Lesson 1 Writing & Reflecting

Relating the Historic Canadian Fur Trade in the

Global Economy

Learning Outcome

Students will assess the impact of the fur trade on exploration and settlement.

Steps to the Lesson

  1. Conduct a Jigsaw Activity with four articles on the fur trade.
  2. Watch a video on the impact the beaver had on the development of Canada.
  3. Complete a Four Quad graphic organizer while viewing the video.
  4. Play a ‘Chocolate Game’ to develop understanding of modern trade practices.
  5. Write a reflection on the Fur Trade and modern trade practices.
  6. Reflect on the process.



Students will be able to:

  • identify the main factors leading to the development of the North American fur trade.
  • relate the elements of the North American Fur Trade to the modern global trade economy.


Students play “The Chocolate Game”, a game which hilights the disparities in world trade, and write a reflection on the process.

Activate Prior Knowledge:

Students conduct a Jigsaw Activity on the following four articles:

  1. For Want of a Hat
  2. The Fur Trade in North America
  3. The Role of Mercantilism in Colonialism
  4. A Savage Commerce

For information on how to do a jigsaw activity, please visit the following link:

Jigsaw Instructional Strategy

Once the students have reported back to their ‘home’ groups in the Jigsaw activity, students record their thoughts for each article on a What’s Important and Why sheet.

Predict and Question:

The students will now watch a video on how the beaver impacted the development of Canada from a M├ętis perspective. Have students make predictions about the video based on the articles they have read. What are they wondering about? What questions do they have?


Reminder: It is important to stop throughout the video and give students (A/B partners) opportunity to talk or respond to the information. Students can track ideas on a Four Quad note sheet during the video.

(Video Length: 3 mins)


The Hudson’s Bay Company was one of the world’s first multinational companies that extracted resources from a foreign land and turned those resources into high profit status goods for sale in their home country. There are many modern examples of multinational corporations which continue the practice of resource extraction in foreign countries and converting those resources into high profit status goods in their domestic economies. Teacher brainstorms on the board examples of modern multinational corporations (ie. Nike, The Gap) and the products they create.

For further understanding of how wealth is distributed from countries supplying resources to multinational corporations, students play ‘The Chocolate Game’ located at the People and Planet.org website.


Students write to explain their thoughts and opinions on the Fur Trade, the Hudson’s Bay Company, and the practice of multinational corporations in the 21st century. The length of this writing piece can be determined the teacher (ie. essay, paragraph) but the intention is for individual accountability.


On the back of their What’s Important and Why sheet, students write two things they now know about the Fur Trade that you didn’t know before. Students then write one question they still have about the topic.

Extend learning or next lesson

Students research more information on multinationalism and world poverty. Some websites include:

People and Planet


Global Exchange