General feature of the Canada

General information (status, population, ethnic composition, religion). Origin of the name Canada. The monarchy, federal government. The parliamentary system. Political development. Making, people, education, history of Canada. Provinces and territories.

Рубрика География и экономическая география
Вид реферат
Язык английский
Дата добавления 06.05.2009
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Министерство образования Украины

профиль: гуманитарный

предмет: английский язык

General feature of the Canada

ученицы 11-А класса

многопрофильного лицея №62

Балацко Яны.

Руководитель: Панько Ирина Анатольевна

г. Запорожье - 2005 г.


1. General Information

2. Origin of the Name Canada

3. The Monarchy

4. The Federal Government

5. The parliamentary System

6. Political Development

7. Making of Canada

8. People of Canada

9. Education in Canada

10. History of Canada

11. Provinces and Territories of Canada

12. Territories

1. General Information

Official name. Canada.

Status. An independent federative state, a member of the Commonwealth, headed by the Queen of GB.

Area. 9,976,000 sq. km (3,851,790 sq. mi).

Population. 30, 1 mln

Nationality. Canadian.

Ethnic composition.

" About 40% are people of British origin.

" 30% are people of French origin.

" 1% is Indians and Eskimos.

" European minorities (Irish, German, Ukrainian, Scandinavian, Italian, Dutch, Polish).

The "Open Door" policy of immigration which began in the 1890s has meant that Canada's population is varied.

Language. English, French are both official languages. 20% of the population speak only French, while 13% speak both French and English.

Religion. Roman Catholics 46%, Protestants 41%.

Education. Literacy: 99%.

Canada has about 50 universities. Among them are:

- New Brunswick (Fredericton, 1785),

- Dalhousie (Halifax, 1818),

- McGill (Montreal, 1821),

- Toronto (1827),

- Laval (Quebec, 1852) - French language university,

- Montreal (1876) - French Language University.

Capital. Ottawa (920,800).

Currency. Dollar.


" Is situated in the north of North America continent.

" Is the 2nd world's largest country.

" Is bordered by the USA.

" Its only neighbor is the USA.

" Is washed by the Arctic Ocean in the North, by the Atlantic Ocean in the East, by the Pacific Ocean in the West.

" Is about 7,730 km from east to west.

" Shares with the USA 7 of the world's largest lakes.

" Contains 3 of the globe's longest 20 rivers.

" Is blessed with the freshest water of any country.


Canada can be divided into 7 geographic regions:

1. The Appalachian Region, the far eastern area (Newfoundland, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, the part of Quebec south of the St. Lawrence River), is hilly and wooded.

2. The St. Lawrence - Great Lakes Lowland (between Quebec City and Windsor, Ontario) includes most of the country's large cities and towns. Half (1/2) of Canada's people live here.

3. The Hudson Bay and Arctic Lowlands. This land is mainly flat, bog, little inhabited.

4. The Canadian Shield (Precambrian) formed 2,5 billion years ago (northern Manitoba, Quebec, Ontario, across Labrador to the northern edge of Alberta) is an ancient, rocky region with rivers, lake-filled timberland. It's rugged, cool and little developed.

5. The Great Plains (Manitoba, Saskatchewan, parts of Alberta) is a huge, flat region responsible for Canada's wheat crop.

6. Western Cordillera Region (British Columbia, the Yukon, parts of Alberta) combines the Rocky Mountains, the Coast Mountains, the Selkirk's, Mount Logan (19,850 feet). Mountains dominate this region.

7. The Arctic Region is in the far north.

Rivers: - the St. Lawrence

- the Mackenzie

- the Saskatchewan

- the Columbia

- the Yukon.

Climate. Temperate, varies from freezing winter cold to blistering summer heat.

" The warmest area of Canada is along the US border.

" The warmest areas with the longest summers and the shortest winters are British Columbia's South, central coast, southern Ontario around the Niagara Peninsula.

" July and August temperatures are + 20є Cs and few days + 30єCs.

" The hottest summer temperature and the most sunshine is in Manitoba.

