Learning Ensemble Components – The List
Learning Ensemble has over 80 components, each curated in a unit, and located in a thematic module. This annotated list of the main Learning Ensemble components, linked to the components themselves, allows instructors to quickly review the rich experiential learning objects that are the heart of Learning Ensemble’s educational experience. Additional images, art, documents, and audio and video clips can be found at the unit level.
Stigma and Discrimination Module
1940s Mental Health Radio Plays Unit
Two reenacted vintage CBC radio plays from Canada’s first public mental health campaign that demonstrate how notions of normal shift across time and place, and are more often shaped by professional expertise than lived experience of difference.
From Stigma to Action Unit
Frontline stories of marginalization, discrimination, and nascent activism in Toronto’s deinstitutionalization era from writer and activist Pat Capponi’s, author of the 1992 autobiography “Upstairs in the Crazy House.”
What If? Unit
A short satirical essay contrasting attitudes toward cancer patients and mental health patients. Written by a Learning Ensemble community expert Lanny Beckman.
Us and Them Unit
A reflection on the distance between the patient and the practitioner. Written by a Learning Ensemble community expert Lanny Beckman.
Making Change Module
MPA: The Inmates Utopia Unit
A documentary about the Utopian MPA, a radical mental patients’ organization that formed in Vancouver in the early 1970s
Making Madness Political Unit
A virtual scrapbook by David Reville – a patient turned activist, politician and educator
The Toronto Scene Unit
A 15 minute video about Toronto’s mental health activists, highlighting issues and personal stories
Go Nuts! Unit
A song that celebrates madness and autonomy by a Irit Shimrat, a former patient who rejects mainstream treatment models
Medicine and Power Module
The Doreen Befus Story Unit
Documents, audio commentaries, and a powerful personal story illuminating the history of sterilization in Canada
Ya’Ya Heit and Indigenous Mental Health Unit
Art and poetry expressing an Indigenous perspective on mental health and a context text explaining the link between colonialism, the Indian Act, and the messages expressed in this work
Mo-Vay’s Way Unit
A 5-minute puppet show on the importance of healing systems that treat the whole person. Created by Lori, a community expert.
The Psychiatric Gaze Unit
An autobiographical sculpture with a provocative title, created by two community experts with a sincere wish for healing partnerships in mental health
Question Man Unit
A 6-minute video depicting “Question Man”, the ultra ego of a patient struggling for a sense of self. Created by community expert Irit Shimrat.
A Living Room to Thousands Unit
An array of images and text introducing students to the world of Toronto’s PARC, born in 1980 as a drop-in offering basic services to former psychiatric patients, but recognized today as a “living room to thousands” and an important civic institution.
Because of Edmond Unit
Powerful audio clips, images and documents setting out the story of Edmond Yu, a chronicle of inadequate social supports and bad policing with a hopeful postscript – the creation of supportive housing for marginalized people.
Moyra Jones at Valleyview: Dementia Care Innovation Unit
Video footage – past and present – telling the surprising story of pioneering dementia care innovations at BC’s Valleyview Hospital in the late 1978s and 1980s.
Unity Housing Unit
A 10-minute documentary created by a Learning Ensemble community expert that explores the inner workings of Unity Housing, an innovative community housing run by and for service users.
Doing Well Through Art at Gallery Gachet Unit
A 10-minute video introducing Vancouver’s Gallery Gachet, an artist-run centre that works at the intersection between art, healing, and social justice.
Speaking to History: Mental Health Policy Unit
Historical documents and insider audio commentaries mapping out the development and ethos of community mental health in Canada
Designing Dementia Care Unit
Audio testimony, documents and researcher reflections on the difficult history of Greenacres, Ontario’s first purpose-built dementia care facility
Tools for Recovery Unit
One woman’s story of recovery from mental health difficulties, a contemporary account of community mental health by one of our expert colleagues
Past, Present and Future Unit
Three skits by project community experts that explore past, present, and desired future of our mental health system