Project Description

Course Description

This course enables students to draw on sociological, psychological, and anthropological theories and research to analyse the development of individuals, intimate relationships, and family and parent-child relationships. Students will focus on issues and challenges facing individuals and families in Canada diverse society. They will develop analytical tools that enable them to assess various factors affecting families and to consider policies and practices intended to support families in Canada. They will develop the investigative skills required to conduct and communicate the results of research on individuals, intimate relationships, and parent-child relationships.

Course Code: HHS4U

Course Name: Families in Canada

Department: Social Science and Humanities

Hours: 110

Credit Value: 1.0

Pre-requisites: Any university or university/college preparation course in social sciences and humanities, English, or Canadian and world studies.

Curriculum Policy Documents:

The Ontario Curriculum, Grade 9 to 12, Social Science and Humanities, 2013 (Revised)

Assessment evaluation and Reporting in Ontario School, First Edition Covering Grade 1-12

Development Date: August 2019

Developed By: Jimmy Chia, B.A.(Hons), M.Ed. B.Ed. (OCT)

Revised By: NA

Revision Date: NA

Overall Curriculum Expectations

  • A1. Exploring: explore topics related to human development, and formulate questions to guide their research.
  • A2. Investigating: create research plans, and locate and select information relevant to their chosen topics, using appropriate social science research and inquiry methods.
  • A3 .Processing Information: assess, record, analyse, and synthesize information gathered through research and inquiry.
  • A4 .Communicating and Reflecting: communicate the results of their research and inquiry clearly and effectively, and reflect on and evaluate their research, inquiry, and communication skills.
  • B1. Individual Development: demonstrate an understanding of theoretical perspectives and research on various aspects of individual development.
  • B2. The Development of Intimate Relationships: demonstrate an understanding of theoretical perspectives and research on the development of intimate relationships.
  • B3. The Development of Family and Parent-Child Relationships: demonstrate an understanding of theoretical perspectives and research on the development of family and parent-child relationships.
  • C1. The Effects on Individuals: demonstrate an understanding of the impact of norms, roles, and social institutions on individuals throughout the lifespan.
  • C2. The Effects on Intimate Relationships: demonstrate an understanding of the impact of norms, roles, and social institutions on intimate relationships.
  • C3. The Effects on Family and Parent-Child Relationships: demonstrate an understanding of factors that can affect decisions about whether to have and how to care for children, and of the impact of norms, roles, and social institutions on family and parent-child relationships.
  • D1. Trends and Challenges for Individuals: demonstrate an understanding of demographic trends related to the lives of individuals and of the impact of social issues and challenges on individual development.
  • D2. Trends and Challenges in Intimate Relationships: demonstrate an understanding of demographic and social trends and issues related to intimate relationships and of strategies for responding to challenges in those relationships.
  • D3. Trends and Challenges in the Family and in Parent-Child Relationships: demonstrate an understanding of demographic trends related to the family and to parent-child relationships and of the impact of social issues and challenges on family development.

Course Content

Unit Unit Title Approx. Duration
Unit 1 All in the Family 20 hours
Unit 2 Emerging Adulthood 20 hours
Unit 3 Couple Relationships 20 hours
Unit 4 Expanding Families 20 hours
Unit 5 Middle and Later Life 20 hours
Culminating Task and Exam 10 hours
TOTAL 110 hours

Unit Description

Descriptions taken from:

Holloway, M. Garth Holloway and Jane Witte. (2010). Individuals and Families: Diverse Perspectives. Toronto: McGraw-Hill.

