Monday, 25 November 2013




      One of the great things about the Harbord Village project has been the ability to split into groups and each take responsibility for a different part of the project. Hilary and I are both very interested in education, interpretation and public programming, and we were able to improve our skills with this course. 

Week 1. Image courtesy of Keely Bland and Hilary Walker.

      We had the opportunity to give tours of Mapping Harbord Village to three different groups from Lord Landsdowne School; we welcomed classes from grade 6, grade 7 and a group of students that are involved with the school’s Tech Club. The Tech Club even filmed Hilary and I conducting the tour for footage to use in the celebrations for Lord Landsdowne’s 125th anniversary. It was great to be able to share some of the residents’ stories and hear from the kids about their experiences with Foodscapes, Laneways and Porch Life in their own neighborhoods. 

Week 2. Image courtesy of Keely Bland and Hilary Walker. 

      The last class that we took through the exhibit was a grade 12 class from Harbord Collegiate Institute. Their class is about local history and archives, so we talked about the importance of studying and preserving local history for generations to come. We also listened to some of the StoryPosts that were created by the HVRA and had discussions about the changes and similarities in life – like dating – from the past to today. Check out some of the StoryPosts on the HVRA’s History website. 

Week 3. Image courtesy of Keely Bland and Hilary Walker.

      Another interpretive element that we worked on was the interactive map of Harbord Village. The map showed the neighbourhood – with all of its streets and laneways – on a large piece of vinyl that hung on one of the exhibit’s walls. Post-it notes were placed beside the map with instructions for visitors to write out their own personal memories relating to Harbord Village and stick them on the corresponding spots on the map. Because the exhibit only covered material from the HVRA’s oral histories, and because these oral histories only covered memories from the 1920s to the 1970s, we wanted to use the map as an opportunity to share other residents’ and visitors’ current and past stories. Essentially, this map was created to demonstrate that Harbord Village is still a living, vibrant, and dynamic neighbourhood.  

 Image courtesy of Keely Bland and Hilary Walker.
     We put up the map when the exhibition was installed, and checked back once or twice a week to ensure that there were no inappropriate comments on the map and to make sure that there were enough Post-it notes and pencils for future visitors. The success of our map interactive was incredibly exciting and inspiring. We loved coming in to the exhibit to see how many more comments had been added. The photos below show the map during the duration of the exhibit and include some of our favourite comments left by visitors.

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