High School

Programs Notice

The Canadian Canoe Museum is temporarily closed, and our programs are on pause as we prepare to move to our new museum.

If you’d like to be notified when our education programs resume, please sign up for our Educator’s Newsletter.

Treaty by Canoe 

Please note: this is currently a pilot program

In this three-hour program students will “journey by canoe” through the traditional territory of the Nishnawbe Aski Nation of the Mushkegowuk and Anishinaabe Peoples of Northern Ontario, travelled in 1905 by the Commissioners and the Indigenous crew in the making of Treaty no. 9.

A GIS Story Map will help students gain an understanding of the vastness of the territory, the inseparable relationship of Indigenous peoples’ to the land, the challenges of the journey, and the skill of the Indigenous crew who guided the delegation.

In addition to a virtual experience, students will “travel” to place markers, or lobsticks, throughout the museum, for hands on, audio and visual activities (birch bark canoe repair, portaging, journaling, harvesting, hunting and fishing rights and customs of the land.

Students will also hone their critical skills, as part of one of the Treaty signing communities, hearing surviving written records and oral testimony of Mushkegowuk and Anishinaabe representatives who give accounts of the making of an agreement to share the land and the promises made in stark contrast to the surviving government parchment that is Treaty no. 9.

Grade 9, Canadian Geography, Geographic Inquiry and Skill Development-A1.5 use the concepts of geographic thinking (i.e., spatial significance, patterns and trends, interrelationships, geographic perspective)

Grade 9- Canadian and World Studies, Issues in Canadian Geography, Academic and Applied; To explore treaty territories where resource extraction is taking place; To explore locational patterns of First Nations communities

Grade 10 Canadian History since World War I, Academic and Applied- To explore current regional issues impacted by treaty rights (e.g., resource development, infrastructure, land claims)

Grade 12 – Canadian and World Studies – Canada: History, Identity, and Culture – To explore the treaties and First Nations communities that emerged between 1774 and 1945 to explore current regional issues impacted by treaty rights (e.g., resource development, infrastructure, land claims)

Grade 12, Business Leadership: Management Fundamentals, University/College Preparation (BOH4M), Foundations of Management, Issues of Ethics and Social Responsibility– evaluate the impact of major ethical issues (e.g., … Aboriginal land claims versus interests of resource companies) and dilemmas (e.g., for the individual, the workplace, and the local and global community) on management strategies and decision making

Kayak Discovery

A stimulating hands-on initiative task. Students work together to build an eight-foot skin-on-frame kayak, from a kit based on an Inuit watercraft in the Museum’s collection. Students learn about of kayak-building as a community task in traditional Inuit cultures where different members play distinct and crucial roles. Working collaboratively in small groups, the students problem-solve to discover the best building method for their group and project. This is a challenging program that promotes team-building and an understanding of Inuit cultures.
Please note: the kayaks the students build are not take-homes.
Grade 9-12 Visual Art AVI10,AV120,AVI3M,AVI4M and AVI4E General Expectations
Grade 9 Native Studies NAC10 Expressing Aboriginal Cultures
Grade 9-12 Canadian and World Studies
Grade 9-12 Business Studies (Problem Solving, Teamwork, Critical and Creative Thinking, Leadership, Strategic Planning)
Grade 12 Business Studies BOH4M, BOG4E
Grade 12 Health and Physical Education (Recreation and Fitness Leadership)

Full-sized Paddle Carving 

7.5 hrs, $80 (bass wood)

A one-day paddle-carving program for youth ages 15-18. Students carve a full-sized paddle to keep and use for years to come, using correct measurement techniques, spoke shaves, shave horses, calipers and palm sanders. Full-size paddle carving requires focus, perseverance and stamina — participants get a great deal of satisfaction from the tangible results of their hard work!
No time for full-size? We also have a 3-hour souvenir-size (24″) paddle-carving program for $18/student.
Grade 10-12 Arts (Developing Creativity, Communicating, Understanding Culture, Making Connections)

Souvenir Paddle Carving

3 hrs, $18/student (poplar)

Carve a 24” paddle out of poplar! Using a traditional spoke shave tool, students learn the woodworking techniques to take their rough blank to a smoothly-sanded, finished paddle. Students have a beautiful souvenir to take home and treasure. as well as an introduction to all the skills necessary to make a full-size paddle in the future. While the majority of this program is hands-on wood-working, we contextualize paddle-making with a brief tour of paddles in our collection, their origins and significance.
Grade 10-12 Arts (Developing Creativity, Communicating, Understanding Culture, Making Connections)
“The soapstone carving workshop had all students actively engaged, for the entire visit. The amount of time in the museum, to create concrete links to the culture and geography of the north, was well considered. The closing lesson around the qulliq provided an excellent opportunity to refocus the group, and introduce the students to Indigenous vocabulary before our departure. It was well worth the drive to Peterborough from Scarborough.” – Teacher

Soapstone Carving

Hands-on experience of soapstone carving in the context of our Arctic Galleries and Inuit artifacts.
90-minute Soapstone Carving: carve from a 2×3″ block that is pre-shaped to most easily be worked into the mouse or bear sculptures, but which is very open to abstract and other ideas.
Three-hour Loon Carving: start with a “blank” made from a 4×6″ block and create a silky smooth sculpture in the iconic loon shape.
Grade 9-12 Arts (Developing Creativity, Communicating, Understanding Culture, Making Connections)
Grade 9 Visual Arts AVI10 (A1, A3.1, C2.1)
Grade 9 Native Studies NAC10 Expressing Aboriginal Cultures
Grade 10 Visual Arts AVI20 (A1.2, A2.2.,A3.1,B2.1,B2.2,B2.3,C1.2)
Grade 10 Civics and Citizenship CHV20 (C2.1)
Grade 11 Visual Arts AVI3M (A3.1, A3.2, C2.1) AVI13O (A2.1, A3.1)
Grade 12 Visual Arts AVI14M (A3.2) AVI14E (A2.1)

Watercolour Painting

An exploration of watercolour painting techniques. Our staff work with small groups of students to introduce watercolour techniques, and draw attention to the forms of artistic expression throughout the museum from different periods. Participants are then free to set up throughout the Museum’s galleries – wherever they find most inspiration – to complete one to two small paintings. At the end of the program, we gather to frame and celebrate the participants’ works.
Grade 9-12 (Developing Creativity, Communicating, Understanding Culture, Making Connections)
Grade 9 Visual Arts AVI10 (A1, A3.1, C2.1)
Grade 10 Visual Arts AVI20 (A1.2, A2.2,A3.1, B2.1, B2.2, B2.3, C1.2)
Grade 11 Visual Arts AV13M (A3.1,A3.2, C2.1), AVI13O (A2.1, A3.1
Grade 12 Visual Arts AVI14M (A3.2), AVI13E (A2.1)

Voyageur Paddling Program 

Students have the unique experience of paddling a 36″ Montreal Canoe up the Peterborough Lift Lock and along the canal. This stunning canoe is a replica of a canoe used in Canada’s Fur Trade era. Students learn about Voyageur history and First Nations’ roles in the Fur Trade through story, role play, and costume, as well as the history and engineering of the lift lock.


Sleepover in the Museum’s Galleries! You get exclusive access to the Museum’s exhibits during your overnight experience. We create a custom schedule base around our education programs. It’s a great camp-in option that can’t get rained out.