This unit establishes the framework for the study of individuals and families in Canada’s diverse society. The purposes of families within all societies will be explained first. The diversity of families and the roles of individuals within their families throughout history will be described next. Since this is a research-based study, the unit presents various disciplines and theoretical perspectives from which individual and family behavior can be viewed. Finally, the social-science research methods used in the study of individuals and families will be described.
This unit looks at the transition into adulthood for young Canadians in the 21st century.  Because people are living longer and because our society is more complex than it used to be, becoming independent individuals takes longer than it did for previous generations.  In Unit 2, sociological research will be examined to determine when and how Canadians leave home to live independently, finish their education, and find jobs.  Psychological research that explain how emerging adults manage the transition, and how relationships within the family and with other support this transition, will also be explored.  Finally, some of the issues that are currently affecting how your generation will become adults will be investigated.
In this unit, the conjugal couple relationships of Canadians, including marriage and alternatve relationships, will be examined. To determine the role that marriage and other couple relationships play in Canadian society, the history of marriage and couple relationships will be traced first.  Then, the diversity of conjugal relationships will be determined.  Next, the psychology of attraction, courtship, mate selection, and the factors that contribute to satisfying relationships for men and women will be examined.  Finally, several specific topics that are influencing the formation and development of marriage and other couple relationships will be explored.
In this unit, expanding families will be explore through an analysis of related theories and research.  The history of childbearing, socialization in parent-child relationships, and the roles of children and parents in Canada will be traced.  The trends in Canada today will be evaluated, including a look at childbearing in Canada today.  The role of parent-child relationships in individual and family development will be examined.  The parental and caregiver role expectations will be explored, including the division of responsibility for child rearing and socialization.  Finally, issues that have had an impact on expanding families can be selected for in-depth study.
In this unit, the lives of individuals in middle and late adulthood, and their families, will be examined first.  First, adulthood and aging will be traced from a historical and an ethnocultural perspective.  To determine the role that adults of all ages play in Canadian society, the age transitions of adulthood, midlife, retirement, and old age will be outlined from a sociological and demographic perspective.  Next, the psychology of aging, and the factors that contribute to satisfaction at each stage of life for men and women, will be examined.  Finally, you will be able to select for in-depth study specific issues related to the development of an individual in Canadian society.

Teaching/Learning Strategies

  • Research project
  • Independent study
  • Oral Presentations
  • Debate
  • Case summary
  • Presentation
  • Graphic Organizers
  • Computer-Mediated Instruction
  • Lectures
  • Discussions
  • Reading
  • Pair Work
  • Role Play
  • Brainstorming
  • Group work

Unit Organization

Assessment Strategies

For Learning As Learning Of Learning
  • Diagnostic assessment
  • Debate
  • Classroom discussion
  • Role play
  • Reading aloud
  • Researching
  • Classroom discussion
  • Debate
  • Unit test
  • Research paper
  • Group Project
  • Presentations
  • Role play
  • Debate

Evaluation Strategies

Evaluation focuses on student’s achievement of the overall Expectations. Evaluation is basically collected from; observations, conversations, and student products.

Student Products include: tests, exams, rich performance tasks, projects, presentations and /or essays. Students submitting assignments that involved group work will be evaluated individually.

Before making a decision about a student’s final grade, the teacher will consider all the collected evidence of student products. The teacher will also consider that some evidence carries more weight than other evidence.

Achievement Level Percentage Mark Range
4+ 95-100
4 87-94
4- 80-86
3+ 77-79
3 73-76
3- 70-72
Achievement Level Percentage Mark Range
2+ 67-69
2 63-66
2- 60-62
1+ 57-59
1 53-56
1- 50-52

The final grade will be determines as follows:

  • 70% Seventy percent of the grade will be based on evaluation conducted throughout the course.
  • 30% Thirty per cent of the grade will be based on a final evaluation and the summative administered at or towards the end of the course.

Evaluation/Assessment Plan

Unit Unit Title Approx. Duration KICA % Application
Unit 1 All in the Family 20 hours 25/25/25/25
Unit 2 Emerging Adulthood 20 hours 25/25/25/25
Unit 3 Couple Relationships 20 hours 25/25/25/25
Unit 4 Expanding Families 20 hours 25/25/25/25
Unit 5 Middle and Later Life 20 hours 25/25/25/25
Culminating Activities (ISU and Final Exam) 10 hours 25/25/25/25
   TOTAL   110 hours


Holloway, M. Garth Holloway and Jane Witte. (2010). Individuals and Families: Diverse Perspectives. Toronto: McGraw-Hill.

