Assignment: Latitude and Longitude / Search and Destroy

Grade 9: Academic/Applied Geography
Time Length: 30 to 40 min (based upon student understanding)

Curriculum Connections

Category: Geographic Inquiry and Communication.

Overall Expectations: Analyse and interpret data gathered in inquiries into the Geography of Canada, using a variety of methods and geo-technologies.

Specific Expectations: Interpretation and Analysis. Use different types of maps (eg: road, topographical, thematic) to interpret geographic relationships.

Necessary Pre-Assessment:

  1. Students should have knowledge about direction in terms of compass points.
  2. Students should have a detailed understanding of longitude and latitude and how to read coordinates and corresponding minutes.

NOTE: Students do not need to have prior knowledge about World War II nor the Battle of the Atlantic.

Materials needed:

  1. Enough assignment handouts for each student in the class.
  2. One teacher answer page that provides detail about whether ships/U-Boats were destroyed or not.
  3. One overhead copy of the assignment to be used to take-up answers with the class (if necessary).
  4. One overhead copy of the answer page to be used for marking purposes (if necessary)
  5. Students will need pencils and erasers (to label locations and correct errors as necessary)

Teacher Instructions:

  1. Handout the assignment sheet to each student in the class.
  2. At teacher discretion, students may work in partner if they wish.
  3. Students are to locate the ships and U-boats on the map to determine if they were sunk, or if they engaged and destroyed an enemy vessel.
  4. Students are to mark the location with a small X and write the name of the vessel or U-Boat.
  5. When complete, the teacher will collect this assignment and using the overhead, evaluate the activity.
  6. The corresponding answer page can be used to discuss with the students the fate of each vessel.


The Battle of the Atlantic was the longest and perhaps the most crucial campaign of the Second World War. Britain depended upon maritime trade and the approximately 3000 ocean-going merchant ships to supply the country with men, equipment and food, much of which came from Canada. Thus, the Canadian Navy and her fleet of HMCS (Her Majesty's Canadian Ship) vessels were crucial to Britain and the Allies having a chance to win the war against Hitler and the Nazi's.

However, the German navy needed to stop these shipments to have a chance to win the war so thousands of U-Boats (submarines) were deployed throughout the Atlantic Ocean to sink any Canadian ship traveling there.

So the question remains, did the following list of Canadian ships make it across the Ocean to Liverpool, England, or did the U-Boats sent out to destroy them succeed?

It is now your job to find out.


  1. Using your knowledge about longitude and latitude, it is your job to locate the following 7 HMCS ships and 7 U-Boats on the corresponding map.
  2. When you find a vessel or submarine, place a small dot and write its name beside it's location.
  3. Complete this assignment neatly in pencil so you can erase errors if necessary.
  4. Be sure to draw in a proper compass, write scale unknown and title your map.
  5. This activity will be collected at the end of the period and marked for accuracy.
  6. When taking up this assignment, information will be given on the fate of each ship or U-boat so you know if it was destroyed or survived.
  7. Be sure to put your name on the assignment.

Mark Scheme:

CategoryLevel OneLevel TwoLevel ThreeLevel Four
ApplicationMany chosen locations are incorrectly placed and/or labeled. Some chosen locations are incorrectly placed and/or labeled. Few chosen locations are incorrectly placed and/or labeled. Chosen locations are are correctly placed and labeled.
CommunicationLabels are messy and unclear. Map is missing a compass and/or title, scale. Labels are somewhat clear. Compass and/or title, scale is missing. Labels are clear and neatly written. Scale is included. Compass is included but lacks clarity/is inappropriately placed in terms of proper direction. Title is included but lacks clarity and/or relationship to the assignment. Labels are clear and neatly written. Scale is included. Compass is included, is clear and is appropriately placed in terms of proper direction. Title is included, is clear and is directly related to the assignment.


  1. HMCS. LEVIS: 60 07' N 38 37' W
  2. HMCS. ASSINIBOINE: 54 25' N 39 37' W
  3. HMCS. OTTER: 44 0' N 63 45' W
  4. HMCS. SHAWINIGAN: 47 31' N 59 10' W
  5. HMCS. ST. CROIX: 57 00' N 31 10'W
  6. HMCS. OTTAWA: 47 55' N 43 27' W
  7. HMCS. DRUMHELLER: 48 37' N 22 39' W


  1. U-756: 57 41' N 31 30' W
  2. U-548: 46 03' N 52 24' W
  3. U-806: 44 24' N 63 24' W
  4. U-190: 44 26' N 63 10' W
  5. U-356: 45 30' N 25 40' W
  6. U-845: 46 18' N 27 34' W
  7. U-136: 56 10' N 21 07' W



  1. HMCS. LEVIS: Was torpedoed and sunk by U-74 on September 19th, 1941, killing 18 of the 58 Canadian officers on board.
  2. HMCS. ASSINIBOINE: Sunk German U-Boat 210 on May 6th, 1942.
  3. HMCS. OTTER: Caught fire and sank on March 26th, 1941 off Halifax, Nova Scotia.
  4. HMCS. SHAWINIGAN: Lost at sea/assumed to be destroyed in a battle with a German battleship on November 25th, 1944. All 90 crew on board perished.
  5. HMCS. ST. CROIX: Was torpedoed and sunk by U-305 on September 20th, 1943 killing 146 officers. The 80 survivors were then killed when their rescue ship sank.
  6. HMCS. OTTAWA: Torpedoed and sunk by U-91 on September 14th, 1942. Of 189 crew on board, 113 died while 76 survived.
  7. HMCS. DRUMHELLER: Sunk U-Boat 753 on May 13th, 1943.


  1. U-756: Was destroyed by the HMCS. MORDEN on August 31st, 1942.
  2. U-548: Torpedoed and destroyed the HMCS. VALLEYFIELD on May 7th, 1944. 163 Canadian crew were on board and 125 died while 38 survived.
  3. U-806: Sunk the HMCS. CLAYOQUOT with a torpedo on December 24th, 1944 as it approached Halifax Harbour.
  4. U-190: Torpedoed and sank the HMCS. ESQUIMALT on April 16th, 1945.
  5. U-356: Was sunk by the HMCS. ST. LAURENT on December 27th, 1942.
  6. U-845: Was sunk by the HMCS. OWEN SOUND on March 10th, 1944.
  7. U-136: Torpedoed and sank the HMCS. SPIKENARD on February 10th, 1942 killing 57 of 65 men.