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Photograph of man wearing traditional Chinese clothes, standing with umbrella

A portrait of See Shu Goong, ca. 1900

ARCHIVED - The Early Chinese Canadians

Archived Content

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Educational Resources

Exploring the Chinese Immigrant Experience

Related Website: The Early Chinese Canadians, 1858 to 1947
Ages: 13-18 (Junior, Intermediate, Senior)
Subjects: History, Social Studies, Geography


This educational resource includes two lesson plans that use different ways of examining history. In the first lesson, students will research the reasons behind Chinese Immigration to Canada and create a concept map on the Chinese Immigration Act of 1923. In the second lesson, students will create a museum-like exhibit on the topic "Continuity and Change, What Was Life Like for Early Chinese Canadians?"

Learning Outcomes

Students will:

  • identify important causes and conditions that led to the immigration of the Chinese to Canada.
  • make inferences about the point of view represented in a photograph.
  • use historical evidence to demonstrate the changes and continuity of an ethnic community over time.


Students will explore:

  • causes and consequences, along with reasons for historical events.
  • inference (based on evidence), as well as cultural perspectives.
  • continuity versus change, and immigration.

Learning Modifications

The lessons are based around open-ended questions that allow for both concrete and abstract responses. Activities can be adjusted for cooperative groups or individual study. The following learning styles are addressed: kinesthetic, interpersonal, intrapersonal, visual/spatial, auditory, tactile, logical, linguistic/verbal.

Activities Summary

Below is a table summarizing the activities in this educational resource. The table column titles are: Title, Objective, and Alternate Formats.

Title Description Alternate Formats
Curriculum Connections A table showing where the activities meet provincial and territorial curriculum [PDF 37 KB]
[RTF 845 KB]
Activity Resources A list of websites to help complete the education activities [PDF 36 KB]
[RTF 801 KB]
Lesson 1
Activity 1.1
Understanding Causes and Consequences
To explore how events are caused by multiple factors [PDF 36 KB]
[RTF 786 KB]
Activity 1.2
Preliminary Research for Concept Maps
To research the historical reasons for Chinese immigration [PDF 37 KB]
[RTF 791 KB]
Activity 1.3
Creating Concept Maps
To create concept maps for the Chinese Immigration Act [PDF 37 KB]
[RTF 796 KB]
Handout 1.1
Concept Map - Chinese Immigration Act
Student handout explaining Activity 1.3 [PDF 31 KB]
[RTF 786 KB]
Handout 1.2
Evaluation Tool - Rubric for Concept Map
Rubric for evaluating students' concept maps [PDF 60 KB]
[RTF 793 KB]
Lesson 2
Activity 2.1
Understanding Inference
To explore how to construct inferential observations [PDF 35 KB]
[RTF 787 KB]
Activity 2.2
Photo Analysis
To analyze the elements of a photograph [PDF 35 KB]
[RTF 801 KB]
Activity 2.3
Museum Exhibit Challenge
To construct a museum-like exhibit [PDF 35 KB]
[RTF 786 KB]
Handout 2.1
Layers of Inference
A graphic organizer to complete Activity 1.2 [PDF 30 KB]
[RTF 780 KB]
Handout 2.2
Layers of Inference Worksheet
A graphic organizer to complete Activity 1.2 [PDF 30 KB]
[RTF 783 KB]
Handout 2.3
The Museum Challenge
Explanation of research project [PDF 39 KB]
[RTF 799 KB]
Handout 2.4
Evaluation tool - Museum Exhibit Rubric
Rubric for formative and summative evaluation [PDF 40 KB]
[RTF 843 KB]