Peter Verigin and the Doukhobors

Yup. So that was that.

We started off this unit by reading Chester Brown’s ‘Louis Riel’, a comic-strip biography. Each part, pertaining to the fact that the book is split into 4 parts, we were to do a summary. Now most of these summaries were written, but our third was a video. So here it is. 

While reading this book, we were also learning about the Métis people and the red river settlement. The red river settlement was a settlement of Métis people. Louis Riel lived here, and the red river rebellion was what brought him to power. In his life, Louis Riel accomplished many things, and brought attention to some of the problems facing First Nations people.

At this time, the Canadian govt. was trying to get as much land as possible, to avoid annexation with the USA, and to build the Canadian Pacific Railway. They also just wanted more white people in Canada.

Numbered Treaties

The Canadian govt created several different treaties with the First Nations people. These insured the Canadians that they got the land, but were completely unfair for the First Nations people. Some language on the treaties they didn’t understand, and they mistook Xs for the cross, and took it as a sign of peace. Learn more about it here!


In 1867 Canada became a country. But, BC wasn’t. At this time, BC was an independent colony of Britain. It had become populated after the Cariboo Gold rush, which brought tons of people, money, and camels to BC. After the gold dried up, many people left, but many also stayed, populating BC with white people. (I put this here because BC was already very populated with First Nations people, but they came anyways. There was almost a war to. Learn about that here!)

What they had to decide, was wether or not to join Canada. There were three main views on this; join with Canada, stay independent, or become part of the United States. Eventually, they decided to join with Canada, but they had many conditions. One of the promises that the Canadian government made to British Columbia was that the rail road that John a McDonald had previously promised would end in BC. The rail road was also supposed to be finished in 10 years, with a two-year start date. This did not happen as the construction of the CPR began in 1881. The last spike was driven in Craigellachie BC on November 7th 1885. Learn more about this here!

While on our trip to Calgary, we actually got to visit Craigellachie. It was so cool to see where so much history happened. Also, a bunch of trains passed while we were there.


Now, in PLP fashion, while all of this was going on, we were working on a project. Using our driving question, 

How do disparities in power alter relationships?

Now, in PLP fashion, while all of this was going on, we were working on a project. Using our driving question, 

We had to, well, do a thing. First, we chose topics from categories such as the CPR, Red River Settlement, and Manitoba. I chose from the Immigration category, and I chose the Doukhobors. I wanted to do the doukhobors because they settled in the area that I used to live in, and that sounded cool to me. 

Second, we had to research our people. We were supposed to choose one person to focus on for this, so I chose Peter Verigin. He was the leader of a large group of doukhobors during the time when they came to Canada. I won’t say anything else so to not spoil my video. 

Next, we were to write a story based on our research. Lucky for me, I had written my research in a story-esk form. So all I had to do was tweak it a bit. 

These seem like a lot of steps, I know. But the final product is so worth it, so stay with me.

After the story, we had to make a storyboard. A storyboard shows the shots you are going to do for your video. I used Sketches Pro, a really cool drawing app for this.

I did end up changing a lot of this, but anyways. 

Then we animated. Oh my goodness, this took a long time. 3 weeks we spent animating. I used an app called FlipaClip, which helped, but it was still a long time. I’m very proud of how this turned out though. 

We had a viewing party on Monday, where we watched all the videos. It was really cool to see everyone’s topics, and the approach they took to animate this. 

This was a really cool project that I would definitely recommend. I learned so much about the doukhobors, and their tragic story. If I were to go back, I think I would have bought an iPad Pro. I drew most of the slides with my fingers, and it took so long. But I had a lot of fun, and learned tons. Not just about the topic, but about animation. I have so much respect for animators now!

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