Three Aberfoyle students part of Historica Canada’s COVID-19 virtual museum project

ABERFOYLE – Three students from Aberfoyle Public School have had school projects selected for the Canada During COVID-19 virtual museum, a Historica Canada project to archive experiences of Canadians during the pandemic.

The three students whose work was selected are Ellie Schlotzhauer, in Grade 8; Kendra Thompson, also in Grade 8; and Sophie Bertrand, in Grade 5.

“They put out a call to Canadians to submit original artifacts to represent this time,” said Elizabeth Bertrand, who teaches Grades 6, 7 and 8 at the Aberfoyle school.

“At the same time, when schools closed (and online learning began), it was my hope to support students and help them keep positive, learn about self-care, to understand gratitude, and to foster creativity.”

Her students wrote gratitude letters to essential service workers, created book spine poems to express their feelings during the lockdown, and curated virtual learning portraits of items that helped them learn at home.

They also self-directed their own creative art projects, such as rock painting, poster designing, video creation, and sketches to capture the essence of being unified as one community working to protect each other against the virus.

The students then created a “Unity and Solidarity Portfolio” of these important items, accompanied by their own self-reflections.

“When I saw the Historica notice I submitted some projects and yesterday we learned three of them were selected,” Bertrand told the Advertiser on May 27.

“It’s been neat to see the reflections that went along with the projects. They are a positive ray of light – very inspiring and positive.”

Sophie Bertrand, Elizabeth Bertrand’s 10-year-old daughter, chose a virtual learning project that includes a collection of items that are meaningful to her.

“It’s stuff I’m doing to get through the pandemic,” said Sophie, noting items on her list include ballet slippers, flowers, a cookbook, a globe, art supplies and her dog.

She said she’s been learning a lot during the pandemic.

“I’ve learned a lot about technology,” said Sophie.

“And I’ve learned that creative activity, like art and pottery, bring me peace and joy.”

Historica Canada has many projects on the go. They produce Heritage Minute clips that tell the stories of historical figures in Canada, both well-known and often unknown.

The Canada During COVID-19 virtual museum is a living archive that’s updated regularly and can be found at and on Instagram.

The submissions from Schlotzhauer (below), a letter to hospital employees, and Thompson (bottom), a rock painting display, are included below.

Submitted images