Education Heritage Museum

Tourism Region: Great Victoria

Our museum is a virtual museum that is freely available on line. The purpose is to make available educational artifacts for teachers, students, researchers, teachers, and other museum workers. The goal is to improve the teaching of educational history at the university level and to enhance existing education exhibits in other museums. The Education Heritage Museum hosts a small, rotating display of education artifacts in the main hallway of the University of Victoria MacLaurin building. However, the "whole" museum is to be found on the website so that anyone around the world can access it.



University of Victoria, MacLaurin Building, Room A568
Victoria, British Columbia
V8W 3N4

Telephone: 250-721-7776
Fax: 250-721-7598

Mailing Address: 
Education Heritage Museum
Department of Curriculum and Instruction, P.O. Box 3010 STN CSC, Victoria, British Columbia
V8W 3N4

Visit the Website
Email Us

Hours of Operation

Operations: Year Round

We offer lesson plans, texts, photos, and other resources all year round since they are all available on the web.

Open: The website operates year round 24/7. Staff can be contacted by e-mail and will respond between the hours of 8:00 and 6:00 Monday to Friday.

We are never really closed, since we're "on line." However, queries will only be answered Monday to Friday, 8:00 to 6:00, except during statutory holidays.

Administration fees

Admission: Free

About Collections

Collections are educational artifacts used in kindergarten to grade 12 schools in Canada from the mid-1800s to the 1980s. These include lesson plans, objects (posters, bells, ink bottles, fountain pens, desks, maps, etc.) as well as athletic clothing, photographs, school yearbooks, etc.

Approximate number of objects in the collections: 1700


as noted above

Electronic Records • Prints and Drawings • Manuscripts • Films and Videos • Photographs • Sound Recordings • Textual Records

Decorative Arts

We have materials for the teaching of art (such as paints, posters, lithographs, etc.)

Costumes • Furniture or Furnishings • Musical Instruments • Textiles or Tapestries

Fine Arts

We have materials that have been used to teach about cultures around the world, such as posters, records, sheet music, books

African • American • Asian • Australian • Canadian • Aboriginal or First Nations • Inuit • European • Central/South American

Other Period: From 1840s to 1980s

Painting • Photography • Prints and Drawings • Sketchbooks or Albums • Film and Video

Folk Art

Human History

Educational history - artifacts from classrooms and schools

Chemistry • Computing Technology • Costumes and Accessories • Fisheries • Forestry • Furniture or Furnishings • Imaging : Film : Photographs : Video • Manuscripts • Maps, Charts, Plans or Blueprints • Memorabilia • Musical Instruments • Oral History • Performing Arts • Physics, Mathematics or Metrology • Sports Equipment

Services & Activities

We offer free self-access to materials, lessons, photos, and images of objects used in teaching in Canada from the mid-1800s to the 1980s. We have interviews and film footage that we'd like to add to the site soon.

Research Services

We research the use of the materials to assist historians, teachers, and students.We also lend materials to schools and university researchers.

Archival Records • Conservation or Restoration • Library

Educational Programs

Professional Development

Visitor Services

n/a We are virtual

Other Guided Tours: n/a We are virtual

Volunteer Services

Volunteer Services Available • Volunteer Training Offered

Number of Volunteers: 2 (regular); unlimited drop in

Activities: Our volunteers consist of retired teachers who collect and catalogue donated artifacts. These are then passed on to our webmaster who photographs the images and uploads them to the virtual museum.

Member Privileges


Food Services

n/a We are virtual

Internet Services


Publications & Products

We are not yet at this point. However, we hope to soon be publishing Annual reports, and audio/ video materials.


Image highlighting the museum Education Heritage Museum

Wrought iron desk used in elementary schools during late 1800s. Note that desk is bolted to wooden slats as it was once bolted down in classroom indicating lack of mobility. This contrasts with mobile desks enabling small workgroups in today's classrooms. Note also ink well on desk.

© Donor: Judi and Patrick Warrington

Image highlighting the museum Education Heritage Museum

1910 - Midsummer - Urban High School Entrance Exam: Drawing

© Donor: Judi Warrington

Image highlighting the museum Education Heritage Museum

1920s Elementary School student slate used for writing

© Sharon Hope

Image highlighting the museum Education Heritage Museum

1921 Victoria Normal School - Teachers and Students

© Donor: Helen Smith

Image highlighting the museum Education Heritage Museum

Strap used by teachers to administer corporal punishment. Its use was abolished in British Columbia in 1973; in some provinces it was not abolished until the 1980s.

© Donor: Lillian Evans