" The east and west coasts are wet.

" The prairies are dry.

" Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto can be humid in summer and damp in winter.

" Nights are cool all year round.

" January temperature is - 18є Cs.

" The further north the more snow.

Vegetation (flora).

There are 8 vegetation zones:

1. The Arctic tundra.

2. The boreal forest.

3. The Great Lakes - St. Lawrence River forest zone.

4. The Acadian forest.

5. The parkland zone.

6. Prairie grasslands.

7. The Rocky Mountain forest.

8. The Pacific Coast forest.

The sugar maple is one of Canada's best known symbols and the leaf appears on the country's flag. The sugar maples also produce edible maple syrup.

Wildlife (fauna).

Canada has abundant wildlife:

1. Bears (grizzly bear, brown bear, black bear, polar bear).

2. Beaver (a symbol, they say "as busy as a beaver").

3. Buffalo / bison.

4. Wolf.

5. Coyote.

6. Deer (moose, caribou, elk).

7. Rocky Mountain goat.

8. Lynx (a grey cat 90 cm long).

9. Skunk.

10. Birds.

11. Fish.

Canada is a constitutional monarchy, a federal state and parliamentary democracy with two official languages and two systems of law: civil law and common law. In 1982, the Charter of Rights and Freedoms was entrenched in the Canadian Constitution. Canada's Constitution was initially a British statute, the British North America Act, 1867, and until 1982, major amendments required action by the British Parliament. Since 1982 when the Constitution was "patriated" - that is, when Canadians obtained the right to amend all parts of the Constitution in Canada - this founding statute has been known as the Constitution Act, 1867-1982.

2. Origin of the Name Canada

In 1535, two Indian Youths told Jacques Cartier about the route to "kanata" They were referring to the village of Stadacona; "kanata" was simply the Huron-Iroquois word for "village" or "settlement." But for want of another name, Cartier used "Canada" to refer not only to Stadacona (the site of present day Quebec City), but also to the entire area subject to its chief, Donnacona. The name was soon applied to a much larger area: maps in 1547 designated everything north of the St. Lawrence River as "Canada."

Cartier also called the St. Lawrence River the "Riviera de Canada", a name used until the early 1600s. By 1616, although the entire region was known as New France, the area along the great river of Canada and the Gulf of St. Lawrence was still called Canada.

Soon explorers and fur traders opened up territory to the west and to the south and the area depicted as "Canada" grew. In the early 1700s, the name referred to all lands in what is now the American Midwest and as far south as the present day Louisiana.

The first use of "Canada" as an official name came in 1791 when the Province of Quebec was divided into the colonies of Upper and Lower Canada. In 1841, the two Canada's were again united under one name, the Province of Canada. At the time of Confederation, the new country assumed the name of Canada.

The National Anthem of Canada

O Canada!

Our home and native land

True patriot love in all

thy sons command.

With glowing hearts

we see thee rise,

the True North

strong and free!

From far and wide,

O Canada,

we stand on guard

for thee.

God keep our land

glorious and free!

O Canada, we stand

on guard for thee.

O Canada, we stand

on guard for thee.

3. The Monarchy

From the days of French colonization and British rule to today's self-government, Canadians have lived under a monarchy. Although Canada has been a self-governing "Dominion" in the British Empire since 1867, full independence for Canada, as for all British colonies, was established only in 1931 by the Statute of Westminster.

Elizabeth II, Queen of England, is also Canada's Queen and sovereign of a number of realms. In her capacity as Queen of Canada, she delegates her powers to a Canadian Governor General. Canada is thus a constitutional monarchy: the Queen rules but does not govern.

4. The Federal Government

Canada's 33 "Fathers of Confederation" adopted a federal form of government in 1867. A federal state is one that brings together a number of different political communities under a common government for common purposes and separate regional governments for the particular needs of each region.

In Canada, the responsibilities of the federal Parliament include national defense, interprovincial and international trade and commerce, the banking and monetary system, criminal law and fisheries. The courts have also awarded to the federal Parliament such powers as aeronautics, shipping, railways, telecommunications and atomic energy.

