CELS-Developed Curriculum Resources for Educators

As part of our mission to promote legal literacy CELS has developed a number of  teaching resources that will help teachers address the themes of legal literacy. These resources are directly tied to the Prescribed Learning Outcomes of the BC schools curriculum . They are also broadly written and would have application in many other school jurisdictions. They use best practice learning strategies, in particular emphasizing  Co-operative learning and critical inquiry.

Mock Trial Dramas and Restorative Justice

Description

Lesson ideas and educational resources to complement three People's Law School dramas (Theft under $5000/shoplifting, Uttering threats/Online bullying, and Assault causing bolidy harm). Presents both pre and post-drama classroom activities designed to enhance the learning opportunities of the students who attend the dramas.

Keywords: inquiry learning; mock trials; restorative justice; circle process; law-related education

Click here to download PDF (3MB).

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Elizabeth Laird’s “The Garbage King” Through a Children’s Rights Lens

Description
This is an integrated learning resource that uses the novel, “The Garbage King” by Elizabeth Laird as a starting point to help students become aware of the concept of human and children’s rights and to provide an inspiration for students to become engaged in social action to have a positive influence on children’s rights. (2018 update reflects the new BC Curriculum)

Click here to download PDF

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The Royal Proclamation of 1763 and how it affects Aboriginal issues in Canada today

Description
Teaching about historical significance is critical to helping students develop an understanding of the relevance of history to the present. This is not always an easy task as the relevance of many historical events to the present is not apparent and the links are often complex. Drawing out historical relevance is a teaching challenge. Fortunately the Royal Proclamation of 1763, lends itself to a lesson in historical significance more readily than many. The reason for this is that the Royal Proclamation is one of those events that has had far reaching, deep consequences for many people over a long period of time. (2018 update reflects the new BC Curriculum)

Click here to download PDF

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A Mock Trial: "You Can't Say That! It's Cyber Libel!"

Description
This mock trial is a practical lesson for intermediate/ middle school level students on how the law is relevant to them on a daily basis and how their behaviour is affected or governed by laws such as those regarding libel. Electronic media open many possibilities for the violation of libel laws. (updated 2018)

Click here to download PDF

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A Growing Community

Description
There are many legal, social and environmental issues associated with any community that poised to grow.  In this role play, students work together to determine how their community should develop.  Considerations include the agricultural land reserve, green spaces, salmon habitat and a local watershed. (2018 update reflects the new BC Curriculum)

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Crime and Punishment in Medieval times: The Life, Trial and execution of Joan of Arc

Description
The lesson studies the life, trial, and execution of Joan of Arc, and examines their relation to current legal processes, demonstrating changing notions of law and how legal categories of right and wrong (as well as broader public perceptions) change over time. The lesson is intended to give students a deeper understanding of why historical events unfolded as they did. (2018 update reflects the new BC Curriculum)

Click here to download PDF  

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Crime and Punishment in Medieval times: The Life, Trial and execution of Joan of Arc - French

Description
Dans le cadre de cette leçon, nous étudierons la vie, le procès et l’exécution de Jeanne d’Arc et nous examinerons ces événements en relation avec les processus juridiques actuels, en démontrant à quel point les notions de loi ont changé, et comment les catégories juridiques du bien et du mal, tout comme les perceptions plus vastes du public, ont changé avec le temps. Cette leçon a pour but de mieux faire comprendre aux étudiants pourquoi ces événements historiques se sont déroulés de la sorte. (la mise à jour 2018 est en ligne avec les nouveaux programmes d'études de la C.-B.)

