Ms. Westgate's CAWS website

Grade 9 Canadian Geography

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Welcome to your geography page. The coures will cover both human and physical geography. It has a Canadian focus with consideration of our impact on and the influence of the global community. We have began seeing what we remember from public school and with begin a text assignment on Monday.

Daily Learning

Below will be the lessons, including any videos, images, worksheets, and organizers. They will be placed in reverse chronological order so that the most recent day will be first.

January 2011

Our final exam will be held in room 142 Friday 28 January 2011 at 9 a.m. The exam should take about 1 1/2 hours but you will have extra time if needed. You have the prep information already. You can bring in 2 index cards filled with notes on both sides to help you with the essay questions.

The month has been spent working in groups designing sustainable communities with me providing assistance and feedback along the way. You have worked very hard and the community designs look fantastic. They were handed in Wednesday 26 January by the end of the day. If not, you will face late penalties of 5% a day, unless you spoke with me and were given explicit approval for an extension. For most of you, there was ample in class time because that is what you have been working on since you came back from Christmas break.

It has been fun working with you all and I wish you all the best next semester!!

Canada's Industries

agriculture.ppt
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energy.ppt
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fishing.ppt
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forestry.ppt
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mining.ppt
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natural_resources.ppt
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tourism.ppt
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water.ppt
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Tuesday 11 January 2011

You had a supply today because I was attending an PLC on cooperative learning. You were introduced to some of the cutting edge designs for sustainable communities today. You watched Sustainable Cities and responded to corresponding questions. There are six parts. If the clip below doesn't give you the option of continuing, just open the lesson plan below and open the link from there.
tuesday_january_10_sustainable_cities.docx
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sustainable__cities_documentary_questions.docx
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Monday 10 January 2011

Happy New Year!! Today we learned from Ms. Nicholson in the library about great research sites and productive ways to search the internet and library and how you can access the school databases from home!! You were given the Designing a Sustainable Community culminating task today. We will discuss it in depth on Wednesday. It is big but also lets you experience what someone who has a geography background can do with that knowledge. It will serve as a review of physical geography and allow you to work with the many aspects of human geography. It is what we will do the rest of the semester. You will learn a great deal and hopefully have fun while you do it!!

When either at school or at home, to access the databases for research:
1. Go to the BMLSS website
2. Click on library in the students pull-down menu
3. click on any of the sources there.
4. If searching in Librarian's Index to the Internet (THE DEEP WEB), be sure to tack "database" to the search term
5. Once you have general knowledge on sustainable communities, go back and search again with more specific terms (ie. sustainable houses, alternate energy sources, planning a sustainable community, sustainable transportation, etc.)
designing_a_sustainable_community_task.docx
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designing_a_sustainable_community_checklist.docx
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Thursday 23 December 2010

Today was our Multicultural Fair and it was FANTASTIC!! Excellent work everyone. I hope you enjoyed it and learned as much as I did about some of the cultures that make up Canada's human geography. Enjoy your holidays and I will see you on the 1oth of January 2011!!!

Tuesday 21 and Wednesday 22 December 2010

Students were given a work period to work on their Multicultural Fair task in their groups today.

Monday 20 December 2010

We looked at rural land use patterns today and discussed which pattern was most efficient and why.
rural_settlement_patterns__lesson_plan.docx
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urban_settlement_patterns.docx
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urbanrural_landscapes.ppt
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Wednesday 15 December 2010

Today we watched a clip on Kwanzaa at http://www.history.com/videos/history-of-kwanzaa#history-of-kwanzaa . We then revisited the immigration point system and critiqued it for fairness and also whether our families would be accepted into Canada. We did a four corners activity responding to the following:
Should we accept immigrants?
Should immigrants with skills like doctors and lawyers who are practicing in their native countries be allowed to practice upon arrival to Canada?
After discussing and perhaps debating these questions, I will ask students what immigration has to do with geography?

