Discovery of Gold and Australia’s Identity
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HSIE K-6 Syllabus

Laura Griffiths's insight:

This 'Scoop It' site contains resources that are suitable for Stage 3 students who are undertaking the Change and Continuity outcome:

CCS3.1: Explains the significance of particular people, groups, places, actions and events in the past in developing Australian identities and heritage (NSW Board of Studies, 2006, p. 23).

 

Within this outcome students will learn about:

Significant events that have shaped Australia’s identity, including the discovery of gold, and colonial exploration and expansion (NSW Board of Studies, 2006, p. 61)

 

The resources chosen allow students to learn about all different aspects of the Australian gold rush including the Eureka Stockade, the Australian goldfields, Aboriginal and Chinese perspectives of life on the goldfields and the impact the gold rush had on Australia. The teacher when using these resources must remember to connect the content the students are learning to how the gold rush had an impact on shaping Australia's identity.

 

Resource: NSW Board of Studies (2006).

Human society and its environment: K-6 syllabus. Sydney: Author.

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Australian Gold Rush and its Impact on Society | Ergo

Australian Gold Rush and its Impact on Society | Ergo | Discovery of Gold and Australia’s Identity | Scoop.it
A wave of change, fuelled by gold and a massive increase in wealth, transformed Victoria almost overnight. From the behaviour of diggers who suddenly found themselves as rich as English lords to the massive population increase and the beginnings of a multicultural society; the colony of Victoria had become a magnet for the world’s fortune seekers.
Laura Griffiths's insight:

According to the NSW HSIE syllabus, students studying the Australian gold rush need to be able to explain the significance of this event in developing and shaping Australia’s identity. A website created by the State Library of Victoria provides information on how the Australian gold rush had an impact on society, consequently shaping Australia’s identity. The information presented shows the gold rush’s impact on Victoria and Melbourne; however this is still demonstrating how the gold rush was significant in shaping society and its identity.  

 

The website separates the information under key topic headings making it comprehensible and manageable for students to access. The topic headings include ‘Infrastructure’, ‘Migration’ and ‘Transportation’ and they all express how the gold rush had an impact on these areas. The website incorporates primary sources within the information, so students can also see firsthand accounts on how the gold rush affected these specific areas. Primary sources include artwork painted during the time, which students can 

interactively click on and zoom in to see the features of the picture.

 

Each section also provides further links students can access to gather additional information. An example can be seen within the ‘Transport’ section where there are links to other informative websites including the Victorian Railway Museum, the Cobb & Co Museum in Victoria and Queenslandand an Australian Government website on the Cobb & Co. It is important if students are leaving websites through links that they are safe and appropriate for students to use. As teachers it is essential that all sites are evaluated before students use them. Teachers should verify the sites authority to ensure they are credible, verify the purpose of the site to make sure that it is educational and verify content to make certain it is accurate and related to the teaching purpose (Shell, Gunter & Gunter, 2010, p. 400-401). All links have been personally checked and they lead to safe and reliable sites. However, some sites may have information that is too sophisticated for students in stage 3.

 

The teacher’s purpose for students when using this website is for gathering information. From there, students will be able to explain the significance of the Australian gold rush in shaping Australia’s identity. Activities that students can undertake with this information include being able to write explanations on how the gold rush shaped Australia’s identity and incorporate the examples of infrastructure, democracy (land taxation and Eureka Stockade), migration and transportation as evidence. This could then link to the stage 3 English syllabus, specifically the outcome EN3-2A where a student “composes, edits and presents well-structured and coherent texts” (NSW Board of Studies, 2012, p. 100).  The teacher could also have students making posters on specific areas that were impacted by the gold rush. This not only allows the students to use the information gathered, but they can incorporate and place the primary resources with the information as further evidence. These group posters can then be presented orally to the class and can be displayed in the classroom.

 

References:

Board of Studies NSW (2012). English K-10 Syllabus. Sydney: Author.

Shelly, G., Gunter, G & Gunter, R. (2010) Integrating technology and digital media into the classroom. Boston: Cengage Learning.