Click here to download PDF

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Who has the Power? A Case Study on "Insite" and the Division of Powers in Canadian Government

Description
This resource addresses the issue of the division of legislative powers between federal and provincial governments in Canada. An understanding of the levels of government in Canada and their respective powers is a part of the Social Studies 10 curriculum in British Columbia. (2018 update reflects the new BC Curriculum)

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The Enviromental Impact of the Oil Sands: A Research Project for Secondary School Science Students

Description
This resource is designed to address the learning outcomes of the “Life sciences: Sustainability of Ecosystems” component of the British Columbia Science 10 Integrated Resource Package. It can be used specifically for the learning outcomes B2, “assess the potential impacts of bioaccumulation” and B3, “explain the various ways in which natural populations are altered or kept in equilibrium”.

Click here to download PDF (951kb).

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A Process of Citizenship Empowerment with Students

Description
This website describes a project undertaken by a secondary school social studies teacher in Burnaby, British Columbia, who worked in concert with the Centre for Education, Law and Society’s Legal Literacy for Youth project. The project unfolded following her Grade 8 students’ examination of a picture of a medieval manor found in the social studies textbook. The students began to ask questions in relation to how people live today and how food is grown today. Their questions presented an opportunity for self directed learning as they were invited to explore the question: Has sustainable food production changed from medieval times? Legal, social and environmental issues are examined as students delve into the various dimensions of this question.

Presentation / Questions for students

Click here to download the Powerpoint file (2.47mb)

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The Lennikov Case

Description
This case study is a lesson in the application of the principles of justice and fairness. The issue is the request by Mikhail Lennikov for residency in Canada and the subsequent denial of residency and deportation order issued to him by the government of Canada.

Keywords: BC law 12 resource principles of law justice fairness sanctuary law in Canada

Click here to download PDF (199kb).

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Understanding the Employment Standards Act of BC and the BC Human Rights Code

Description
The Planning 10 IRP refers to the Employment Standards Act of BC and the BC Human Rights Code as topics for consideration. Many students at this age are about to formally enter the workforce for the first time. This resource is intended to help students learn about the most important features of employment law and human rights as they apply in the workplace.

Keywords: employment standards employment rights employment law youth at work BC human rights in the workplace human rights employment BC planning 10 resource

Download English PDF (174kb) /Download French PDF (174kb)

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Human Rights Education in British Columbia

Description
This report  examines the place of human rights education in British Columbia schools, including suggestions of ways to incorporate human rights topics into various subject areas at the  elementary and secondary school level.

Click here to download PDF (127kb)

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Using Freedom of Information Legislation- A Mock Public Hearing

Description
This integrated resource is for British Columbia secondary school teachers who want to teach students about freedom of information legislation in Canada and BC.

Click here to download PDF (1.8MB).

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Streamside Setbacks and the Coquitlam Case

Description
Students work as teams of journalists to explore the changes made to the regulations around determining how close to a salmon bearing stream developers can build. Their goal is to write an article for publication.

Click here to download PDF (69kb).

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International Human Rights Education (IHRE) in the Context of Canada

Description
Human rights are rights to which everyone is entitled regardless of gender, sex, race, religion, ethnicity and political opinion. International Human Rights Education (IHRE) is an education that not only promotes inclusivity, tolerance and respect for international human rights principles locally and nationally, it also promotes a deeper understanding of the culture of international human rights values and principles internationally while encouraging people to become agents of change in the global community.

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Introduction to Freedom of Information Legislation

Description

Most of us have probably heard of “freedom of information legislation” at some point. Perhaps a journalist mentioned it in a news story that uncovered contentious documents and stirred up a political scandal. But it might be surprising to learn that journalists are relatively infrequent users of freedom of information legislation. So what exactly is it? This reading provides an introduction to freedom of information legislation – what it is, where it came from, how it works, and why we are lucky to have it.

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Peace Education in the Context of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

Description

The conflict in Palestine and Israel is one of the longest and the most complex conflicts in the Middle East. In fact, historical evidence demonstrates that the context of war, violence and displacement is not new to this region of the world and predates the formation of the state of Israel in 1948. The city of Jerusalem has been the spiritual centre of three Abrahamic religions (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam) for many centuries, and has a spiritual value for many Jews, Christians and Muslims.