We will leave immigration and move on to rural and urban land use. We will go through a PowerPoint as an introduction and then  students will work in groups or pairs on reading the text on rural land use patterns (see Monday below),  defining terms and answering questions. As students finish this task they will be given the text work for urban land use.
Students will be in the computer lab room 221 for Thursday and Friday to work on their multicultural Fair project.
urbanrural_landscapes.ppt
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urban_land_use_tuesday_14_december.docx
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Monday 13 December 2010

Today we looked at a short clip on Diwali which is the Festival of Light that is celebrated in India and occurs during the time that we celebrate Christmas. Every class I will show them a clip of holiday celebrations from different cultures to assist and educate. We then returned to our discussion and exploration of immigration.  Students received handouts on Canada's immigration trends and put them in historical context. They were reproductions frome the demographics PowerPoint.  Students then worked on text questions and terms. At the end of class,  we tried to rate our families on Canada's immigration point system. You can  try it out by going to https://www.fastcanadaimmigration.com/main/resources-and-forms/point-system/ . We will debrief that when I return to class on Wednesday because we discovered it was quite vague and confusing. I am on a trip to the ROM tomorrow (weather pending) so students will continue the immigration questions and then go on to look at rural land use.
demographics.ppt
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immigration_terms_and_questions_for_monday_13_december.docx
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rural_settlement_patters_tuesday_14_december.docx
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Friday 10 December 2010

We explored some holiday traditions from cultures around the world. On the 23rd, we will be holding a multicultural fair. Students have chosen their cultures based upon their own heritage for the most part. We stared by looking at strange customs at http://www.history.com/videos/holidays-toys-christmas-unwrapped#strange-christmas-traditions . We then watched a history documentary on the history of Christmas. You can watch it below but it is in 5 parts and I am not sure if it will give you the option to play each part. If not go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HBzt_nDArqo&feature=related. This should help give students ideas and inspiration for the fair!! Students concluded the class self-evaluating their issue projects.

Thursday 9 December 2010

Students presented their issue to the class.

Wednesday 8 December 2010

I collected students family trees. Students had their final work period for the issues task today. Tomorrow they will hand their task in or present if they wish.

Tuesday 7 December 2010

I was at the ROM with my history class. The students worked on the tasks you see below. The girls were away on Friday so they were given the creating your own family tree activity to begin and do for homework with the help of their relatives. All the students were given the handout on mixed marriages and cultures of Canada. Students had class time to work on the ethnic distribution  and origins of Canadians tasks. Some my have chosen to work on their issue instead. They will be presented on Thursday rather than Wednesday because of the YWCA conference on Friday. The tasks given will be worked on Wednesday as well and due on Friday.

Wednesday 1 through Friday 3 Demember 2010

We have the laptops the entire week for working on the Human Geography Unit Culminating issue project.
culture_ethnic_origins_of_canadians.pdf
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culture_ethnic_distribution_in_canada.pdf
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culture_discover_your_familys_origins.pdf
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Tuesday 30 November 2010

We began to look at cultures and immigration today. We talked about our own cultural heritage and immigration stories. Students were given their culminating task for this unit. We will be holding a multicultural fair on the 23rd of December during which students will have a booth for their culture and their peers will learn about their cultures and sample ethnic foods. This is a pretty big project so I wanted to give them lots of time to plan and work. There will be some class time allotted. Students will need to provide their own materials for presenting - 3 fold presentation board, images, food. It should be a lot of fun and a great way to kick of the holidays. With that in mind, it would be interesting if everyone shared the holiday traditions of their cultures.  Check the blog for any good sites or resources I discover.
culture.ppt
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a_multicultural_fair_culminating_task.docx
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human_geography_unit_culminating_activity.pdf
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Monday 29 November 2010

Because Friday was a "snow day" we had our work period today. Students will have to work on this task on their own and hand it in on Friday. I am looking for the questions and chart, the map is extra and something they can do if they have finished class work and need to keep busy. The point of the map really was to illustrate how many treaties and Aboriginal cultures exist in Canada.

Friday 26 November 2010

Students will work on their text assignment for Chapter 17 on aboriginal land claims. It will be collected on Monday.

