The DaVinci Program

We had another visit by another school group this week. The John F. Ross Secondary School in Guelph, Ontario arrived with 21 students (12 females and 9 males) from an 11th grade course they call the DaVinci Program.

It seemed to us that it was a rather forward thinking program devised undoubtedly, by some forward thinking pedagogues. We are not certain of the details of the program but it seems to be a cultural experience combining both Arts and Sciences.

They first had a tour of the Bata Shoe Museum then attended a University of Toronto Hart House production of the Shakespearean tragedy “Macbeth”.

Their whirlwind (2 day, 1 night) tour of our city ended with a visit to the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair an annual event held at Exhibition Place on Toronto’s waterfront. The “Royal” is the world’s largest combined indoor agricultural show and international equestrian competition.

Guelph is a neighbouring city with a University renowned for its’ Agricultural and Veterinary schools. One student from John F. Ross H.S. avers that the Royal Winter Fair was formerly held in Guelph.

We couldn’t confirm that bit of trivia; however, if it is true, it would have to have been prior to 1922 when the fair was first held in Toronto. Nonetheless, it is possible given the Guelph connection with Agricultural studies.

As close as we were able to ascertain, there was a heated debate (and considerable animus) between Hamilton, Ontario (located near Guelph) and Toronto over hosting of the initial event.

Anyhow, we sincerely hope that the John F. Ross students return to our hostel next year because the students were extremely polite, well-behaved and a pleasure to host.
the Davinci Program - Canadiana Backpackers Youth Hostel Downtown Toronto

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