Question Mark

Thinking about what to think about

Are you hunting for some Heritage Fair topic ideas for your students, or for yourself? Here’s a few ideas.

  1. The Selkirk Settlers. Those folks who came to the Red River area 200 years ago helped stimulate the development of much of what has become Winnipeg today, both good and bad. There’s stories of intrigue, treachery, conflict, loyalty, and triumph all built into this period of settlement. And for those of you who are competitive, we have an award specifically aimed at this time period.
  2. How about Inuit Art? Right here in town we have an amazing collection of Inuit art at the Winnipeg Art Gallery. There’s “a story living in every piece of art” and that means that the WAG is a great place to learn about Inuit history and heritage. What is important to the artists and the communities they live in? How do they understand the world?
  3. This year marks the 150th anniversary of Manitoba. While labor strife and protest might be common in some parts of the world, it’s not out here. What was different about Winnipeg in 1919 that set up the conditions needed for this kind of conflict? Could it happen again?Any sustainable development ideas??
  4. 75th Anniversary of the End of World War II, 1945. Explore Canada’s involvement.
  5. 50th anniversary of the Arctic Winter Games. This would be a great topic to explore.
  6. The 350th anniversary of the founding of the Hudson’s Bay Company. Lots of great topics here!!
  7. The 100th anniversary of the creation of the “Group of Seven”. Any artists in your classroom??
  8. The 100th anniversary of Canada’s first Olympic gold medal in hockey

There’s lots more possible topics. Check out the “Topics” section of our “How To” Manual. If you have ideas you’d like to share with a wider audience, leave a comment or e-mail us at info at

A unique opportunity for Red River Teachers

Have you participated in the Red River Heritage Fair for at least two years? Do have a wild and crazy out of province PD opportunity that you want to take advantage of? The Red River Heritage Fair, with the generous support of the Winnipeg Foundation, has arranged a bursary for teachers working with our Fair and want to upgrade out of province. Canada’s History is handling the paperwork and you can apply over here.

We highly recommend the Historical Thinking Summer Institute, to be held in Ottawa in July, as one out of province PD worth checking out. Check out the poster for more details.

Frenquently Asked Questions

Question MarkThings you’ve asked us. Now we’re answering.

Let us know if there’s things we’ve missed.

General Questions

Q: Where are the bathrooms located?

A: On the second floor

Q: Is there a drinking fountain/drink machine available?

A: A water fountain is just outside the washrooms on the second floor, or there is water for purchase in the Canteen 

Q: Where is the nearest first aid kit/AED?

A: At the Duckworth Main Office on the ground floor


Parent Questions:

Q: Can I attend sessions with my child? (Parents of young children)?

A:  No, unless you are a parent supervising students or a parent of a homeschool student 

Q: My child has an appointment this afternoon. Can I pick them up and then return them later?

A: Your child should be here for their “Judging Session” where he/she presents their project. Check to see when your child’s judging session is, and if you must miss it, inform the judges beforehand and we will try to accommodate another judging session time

Q: What time should I come back to pick my child up?

A: The ending time of the last session is 3:30 pm

Q: When should I be here for the award ceremony?

A: Students should return to be by their projects for Public Viewing is 5:30 pm, Awards start at 6:30 pm

Q: I cannot attend the award ceremony tonight. Can I take my child’s project with me now?

A: Judges take their final looks after the students have left to determine the awards. Taking your project early may make it difficult for your child to win an award.   You may arrange to have someone bring it home for you after the award ceremony.

Please note: All projects that have been left behind will be disposed of, unless other arrangements have been made to pick them up. RRHF or the Duckworth Centre is not responsible for projects left behind after the close of the fair


Student Questions:

Q: Do I get lunch? (students/teachers at the fair)

A: No, students/teachers do not get lunch. Please bring a lunch from home or purchase*  from the canteen upstairs. *Canteen lineups will be long

Q: Where are the blank feedback forms? (My bag did not have one…)

A: Blank feedback forms will be at the registration check-in help table



Q: My friend is in a different session. Can I go with him/her instead?

A: No, your session leader is expecting you. They do not have extra materials for non-registered students to attend sessions

Q: Where is the _______________________ session located?

A: A list of the session locations will be at the check-in help table

Q: My label does not have any sessions written on it. Where do I go?

A: The check-in help table.



Q: There is not enough room for my project at my spot. What should I do?

A: Size requirements for projects were stated in the overview for projects. If you can, try to alter the project so that it fits in the required space. If it is larger than the assigned space, you will be deducted marks

Q: I need electricity for my project, but I do not have access. What do I do?

