Famous Burlingtonians

David Elder - Educator

Born in Sault Ste. Marie, Elder graduated from McMaster University and attained his M.Ed. at UofT, with his research focusing on how students learned French language vocabulary. In 1953, he was the Head of the Modern Languages Department at Burlington Central High School, teaching French and German. He served as President of the Ontario Modern Language Teachers’ Association, and co-authored a textbook for teaching German.  A pioneer of structural linguistic approaches to language learning, he made significant contributions to the field including the installation of a language lab at BCHS, one of the first of its kind in Canada, and the introduction into Ontario schools of an innovative French language course, le Français international, which used audio-visual methods to teach the skills of speaking and listening as well as reading and writing.  In 1975, he received the Order of Canada. Elder passed away in 1995.