For the first time in three years, students and staff gathered in person for PEI’s Provincial Heritage Exhibition.
In recent years, the epidemic has ruined plans for young historians to compile their research and historical work. Prior to Govt-19, more than 200 students from about 28 schools will attend the event.
This year the exhibition took place in Orwell and was attended by more than 40 students from five different schools. Despite having fewer students than normal, the level of excitement is immeasurable.
Mia Gells is a 5th grader at Spring Park Elementary and her project was saddle racing at PEI.
He said he chose the title because of his deep family roots in the sport.
“My mom was an ambassador in 2007 and my great-grandfather was the head of the Red Shores Driving Park,” he said. The project took her two weeks and she is happy with the final preparation.
“I’m proud of how I designed it and added gold and everything. It makes it pop, I think. I really like it.”
‘I learned a lot’
Alexander Yonsev and Ammar al-Rahal also visited Spring Park and did a project in Afriquille, NS, a historic Black community on the outskirts of Halifax.
Al-Rahal said he was shocked to learn that the Halifax City Council had voted in the 1960s to relocate residents and demolish the community.
“I was interested in the project, I wanted to know more about it, and I think people should have respect,” he said.
Like his project partner, Yonsev said he wanted to explore the history of Africa. He also enjoyed learning about the people who were born and raised there.
Kylie Rufus is a 7th grader at Georgetown Elementary. He made a plan for the origin of hockey: Windsor, NS
“I play hockey, so I think it was very interesting,” he said. “I learned a lot.”
Morgan Shepherd is a 7th grader at Stonebark Intermediate. He did his project on Mickmack and Agadian culture, and “how they were together and helped each other throughout their exile.
“It’s very important about our culture and the culture of the island and our community at this point,” Sheppard said.
‘I don’t even know there was a shipwreck’
Serena went to McDonald Soris Regional School and did a project at the East Point Lighthouse.
“I chose this because I felt it was an important part of PEI’s history, and I started to show interest in lighthouses,” he said.
One of her favorite parts of the project was taking history and everything she learned and putting it on the board for people to see.
“One thing I learned, something I didn’t know before, was that I didn’t know there was a whole HMS Phoenix-shipwreck,” he said.
Sophie Pitre and Sadie Arsenault go to Stonebark, their project is about LGBTQ + history and rights in Canada.
“It basically tells the history of Canada and PEI, and who created the flags and illustrations of how homosexuality and transphobia are,” Arsenal said.
Pitre said, “People think this is a problem that is happening now, but it’s been going on for decades and decades.”
‘This is a very fun day’
Charlotte Stewart, a heritage official and fair coordinator, said the lack of a traditional exhibition in recent years has encouraged her to run her own classrooms to “keep the traditional exhibition alive”.
He said the individual heritage exhibition went well and it was a great pleasure to see the students once again talking about their projects.
“They’re so excited to talk about the research they did, it’s so nice to see,” Stewart said.
“From what I hear from teachers and students and from our team today, we’d love to see the bigger exhibition again – it’s a very fun day because more people can participate and have fun.”