Thursday 25 November 2010

We had a pop quiz today. I spoke about Native diplomacy and the treaty process as well as issues that have come up and will continue to come up because of broken treaty promises and changes in need over time. This may help them understand the Oka Crisis better.
aboriginals.ppt
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Wednesday 24 November 2010

We went through the text questions as a class and discussed why demography is important to know. Students asked what careers can you have with geography and we talked about a few. We will do a little career surfing in the future.
Students then worked on the next text assignment on Aboriginal Land Claims. They are marking aboriginal cultures and Nations on a map of Canada to see how many different aboriginal groups there are in Canada and the lands they were allotted in treaties. They are then to link those groups to what the land provides (the ecozones and resources).  Tomorrow we will take a break from this task and I will talk to them about Native diplomacy and how the treaties were made and often broken over time.
aboriginals_text_assignment.pdf
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aboriginals_land_claims_reference_map.pdf
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aboriginals_land_claims_map_instructions.pdf
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Tuesday 23 November 2010

At the beginning of class, our last student teachers spoke to us about the geologic history of Earth. They made connections between the tectonic plate eras and the geologic eras, which was great!! We went through a PowerPoint summarizing what we read in Chapter 16 on population geography (demography) and connecting it to the real world. We had a good discussion. Students continued to work on the text questions. We are taking them up on Wednesday. Those who were finished were given independent work to do on the demographics of Canada.
population.ppt
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Monday 22 November 2010

We discussed the documentary from Friday. We began a shared read and disucussion of chapter 16 in the textbook, which is on population. Students worked on some textbook questions from pp. 194-195.

Friday 19 November 2010

Students participated in the vow of silence today and to respect their choice, a documentary was viewed. I was absent but this movie was the introduction to the next unit.  Students watched OKANADA: Behind the Lines in Oka.  Students watched with the following questions in mind. These questions were then responded to at the end of the film.
1. What are the main issues that came to a violent head at Oka, Quebec in 1990?
2. Do you feel that this was handled well by the Mohawk? By the golf club owners? By the government?
3. How should it have been handled by all involved?

Wednesday 17 and Thursday 18 November 2010

Students taught each other about the rock cycle, the geological time scale of Earth, the formation of Earth, and Plate tectonics. There were some wonderfully creative projects presented. We will listen to our final group on Monday.

Monday and Tuesday 15 and 16 November 2010

We are in Room 147 to work on the computers.

Friday 12 November 2010

We watched Geologic Journey: The Great Lakes today in class. Students are to take notes responding to the question: How were the Great Lakes formed? The video link and viewing below should have the 6 parts running consecutively. If not, They can be found on youtube searching geologic journey great lakes. HOMEWORK:  Students are to read Chapter 11 for homework and write down definitions in their own words for their glossary.
We discussed the culminating task they will do for this unit. I gave them the assignment sheet and checklist/rubric that I will us to mark their tasks. I am looking forward to seeing their creative minds at work!!
Monday and Tuesday we will be in rm 147 to work with the computers and Wednesday will be the last day to finalize and rehearse. This is NOT a major assignment worth any significant part of your mark so DO NOT go overboard. It is a litte 1-5 minute presentation. You shouldn't need any more time than what I provide. There are video cameras available if you would like to use them or you can bring things from home.
geologic_history_of_earth_culminating_task.docx
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Thursday 11 November 2010

We had our Remembrance Day ceremony today in the theatre and Main Street. It was powerful and extremely well-done.
We began our exploration of the geologic history of earth, what earth is made of, and the rock cycle today. We watched a brief national geographic documentary to start and then went through a PowerPoint. You will receive the complete graphic organizers today. If you need copies of that information just print the slides you need or want from the PowerPoint below.
planet_earth.ppt
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Wednesday 10 November 2010

We had Samantha Hastings come to the class from the planning department for the District of Muskoka. She spoke with us about the vision the District has for Muskoka and we had the opportunity to provide input as to what we would like to see happen in Muskoka over the next 20 years. Thank you Samantha and thank you class for participating. We will be able to see our feedback on the district website soon!!! Here is the link:  Muskoka District

Tuesday 9 November 2010

We went over the unit test as a class. Students who were not successful will be rewriting the test tomorrow during our class time in the resource room.

