N.B. students ask for help with fallen soldiers project
Published Friday, November 30, 2012 4:58PM AST
Last Updated Friday, November 30, 2012 5:00PM AST
Students at a New Brunswick High School are taking an exceptional interest in history class these days.
Grade 11 history students at Kennebecasis Valley High School in Quispamsis have been matched up with a local fallen soldier to research for a special assignment.
“It allows us to go more in depth about what soldiers do, because we learn in the textbooks and what the most important things are, but we get to go in depth and learn about their private and personal lives,” says student Chantal Gosselin.
Martina Carvell says the project is making history class more personal.
“These men that fought, they had jobs and families. They were smart people with lots of ambition. My person, my solider, was a lawyer. He was smart.”
Students involved in the project say information is scarce. As a result, they are asking for the public’s help to find out information about the soldiers they are researching.
Many of the soldiers the students are learning about are from southern New Brunswick. The students say the fact the soldiers are local brings a certain connection to their findings.
“It’s interesting because they came from the same place as we do, so we see the same things as they saw everyday, except it’s obviously changed over time,” says student Laura Robinson.
“Once you begin to know about the individual, you’re invested, and emotionally too,” says teacher Mark Perry.
This isn’t the first time Perry has assigned this project to students. He says he continues to do it each year because of how students respond.
He says they get emotionally involved in the stories and information they dig up.
“They don’t want to stop. They want to go further, every little bit of information takes them further, so that’s the value,” says Perry.
“And it’s not just that they’re learning about the individual. They’re learning research skills. This is historical literacy in action.”
Once the project is complete, the students plan to publish a book containing their research.
They expect the process will take two to three years, but the students say it’s time well spent.
With files from CTV Atlantic's Ashley Dunbar
The students are looking for photographs, letters, or any other information that will add to their research.
Anyone with information can contact Mark Perry at email@example.com