Curated by Nadine Finlay

July 12 to November 3, 2018

About the Exhibit

So This is Teaching covered a major topic in Ontario's educational system: the transition between one room school-houses to the now standard style of today's classroom. Teacher's education was the turning point to more students staying in school for longer, and the pursuit of further education for a greater number of students. The exhibit itself told the story through a snapshot of time by recreating some of the experiences of teachers' college through the example of the Lakeshore Teachers' College, which operated on the Lakeshore Grounds from 1959 - 1975. In the exhibit, visitors were able to see what the experience of Teachers College was like, coupled with interpretation of major historical events. 

Pictured Below is the 1969 Teachers College Yearbook from Lakeshore Teachers College. 

Click on the golden arrows to move through the images and click on the image to find out more about each page. 

Check out the Ground Floor Plan and the Upper Floor Plan of the Lakeshore Teachers College 

History of the Lakeshore Teachers College

The Lakeshore Teachers College received its first students in September of 1959 and remained in operation for 16 years. It was the first built structure to appear on the farmland owned by the Lakeshore Psychiatric Hospital (1890 - 1970). The building of Humber College's new Lakeshore campus, today known as A Building.

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And So it Begins / Before it Began

To be a teacher in Ontario in 1847 you needed to be at least 16 years old, have the ability to read and write, and be certified as being of "good moral character" by a clergyman. Teachers were provided with a basic curriculum that focused on literacy, numeracy, and citizenship.

Vive la Revolution!

The Post-War years saw an increase in urbanization, industrialization, and population across Ontario. With a growing interest in public education and an expanding curriculum, teaching certification begain to specialize, but remained general to keep up with the demand for teachers. 

One Must Be the Student

The 1950s were a time of radical change for public education in Ontario - and, as a result, for teacher training. Schools transitioned from single-room schoolhouses to buildings that provided individual classrooms with movable desks for each grade and specialized spaces for art, music, and sports. 

All Work and No Play 

Changes the education system created a new view of teacher training. Teachers were to learn in buildings modelled on the schools their future classrooms. At the Lakeshore Teachers' College, the other-year program included a mix of academics and in-school practice along with an extracurricular in athletics or arts. 

Practice Makes Perfect

Teacher training continued to specialize throughout the 1960s with student-teachers apprenticing in school settings under the guidance of more experienced teachers. This 13 week practice session gave them more direct experience with the children they would soon be teaching.

The End of an Era

The McLeod Report of 1966 opened the discussion around university education for elementary school teachers. The concern was that teachers were entering the classroom too young and too inexperienced. The recommendations would also serve to minimize the differences between elementary and secondary school teachers. 

To Infinity and Beyond


By the mid-1970s the teachers; college system in Ontario had almost entirely been replaced by university-based departments. The transition was made over a number of years: for instance, the Lakeshore Teachers College became affiliated with York University in 1971 but did not close until 1975.

Try our Cursive Worksheets 

by clicking and downloading the following documents!


The Exhibit

We had a Photo Contest! 

Check out the winning captions below and go to our Instagram to see the original posts.

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