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Ratwhiskers and Me

Laura Griffiths's insight:

  

Historical fiction can be an effective resource that teachers can use to explore significant events that occurred throughout history. Teachers must ensure before using a historical fiction novel that the information is accurate and authentic, not over romanticised, uses language of the time as well as represent issues that can still be relevant and current in the present (Levstik & Barton, 2011). “Ratwhiskers and Me” by Lorraine Marwood is a historical fiction novel written in prose poetry that follows a character living on the Victorian goldfields during the Australian gold rush. The protagonist interacts and becomes friends with a Chinese miner and consequently experiences the racial discrimination her friend and family encounter.

 

This book not only provides a Chinese perspective of life on the gold fields but provides discussion points and further inquiry incorporating a global perspective. When reading this book, teachers should highlight to students the unfair racial treatment that the Chinese miners were subjected to. This can then lead onto inquiry and discussion questions such as ‘Why did Chinese miners leaveChinato come toAustralia?’ ‘What was happening in China which made moving to the Australian goldfields so appealing?’ Teachers could even compare how the Chinese were treated on other goldfields around the world such as inCalifornia, where a gold rush was also occurring. By asking these questions while reading the novel, teachers can introduce a global perspective on the Australian gold rush. 

 

It is also important while students are reading this book to connect the Chinese perspective on the gold rush to how Australia’s identity was shaped. This can specifically be seen with how Chinese migration shaped Australia’s identity as it was one of the critical reasons for the introduction of immigration laws and the White Australia Policy. Teachers should highlight this through the racial treatment of Chinese miners.

 

Not only does this resource connect with the Stage 3 HSIE syllabus, teachers can also create lessons which connect to the English syllabus. This could be in relation to students responding to the text outlined in EN3-5B where a student “discusses how language is used to achieve a widening range of purposes for a widening range of audiences and contexts” and through reading and viewing the text, students are achieving the outcome EN3-3A:“uses an integrated range of skills, strategies and knowledge to read, view and comprehend a wide range of texts in different media and technologies” (NSW Board of Studies, 2012).

 

The document to which this scoop-it site connects gives an overview of the book and various activities teachers can utilize in the classroom.

 

References:

Board of Studies NSW (2012). English K-10 Syllabus.Sydney: Author.

Levstik, L & Barton, K. (2011). Doing history: Investigating with children in elementary and middle schools. New York: Routledge.

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~ GOLD ~

~ GOLD ~ | Discovery of Gold and Australia’s Identity | Scoop.it
Laura Griffiths's insight:

It is recognised that to learn and to have competence in an area of inquiry, students need to have content and factual knowledge which can then be formulated and organised allowing for retrieval and application (Brandsford, Pellegrino & Donovan, 1999, p. 12). This SBS Gold website provides a vast amount of content knowledge on the Australian gold rush that students can collect and organise. This website provides information on various aspects of the gold rush and is categorised under such headings as “Life on the Diggings”, “Immigration and Population”, “Economy and Infrastructure” and “Law and Democracy”. Within these sections, information is separated into further topics - for instance under the “Immigration and Population” link there is information on the “Immigration and Multicultural Expansion of Australia”, “Chinese on the Goldfields” and “Aboriginal Lands and Mining”. This allows for more specific and in depth information for students to gather.

 

This website is appropriate for students to access in the classroom due to the comprehensible information suitable for Stage 3 and the interactivity provided by the use of pictures and maps students can click to view. Knowing this, teachers can create a lesson where students are given sections of the website to gather information and present their findings in a table or graphic organiser. From there, students can come back together and either presents their findings as a group or one member from each group discusses the information they learnt from their specific section to others – jigsaw approach. The work completed in the graphic organisers will allow teachers to assess what students have gathered and learnt. This website and subsequent collecting and gathering activities would be a useful when beginning to undertake an inquiry investigation on how the gold rush shaped Australia’s identity.

 

Reference: Brandsford, J. D., Pellegrino, J. W. and Donovan, S. (1999). How people learn.Washington,D.C.: NationalAcademy Press.

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Katrina Ferrer's curator insight, April 6, 2015 9:43 AM

The SBS Gold website is a treasure trove of content for Stage 3 students' independent research on the gold rush.