Monday 8 November 2010

Students wrote their Canada's Physical Geography unit test today. Students were given a Letter of Good Standing to take home. They are to sign it, have a parent or guardian sign it and return it back to me by Friday. This is just another way to keep communication between students, parents and guardians, and myself open.

Friday 5 November 2010

In preparation for the unit test on Monday, we played Canada's Physical Geography jeopardy today!! Click the word "jeopardy" to play our game and see how you do! Congratulations to all the teams who participated in the game. A special shout out goes to Mashed Potatoes whose studying and hard work led them to victory!!

Thursday 4 November 2010

Students worked on their test prep and text assignment. We started the day continuing the lesson from yesterday, viewing the videos on currents, winds, and ecozones of Canada. The lesson with the links to the videos and resources used are below. Our test is Monday. You can play the jeopardy game to quiz yourself.  Also, YouTube is an excellent source for short video explanations of all the things we have been working on so use it to learn more or gain a better understanding of the physical geography of Canada, answer the questions in the text assignments, and prepare for the test.
thursday__november_4_questions_on_ecozones_answered.docx
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Wednesday 3 November 2010

Below is our lesson plan so you can use the links to the videos we watched. We continued this on Thursday as well. Students watched The Producers today. It was a nice break from the text work and test prep.
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wed__november_3_questions_on_ecozones_answered.docx
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Monday 1 and Tuesday 2 November 2010

Students worked on their text assignments and test prep. The test will be Monday 8 November and open book. I also gave everyone a study sheet of things to know so they can be well-prepared.
what_students_need_to_know_for_the_physical_geo_unit_test.docx
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tuesday__november_2_questions_from_monday_answered.docx
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Friday 29 October 2010

Students continued working on the text assignments.

Thursday 28 October 2010

Students were given the glossary pages and questions from the text assignments for climate and soil and vegetation. These sheets cover things that we need to know that were not included in the webquest. Students only do the first page of climate questions. We will work on ecozones on Monday. Students spend the first part of the class working on questions from the tasks above. The second part of the period was spent creating questions for our Canada's Physical Geography jeopardy game. We will play on Friday and rewards will be given to correct answers and good team work.
canadian_climate_connections_glossary_blm.docx
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physical_geography_climate_text_assignment.pdf
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canadian_soil_and_vegetation_connections_glossary_blm.docx
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physical_geography_soilvegetation_text_assignment.pdf
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Wednesday 27 October 2010

Student pairs presented their province or territory to the class today. Students peer evaluated using the chart below and the rubric that they were given when they began the webquest. Students then evaluated themselves, their group and the project itself. This reflection will provide me with valuable feedback on how I can improve projects and learning.  I distributed a complete package of information that students gathered while doing the webquest so that everyone has the same information and the complete information. Please read and highlight important pieces of information.

We will be having a unit test on Canada's physical geography on Wednesday 3 November. Students should know main details about each physical region, population distribution (where it is most dense or sparse and why), natural resources, climate, and be able to make connections between the physical features and population. Students should also be familiar with soil and how it effects vegetation, and be familiar with Canada's various ecozones. Friday will be a practice day in the form of a jeopardy game. Students will then have a clear idea what they already know well and what needs further review.  I will give students an information sheet on Monday that will tell them the format of the test. There will be matching questions for terms, fill in the blanks, multiple choice, map identification questions, and short answer questions.
canadian_tourism_presentations_peer_evaluation_chart.docx
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rubric_for_task.doc
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self_and_group_assessment.docx
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Digital Tourism Projects

yukon_larger_than_life.pptx
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Ontario - There's no place like this

Tuesday 26 October 2010

Today was the last day to get the tourism brochure, poster, website, or PowerPoint presentation completed. Thank you to all those students who helped carve our pumpkin!! It looks great!

