My latest SSHRC-funded research project is the Manitoba Food History Project. I’m honoured that the Oral History Centre‘s Kimberley Moore and Kent Davies are collaborators on this research. The project’s two key research questions are:
“How has food been produced, sold, and consumed in Manitoba?”
Manitoba Mennonites’ ethno-religious identity was transformed in the last half of the 20th century. As a school situated in the heart of the city, Westgate Mennonite Collegiate‘s history offers a unique means of exploring generational and class differences within the Mennonite community. Westgate has been a significant site of contested power and social integration: authorities (government officials, church leaders, and school administrators) struggled with others (parents, students, faculty and staff, church members, neighbourhood residents, and non-Mennonites) to (re)define Mennonitism for the post-Second World War generations.
I taught high school students for a decade and a half before my current university career. I obtained my education degree in the early 1990s, at the height of the interest in “alternative assessment.” The phrase “alternative assessment” was replaced eventually by “authentic assessment” and finally the term became simply “assessment.” The change in terminology reflected a change in understanding: alternatives to traditional paper-and-pencil testing should not be considered “alternatives” but as central methods of assessing students. Those methods should be “authentic” in that they reflect actual real-world (meaning, outside of school) tasks, and should require demonstration or performance of student skills. As these ideas became the norm among secondary school teachers, the adjectives “alternative” and “authentic” fell away.