Jeunes Citoyens / Young Citizens

Ashlyn Summerside, Prince Edward Island

Fair address: Prince Edward Island Provincial Fair

Project: Residential Schools

My project gives an overview of what Indian Residential Schools were like for the Indigenous children of Canada. The project asks and answers the question "Why did it take so long for Indian Residential Schools to be closed down completely?" and it also explains some things Canadians can do to help Canada work towards reconciliation.

What was the most interesting thing you learned about your topic?

The most interesting thing that I learned is that the last Residential School only closed in 1996. I couldn't believe how long the schools stayed open. One hundred and twenty years was a long time for the schools to stay in operation and sadly the Canadian Government kept blaming the poor results of the schools on the Indigenous people instead of taking responsibility and closing the schools.

What important lessons have you learned that you want to share with other Canadians?

The most important lesson that I learned when researching this subject is that just because you think something is right doesn't mean it is right. If you see it is hurting other people then you need to change what is happening. Also, when you make a mistake you shouldn't blame it on others. You need to take responsibility for your own actions.

How would you compare your life today to the lives of those studied in your project?

The children in Residential Schools had a very tough life. They were deprived of their childhood and they went through what no child should have to go through. I live a safe and privileged life with the freedom to experience my own culture and grow up with my loving family, while the children in Residential Schools were stripped of their human rights and their culture.

  • Peter Johnston

    Great job Ashlyn - good luck!
    07/07/2017 2:16:21 PM

  • Madison (young citizen)

    I loved the pictures in your video. They were very detailed for so many. Great job researching into Canadian heritage.
    30/06/2017 8:38:29 AM

  • Lauren Johnston

    Awesome job Ashlyn! Congrats on all your hard work. Good luck!
    28/06/2017 6:09:14 PM

  • Nancy Mckenna

    Well done and good luck Ashlyn!
    22/06/2017 9:55:34 AM

  • Dan McHale

    Great job Ashland..a topic that all Canadians need to be aware of !
    21/06/2017 10:56:41 PM

  • Kerstin

    Well done. I learned a lot. So sad. Good luck Ashley.
    18/06/2017 6:39:51 AM

  • Kerstin

    Well done. I learned a lot from your video. So sad. Thank you and good luck.
    18/06/2017 6:35:06 AM

  • Kristine Ogrodnick

    Fantastic! You did a great job with a delicate subject. You should be very proud! Well done!
    15/06/2017 9:42:26 AM

  • Tricia Logan

    That's exceptional work, Ashlyn. You've created a great resource. Thanks for your contribution to our shared history.
    15/06/2017 9:02:26 AM

  • Lorette George

    Hello Ashlyn, Another teacher gave me this link to your video. My mother and my grandmother were both residential school survivors. I loved your video so much that I am using it in my classroom to teach my students about residential schools. Thank you!
    14/06/2017 4:29:16 PM

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Vancouver, British Columbia


Lockeport, Nova Scotia


Freeland, Prince Edward Island

Project partially funded by the Government of Canada through the Department of Canadian Heritage.
  • Canadian Heritage / Patrimoine Canadien
  • Government of Canada
  • HBC: Hudson's Bay Company
  • ecentricarts inc.