Lesson 6: Federal Courts


Activity 1: Canada’s Federal Courts

Handout 2: Supreme Court Review and Handout 3: Supreme Court Chart can be submitted for marks once students have completed them. The answer keys are located below.

Answer Key: Handout 2: Supreme Court Review

  1. In what year was the Supreme Court of Canada created?
    c. 1875
  2. Name the first woman appointed to the Supreme Court of Canada and the year she was appointed.
    a. Bertha Wilson, 1982
  3. How many applications for leave to appeal does the court receive each year?
    b. Between 550 and 650
  4. Approximately how many appeals does the Supreme Court hear each year?
    a. 80
  5. What is the minimum number of judges (quorum) required to hear an appeal?
    d. 5 
  6. Who is the current Chief Justice of Canada?
    b. Beverly McLachlin
  7. For many years the Court’s decisions could be appealed to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council in England, but this right was later abolished in criminal cases in 1933 and in all other cases in____.
    c. 1949
  8. The majority of appeals heard at the Supreme Court come from which of the following sources?
    a. Applications for leave to appeal
  9. The judges of the Supreme Court are appointed by?
    d. The Governor-in-Council
  10. A judge appointed to the Supreme Court of Canada can serve until mandatory retirement at what age?
    d. 75 years

Answer Key: Handout 3: Supreme Court Chart

Supreme Court Chart


  1. Chief Justice
  2. Court Attendants
  3. The Media
  4. The Public
  5. Counsel for The Appellants
  6. Counsel for The Respondents
  7. Law Clerks
  8. Court Attendants
  9. Registry Officer
  10. Puisne Judges

Activity 2: Citizenship Court

Handout 5: Would You Pass the Test? is not intended to be graded as a normal class quiz, but it does offer some review of concepts previously covered in the general course content of Social Studies 11. Use your professional judgment when considering how to assess student knowledge and participation in the quiz. The answer key is below.

Answer Key: Handout 5: Would You Pass the Test?

Aboriginal peoples

  1. What are the three main groups of Aboriginal peoples?
    a. Inuit, First Nations, Metis
  2. Which Aboriginal peoples make up more than half the population of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut?
     c. Inuit


  1. Where did the first European settlers in Canada come from?
    a. France
  2. When did settlers from France first establish communities on the St. Lawrence River?
    a. 17th century
  3. Which trade spread across Canada, making it important to the economy for over 300 years?
    b. Fur


  1. What is the Canadian Constitution?
    a. A document used to outline the powers of government.
  2. Which four provinces first formed Confederation and in what year?
    b. Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick -1867
  3. When is Canada Day and what does it celebrate?
    b. July 1st. It celebrates our nation’s birthday.

Rights and Responsibilities

  1. Name two fundamental freedoms protected by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
    c. Freedom of belief and freedom of speech.
  2. Name three responsibilities of citizenship.
    c. To obey the law, vote in elections, eliminate discrimination and racism.
  3. List three rights Canadian citizens have.
    a. Presumption of innocence, right to vote, right to preference for federal employment.


  1. What are the two official languages of Canada?
    a. English and French
  2. Which province has the most bilingual Canadians?
    a. Quebec


  1. What does the Canadian flag look like?
    a. A maple leaf
  2. Give the first two lines of Canada’s national anthem.
    a. O’ Canada our home and native land. True patriots love by all thy sons command.


  1. What is the population of Canada?
    a. 33,000,000
  2. What is the capital city of Canada?
    c. Ottawa