The Portrayal of Riel

Driving question: How has the portrayal of Louis Riel changed over time?

When I got back to school after winter break, I learned about my last project for Humanities in semester 1. For my three last weeks, I was going to learn about Louis Riel, and how his portrayal changed over time. I was ALSO going to be improving my writing abilities.

Now, to be able to answer the driving question I was given for this project, “How has the portrayal of Louis Riel changed over time?”, I need to learn the basics first. We spent lots of time learning about who Louis Riel was, where he was from, what he did, and who it effects. At the same time, we were also spending time learning about how we can use stronger words. These stronger words would help us improve writing pieces, and understand how to express a powerful message. We used frayar models, and other tools to help us with this.

Now that I had a good understanding of him generally, I started to her more about different portrayals of him. A really good example we looked at were two statues. One statue, made by Marcien Lemay and Étienne Gaboury, presents a very weak, powerless man. The figure has a distorted body, that is leaning over and has his hands behind his back. Then we looked at a different statue Miguel Joyal, that showed a very strong, powerful, heroic man. The figure is standing tall, is well dressed, and holding a scroll. The first statue was made in 1973, while the second one was made in 1996. From this comparison, you can see how negatively Louis Riel was viewed. Over time though, more positive portrayals of Riel came to life, as more people started to learn about him from more then just one perspective.

With all the information I had gathered, I could create my multi-paragraph response to the driving question! I had a very hard time with this. I found I had a really hard time starting my project, but with the help of an amazing teacher, I found myself creating something I am quite proud of. I got feedback from my peers, and from my teachers, leaving me with writing that I want to share. I feel I met the criteria, and showed my analyzing skills through my writing. I used two examples that we learned about as evidence, and explained how the portrayed Louis Riel, and how that contributes to the driving question.

Through this project I learned a lot. I learned about some words, and how I can use them to enhance my writing. I learned about Louis Riel, what he did for the Métis people, and how is portrayal changed over time. These aspects of what I learned are very easy to see, but when I reflect deeper, I can see a few more things. One thing I got to really understand through this project is when you look at history, you might not be getting an accurate explanation to what happened after you read on article, or look at one piece of evidence. Especially when the evidence you are looking at was from the time period. As these events are happening, everyone will have options, and biases, which can lead the to create information that doesn’t share the full story. Morals also tend to be differnt then morals that are more common now. I really understand how much a bias can effect the way a person is seen.

This project only took 3 weeks, but was still as big and important as a project I could spend 2 months on. I learned a lot, and got to practice skills in more focused, clear ways.

I hope you enjoyed my blog, and had a RIEL good time!

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