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 Featured Title
New Possibilities for the Past
Shaping History Education in Canada
Penney Clark  

$87.00 Hardcover
Release Date: 8/11/2011
ISBN: 9780774820585    

$34.95 Paperback
Release Date: 1/1/2012
ISBN: 9780774820592    

408 Pages


About the Book

The place of history in school curricula has sparked heated debate in Canada. Is Canadian history dead? Who killed it? Should history be put in the service of nation? Can any history be truly inclusive?

In this volume, museum educators, secondary school teachers, and leading and emerging historians and history educators define a new agenda for history education research by shifting the focus from content to method, from what should be included in narratives about the past to how to think about and teach history. They document the state of history education theory, research, and practice and consider the implications of research for classrooms from kindergarten to graduate school and in other contexts, including museums, virtual environments, and public institutional settings. They also consider the perspectives of indigenous peoples, the citizens of Quebec, and advocates of citizenship education.

Reflecting current critical engagement among historians, educators, and the Canadian public, New Possibilities for the Past sets a comprehensive research agenda both to help students at all levels learn about the past, and, more importantly, to understand how we construct history from its infinite possibilities.

About the Author(s)

Penney Clark is a professor in the Department of Curriculum and Pedagogy at the University of British Columbia and director of the History Education Network/Histoire et éducation en réseau.

Table of Contents

Penney Clark

Part 1: History Education: Contested Terrain
1 A Brief Survey of Canadian Historiography
Margaret Conrad
2 Teaching Canadian History: A Century of Debate
Ken Osborne
3 The Debate on History Education in Quebec
Jocelyn Letourneau
4 Teaching History from an Indigenous Perspective: Four Winding Paths up the Mountain
Michael Marker

Part 2: Orientations toward Historical Thinking
5 What It Means to Think Historically
Stephane Levesque
6 Assessment of Historical Thinking
Peter Seixas
7 History Education as a Disciplined “Ethic of Truths”
Kent den Heyer

Part 3: Classroom Contexts for Historical Thinking
8 Historical Thinking in Elementary Education: A Review of Research
Amy von Heyking
9 Historical Thinking in Secondary Schools: Zones and Gardens
Tom Morton
10 The Shape of Historical Thinking in a Canadian History Survey Course in University
Gerald Friesen
11 History Is a Verb: Teaching Historical Practice to Teacher Education Students
Ruth Sandwell

Part 4: Other Contexts for Historical Thinking
12 Historical Thinking in the Museum: Open to Interpretation
Viviane Gosselin
13 Creating and Using Virtual Environments to Promote Historical Thinking
Kevin Kee and Nicki Darbyson
14 Obsolete Icons and the Teaching of History
Peter Seixas and Penney Clark

Part 5: Perspectives on Historical Thinking
15 Ethnicity and Students’ Historical Understandings
Carla Peck
16 Learning and Teaching History in Quebec: Assessment, Context, Outlook
Marc-Andre Ethier and David Lefrancois
17 Historical Thinking and Citizenship Education: It Is Time to End the War
Alan Sears



In shifting the discussion from "what" kinds of history should be taught in our schools to "how" history should be taught, this pathbreaking book takes us beyond the stale debates of the 1990s. It is, in itself, an important milestone in the development of the field of history education in Canada.
STEVEN HIGH, Canada Research Chair in Public History, Concordia University

This excellent book contains outstanding contributions on history education, relating not only to Canadian issues but also to educational debates taking place in different continents. Its chapters are without doubt insightful tools for developing a reflective point of view about the role of historical contents in our increasingly globalized and multicultural societies.
MARIO CARRETERO, Professor of Psychology, Autonoma University, Madrid

Sample Chapter

Sample Chapter [PDF]

Related Topics


Other Ways To Order

In Canada, order your copy of New Possibilities for the Past from UTP Distribution at:

UTP Distribution
5201 Dufferin Street
Toronto, Ontario
M3H 5T8

Phone orders: 1(800)565-9523 or (416)667-7791
Fax orders: 1(800)221-9985 or (416)667-7832

Ordering information for customers outside Canada

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