Final Report

We thought it appropriate that we submit our final report in the form of film.  This, in 1 min 30 sec, represents our journey.





A huge thank you to SET-BC for providing Royal Bay Secondary with the opportunity to participate in the 2018-2019 Place-Based Synergy Project.

i. Description of the project – Food from Our Place was a collaborative partnership between Tanya Phillips (Teacher Librarian), Robin Ruff (Food Economics Teacher), with support from our Aboriginal Support Teacher (Lindsay Lockhart) and our Media Design Teacher (Jay Larson).  We had four Senior Food Studies classes work through this inquiry (2 each semester).  This was a blended model where the students cooked one week and worked on their inquiry project the alternating week for the entire semester.  Students explored food topics, reached out to community farms, interviewed, collected footage, researched, and created a film to tell their story.

Our goals:

1: Engage students with food produced from this place.

2: Connect with community

Our anticipated outcomes, were to create community partnerships, and have students engage in an inquiry around a topic that they were interested in, and create a film that told their story.

ii. The following is a synopsis of things we considered as the project proceeded:

  1. Clear guidelines, including timelines, prior to starting the project.
  2. Team building and scaffold skills for designating roles for each team member.  This would be to encourage equitable work loads and an opportunity for each team member to participate in all aspects of each project.
  3. Use the project as a vehicle for fostering the Curricular Competencies (design thinking) and Core Competencies.
  4. Provide opportunities for developing technical skills required for editing and capturing footage.  We did this in the form of short lessons called “Tech Talks”.

iii. A description of the main challenges:

KEEPING STUDENTS ON TASK! Once we got to the editing part, we found it difficult to keep all students in the group engaged as editing is often a one person job.  This left the other (2-4) students in the group unengaged and on their phones. To overcome this, we had some of these students work on the planning of the Food and Film Fest, but still struggled with engagement once we got to this point in the project (and school year).

SOUND for the films was another big challenge.  If we were to do this project again, I would look at a way to get some more advanced microphones to capture better sound quality.

iv. A description of the main successes of the project and what was achieved overall:

The culminating event, The Film and Food Fest has a huge success and allowed all stakeholders to share and celebrate the learning that had occurred during the project.  It was a perfect way to blend the films and prepare and serve the foods that they had learned about during the project.  I can’t stress enough the value of the preparation and act of presenting to an authentic audience.

v. Any recommendations or advice:

Being on a semestered system, we were fortunate to be able to go through this whole process twice.  The second semester projects were of higher quality as a result of knowing the importance of keeping a fairly rigid timeline, spending more time teaching some film editing skills and strategies when collecting footage, including capturing the best sound.  Our recommendation is to be sure to do the project a second time.  Additionally, Robin and I were able to enjoy the process more the second time as we were more comfortable with the whole process and were able to adjust the project, based on what we learned from the first semester.  And, as our film demonstrated – just jump into inquiry; you will be happy that you did!

Sample of Video Project

This video was created by Brody and Lauren.  Their inquiry question was “Why do people raise their own chickens?”.  This is their answer to that question.


Can you plant seeds in the fall?  And if so, what ones will do well on the west coast?

Digital Literacy

Due to our project having a heavy emphasis on acquiring knowledge from community members, our focus for digital literacy is centered around interview etiquette.  We worked with our students to compose emails, make cold calls, and schedule times to visit local farms.  In the communication, students were expected to have conversations with the people that they would be interviewing regarding filming and taking pictures; woven in this, considerations when interviewing our local Nations’ Elders.  We created a contract that students were expected to discuss with the interviewees, and if it was appropriate, we asked both the student and the interviewees to sign it.

Below, you will find a link to the document.

Interview Etiquette

We consulted a book, South-Western Vancouver Island Ethnography Primer by Dr. Allis Pakki Chipps-Sawyer for considerations when interviewing Elders.  I have included a summary of the main points in this blog post.

Things to consider as you prepare for going out into the community to acquire knowledge.

  • Desire: You must have a desire to learn.
  • Respect: You must have respect for those who are willing to tech you and what they teach; also, respect the environment in which you are visiting.
  • Curiosity: You will need to be curious in order to discover new things.
  • Determination: You will need to be really determined in order to learn what you wish to learn. (Chipps-Sawyer, 2014)







Chipps-Sawyer, A.P. (April 2014). South-Western Vancouver Island Ethnobotany

Ready, set, go….

A huge thank you to SET-BC for providing Royal Bay Secondary with the opportunity to participate in the 2018-2019 Place-Based Synergy Project.

With the support of SET-BC, we will be given the opportunity to utilize film making technologies, in a Foods 11/12 class, to provide curricular access and meaningfully include all students in our classroom environment.

Food In Our Backyard

Royal Bay Secondary is in its fourth year, build in the old gravel pit, and overlooking the Esquimalt Lagoon. We have over 1200 students grades 9-12. Our physical location makes this project so exciting as we are on the traditional territory of the Esquimalt Nation, in a booming urban landscape, and on the border of the vast farm lands of Metchosin; the perfect location for looking at food sustainability, local food sources and innovative ways of growing food in urban areas.

Goals: Embrace the journey and the learning by our team and our students throughout the project.

We are most excited about the “ah-ha moments” along the way.