HELPING TEACHERS INSPIRE COMPASSION FOR ANIMALS, PEOPLE & THE ENVIRONMENT

Classroom Resources

Animals and Remembrance Day

Classroom Activities

Remembrance Day is a time to recognize, appreciate and remember those that have served and continue to serve our country in the past and present, and in times of war and peace. Included with these brave men and women are animals that have served alongside them. Delivering messages, providing security, rescuing wounded, carrying supplies, detecting bombs, and providing moral support are just a few of the tasks that they have carried out assisting Canadians since before WWI to our more recent war in Afghanistan. Without the help of these animals, our sacrifice would have been even greater.

1. Animals in War

Animals had a significant role in wars. In the First World War mules hauled ammunition over treacherous terrain, as did horses who also carried troops. Dogs were used as messengers, bomb detectors, and for search and rescue missions. Carrier pigeons delivered messages to specific destinations and were said to be the most dependable way of sending a message during the war. Collected in jars, Glowworms provided much needed light in the trenches for officers to study battle maps and soldiers to read their letters from home. 

Have students pick an animal mentioned above (or one of their own choosing) and research the role the animal played in war. Students can create a poster or write a poem to demonstrate what they learned.

Screenshot from Canada Animals in War Tribute Monument

2. Memorializing Animals in War

In 2012 Canadian artist and sculptor, David Clendining, created the Animals in War Dedication in Confederation Park in downtown Ottawa. As a class, watch the short video ‘Canada Animals in War Tribute Monument‘ (6:28).

Post Video Discussion Questions

  • Why is it important to honour animals who serve in war?
  • Do you think the monument portrays what it was intended to portray?
  • Are there other monuments dedicated to animals that you know of?

Have students create/draw their own monument dedicated to service animals. Encourage students to present their monument to the class, explaining the significance behind what they created.

To see what the Animals in War Dedication represents, click here.

3. After the War

Animals play an important role in helping veterans who return home from the war. Service dogs can help veterans who are dealing with post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after service. As a class, watch the CBC video ‘Watch how a dog help one veteran conquer his PTSD‘ (6:01). The video may not be appropriate for all classrooms as some of the footage includes images and sounds of war. Preview to make sure it is suitable for your class. You could read this article as an alternative.

Pre-Video Discussion Questions

  • What is a service dog?
  • Have you seen a service dog before? If so, describe the situation.
  • What are some reasons someone might require a service dog?
  • Can any dog become a service dog? Why or why not?
  • What are other ‘jobs’ dogs can do? Brainstorm a list.

Post-Video Discussion Questions

  • Why does Chad require a service dog?
  • What are some of the ways Norman helps Chad?
  • How would you describe the relationship between the Chad and Norman?
  • What other animal species can be a service animal?

Norman is a service dog trained to help veterans dealing with PTSD, meaning that he was trained to perform specific tasks and to work with people with specific needs. Other types of jobs animals can have include working (search and rescue, explosive detection, etc.), therapy, and emotional support animals. Individually, have students pick an animal job to research to identify a clear definition of what the job is, what it entails, how it differs from the other types, and how one goes about accessing one of these services if needed. Have students compare their finding with a classmate who picked a different type of animal job.

EXTENSION: Have students research guidelines for meeting a service dog in public. Students can create a poster or pamphlet that illustrates the work service dogs do, including the dos and don’ts of interacting with a service dog.

Additional Information of Service Animals

Screenshot from the CBC video

Curriculum

Grade 7
  • General Outcome 3 – Students will listen, speak, read, write, view, and represent to manage ideas and information.
    • 3.2 Select and Process
      • Use a variety of sources
        • obtain information from a variety of sources…
    • 3.3 Organize, Record and Evaluate
      • Evaluate information
        • assess if the amount and quality of gathered information is appropriate to purpose and audience; address information gaps
Grade 8
  • General Outcome 3 – Students will listen, speak, read, write, view, and represent to manage ideas and information.
    • 3.2 Select and Process
      • Use a variety of sources
        • obtain information from a variety of sources…
    • 3.3 Organize, Record and Evaluate
      • Evaluate information
        • evaluate the relevance and importance of gathered information; address information gaps
Grade 9
  • General Outcome 3 – Students will listen, speak, read, write, view, and represent to manage ideas and information.
    • 3.2 Select and Process
      • Use a variety of sources
        • obtain information from a variety of sources…
    • 3.3 Organize, Record and Evaluate
      • Evaluate information
        • evaluate usefulness, relevance and completeness of gathered information; address information gaps
        • reflect on new understanding and its value to self and others
Grade 7
  • Wellness Choices
    • Students will make responsible informed choices to maintain health and to promote safety for self and others.
    • Safety and Responsibility: Students will
      • W-7.10 identify and examine potential sources of physical/emotional/social support
  • Learning Life Choices
    • Students will use resources effectively to manage and explore life roles and career opportunities and challenges
    • Life Roles and Career Development: Students will
      • L-7.6 examine factors that may influence future life role/education/career plans
Grade 8
  • Wellness Choices
    • Students will make responsible informed choices to maintain health and to promote safety for self and others.
    • Safety and Responsibility: Students will
      • W-8.10 develop strategies to effectively access health information and health services in the community
  • Learning Life Choices
    • Students will use resources effectively to manage and explore life roles and career opportunities and challenges
    • Life Roles and Career Development: Students will
      • L-8.6 investigate, interpret and evaluate career information and opportunities using a variety of sources
Grade 9
  • Learning Life Choices
    • Students will use resources effectively to manage and explore life roles and career opportunities and challenges
    • Life Roles and Career Development: Students will
      • L-9.6 develop strategies to deal with transitional experiences: e.g., create a learning plan for transitioning to senior high school, keeping future career plans in mind
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