We’re asking Canadians of note to share the message of active and knowledge-based citizenship by taking the Citizenship Challenge and making their results public. Think you can do better? Take the Challenge!
"Don't you think it's kind of a thrill when you get something wrong on a history quiz? If you're a voracious learner, it means there's another avenue for you to explore, and next time you'll come back and you won't be guessing, you'll know. If we all got 100% all the time, it would be a bore. There is so much to Canadian history, there is always going to be someone's story you have never heard, that may move your heart and mind. Not that I don't like getting a good chunk of the answers right, too. Bring it on!"
For the last eight years, cartoonist Kate Beaton has been delighting Canadians with her humorous, yet educational, take on Canadian historical figures and moments. Read her comics, including ones on Laura Secord and the invasion of Canada, at harkavagrant.com.
"Canada is Big Tent country, based on civic nationalism. I like that. Where ethnic nationalism can often be exclusionary and confrontational, Canadian nationalism tends to be inclusive and tolerant. Our mulligan's stew citizenship reflects that."
Will Ferguson is best known for his humorous observations on Canadian history and culture. One of Canada’s bestselling authors, Will Ferguson is the author of more than a dozen books, from travel guides, such Beauty Tips from Moose Jaw, to works of literary fiction like the Giller Prize winning 416. Find out more: willferguson.ca
“What a great quiz! It reminded me that there are so many dimensions to being a Canadian, including sport, music, a long history of diversity and (given some of the alternative answers) a sense of humour. I remember reading the Citizenship booklet when I first immigrated here, and immediately wanting to know more about this country.”
Charlotte Gray is the author of ten bestsellers about Canadian history, several of which have been adapted for the screen. Her latest book is The Promise of Canada: 150 Years — People and Ideas that Have Shaped Our Country. Check her out: www.charlottegray.ca
"I must say being born and raised in Canada, I've realized from this challenge how much more I need to learn about this great country we live in. The wealth of historical information is important to understand how far along we have come as a nation and what more we need to do to propel our country to its greatest potential." Follow Tiffany Ford on Twitter at @TiffanyFordTO
"I got a hundred!... but that first question about the time threw me because I didn't read the names very closely. I thought the first one said Sir Alexander Fleming... who I'm related to! But then I read more carefully and realized my oversight."
Jon Montgomery won the gold medal in Skeleton racing at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics in a tight race where he beat his opponent by 7/100th of a second. He has gone on to be the host of the Amazing Race Canada and an inspirational speaker. Follow him on Twitter at @jonmonty.
Arguably Canada’s most popular political blogger for publications like CBC and The Ottawa Citizen, Kady O’Malley has been covering the Hill for over a decade. With her blackberry always in hand, she is your go-to source for the latest news from Ottawa. Follow her on Twitter at @Kady.
“Much to my shock, I scored a perfect 10. Now admittedly, I guessed correctly on two of the questions. Having said that, just doing the quiz helped remind me of what I knew and taught me a couple of things I didn’t, so it was a worthwhile exercise.
I’ve spent 30 years working in public broadcasting, a very fortunate perch from which to engage Canadians in their citizenship. In fact, perhaps the best compliment ever paid to me happened one day while I was lining up at Queen’s Park to have my driver’s license renewed. A woman wearing a sari told me she had just moved to Canada, was advised to watch The Agenda because “it will make you a better citizen.” I thought, that’s exactly why we’re in business. It was music to my ears.” Follow him on Twitter at: @spaikin.
"I remember when my parents studied for their citizenship exam, it was my first lesson in Canadian history. Since then I've watched them grow into their lives as Canadian citizens, sharing the experience with my brothers and I along the way. It's important that we all recognize that with this privilege of citizenship comes the responsibility not only to defend the basic human values which lie at the heart of the Canadian spirit, but also to remain open to the possibilities of what Canada might and should become in the days ahead..." Follow him on Twitter at: @samrobertsband.
Daniel Thomson was born in Montreal, Quebec and comes from a long line of prominent Canadians, he himself can trace his Canadian lineage across fourteen generations. Some of his most notable ancestors and relatives include his fifth great grandfather Commodore Alexander Grant, a distinguished naval officer and politician. Daniel's third great grandfather Hugh C. Thomson was the Founder and Editor of the Upper Canada Herald and a member of the Legislative Assembly of Upper Canada. Other prominent family members include his third cousin twice removed Roy Thomson, Lord Thomson of Fleet, his first cousin once removed Farley Mowat, his great grandfather, John Agnew, was a member of the Legislative Assembly of Prince Edward Island and the first mayor of Alberton, Prince Edward Island, his fourth great grandfather Archibald Thomson, who along with Daniel's fourth great grand uncles David and Andrew Thomson, was a notable early citizen of York and the first settler of Scarborough, Ontario and his own grandfather, Arthur Thomson, was a prominent trombonist in the Montreal big band scene and played with the likes of Oscar Peterson and Maynard Ferguson. His father, Andy Thomson, had a distinguished career at the NFB, directing the oscar nominated documentary Blackwood on renowned printmaker David Blackwood and later produced the seminal documentary series The Canadians: Biographies of a Nation for History Television. Find out more: www.danielthomson.ca
"Active and engaged citizens are critically important to democracy. I had to think hard for a few of the quiz questions but I thought that overall the quiz did a good job of testing knowledge on a variety of important elements of Canadian history and culture."
The current mayor of Ottawa, Jim Watson has dedicated most of his career to public service, serving as a City Councillor, a Member of Provincial Parliament and Cabinet Minister since the 1990s. The beloved mayor is known for his active involvement and community service.