Shipping on the Seaway: A Unique Classroom Experience

What is Shipping on the Seaway?

"Shipping on the Seaway" is an educational resource designed for students from grades 7+ to learn about marine transportation on the St. Lawrence Seaway. Produced by the National Film Board and Dalhousie University, and hosted on the Ocean School platform, this engaging bilingual series of videos and curriculum-based activities explores the interconnectedness of marine shipping and its vital role in Canada.

The collection is brought to life through a mind-blowing 360-degree tour of a real Canadian vessel with insights into the challenges, diverse career paths, and operations of shipping professions. From navigating locks to exploring the use of biofuels, students will get a taste of what life is really like working onboard a 750 ft. ship.

Student activities totalling 10h45mins have been developed specially for classroom use, linked to various subjects and key concepts. Activity examples include:

  • Evaluate soy as a biofuel: Students learn more about soy production and biofuels, then complete a list of pros and cons of using biofuels on ships. The activity ends with a deep reflection about how we can reduce our reliance on fossil fuels.
  • Evaluate a job advertisement: Students learn about the gender gap in the maritime industry, and reflect about how the industry can attract more women. Then they are challenged to critique two job advertisements and decide which one is more inclusive.
  • Make a meal plan: Students create a detailed one-day meal plan that accommodates all the crew’s food preferences and dietary restrictions. Then they develop a detailed shopping list to purchase all the ingredients that they will need.
  • Write a sea shanty: Students research one or two different maritime careers. Then they write a sea shanty about one of the jobs they researched!
  • Design a better cargo ship: Students reflect on what a ship’s crew needs to be healthy and happy, and propose ways to change the design of a cargo ship to promote wellness among the crew.

With 43% of the marine workforce expected to retire in the next decade and an estimated 19,000 'on board jobs' to fill, Shipping on the Seaway aims to cultivate the next generation of marine professionals by strengthening their connection to Canada’s vital waterways.

High-paying and rewarding career opportunities to explore include (but aren't limited to!) ship captains, seafarers, marine engineers, and shoreside professionals.

Explore the Collection

How are soybean waste and commercial shipping related? Shipping relies on fossil fuels, which contribute to carbon emissions and global warming. Meet Yousef El Bagoury, a senior naval architect and technical lead for CSL's biofuels program. Learn how soybean waste has the potential to reduce carbon emissions from ships!

Meet Anita Lambe, captain of the CSL St-Laurent. As captain of a Trillium Class cargo ship, Anita oversees everything on board, from cargo operations to safe navigation and supply management. Discover how Anita and her crew navigate unpredictable weather and the super narrow passages of the St. Lawrence Seaway!

Get a taste for life at sea as Cheryl Wyllie, chief cook on the CSL St-Laurent, shares her daily routine. Discover Cheryl’s passion for dessert and excitement for new recipes while enjoying the ever-changing views from her porthole in the galley.
Meet Federico Gabriel Kell, third officer on board the CSL St-Laurent, and learn about his responsibilities on the boat. Along the way, listen in on Federico’s journey, from studying natural sciences to finding his calling in the maritime industry.
Sail with cadet Thierry Seguin on board the CSL St-Laurent, while he learns the trade of transporting grain and navigating through challenging currents. Find out how Thierry decided to become a cadet and travel the world!
Take a 360-degree tour of a Trillium Class cargo ship with Francis Lavoie, the first officer of the CSL St-Laurent. Explore the ship’s cargo holds, navigation bridge, crew areas, and engine room, and get a glimpse of life at sea!
Join Alexandra Couture, a controller at the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation, where she directs vessel traffic, lifts bridges, and operates the locks! Learn about her career path, the skills she needs, and the challenges a controller faces.
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