Monday 25 October 2010

We continued working on the tourism portion of the webquest. We will have the laptops again tomorrow. Tomorrow will be the final work period because Wednesday is presentation day!!

Friday 22 October 2010

We had a seating change yesterday. We will see how this one goes. We have the laptops to finish the research on the provinces. Feel free to bring and use your own laptops, ipods, or other internet capable devices.

Thursday 21 October 2010

Students continued working in their expert groups and then shared. I collected the worksheets and maps so that I can copy the information so that everyone has the same information. Tomorrow we will work on the provincial tourist brochure, poster, website on the laptops. Get all the research done and we will finish the artistic part Monday and share or Tuesday.

Wednesday 20 October 2010

Students got into their expert groups and shared their knowledge on climate, population, natural resources, and physical regions. As expert teams, they responded to the question how each feature is connected or influenced by the others. We will continue the expert teams making connections exercise tomorrow and then groups will share their connections, challenges in the  groups and how we could improve this jigsaw activity.
making_connections_in_canadian_physical_geography_webquest.docx
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Tuesday 19 October 2010

We continued the webquest. Some pairs began their research on their province. They are researching cool features and places of interest so they can create a brochure,  poster, or website convincing us that their province is the best. We will continue working with the computers on Thursday. Wednesday, we will be getting in our expert groups and sharing what we learned about the physical geography of Canada. The teams of experts will then answer the last question about connections between each featured topic.

Monday 18 October 2010

We shared some exciting events from the weekend. We read and discussed the PowerPoint presentation of Canadian physical geography. Students who had been researching certain features were able to clarify and even go deeper than what we read!! Way to go!!
physical_geography.ppt
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Friday 15 October 2010

We are doing a Canadian physical geography webquest today and finishing up the task next week. We will only have the laptops Friday though so all the research parts have to be completed during this block. Below is the link to the task. The lesson plan below provides new links for the dead links in the webquest so open it to get those links. The organizers are below as well so if you want or need to do some research on the weekend you can. The link to the webquest is:
http://olc.spsd.sk.ca/de/webquests/travelcanada
friday_oct_15_canadian_physical_geo_webquest.docx
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climate_organizer.doc
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natural_resources_organizer.doc
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physical_regions_organizer.doc
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population_organizer.doc
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map_of_canada.doc
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travel_canada_webquest_province_organizer.doc
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rubric_for_task.doc
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Thursday 14 October 2010

While I was away, you continued to work on the text assignment for geo and technology. This was your last in class period to do it. I will be doing a notebook check next week and looking for completion of all the tasks we have done so far.
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Tuesday 12 October 2010

We began the class with a pop quiz. It was a bit more challenging than the first because I gave you warning on Friday. Most did quite well. If you missed please see me and I will give you the pop quiz to answer tomorrow. We began working on the text assignment on Geography and Technology and will continue with it tomorrow and Thursday because many of you are away Wednesday enjoying the ROM. Lucky!!

Friday 8 October 2010

We spent the class working with the Garmin Etrex hand-held GPS. Student worked in small groups entering in waypoints, finding the location, recording the letters found at each location and then unscrambling them to spell WAYPOINT.
It was a lot of fun and we will do more with the GPS throughout the semester.
HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!

Thursday 7 October 2010

This is the last day to work on Pear Island in class. It is due Friday and is the culminating task for this unit. There will be a quiz on Friday on what we have done these last couple weeks.

Wednesday 6 October 2010

Students worked in groups to explore the various geography technologies out there. They anwered some questions as they researched.
geographytechnology.ppt
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geographytechnology_lab.pdf
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Tuesday 5 October 2010

We began the culminating task for the unit of mapping. Students are creating their own island following the instructions. Tomorrow we have computer time so students will be exploring some of the digital mapping software and technology using the laptops. We will resume the Pear Island project on Thursday.

Tuesday 28 - Friday October 1 2010

We are working on the Map of Canada exercise. Students were to label a provincial map and a drainage map following the instructions closely and checking of tasks as they completed them.
Those who finished on Friday explored googleEarth, played Risk or read.