A: If you have informed RRHF that you required electricity we will try to accommodate you, if the request was not noted on the registration form it may be difficult to find power



Q: How many judges will see me during the judging period? (The person next to me had more judges…)

A: Stand by your project until the judging session is completely finished. All students will have 2-3 judges.  There are speciality judges who are experts in certain topics and they will only visit projects relevant to their award category

Q: What do the different coloured dots mean? (Does that mean my project is bad/good?) 

A: The dots just say that your project has been visited by a judge. The colours are random and do not mean anything.  The “dots/stickers” are a way to visually check to make sure the student has been judged


Teacher Questions:

Q: Where do I put the *photo release* slip?

A: At the drop-off box at the check-in help table.  *ALL students must have a consent form completed or they will not be allowed to participate

Q: When/where do I pick up my receipt?

A: Receipts will be available at the check-in help table at the end of the day, after they have been signed


Registration Questions:

Q: There is no label for this student who is checking in. What do I do?

A: Check again (sometimes late registrants are not listed alphabetically).  If they are not there, see the check-in help table.

Q: The Student label has the wrong project title on it. Will this be a problem?

A: As long as your project is at the correct number space, the judges will find you. Let the judge know the actual title of your project at that time


Judges and Questions

Q: Where is the judge’s area located?

A: Upstairs, on the mezzanine

Q: I can’t find this project. What do I do?

A: If the project is not in its numbered spot, let the judging station know that this project could not be found, then continue on with the other projects to be judged

Q: No one was at this project when I went by. What do I do?

A: Students are told to remain at their project until their judging session was over.  Please let the judging coordinator know and we will page the student back to the project. If you have extra time, you could return to that project. If student has not appeared, simply fill out the rubric for the areas which are not related to the presentation and inform the judging station why there are zeros in the other areas

Q: Where/when is lunch being served for judges?

A: Lunch will be served upstairs at noon. Remember to bring your lunch ticket

Q: Where are the extra pencils/batteries/scrap paper/tape?

A: Extra supplies should be at the check-in help table or the judges room


RRHF Volunteer Questions:


Q: Where/when is lunch being served for volunteers?

A: Lunch will be served upstairs at noon. Remember to bring your lunch ticket

Q: I am a student volunteer. What should I be doing?

A: Ask the teacher who brought you or the Volunteer Coordinator

row of books

Grade 5 and 6 Curriculum Connections

Heritage Fairs are fun to do, but, ultimately, we still have to connect what we do to the government curriculum. Donna Dawson, one of our committee members, has done much of that work by pulling together some of the curricular outcomes for Grade 5 and 6 English and Social Studies. Many of the broad themes apply from Grades 4-11, but the parts drawn from the ELA Draft Curriculum are specific to Grade 5 and 6.

When your students participate in a Heritage Fair, whether you are working to achieve curricular outcomes from the current SST and ELA curricula or working on phasing in the new ELA curriculum, their projects meet a wide variety of curricular connections.  The comprehensive list for all current curricula can be found on the Red River Heritage website

Please find below the Grade 5 & 6 General Learning  Outcomes met for the current Social Studies, and ELA curricula:

Social Studies – Grades 4-11

  • Identity, Culture, and Community
  • The Land: Places and People
  • Historical Connections
  • Global Interdependence
  • Power and Authority
  • Economics and Resources

English Language Arts – Grades 4-11

GO#1 – Explore thoughts, ideas, feelings and experiences

GO#2 – Comprehend and respond personally and critically to oral, literary, and media texts

GO#3 – Manage Ideas and Information

GO#4 – Enhance the Clarity and Artistry of Communication

GO#5 – Celebrate and Build Community 

ELA Draft Curriculum 2017: (being phased-in by most school divisions):

Heritage Fair projects could be a part of rich learning experiences  and as such, there should be evidence of all four of the Practices as listed below. The four practices are interrelated and work in unison. Teachers are encouraged  to aim for making sure there is evidence of learning in all four Practice areas.

  • Language as Sense Making
  • Language as System
  • Language as Exploration and Design
  • Language as Power and Agency

Some highlights from the Practices would include:

  • using visual, multimedia, oral, and written communication competently, appropriately, and effectively for a range of purposes
  • helping students know/co-construct what and why they are learning and doing something (e.g., big ideas, practices of ELA, essential or inquiry questions, points of progression and learning goals, exemplars)
  • teaching and learning for “deep understanding” (including using questions for deeper understanding as a focus)
  • making meaning of ideas or information received (when viewing, listening, and reading)
  • creating meaning for themselves and others (when speaking, writing, and using other forms of representing)
  • accessing, using, and drawing upon a variety of strategies depending upon the task and purpose, and having metacognitive conversations internally and with others
  • engaging in inquiry learning

Manitoba Education and Training. (May, 2017). Draft English language arts document to support initial implementation. Retrieved from

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