Welcome! This blog post is about the Circle Around BC trip I took a part of in may! We went into this trip knowing the driving question, “How can you convince your neighbor that their life is not complete until they’ve experienced what you’ve experienced.” So, as someone who hasn’t explored much of BC besides south east areas like Nelson, I was very excited to do a circle around a very historically important area. We created many artifacts from the trip, but first I’m going to give you a run down on the trip, then dive into the Exhibition and Podcast!
THE ACTUAL CIRCLE
As you can see on this map here we started from Vancouver, went up Cariboo road, stopped at Prince George, drove up to Nass Valley, then to Prince Rupert and took a long ferry ride to Vancouver island which we then travelled back to North Vancouver from. It was a two week trip and was genuinely an amazing experience. I can’t break down these 2 weeks in a section of a blog post, so I’m going to talk about some of the biggest learning experiences and turning points in my learning.
PORT OF PRINCE RUPERT: Being honest, I was not excited to go to this because I was like eh, boring port stuff… But I remembered to how we needed to keep our minds open to all new information during the trip so I went ready to learn. I was beyond surprised to how interesting and amazing the story of the port is. The people working there talked a lot about trade and that’s really what interested me. They discussed the trade going on now, and the trade in First Nations. I then realized that trade was everywhere on this trip. This port brought together all my ideas into something I was happy with which ended up being my topic for the podcast and exhibition! Ill explain all of this more in detail in the exhibition part of this post.
BARKERVILLE: This part of the trip stood out for me because we basically lived in the 1800s for 2 days. Besides having iPads/phones and being dressed like 2019 teenagers, the experience was very authentic. From the skits that were preformed, the buildings, and actors working there, it felt like I went back in time. I don’t know any time in my life where I’ve done something like this. We were immersed into the gold rush and it felt like we were there. I’d recommend this to anyone learning about the 1800s in BC!
NASS VALLEY: When people ask me what the most beautiful part of the trip was, I tell them Nas Valley. This is where the Nisga’a people live and thrive. They have a treaty signed with the government that lets them have their own government and control over the area. The community and culture in Nas Valley is just as beautiful as the mountains, water, and volcanic rock! This was the first time I’d been in an area this large with mostly only First Nations living there, and it was amazing. If you’re ever near Nisga’a, do stop and take a look at there wonderful area!
Beside some specific places, the overall trip opened my eyes to lots of the perspectives in British Columbia that I wouldn’t have heard in just Vancouver. BC has so many stories and culture intertwined in the trees, ground, ocean, and buildings, and not many people recognize that. From First Nations to now, there are thousands of stories of BC that people need to hear. That’s why we created the podcasts and exhibition to open the eyes of BC to everyone and inspire them to take a deeper look at our province.
This was a smaller assignment in this whole unit, but still very important. This was the first step to our exhibition project. The goal for this podcast was to tell the story of how you came to the conclusion you did. For mine, it’s the story of trade in B.C, and how important trade is to B.C.I noticed this throughout all 3 phases of the trip, and took note of all of it. Going back to the driving question, I needed to share with my neighbors on how important trade is to B.C. We all live life in B.C. doing our own thing but never think about how we live and how our province is thriving. It’s because of trade. Trade isn’t just a simple thing that happens at ports, it has stories and thousands of years connected to it. Trade doesn’t just happen in B.C. it IS B.C! In this podcast I explain how I came to realize this.
The podcast surprised me. I was quite happy with it and felt lost on where to revise, but after long conversations with the teachers I knew where I had to fix things. This whole overall podcast taught me that even if you feel something is great, that’s not going to be what everyone else thinks all the time, and that’s ok! It’s about taking the surprised-ness, and working even harder to make it better.
The exhibition night! For my project I painted a map of B.C. and all of the trade routes we saw on the trip. It is split it up into 3 time periods which also represent the phases of our trip. 8000 BC – 1700s (First Nations.) 1700s-1950s (Fur Trade, Gold Rush.) 1950s-2019 (Ports in our Province.) These titles are really important as they are what makes the map make sense. I made this as a visual representation of all the notes I took on the trip of the trade routes I saw.
There are so many more trade routes in B.C. but these are the specific ones I myself took note of at museums, by asking questions, and just looking around! I had fun explaining my project to people who asked about it, as not many people know much about B.C. besides Vancouver!!!
I’m really happy with how my artifact came out, and how the overall room ended up looking. Everyone in the class was very passionate about their topics and this exhibition which made the overall experience a lot better. We came to creating our artifacts using the launch cycle which was helpful on organizing our ideas! It also makes the reflecting process easier as It can show you where you succeed and failed. I think I did well in creating a creative visual representation of my answer to the driving question and I’m proud of myself.
The exhibition luckily all came together, but I definitely did do it pretty last minute. While this is ok as I’m happy with the end product, I wish I had started actually building and painting earlier. Beside my own procrastination, I felt the launch cycle slowed me down a little. I found myself wanted to skip steps as I didn’t feel they were important, but I didn’t as I know I’m being marked on the process of creating just as much as the end product.
I walked away from this exhibition with a deeper understanding and love for our home province British Columbia. Without being in PLP I wouldn’t have this. I have never met anyone who has explored B.C. as much as my class, and that’s not a good thing! People need to realize they don’t need to go to Europe or America to see new things, we have it right in our backyard. The culture and history is so deep and beautiful, and it deserves to be recognized just as much as places around the world. I genuinely am grateful I have heard so many stories and facts about B.C. in during this unit, and that I learnt so much about trade. I’m proud of myself for stepping out of my comfort zone while choosing topics to focus on (trade.) I could have chosen something artistic or more creative, but I chose industry basically, which was really fun! I think it was definitely the passion I had for my topic which made my project and learning thrive.