The Lesson – The Netherlands – Canada Connection

Part 1: Background

Can be completed independently, or through a teacher-led lesson.

PRESENTATION: Background on the Netherlands – Canada Connection

Dowload Presentation

Part 2: The Tulips

The continued gift of tulips and the friendship that exists between the two countries is seen every year through the Canadian Tulip Festival.

VIDEO LINK: https://bit.ly/33EwtDe

The Canadian Tulip Festival

For the past 68 years the Canadian Tulip Festival preserves the memorable role of the Canadian troops in the liberation of the Netherlands and Europe.

PDF: History by the decades


Brainstorm the following questions with your class, either teacher-led or in groups.

  • Discuss how the tulip has become a symbol of freedom and friendship.
  • After studying the occupation and liberation of the Netherlands in the Second World War, what do you think “freedom” means to a soldier, a civilian, or Princess Juliana and her family?
  • Do you see any examples around you of freedom being lost?
  • What can you do to ensure the preservation of freedom in your own life?

Activity: Virtual Freedom Garden

Using the blank flower template provided, your class will create a freedom garden (either in hard copy-or digital) to be displayed in your classroom or school. Photos of your virtual freedom garden can be submitted to the Canadian Tulip Festival for posting on the Liberation75 website. Images may also be used at this year’s festival.

Ask the students to consider the following question:

  • What does freedom mean to you?

Then have them choose one question to answer in the tulip template. Consider decorating one leaf for Canada and one leaf for the Netherlands. Your school name can be added to the flower pot. Once they are all coloured and completed, display them on your wall, or create a digital garden by taking pictures of your tulips and sending them to us at info@tulipfestival.ca.


Extension Activities

Below are some suggested activities connected to the lesson.

  1. Contact your local Legion to inquire about displaying your virtual garden there. You can access a Branch locator at www.legion.ca.
  2. Invite veterans in to discuss their ideas about freedom with the class and complete their own tulips.
  3. Contact a local seniors home and ask residents to participate. The dialogue between students and seniors and their differing understandings of freedom could be enlightening.
  4. Display your freedom garden in a public area in your school.
  5. Invite your students to take templates home and have their parents, grandparents and neighbours fill them out. These could also be displayed in a central area of your school, or recorded digitally.