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Olds in the Twentieth Century

Olds Junior Senior High School’s project, Olds in the Twentieth Century, has two goals:

  • to preserve and archive some of the memories and stories of rural life as related by older members of the Olds community

  • to teach students about social history and to present their research, through exhibit and literary form, to the community

The school was a pilot site for the Alberta Youth Heritage Project in 1999-2000.  Teachers Doug Shaw and Carolyn Mah worked with sixty Social Studies 10/13 students to document and present the experience of the Great Depression and the Second World War in Olds and the surrounding district. You can see some the results under "Student Projects".

In the following year (2000-2001) Forty Grade 10 students—ten from Doug Shaw’s Social Studies 13 and thirty from Rene Mathews Social Studies 10 classes—continued the work as part Heritage Community Foundation's Reading the Community: Literacy through Heritage project. The students continued the process of researching the community, conducting interviews and writing about their findings.  

Pairs of students interviewed senior members of the Olds community and, stimulated by those interviews, researched events that took place in the decade discussed by their subject. For example, if a student team interviewed a person who recounted her experiences during World War II, the students researched the international, national, provincial and local effects of the war. Storyteller and writer Mary Hays assisted the students in their writing, resulting in the dramatic presentation “Rural Alberta Reflections”.

On May 3, 2001, the students performed “Rural Alberta Reflections” for their peers, teachers and the members of the Mountain View Lodge. The photographs on the website are from the performance.

Student Projects

Student Projects


Sponsored by:The Heritage Community Foundation Website

The Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce Website

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