Cultural Symbols: Badges Flags and more
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World Flags: Interesting Information for Kids on the Flags of the World

World Flags: Interesting Information for Kids on the Flags of the World | Cultural Symbols: Badges Flags and more | Scoop.it
All kids want to know about the World Flags: Shapes, Colors and much more
Caitlin Alexander's insight:

This resource provides some good background information on flags, where they came from, why we have flags and what they mean.  It provides information as how we communicate symbolically through flags, using colour and symbols to convey information about our nation without using words. 

Using the information provided on this site, subsidized with some additional information I would encourage students to create their own flag representing their family.  The children would be given a list of colours and meanings, as well as symbols and meanings.  Using this and their imagination they would have to think up what is important to their family, and how they could represent this through their flag.  As reference the students could also look at the flags of many nations, maybe even referring to flags of other nations as inspiration for their own.   

This flag designing task would be a way of realising how flags show meaning, but also are a constructed meaning, designed by people.  After designing their own flags I would move the children on to an explanation of Harold Thomas, designer of the Australian Aboriginal Flag, discussing how he created meaning and was able to represent so many people with just one design.  

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Wattle- The Floral Emblem of Australia

Caitlin Alexander's insight:

 These teacher’s notes describe and outline the many native floral emblems that Australia has, representing our nation, states and territories.  It would introduce the idea that a symbol can be anything as long as it is something unique, or celebrated by that culture.  In our culture we see the importance of The Golden Wattle being featured on Australia’s coat of arms.  Also, the colours, green and gold are often worn by athletes representing Australia, with nearly all of our national sporting teams wearing the colours (Australian Cricket Team, The Opals, The Hockeyroos, The Wallabies etc.)

After a discussion about the colours and meaning of our national floral emblem I would create a ‘flora bingo’ challenge for the class.  It would involve the students being given a ‘bingo card’ filled with pictures of native Australian plants and the children would then have to enter the playground and locate as many of the plants as they could.  I would scaffold this activity by showing the children photographs of the plants listed on the card, as well as methods for identifying the plants.  This would be a fun way of building some geography related skills through the inquiry process, scaffolding student’s skills related to collecting, recording and evaluating primary data.  

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The Union Jack

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Caitlin Alexander's insight:

 

This website features a comprehensive history of the Union Jack.  It explains the meaning of the crosses, how it represents England and Wales, Scotland and Ireland. It also explains the flags significance in representing the British Royal family, as well as being the national flag of England.

I would use this as my resource to gain knowledge about the Union Jack, and to be able to re-appropriate this for Stage One students, to explain the significance of the Union Jack, what it means to other countries and begin a discussion about the symbols presence on the Australian flag.

This resource would be an important symbol that could bring Australia and our flag into a global perspective.  This would help students begin to understand the history of Australia as a British colony, and its place within the Commonwealth of Nations.

The Union Jack is an important symbol as it introduces topics of history (more specifically, historical knowledge and understanding) of Australia as well as thinking about active and informed citizenship.  The meaning behind the Union Jack and its presence on the Australian flag might also provide a nice segue into discussing the importance of the Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander flags.  This ties in to ‘second order’ historical concepts of: perspectives, empathy and significance (Gilbert, Hoepper, 2014, p.181). 

 

Source:

B., Gilbert., B., Hoepper. 'Teaching Humanities and Social Sciences: History, Geography, Economics and Citizenship' 2014, Cengage Learning Australia, Australia.

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Who are we? - Symbols

Caitlin Alexander's insight:

This website would be a great way of introducing the topic of cultures, their practices, symbols and traditions.  It covers the many types of symbols, from national costume, to floral emblems, flags and animals.  This website would be one you could visit with the children (on a smart board) and begin the discussion of symbols. This is a great point to begin a class brain storm about which cultures children identify themselves as being a part of, and what symbols do they associate with these cultures.  This would give (me) the teacher a great opportunity to understand what level the students understanding is at, as well as giving the students an opportunity to share and learn from each other.

It covers many outcomes from CUS1.3 and CUS1.4 including discussions about groups which students belong to, similarities and differences between cultures, customs and practises, belief systems and more. 

Moving on from this discussion I would encourage the students to think about symbols of cultures as things that make that culture unique.  This would become a discussion about what kind of symbols represent our Australian culture, discussing what is special about Australia and how do we ‘represent’ this. 

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Drawing and Labeling the Aboriginal Flag.

Caitlin Alexander's insight:

Using this Australian museum resource pack, I would take the notes and corresponding worksheet from Activity Sheet Four: The Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander Flags.  This activity includes not only the assignment on drawing and labelling both flags, but also the cultural discussion around Cathy Freeman at the Olympics carrying the Aboriginal Flag. 

This would be a great in class activity/ discussion that could be accompanied by lots of visuals.  It incorporates both the Aboriginal and Torres Straight flags as of equal importance.  

This worksheet/ discussion point encourages students to look at the importance of the national flags of the Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander people.  It also then examines them in a wider perspective as being flags that should be included alongside our Australian Flag to represent all Australians.

This topic also addresses racism affecting Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander people and how they have been excluded from Australian culture in the past.  This is an important topic as ‘understanding racism both past and present is an important need if this blight on society is to be eradicated’ (Gilbert, Hoepper, 2014, p.354).  This discussion could be a further jumping off point for moving on to discussions of social justice in Stage 2 CCS2.2 where they will be examining the contributions of Aboriginal people to Australian culture.  

 

Source:

B., Gilbert., B., Hoepper. 'Teaching Humanities and Social Sciences: History, Geography, Economics and Citizenship' 2014, Cengage Learning Australia, Australia.

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