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Our Country, Our Parliament

Learn About Parliament

Graphic for activity 3

Section 3: Canada's Democracy in Action

  • Booklet: Section 3 Download the PDF
  • Activity 8: Working on the Hill


    Instruction Levels


    Web Link

    Teacher Notes
    Write the following words on the board and make sure students understand them:

    Using the booklet (pp. 24-27), have students work in small groups and write down the various jobs they see people doing. Consider assigning roles to individual group members, such as captain, time monitor, word finder (to find words that students do not know how to say or understand), summarizer, recorder and presenter. Throughout the activity, write prompts such as the following on the board, to alert students to possible jobs they might see:

    Next, encourage students to think about all the people who do behind-the-scenes jobs that help Parliament run successfully. Tell students to think about their own lives and the different services they use. Would parliamentarians need these services as well? Have students list various behind-the-scenes jobs. Throughout the activity, write prompts on the board, such as the following:

    Take up student answers, introducing new vocabulary for job descriptions and fine-tuning student descriptions. For example, if a student says "makes food," you could add "cook" or "chef." Write down on the board all the jobs students name.

    Introduce the idea that Parliament Hill is a mini-city. Discuss some of the features and services found on the Hill that you or your students might not know about, adding to the list on the board. Here are some examples:

    Why would these services be important for the operation of Parliament? What other services can your students think of that might be necessary or useful on Parliament Hill?

    Extend This Activity
    Students select one of the jobs on the Hill and write a short day-in-the-life story. Using the Parliament of Canada website, students can explore various aspects of life on the Hill, such as tours available, programs and the locations of various services.

    Students select the job they would most like to have if they worked on Parliament Hill. Each student then writes a composition explaining why he or she would want that particular job and the personal qualities that make him or her suitable for the job. The length and components of the competition can vary, depending on the level of the class.

    Students play a guessing game with a partner using the photos of the Senate and House of Commons Chambers (on pages 25 and 27, respectively, of Our Country, Our Parliament). Students use visual clues to describe a person or object labelled in the photo to their partners. For example, for the Senate Chamber, a student might say, "I am thinking of an object on the left side of the photo underneath the window." The student's partner would then ask whether the student is talking about the murals depicting scenes from the First World War.

    © Library of Parliament | Revised: 2009-09