The land dispute between people of different faiths and nationalities has been the driving force behind major wars in the city of Jerusalem, and leaders in positions of power eliminated the other over time. The formation of Islam in the sixth century brought in a new era in the history of Jerusalem during which Islam became the dominant religion in Jerusalem and neighboring countries after its conquest by Arab tribes in the seventh century, and gradually the majority of its preexisting Aramaic speaking population were Arabized, with most of them becoming Muslim and some remaining Christian or Jewish.

Although the history of Jerusalem or Palestine and Israel is beyond the scope of this paper, it is important to highlight a few points in this brief description. The focus of this article is to introduce peace education and my research on the narratives of peace educators in the context of Israeli and Palestinian conflict.

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Using Media in the Classroom and Copyright Issues

Media Literacy & Copyright Law (PDF, 310kb)
Media Literacy for Social Justice (PDF, 268kb)
Media Literacy Online Resources(PDF, 13mb)

Description
Teaching media literacy in schools provides educators with unique opportunities to integrate current media technologies and popular culture into their classrooms. In their book Web 2.0 for schools, Davies and Merchant highlight the educational value of incorporating sites like YouTube, flickr, in classrooms, as well as the enriching experiences that blogging, photo and music sharing can provide (Davies & Merchant, 2009). Also, because alternative media production is important in critical media literacy, students will have opportunities to create their own films, music videos, collages and more. This can make learning more engaging and relevant for both students and teachers, and because students are more engaged in ideological analysis and participatory dialogue with a community, can lead to the creation of a more just society.

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Intergroup Dialogue: One tool for social justice education and action

Description

In Lee Mun Wah’s widely acclaimed documentary film, Last Chance for Eden (2002), a young African American woman wipes tears off her face, sharing her frustrations of encountering institutional oppressions in her workplace on a daily basis. “I’m trying to figure out who I am, who you want me to be, who you see, how not to offend you, how to know how far to offend you before I lose my job… Just feel it [the pain of experiencing institutional oppressions] with me. Don’t explain it to me.” This film follows a group of nine women and men as they spend a weekend together in Ukiah, California, examining the impact of racism, sexism and heterosexism on their lives in the workplace, in their personal relationships, within their families and communities.

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Police and Schools

Description
In the community of West Vancouver, controversy has been brewing since January 2009 with respect to the role of police officers in schools. When the West Vancouver Police Chief, Kash Heed[1], was appointed to lead the force one of the first things he did was to cut the school-based, DARE program.

Click Here to Read More.

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The Challenges in Dealing with War Crimes: Canada’s Options

Description

As of 2009, there were an estimated 1,500 suspected war criminals living in Canada (Banerjee, 2009). The Canadian government has a number of options in dealing with this issue and has taken a “No Safe Haven for War Criminals” approach.

Click Here to Read More.

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Exploring the Possibilities: Restorative Justice as a Response to Harm Doing

Description

In early June, an International Conference on Restorative Justice was held in Vancouver, British Columbia. Around 300 participants from all over the world gathered to share their experiences with using restorative justice practices to deal with crime and conflict in their communities.

Click Here to Read More.

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Social Justice for "Victims"? Challenging the Label and Widening the Lens

Description

Headlines like "Father murdered: Innocent man killed" (Vancouver 24 Hour, May 19, 2009) are hard to ignore. Chris Whitmee was shot and killed at a bar in Cloverdale along with another man who was critically wounded. The injured man is suspected to be the target in this gang-related shooting and we know little about him.

Click Here to Read More.

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Youth Justice in BC

Description

By examining electoral platforms, many citizens watch political party leaders make their case to voters through radio, television, public appearances, and other forms of electronic media. As citizens watch and listen, there is much left unsaid about the ideology behind election promises. By examining electoral platforms, it seems clear that there are assumptions made about “what works” in dealing with crime.

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