The Juno Beach Centre offers this collection of online archives, websites, and Canadian history resources designed to help Educators incorporate primary research and learning in their classrooms. You will find useful links to other institutions and projects relating to the Second World War, tools for researching Canadian military records, and First Nations culture.
Second World War
1939-1945: A Soldier’s War (CBC Archives)
Description: Presents radio clips illustrating life on the battlefields of World War II. Includes reports from the front, dramatizations and messages home from soldiers, as well as educational activities for teachers.
Canada’s Role in the Second World War (CBC Webquest, Grades 11-12)
Description: Using a variety of Web-based resources, students identify and use presentation software to create a timeline of major events of the Second World War.
Second World War: The War Effort at Home (CBC Introductory Activity, Grades 6-12)
Description: In this introductory activity, students listen to war interviews with soldiers and analyze their effectiveness.
Educators – Resources for the classroom
Description: Veterans Affairs Canada’s Public Education Program has created, with the advice and assistance of Canadian educators, teaching resources which bring a uniquely Canadian perspective to the history of 20th century conflicts and Canada’s involvement in them.
Description: Veterans Affairs Canada has recorded countless hours of video and audio conversations with veterans of the First World War and Second World War and the Korean War. These interviews offer rare and personal memories of those individuals who lived the experience, first-hand. Each interview has a story attached and makes up a bigger picture. Each piece makes it possible to tell a nation’s history through the eyes of those who served.
Through a Lens: Dieppe in Photographs and Film (Library and Archives Canada – Classroom Resources)
Description: This educational site explores the raid on Dieppe through both photographs and films selected from the Archives. It proposes classroom activities for all ages based on these archival sources.
Remembrances: Canada and the Second World War (Virtual Museum of Canada)
Description: This bilingual website provides an excellent overview of the role played by Canada in the Second World War. It also provides interactive tools, games and trivia for children.
National Film Board of Canada: D-Day
Description: A site on the 60th anniversary of the D-Day landings includes several NFB titles, available for viewing online, on the events of June 6, 1944.
Canadian War Museum
Description: Games & Activities for Children.
Democracy at War: Canadian Newspapers and the Second World War
Description: Democracy at War: Canadian Newspapers and the Second World War is the Canadian War Museum’s fully searchable digitized collection of 144,000 contemporary newspaper clippings that report on the events of the Second World War as that great conflict unfolded.
The Canadian Battle Series
Description: The Directorate of History and Heritage (DHH) is pleased to present the Canadian Battle Series, a series of 17 brochures each detailing an historic battle in which Canadians participated. These documents were prepared by military historians for the Canadian War Museum (CWM). They are available electronically on this site in French only but a printed version can be ordered in English.
The Canadian Military History Gateway (CMHG)
Description: The CMHG website offers a wealth of military history information, with more than 7,000 unique links to military history resources on partner sites, including animation, art, artefacts, film, interactive games, music, narratives, photos and scholarly research. Users will find links to every NFB production having to do with conflict and peace. Teachers are encouraged to visit the website to locate links to interesting websites, lesson plans and other educational resources.
Description: The Historica-Dominion Institute is the largest, independent organization dedicated to Canadian history, identity and citizenship. The site presents Canadian history, heritage, geography, and culture for students, teachers, history activists, and average Canadians. Contains teacher resources, biographies of Canadians, the Canadian Heritage Minutes as well as the Memory Project.
The Memory Project – Stories of the Second World War Digital Archive
Description: The Memory Project provides every living Second World War veteran with the opportunity to share their memories through oral interviews and digitized artefacts and memorabilia available on this website. The Memory Project is an initiative of the Historica-Dominion Institute.
Open Hearts – Closed Doors: The War Orphans Project (Vancouver Holocaust Education Centre)
Description: Following the Second World War, a group of young Jewish orphans immigrated to Canada from the devastation of Europe. “Open Hearts – Closed Doors: The War Orphans Project” is an online teaching exhibit that chronicles the lives of these orphans as they emerged from the events of the Holocaust into displaced person camps and eventually to new lives in Canda. This multi-media website uses the orphans’ own words and artefacts as well as primary documents and photographs to provide students with a powerful learning experience about the Holocaust and the broader history of Canadian immigration during the 20th Century. The site provides extensive support for students & teachers in middle & secondary school, social studies and language arts classrooms. The teacher’s guide, web links, maps, biblio-videographies and pop-up glossary terms can be browsed online or downloaded as printable classroom materials. The bilingual site offers French teachers a valuable new resource for Holocaust Education.