Program Planning Considerations

This course will include a variety of instructional strategies to help students become independent, strategic and successful learners.  The key to student success is effective, accessible instruction in order to empower students to become lifelong learners. Students will be required to identify the main concepts and skills of the course, consider the context in which they will apply their learning and work toward meeting the stated learning goals.
During this course, the teacher will provide multiple opportunities for students to apply their knowledge and skills and consolidate and reflect upon their learning. It is the student's responsibility to make the most of each learning opportunity provided and grow in their understanding and application of learning skills and strategies that will ensure success in this course and in life beyond.
In planning this course for students with linguistic backgrounds other than English, the teacher will create a safe, supportive, and welcoming environment that nurtures the students’ self-confidence while they are receiving course instruction. Most English language learners who have developed oral proficiency in everyday English will nevertheless require instructional scaffolding to meet curriculum expectations.  The teacher will adapt the instructional program in order to facilitate the success of these students in their classes.
Appropriate adaptations and strategies for this course will include:
  • Modelling of expectations
  • Reference to and use of online ESL and subject-specific and dictionaries
  • Concrete examples and materials whenever possible
  • Use of a variety of learning resources including visual material and cues, , graphic organizers and visual
  • Materials that reflect cultural diversity
  • Pre-writing strategies
  • Previewing course readings / texts
When at all possible, this course will include opportunities to integrate environmental education into the material studied, encouraging the students to explore a range of environmental concerns using issue-based analysis and some of the following strategies:
  • Community Connections
  • Environmental Perspective
  • Simulation
  • Problem Solving
  • Surveys
  • Co-operative Learning
  • Inquiry-based learning
  • Cross-curricular connections
When appropriate, the students will have opportunities to analyse the environmental impact of the concepts being studied, such as the impact of Canadian and international political policies, Canadian and international laws, cultural and social differences, human rights legislation and the protection and stewardship of the Earth.
Every student is entitled to learn in a safe, respectful and caring environment, free from violence, discrimination and harassment. Antidiscrimination education encourages all students to:
  • think critically about themselves and others in the world around them in order to promote fairness, healthy relationships, and active responsible citizenship.
  • work to high standards, as it affirms the worth of all students, and helps students strengthen their sense of identity and develop a positive self-image.
  • value and show respect for diversity.
The course content will use the following strategies to help create a healthy learning environment for all students.
  • Developing a learning environment where all students feel safe
  • Promotion of diversity and inclusivity in the classroom
  • Getting students involved within their school community
  • Making community connections
  • Peer tutoring
  • Role playing
  • Group discussion
  • Case Study analysis
Classes taught within the Ontario curriculum seek to create an atmosphere of equity and inclusion based on respecting diversity, promoting inclusive education, and identifying and eliminating discriminatory biases, systemic barriers, and power dynamics that limit the ability of students to learn, grow, and contribute to society.
The Ontario curriculum entrusts educators to create an environment based on the principles of inclusive education, where all students, parents, caregivers, and other members of the school community – regardless of ancestry, culture, ethnicity, sex, physical or intellectual ability, race, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, or other similar factors – are welcomed, included, treated fairly, and respected.
During this course, the teacher will give students a variety of opportunities to learn about diversity and diverse perspectives.
Teachers provide varied opportunities for students to learn about ethical issues and to explore the role of ethics in decision making.  The teacher will support and encourage students to make ethical judgements when evaluating evidence and positions on various issues, and when drawing their own conclusions about issues, advancements, and global events.
During this course the teacher will provide support and oversight to students throughout the inquiry process, ensuring that students engaged in inquiry-based activities are aware of potential ethical concerns and address them in a respectful manner. If students are conducting surveys and/or interviews, teachers will supervise student activities to ensure that they respect the dignity, privacy, and confidentiality of their participants.
The teacher will thoroughly address the issue of plagiarism with students.  Students will be reminded of the ethical issues surrounding plagiarism, and the consequences of plagiarism will be clearly discussed before students engage in an inquiry.
