Students show projects at provincial fair

Five young history buffs from Terrace showed off their projects at the Provincial Heritage Fair and week-long history camp.

Here's Sebastian Heron presenting his project at the Provincial Heritage Fair.

Here's Sebastian Heron presenting his project at the Provincial Heritage Fair.

Five young history buffs showed off their projects to a new audience at the Provincial Heritage Fair and week-long history camp.

Michael Munday, Myah Bowal, Nicole Lofroth, Sebastian Heron and Morgyn Budden earned their spots at the provincial event after receiving top honours at the regional fair held here in the spring.

With confidence and enthusiasm, the young students explained their projects to a crowd circulating through the July 7 exhibit held in the Royal BC Museum. Given the task of creating a research project on a significant person or event in Canadian history, each student came up with his or her own unique ideas.

Twelve-year-old Munday turned to a local history book provided by his mother Kelly.

“The Terrace Mutiny of 1944 really captured my interest,” he said.

The Grade 8 student found a personal connection with his story: his great-grandfather was serving with the 11th Field Ambulance unit in Terrace during the mutiny.

He found additional information on the subject through old newspaper articles and the internet.

The 3,000-strong soldiers stationed in Terrace from 1942 to 1945 were not happy with their remote posting. Rations were short, amenities were non-existent and winters were cold, he said.

But they chose home defence duties at the start of the Second World War instead of serving in the line of fire overseas thanks to a deal offered by then-Prime Minister Mackenzie King. When King reneged on the understanding in November, 1944, the Terrace-based embittered soldiers went on strike.

A long-time personal interest in dance led 13-year-old Lofroth to research the history of Canada’s renowned Royal Winnipeg Ballet.

“I’ve danced since I was three,” said the Skeena Middle School student, noting she practises five days a week. Under the guidance of dance teacher Leah Gunther, Nicole hopes to one day be part of the Winnipeg-based troupe.

A member of the Terrace Kermode Bantam Girls hockey team, Bowal was among the millions of proud Canadians during the 2010 Winter Olympic Games held in Vancouver.

“We won the most gold medals in Olympic history,” the Grade 8 student beamed.

That got her thinking about, and researching, the games as a project.

“The most interesting thing I learned was that the medals were made out of recycled metals and computer circuit boards,” she said.

For fellow classmate Budden, a family vacation across Canada sparked an interest in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Her project featured photographs of puffins and explanations about the province’s flags and history.

With roots in the Kaska Tlingit territory and an artist, Dean Heron, as a father, Heron’s exhibit looked at the history of First Nations art and the cultural use of tools.

He discovered the impact European settlers and authorities had on aboriginals in B.C.

While in B.C.’s capital for the five days leading up to the exhibition, the 80 students and their chaperones toured a number of educational and heritage sites including the Royal BC Museum, the Parliament Buildings, Fort Rodd Hill, Fisgard Lighthouse and Canada’s oldest Chinatown.

This year, the students also toured Ross Bay Cemetery where many of B.C.’s first settlers were buried, including Sir James Douglas and Emily Carr.