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The Chairmaker and the Boys

The Chairmaker and the Boys

| 20 min

This short fictional film evokes rural life in Cape Breton’s Margaree Valley, with its rich colours, bright sunshine, and crystal-clear streams. The film tells the story of a young boy and his grandfather, a carpenter with a hearing impairment. The young boy frolics joyfully in the rural landscape, but eventually he’ll need to learn a lesson from his grandfather about safety, responsibility, and maturity. The film features original music by Maurice Blackburn, one of Canada’s foremost composers.

  • producer
    Tim Wilson
  • executive producer
    Nicholas Balla
  • script
    Grant Crabtree
  • camera
    Grant Crabtree
  • sound
    Kathleen Shannon
  • editing
    Robert Russell
  • sound recording
    Ron Alexander
  • music
    Maurice Blackburn


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Ages 10 to 13

Geography - Human Geography
Geography - Natural Resources
Geography - Territory: Regional
Social Studies - Communities in Canada/World

Warnings: It is suggested that Grandfather spanks Duncan after he makes a poor decision.

While watching the film, take notes on the physical geography of this part of Cape Breton. Identify human impacts on the physical geography in this area by commenting on land settlement and possible industries of the area. Describe the relationship between Duncan and his grandfather. How is Duncan learning traditional skills from his grandfather? Contrast this mass production of items like chairs that would traditionally have been made in a millhouse.

The Chairmaker and the Boys
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