The provincial legislatures are responsible for such matters as education, property and civil rights, the administration of justice, the hospital system, natural resources within their borders, social security, health and municipal institutions.

5. The Parliamentary System

The roots of Canada's parliamentary system lie in Britain. In keeping with traditions handed down by the British Parliament, the Canadian Parliament is composed of the Queen (who is represented in Canada by the Governor General), the Senate and the House of Commons.

The Senate, also called the Upper House, is patterned after the British House of Lords. Its 104 members are appointed, not elected, and are divided essentially among Canada's four main regions of Ontario, Quebec, the West and the Atlantic Provinces. The Senate has the same powers as the House of Commons, with a few exceptions.

The House of Commons is the major law-making body. It currently has 301 members, one from each of the 301 constituencies or electoral districts. The Canadian Constitution requires the election of a new House of Commons at least every five years. As in the United Kingdom and the United States, in Canada voters elect a single member for their electoral constituency, in one round of balloting.

In each constituency, the candidate who gets the largest number of votes is elected, even if his or her vote is less than half the total. Candidates usually represent a recognized political party - although some run as independents - and the party that wins the largest number of seats ordinarily forms the government. Its leader is asked by the Governor General to become Prime Minister.

The real executive authority is in the hands of the Cabinet, under the direction of the Prime Minister. In general, the Prime Minister is the leader of the party with the largest number of seats in the House of Commons and is vested with extensive powers. It is the Prime Minister who chooses the ministers from among the members of Parliament in the governing party.

Strictly speaking, the Prime Minister and Cabinet are the advisers of the monarch. "De facto" power, however, lies with the Cabinet, and the Governor General acts on its advice. Cabinet develops government policy and is responsible to the House of Commons. The Government of Canada, headed by its Cabinet of some 25 ministers, performs its duties through the intermediary of the federal departments and agencies, boards, commissions and state-owned corporations.

6. Political Development

Canada, which had been a self-governing colony in 1867, rose to the status of an independent state after its participation in World War I and achieved "de jure" independence with the Statute of Westminster in 1931. The Constitution of 1867 had one serious flaw: it contained no general formula for constitutional amendment. It was necessary to address the British Parliament in London each time the founding statute needed change.

An amending formula should have been included in the Constitution at the time of the coming into force of the Statute of Westminster in 1931, but it was not until November 1981, after numerous attempts, that the federal government and the provinces (except Quebec) agreed to the amending formula that is now part of the Constitution Act, 1982. Since that time, all parts of the Constitution can be amended only in Canada.

7. Making of Canada

John Cabot, an Italian sea captain in the pay of the British, discovered Canada in 149, five years after Columbus discovered America. He planted a huge cross on the shore and sailed home, with the news that he had reached north east China, the land of the Great Khan, and that the sea was full of fish.

In 1534, the French explorer, Jacques Cartier, sailed right down the St.Lawrence River until he could go no further. Among the great forests along the shore he met Indians who welcomed him, but in return he kidnapped some of their chiefs. He was the first European to treat the Indians with cruelty and treachery. It was almost another hundred years before French colonists settled on the banks of the St Lawrence and founded Quebec. They were sent there to give food and shelter to the French fur traders, who were carrying on a profitable trade with the Indians.

By the middle of the 18th century, the French in North America realized that they could not avoid a fight to the death with the British and their American colonists, but back in France the French king, Louis XV, was too busy with his wars with Prussia to bother much about what was going on in the 'Land of Ice and Snow'. So the French troops in Canada did not receive the supplies they needed so badly, and the few ships that did try to get through were usually captured by British warships.

Yet this colonial war ended in a famous battle. The British surprised the French by climbing the cliffs at Quebec in the middle of the night. After their defeat, the French were forced to give up each inch of land in North America. But the British allowed the French colonists, all 60,000 of them, to stay on, and they did no try to change the French way of life or their religion. The French were all Catholics. But the British warned them that Louis XV of France was no longer their King. Their King, from now on, would be King George III of England.

