Welcome to the History Department!

Given the broad range of courses available, the History Department offers something for everyone! Whether you are interested in Ancient Egypt, the French Revolution, World Indigenous Peoples, Canada in the 20th century, or even Gangsters and Pirates, there are courses available for you! Historical knowledge, ever changing, ever debatable, ever fascinating, is also our invitation to lifelong curiosity, learning and reflection. Our courses explore social, economic, political developments and events and their impact on the lives of different groups around the world and throughout time. Students can examine the role of conflict and cooperation, the evolving global community, breakthroughs in art, science and technology, and the impact of various individuals, organizations, and events on the identity, citizenship, and heritage of the world’s communities. It’s an amazing journey….come and join us!

Extra opportunities in History

  • Fed/Prov
  • Debate Team
  • Reach for the Top Team
  • Experiential Learning (trips to museums and historical sites as opportunities arise)

Student FAQs

 Q: How many History courses do I have to take?

A: You are required to take Grade 10 Canadian History, where we explore the evolution of Canada over the 20th century from World War One to the present. You are also required to take Civics, which is a half-credit course, also in Grade 10.  After that, you can choose to take another History of Social Science class to fulfill your graduation requirements, but you do not have to.  Of course, we would love it if you did!

Q: I like studying (name anything in History!) Do you have any courses about that?

A: Short answer: YES! The great thing about History is that it not only covers many time periods, and countries, but also virtually every field of study in the world! If you’re interested in Ancient History (like the Greeks and the Romans and the Vikings), we offer a course that teaches that! If you’re interested in the United States, or England, or France, we offer a course that teaches that! If you’re interested in knowing more about Indigenous peoples across the world (in Asia, South America, Africa, and right here in Canada), we offer a course in that! And if you don’t really like History, but you really enjoy science, math, art, economics, philosophy, music, well guess what……we offer courses that explore those subjects as well, since the evolution of all of those disciplines is also something we delve into.

Q: Do I have to do a lot of writing and essays in History?

A: Not necessarily.  In History, one of the components is learning how to research a subject using good sources and then argue a thesis or prove an idea correct or incorrect.  However, writing an essay is only one way for you to demonstrate your knowledge. In every History course there are opportunities for you to prove your understanding through art projects, presentations, original creations like poetry or musical compositions, or even timelines or short films!

Parent FAQs

Q: What are the benefits of taking History?

A: History courses (and a degree in History at University) opens the doors to a wide variety of professions, and prepares students for many successful careers.  Historical training teaches you how to think, analyze, communicate, write, organize and create. History nurtures our curiosity, our openness to new ways of understanding our world, both past and present. As students read, research and write about history, they question taken-for-granted ideas, assess the complexities of social change, dissect evidence and sources, and probe the why, when, and how of human evolution across temporal, spatial and global boundaries. These skills are transferable, and are required if you are to excel in any professional or academic pursuit.

Q: What skills will my child gain from taking a History course? 

A: We concentrate on providing students with critical thinking and communication skills essential in a number of professions.  Students will learn how to analyze information, take a position, and defend that position using credible and reliable evidence.  Additionally, like other humanities and social sciences degrees, History is a passport to many opportunities and careers, especially those involving problem solving, creative intelligence and excellent communication and writing skills.

Q: Do you offer any AP courses at Preston, or similar benefits?

A: Yes, we can and have in the past.  For example, CIA4UI (Economics) is a dual-equivalency credit course.  Students who achieve a 75% or higher on the course, and also achieve 75% or higher on a Wilfrid Laurier Economics exam, qualify for a credit at WLU in any Undergraduate program!  Additionally, we have Department members who have acted as Teacher Mentors for American History AP, European History AP, and others.  Students are encouraged to ask Department members about opportunities.

Department Staff

Mr. Elmslie         trevor_elmslie@wrdsb.ca  Department Head

Ms. Hiscott         jacquelyn_hiscott@wrdsb.ca

Ms. Bekendam  amanda_bekendam@wrdsb.ca

Mr. Peters           galen_peters@wrdsb.ca

Courses and curriculum documents

CHC2DI, CHC2PI   Canadian History since World War I

CHG33I     Crimes Against Humanity: Historical and Contemporary Implications

HSP3UI     Introduction to Anthropology, Psychology and Sociology

HRT3MI   World Religion

HSB4UI     Challenge and Change in Society

NDW4MI   Issues of Indigenous Peoples in a Global Context

Please read the course descriptions under Canadian and World Studies

and for courses starting with “H” read the course descriptions under Social Science and Humanities.

Gr. 9 & 10 Canadian and World Studies curriculum document

Gr 11 & 12 Canadian and World Studies curriculum document