Izzie: The Christmas That Almost Wasn't
Set in 1941, Izzie: The Christmas That Almost Wasn't is an excellent introduction to life on the Canadian home front during the Second World War. Because of rationing and other wartime restrictions, Izzie must be very creative in her preparations for a family Christmas party. When a party of shipwrecked sailors arrives at the party, among them a German, she also learns that the "enemy" is not as fearsome as she might once have thought.
Discuss why rationing was necessary during the Second World War. Why were people only allowed to purchase small amounts of foods such as sugar, meat and butter? Why were there restrictions on how much gasoline they could buy? Ask the children to consider what life would be like for them if food and gasoline were rationed. How would it affect their lives?
To learn about the Battle of the Atlantic, visit the online exhibit at the Department of Veteran's Affairs. This was the long battle in which Allied naval forces, attempting to escort merchant ships across the Atlantic ocean to Britain, were constantly attacked by U-boats, or submarines, from the German navy. More than three thousand Canadian sailors and merchant mariners died during the Battle of the Atlantic.