, interactive presentation, students are encouraged to examine an extensive collection of authentic Native artifacts and materials from Lianne’s family including drums, moccasins, weapons, snowshoes, baskets, jewelry, clothing, and furs. She has spent considerable time on Native Reserves throughout North America since a young girl. These include Woodland cultured (Ojibwa, Chippewa, Cherokee), Plains cultured (Sioux, Blood), West Coast (Haida) and Seminole. Ms. Harris has had the unique perspective of participating in and observing the Native way of life through her own experiences.
Presentation: ‘Canada’s Growing Pains – 1885-1914’
Life in Canada between 1885-1914 was one of excitement and upheaval. It was a time of intense social and economic pressure that created new conditions for change. Follow the lives of the Harris and the Russell families as they forged ahead under these new and unfamiliar changes and claimed this country as their own.
This informative, interactive presentation allows students to better enjoy and appreciate Canadian Life between 1885-1914. Wearing a 1910 costume, Ms. Harris introduces students to the social aspects of the times and the changing conditions of a young, emerging country by referring to her own family’s experience. Students are invited to see first-hand a full array of authentic antique clothing, shoes, accessories, pictures, grooming aids, household goods, medicines, toys and children’s wear from that time period, belonging to the individuals profiled.
PLEASE CLICK 'REVIEW TAB' FOR TEACHER RECOMMENDATIONS
PROGRAM DURATION and AUDIENCE SIZE:
Teachers can opt for a HALF day program (morning or afternoon–9am to lunch or lunch to dismissal) or a Full Day program. Which one is right for you? Up to two classes total (or approx 60 students): A HALF day is great to give the students a grounded understanding of content. A FULL day (with the same students) is now extended into an enrichment experience, with more time to cover more content (no repeated content). 3 or 4 classes of same grade (more than 60 students): A full day is recommended with classes split into two groups, one in AM and one in PM (repeated content). IMPORTANT DETAIL: Please note that a FULL DAY option is for the SAME presentation topic. A full day cannot be split into two topics (e.g. Pioneer in AM and then Ancient Civilizations in PM). PRESENTATION SPACE: Any space that can hold the students comfortably and the necessary tables (or cleared desks) for display. A library, classroom, staffroom, or part of a gym is fine. It is not feasible to move from room to room so the presentation needs a dedicated space. GEOGRAPHICAL AREA SERVED: Primarily serving the GTA: all of Toronto, including Mississauga, Brampton, Oakville, Pickering, Ajax, Whitby, Oshawa, Markham, Thornhill, Unionville, Richmond Hill, Vaughan, King, and Newmarket. Additionally, York Region schools that are within a 1-hour drive of Toronto. Boundaries: West: to Oakville; East: to Bowmanville; North: up to Hwy #89 on the 400; up to Keswick, and Georgina on Hwy #48 (Markham Road).
FEES: Are available upon request.
PROGRAMS: Three years ago, I was asked to develop a special series of 1-hour adult education presentations and discussion topics especially suited for a mature audience (55+) who wants to be educated and intellectually stimulated while being entertained. Currently, I have developed 35+ enriching historical and cultural subjects that have proven to be immensely popular by those in the senior demographic range. Education should be fun so I skip all the 'boring bits' about history and head right into all the relevant 'juicy stuff' people want to know–or wish they knew–when in school. And all this, of course, with me in relevant period clothing! Interested in anything? Just ask and I'll email you a poster of any topic or the catalogue of all topics and content.
- Ancient Egypt
- Greek Mythology & Modern Consumerism (yes, they actually do go together..)
- The Vikings
- Undressed: A History of Hygiene
- The Victorians
- Canada's Growing Pains: 1885-1918
- The Queen's Closet: The Message Behind Clothing
- Amazing Women in History
- The Luck of the Irish: A Journey into the Land and People of Ireland
- Everything You Wanted to Know about Scotland–in 1 Hour
- From Paris, with Love
- The Harem
- Beijing: Secrets from a Forbidden City
- Mongolia: The Earth Shakers
- Greed & Desire: Hot Commodities in History
- Everything You Wanted To Know About Art….But Were Afraid to Ask
- Famous Lovers –– series 1
- Famous Lovers — series 2
- Fables, Fairytales & Rhymes: Lessons for Real Life
- Enchanted Food: The Symbolic Use of Food in the Stories We Love
- Winged Majesty: Angels in Literature, Lore & Art
- Lost Civilizations
- Treasures of the Deep: Sunken Ships & Pirate Maps
- Martians & Moon Goddesses: Perspectives of Outer Space
- Ancient Rome *premium program, essential display
- A Medieval Journey *premium program, essential display
- Vision Quest: A View of Native Life *premium program, essential display
- Pioneers! *premium program, essential display
- The Fountain of Youth NEW–NEW available now
- MesoAmerica: The New World Before Columbus (Inca, Maya & Aztec) NEW–available now
- Canada's Black History— NEW available now
- The Princesses of Wales–NEW available now
- Royal Scandals NEW–NEW available now
- The Roaring 20’s NEW–NEW available now
- Christmas: Stories and Symbols– NEW available now
- She-Wolves of the Throne: Queens Who Ruled — NEW available now
- Bad Advertising From The Past — NEW available now
- Tudor Secrets– NEW available now
FEES: Availabile on request. GEOGRAPHICAL AREA SERVED: West: to Oakville, East: to Oshawa, Central: Toronto, North: to Keswick EQUIPMENT QUESTIONS: I have a screen, projector, and computer–all I need is a table and space!