Project on an Ancestral Country

During the Inquiry on themselves, my students discovered where their ancestors came from. They explored their ancestral countries by using the Google App, looked through the atlas to see the shape of the country, and touched the country and its neighbours on an old-fashioned globe.

With each child I tracked the countries of their ancestors on a world map. When looking at the map afterwards, we noticed that we were a group of people who had history from all over the world.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016
Inquiry board on Ancestral Countries. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

The next step in the inquiry was for the children to find out more about one of their ancestral counrties. This they did by interviewing one of their family members. Their results were presented to me last week on poster boards and in an oral presentation.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016
Inquiry board on Ancestral Countries (2) © Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

What I noted, as I was reading the work, that many families had come to Canada for the same reason:

A message of optimism. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

Many families left their countries of birth in the hopes of finding a better life for their families. One hopes that their optimism bore fruit.

What are the countries of your ancestors?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

(This post is linked to the weekly WordPress photo challenge. The prompt this week is optimistic)


28 thoughts on “Project on an Ancestral Country

    1. That was part of my inquiry Jo – to find out where they come from and to be proud of it. The children certainly enjoyed talking about their heritage. Part of the grade 2 curriculum is to talk about traditions and the kids enjoy sharing what they do with their families.


        1. It is something I initiated Jo. The curriculum states that I need to teach the children about countries around the world. And what better way to keep their interest than to have them investigate an ancestral country? It makes the learning more interesting and meaningful for them.


    1. I am grateful to the grade 5 teacher for lending me her globe. It is one of those old ones on which the countries were created as bumps. The children loved touching it and feeling the different shapes. And I loved seeing them enjoy their exploration 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  1. This is such a great activity, Colline. It really helps all the children get to know each other and to appreciate the diversity as well as what they share. I have always enjoyed doing something similar with my classes too, and have some ideas for a unit in my current Teachers Pay Teachers store, I have updated the materials a little and am looking forward to having the them available from my new website, coming soon.


    1. Unfortunately I would not be able to use these – all activities I do have to be in French. The ideas look great – and some are very similar to what I did with my class. The children enjoyed the inquiry and I will definitely do it again next year.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I knew about your French requirements. I was just so happy to see you doing something similar. 🙂 I’m sure the children enjoyed it. It is a very worthwhile learning experience, and interesting for the teachers as well as the children.


        1. It does make the teaching more interesting when we see the children so interested in what they are doing. There was not one bored child during this inquiry Norah. And it was nice to see that they were proud of their ancestry.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Both of my parents are Jamaican. My ancestors were likely slaves brought from present day Ghana but, as much as I really want to know that part of my roots and still try to find the facts, I’m not likely to ever really know.

    The families from Canada; I’m guessing the parents are mainly doctors, engineers and entertainers (singers, musicians, actors).


    1. Sounds like you know the bare bones of your family story. I am guessing it would take a lot of dedication to find out the details.
      A few of the parents of the children I teach are professionals – but many are immigrants whose parents are doing whatever work they can find.


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