Joe Stafford

Recipient of the 2008 Governor General’s Award for Excellence in Teaching Canadian History

November 17, 2008
Canada's History speaks to Joe Stafford about his class' reenactment of the 1920s Diamond Jubilee.

Saint Theresa Catholic Sec. School, Belleville, Ontario

In Joe Stafford's Canadian history class, students are encouraged to think critically about both past and present issues.

In the Diamond Jubilee Re-Enactment, students create poster boards and organize an event to celebrate the sixtieth anniversary of Confederation. Dressed in 1920s attire, students invite the community to dance, eat, and learn about Canada's achievements and challenges.

Joe also encourages his students to learn about active citizenry and issues of social justice. Throughout the year, students keep a current events journal, and in the culminating activity they examine major themes of the past that are connected to current issues. Students present their project through a visual display and develop a creative piece to enhance their work.

Joe has taught Canadian history for over twenty years. His passion for history also extends beyond the classroom, with his work with the Ontario History and Social Sciences Association in promoting Canadian history and his involvement with a history club, the Renaissance Society.