The following strategies will be used to develop students’ understanding of ethics:
  • Making community connections
  • Peer tutoring
  • Role playing
  • Group discussions
  • Case study analysis
  • Simulation
  • Problem solving
  • Cross-curricular connections
  • Media connections
  • Surveys and interviews
  • Model ethical behavior
  • Explore ethical standards
  • Explore ethical concerns
  • Inclusive practices
  • Foster positive relationships with others
  • Assist students in developing an understanding of ethical judgments
  • Assist students in understanding confidentiality standards
There is a growing recognition that the education system has a vital role to play in preparing young people to take their place as informed, engaged, and knowledgeable citizens in the global economy. Financial literacy education can provide the preparation Ontario students need to make informed decisions and choices in a complex and fast-changing financial world.
Because making informed decisions about economic and financial matters has become an increasingly complex undertaking in the modern world, where appropriate, the teacher will give students the opportunity to build knowledge and skills through a variety of activities in problem solving, inquiry, decision making, critical thinking, and critical literacy related to financial issues. Students will come to understand the social, environmental, and ethical implications of their own choices as consumers.  Strategies that will be used will include:
  • Community connections
  • Simulation
  • Problem Solving
  • Inquiry-based learning
  • Cross-curricular connections
  • Issue-based analysis
  • Critical literacy skills
  • Setting financial goals
  • Developing intra-personal skills
Literacy involves a range of critical-thinking skills and is essential for cross-curricular learning. It is the responsibility of all of our teachers to explicitly teach literacy and inquiry skills. Literacy, mathematical literacy, and inquiry/research skills are critical to students’ success in all subjects of the curriculum and in all areas of their lives.  Students will be exposed to literacy skills relating to oral, written, and visual communication.  The following skills will be developed in this course:
  • Reading, interpreting, and analysing various texts, including diaries, letters, government legislation and policy documents, interviews, speeches, information from non-governmental organizations, news stories, and fiction and non-fiction books
  • Extracting information
  • Analysing various types of maps and digital representations, including charts, diagrams, pictures, etc.
  • Using appropriate and correct terminology, including that related to the concepts of disciplinary thinking
  • Making community connections
  • Peer tutoring
  • Role playing
  • Group discussions
  • Case study analysis
  • Simulation
  • Problem solving
  • Cross-curricular connections
  • Media connections
  • Kinesthetic opportunities
  • Foster use of proper terminology
  • Inquiry and research skills
  • Help students to develop a language for literacy, inquiry and numeracy skills
  • Assist students with developing communication skills in areas of literacy, inquiry and numeracy
Central to successful education is the focus on experiential learning.  Planned learning experiences in the community, including job shadowing and job twinning, field trips, work experience, hands-on experiences and cooperative education, will provide our students with opportunities to see the relevance of their classroom learning in a work setting, make connections between school and work, and explore a career of interest as they plan their pathways through secondary school and make postsecondary plans.  Planned learning experiences in this course will include:
  • Experiential Learning: Library visits, Guest Speaker, Role Playing, mock trials, writing anthology, author visits, writers reading, theatre workshops
As part of every course, students must be made aware that health and safety in the classroom are the responsibility of all participants – at home, at school, and in the workplace. Teachers will model safe practices at all times and communicate safety requirements to students.  Health and safety issues not usually associated with a particular course may be important when the learning involves field trips and field studies. Teachers will preview and plan these activities carefully to ensure students’ health and safety.
Although Sophio Academy does not have an official school library, students are encouraged to use e-books, local libraries, and archives to develop important research and inquiry skills.
Sophio Academy maintains and expects a high standard of academic honesty from all of its students as a vital and essential part of their character growth, academic practice and in preparation for their post-secondary studies. Students are expected to properly reference and cite the work of others in their course work and assignments using the proper recognized MLA formatting. As plagiarism is a serious offence that can have significant consequences, Sophio Academy is committed to instilling the values of honesty and hard work within our students which involves the proper acknowledgement of other's ideas and work.