TCS students in grades 3-8 presented what they learned so far about the St. Lawrence Seaway to members of the Lost Villages Society. Afterwards, each member shared their personal experiences with a small group of students.
David Hill sharing some personal memories. Of the students, “They were very involved, very interested. The cross-grade grouping worked very well. An older student would ask a question, and the younger ones would continue.”
Japke Tibben: “I told some of the students in the groups that my dad was busy at that time [late 1950’s] driving back and forth from Aultsville to meetings here, as he was one of those who started Timothy Christian School and the Williamsburg Christian Reformed Church. I really enjoyed talking with the kids. I think it’s amazing that you’re doing this [project] with the kids.
Gord Summers sharing childhood memories of the project that forever changed his life.
Tom Brownell holding the attention of a group while telling stories of how the Seaway flooding affected his family.
Alan Daye was impressed with our students. He commented that they were “Intelligent, interested and involved. I am very proud of these young people. They’re keeping it [the memories] alive. Somebody told me the other day that we’re not dead until people stop talking about us.”
Jim Brownell voiced the concerns of many that the memories of lives affected by the Seaway flooding might be forgotten, so he was pleased that TCS was working to ensure that that doesn’t happen. “They’ll [the memories] will never be forgotten when you have educators and kids working so hard on a project like this. Today was just amazing, and to see the older students teamed up with the younger ones to work on this project was fantastic. As a retired educator, when you see that, you can’t help but get excited. This is a great learning experience for the kids. Learning about an aspect of history, an aspect of life that I’ve overheard kids say, ‘This was rather sad…’ they got the feeling of it!” Regarding our school’s visit next week to the Lost Villages Museum, of which Mr. Brownell is the president, he remarked, “Your students are going to be walking by and entering the train station that I walked by every day on my way to school!”
Students were very engaged and able to connect with the human side of the story. “I would feel devastated if I had to go through the same experience as the people from the Lost Villages,” reflected Gr.8 student Elizabeth T.
We are continuing to explore other aspects of the Seaway Project. We will be making a book with all what we’ve learned when the project is complete, that will be on display at local libraries and the Lost Village Museum.