Monday 27 September 2010

We have a new seating plan!! These will be your home groups for the next little while. As long as they are working well, these will be your home groups for the semester. There will be opportunities to work with others in pairs throughout the course.
Today was the last day to work on the text assignment on Geography and Technology. Tomorrow we will start the culminating task. We will be going outside this week to do some GPS exploration. I will keep you posted as to when.

Friday 24 September 2010


Today is pop quiz day! Afterward, we will do a put-down funeral. I will have everyone write on a piece of paper their name in the center with 4 people they would like to work with along the edges. I will take this home and work out a seating plan for Monday.
Everyone MUST be ready to work on the last page of the text assignment for Monday. I will address any problems or questions concerning questions 1 through 8 on the green sheets on Monday and then you will have the rest of the period to work on the last green sheet of the text assignment.
Students had the choices of playing interactive geography games  (http://www.canadiangeographic.ca/kids/games/default.asp ); doing a road map crossword puzzle, or playing Canadian Geography board game.

Thursday 23 September 2010

In preparation for question 8, we discussed where the International Dateline is and why it does not follow the 180 degree line completely. We then read the explanation to confirm or expand on our discussion:
http://www.worldatlas.com/aatlas/infopage/dateline.htm.
Students continued to work on the task. There will be a pop quiz of 5 questions on Friday relating to the first chapter task and what we have done so far in the course. As long as you have been keeping up, you will do great.

Wednesday 22 September 2010

Today we reviewed what contour lines were while viewing a great summary on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkaXsSYKmw8. This will help you when you are working on the question 7 G and H. We continued working on the task today. It was a fairly productive class. We will continue working on it tomorrow in class.

Tuesday 21 September 2010

Students began working on the second text assignment. We listened to music while we worked. I have a feeling that a seating plan may be happening next week due to some who are tempted to be disruptive. *sigh*

Monday 20 September 2010

Groups shared their maps and the strategies they used to create them. We talked about challenges and how they were met.
We then compared our maps to the actual maps of the school and Sportsplext complex. How did you do?
The second text assignment was given out and time provided to start the glossary. There will not be any more class time to do the glossary. It must be done on your own. We will move into the questions of the task on Tuesday and work on it until Thursday. Friday will be mini-quiz and Fun Friday. We will do some fun geography related activities on Fridays as a nice way to end the week. This week we will hold a "put down" funeral as part of our Fun Friday so we end hurtful language as we end the week.
geographers_toolkit_glossary.docx
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geographers_toolkit_text_assignment.pdf
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Friday 17 September 2010

We were outside mapping the school and Sportsplex complex. It was great to see you working so well in groups and I saw same fantastic problem solving strategies happening. It will be interesting to see how close your maps are to the actual map.
Have fun at the fair and any other acitivities you have going on this weekend!!

Thursday 16 September 2010

We started looking at what mapping is and what must be on a map. You were given a crazy amount of information but it should have been review for the most part. We watched a PowerPoint until the maps appeared. We will look at those maps on Monday.
geographers_toolkitmodified.pptx
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geographers_toolkit_what_is_a_map.pdf
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geographers_toolkit_how_to_label_a_map.pdf
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geographers_toolkit_map_scale.pdf
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geographers_toolkit_direction_on_a_map.pdf
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geographers_toolkit_latitudelongitude.pdf
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geographers_toolkit_types_of_maps.pdf
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Wednesday 15 September 2010

We went through the first text assignment so that everyone was on the same page. I collected your pen pal letters.

Tuesday 14 September 2010

We worked on the Chapter One Text Assignment today.

Tuesday 8 February 2011

We explored what a map is and what the 6 features of a map are.
tuesday_8_february_2011.docx
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geographers_toolkit_what_is_a_map_answer_key.pdf
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Monday 7 February 2011

We began defining what geography is and why it may be useful.
academic_geography_block_c_and_d_7_feb_2011.docx
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take_a_trip_around_canada_scavenger_hunt.docx
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what_is_geography_definitions_completed.pdf
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