The Canadian Wartime Experience: The Documentary Legacy of Canada at War
Description: This site is maintained by the University of Manitoba. It provides free access to a collection of several thousand digitised primary source materials: such as documents, newspaper articles, letters, photographs and prints relating to the experience of Canada and Canadians during various wars from 1899 to 1970. They include the Boer War (1899-1903); First World War (1914-1918), Second World War (1939-1945); Korean War (1950-1953) and Vietnam War (1957-1975). They cover information relating to military movements, battles and training well as oral history accounts from soldiers and servicemen/women. The site also includes a section for educators with suggested classroom activities. Rights information is available from the web site.
Canada’s Contribution to the Second World War: History Unit (Queen’s Faculty of Education & Canada’s Digital Collections)
Description: This excellent Grade 10 history unit on Canada in the Second World War is a useful learning resource for Ontario teachers, as well as teachers in all provinces and territories of Canada. The lessons and activities can easily be adapted to different grade levels to meet curriculum requirements as needed.
Britannica Online Second World War Study Guide
Description: Encyclopaedia Britannica’s Second World War Study Guide has six student activities for use by high school history or social studies classes, or by students and parents at home. The activities are self-guided and promote critical thinking. They are also interactive, inviting students to locate, evaluate, and compare sources of information on the Internet. The online encyclopedia offers a wealth of information and resources (maps, weapons & tactics, newsreel footage, photos, war documents including D-Day assault plans, oral histories, published memoirs, interactive) about the Second World War and the D-Day landings.
Planning game for the preparations for D-Day
Description: This online game for students helps them understand the decisions made to prepare for D-Day.
BBC Online: World War II
Description: Covers various topics of the war such as campaigns and battles, politics, home front, and the holocaust. Multimedia zone offers interactive maps, photographs, animations, interactive games and audio and video clips.
Description: This interactive UK National Archives Learning Curve exhibition examines life in Britain during the Second World War. Sections revolve around essential questions for students to answer and feature diaries, activities, worksheets, a timeline, and video.
The Avalon Project: Second World War documents (Yale University)
Description: An extensive collection of important primary documents from the Second World War including agreements, declarations, addresses, and conferences are made available on this site. Features a search engine for finding documents not listed on the main page.
Description: Hyper War is a “hypertext” history of the Second World War and features diplomatic and political documents. The content is made up, primarily, of “public domain” (non-copyright) materials in English; Official government histories (United States and British Commonwealth/Empire); Source documents (diplomatic messages, Action Reports, logs, diaries, etc.); and Primary references (manuals, glossaries, etc). Wherever possible, hyperlinks between these histories and documents have been included.
Researching Canadian Soldiers’ Military Records
Library and Archives Canada
Description: Canadian Military Personnel Records.
Commonwealth War Graves Commission
Description: The British Commonwealth War Graves Commission maintains records and registers of the 1.7 million members of UK and Commonwealth forces who were killed in the two World Wars and other conflicts. Their register can also be searched for details of the 67,000 Commonwealth civilians who died as a result of enemy action during the Second World War. Visitors can search the database for details of grave site, date of death, age, address of a close relative, etc.
Association of Liberation Children
Description: The Association of Liberation Children, founded in 1984, renders assistance to the descendants of soldiers from the Second World War in the search for their biological father and / or relatives. Apart from searches in the home country the association coordinates searching in countries like the USA, Canada, Germany, Great Britain, Scotland, Ireland and Belgium.
Description: Project Roots is a unique, humanitarian Detective Agency that helps find the long-lost Canadian fathers of British and European War Children who were born to single, unwed mothers in the aftermath of the Second World War. Project Roots has successfully reunited 2500 War Children with the Canadian fathers who left them behind at the end of World War Two.
Canadian War Brides
Description: The authoritative source of information on the Canadian war brides of WWII. The story of the Canadian war brides and their journey to Canada is one of the most fascinating and romantic of the Second World War. Why nearly 45,000 British and European women would leave behind everything that was familiar to start a new life in post-war Canada is a story worth telling. This website draws together the various components of the Canadian War Bride story to provide a compelling portrait of the human experience.
My Grandfather’s War
Description: The aim of My Grandfather’s War is to provide the descendants of Canada’s military heroes with detailed information about the service of their relatives. The founder of the website, Kim Mathieson, is also able to offer general genealogical research services.
First Nations Culture
First Nations Confederacy of Cultural Education Centres
Description: Nation-wide links to First Nations education centres.
First Nations Culture (in French)
Description: Site by Dominique Wakanda Colas, visual artist, specialized in First Nations culture.