At that time there were very few British colonists in Canada. The first British settlers in Canada were American refugees who refused to fight against the British army in the Revolutionary War, because they felt they were more British than American. They called themselves Loyalists, but their fellow Americans accused them of being traitors and took away their possessions. 80,000 Loyalists helped the British to defend Canada against Americans during the Revolutionary War.

During the first half of the nineteenth century one million immigrants, mostly British, settled in Canada, but there were hardly any French immigrants from France. However, the French Canadians' birth rate was high, so that in just over two centuries the French Canadian population increased from 60,000 to 6 million.

Canada spread from Atlantic right across the prairies and the Rocky Mountains to British Columbia; and northwards to the bare but beautiful Yukon and the ice-covered islands of the Arctic. The pioneer farmers found that the black earth of the Prairie Provinces could grow some of the finest grain in the world. The tracks of the Canadian Pacific Railway pushed to westwards through Indian lands. To protect their land the Indians made fierce attacks on the railway-builders and the farmers.

Canada moved slowly towards self-rule during the second half of the nineteenth century. A federation of the provinces was formed from Nova Scotia on the Atlantic coast to British Columbia on the far side of the Rockies. In 1936 Canada became a Dominion (a self-governing nation) within the British Commonwealth and Empire. The Dominions of Canada, New Zealand and South Africa went to war alongside Britain in 1918 and again in 1939.

8. People of Canada

Canada is a good example of the way peoples of different ways of life and different languages can live side by side under one government. The population of Canada has risen from 11,5 million in 1941 to 25 million in 1980. Most of the newcomers are from Europe, Asia and the USA, so that today less than 44% of Canada's population is of British origin. Quebec Province is still 90% French. There are some groups of French Canadians in Ontario and Manitoba, but the numbers are quite small.

There are many Indians, Pakistanis and Chinese, and also blacks from the USA, among the immigrants who are pouring into Canada now. Some Canadians are afraid that before long Canada will have colored citizens that white. Other Canadians are disturbed by the growing racism in their country. Canada, like so many countries, has only just begun to treat her own non-white citizens, Eskimos (or Inuit) and the Indians, as generously as they deserve. The Indian and Eskimo populations have grown quite a lot in the last few years. The government is at last realizing that it has a duty towards this people that it has neglected for so long.

All Canadian children have to learn both French and English at school, but Francophone's and Anglophones do not enjoy learning each other's language. Still, most Quebecois middle class families, living in Montreal are bilingual - they speak English and French equally well.

Until the Second World War, every Canadian province except Quebec was overwhelmingly British. Some Canadians were more patriotic than the British themselves and were really angry if anyone walked out of a cinema while 'God Save the King' was being played. Now Canadians think of themselves as a people in their own right, not tied to either Britain or the USA. The USA has not been a threat to Canada for almost two hundred years. In fact, the 6,416 km US-Canadian frontier is the longest continuous frontier in the world, has no wire fence, no soldiers, no guns on either side. It is called 'The Border'.

9. Education in Canada

Pushkin Private School, named after A.S. Pushkin provides a curriculum above and beyond the guidelines of the Ontario Ministry of Education and Training. Pushkin Private School motto is "The Sky is the Limit".

A very broad range of subjects is offered at the school, including English, French, Spanish, Russian, Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Computers, Music, Art, Business Studies, History, Tae Kwon Do, and Billiards. Each course is specially designed to meet the highest academic standards.

Beyond the academic expectations placed on students, an atmosphere is provided, which encourages the development of personal and social skills critical for future success. When students graduate they will be equipped to meet the challenges they will face in university and in the rest of their lives.

The Main Goals of the School:

1) Provide students with a learning environment second to none;

2) Give students the opportunity to develop a well rounded education;

3) Make courses and activities challenging for all students;

4) Place considerable emphasis on essential skills such as: study skills, problem solving, professional writing and debating in a number of languages and creativity;

5) Prepare students for the rigors of university and beyond;

6) Constantly improve the school's ability to meet the needs of current and future students;

7) Provide new areas of study when education advancements warrant them.

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