 

The website provides rounded coverage organised under 11 key subject headings: Literature; Life on the Diggings; Economy and Infrastructure; Law and Democracy; Arts, Culture and Entertainment; Science and Technology; Environment; Discovery of Gold; Links; Gold Events.

 

Content in each of the subject headings is presented in accessible language, referenced and includes a combination of primary and secondary sources-- artworks, literature, reports and media clippings-- allowing children to engage with and interrogate historical artefacts firsthand (albeit with scaffolding provided by both website and teacher) (see Gilbert & Hoepper 2014 p. 177).

 

The section on Immigration and Population is particularly notable for its descriptions of Chinese immigration and the effects of the Gold Rush on Aboriginal populations. Commentary on Indigenous aspects of the Gold Rush has been adapted from work by Fred Cahir and Ian Clark, both reputable historians in the field of Aboriginal Studies. Original works could not be located and verified for the purposes of this assignment, but other works by these authors suggest that the research is accurate, balanced and was conducted with the appropriate consultation (Queensland Studies Authority 2007).

 

Discussion on Aboriginal livelihoods is sophisticated and includes perspectives on varied topics as mining, representation, and employment (incl. Native Police Corps); but should nonetheless be appropriately discussed in class to avoid simplistic readings. Scaffolding may be aided by material extracted from Cahir's more recent work, Black Gold (Cahir 2012) (see related post below).

 

While the sheer amount of content on the website may become overwhelming, by the end of Stage 3 students should be able to "locate, retrieve or generate information using search engines... and classify information in meaningful ways" (Gilbert & Hoepper 2014 p. 162). Learning could be organised by asking students to conduct research from the perspective of a particular historical stakeholder. Findings could be presented in the form of a diary entry or role play, which would serve the function of 'humanising' an abstract historical narrative (Smyth 2015). Biographical excerpts and relevant primary sources could be provided to each group as scaffolding material.

 

REFERENCES

Cahir, F. (2012). Black Gold: Aboriginal people on the goldfields of Victoria, 1850-1870, Canberra, Australian National University e-Press, retrieved from <https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/#search/black+gold/14c58b77f2c2e7c9?projector=1&gt;

 

Gilbert, R. & Hoepper, B. (Eds). (2014). Teaching humanities and social sciences: History, geography economics and citizenship in the Australian curriculum. Fifth edition. South Melbourne: Cengage Learning Australia

 

Queensland Studies Authority. (2007). Selecting and evaluating resources. Retrieved from https://www.qsa.qld.edu.au/downloads/approach/indigenous_g008_0712.pdf

 

Smyth, C. (2015, March 24). Anzac Day [Web log post] retrieved from <http://www.scoop.it/t/hsie-k-6>;

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Eureka Stockade

Eureka Stockade | Discovery of Gold and Australia’s Identity | Scoop.it
Today is a significant day and not just because it's the last BtN of the year. It's also the anniversary of a very famous event in Australia's history called the Eureka Stockade. Sarah visited Ballarat in Victoria to find out what it was and why it's so important.
Laura Griffiths's insight:

A significant incident during the Australian gold rush period was the Eureka stockade and today, it is recognised as being an event that shaped Australia’s political landscape. This BtN report covers the importance of the Eureka Stockade not only for the miners during the 1850s but its continuing effect on Australia’s democracy. Educational television programs like BtN have been recognised as effective resources teachers can utilise as they raise current problems and issues, have the ability to stimulate student curiosity and allows for discussion (Marsh, 2010, p. 247).

 

This BtN report would be appropriate to show to students within the classroom due to its comprehensible information and its engaging and entertaining format. It would be beneficial for teachers to use this clip as a foundation and an introductory activity on the importance of the Eureka stockade and its effect on Australia’s political landscape. Students should watch the clip twice – firstly as enjoyment and secondly to record information relevant for follow up discussion and activities. A scaffold should be provided for students while watching the video so they know what they should be listening to. After watching the clip twice, teachers should instigate a discussion identifying what students learnt from the video and what they have written in the scaffold. The BtN website provides questions that teachers can draw upon to discuss the Eureka Stockade Report. However, teachers should also provide discussion points and questions to link the Eureka stockade and its effect on shaping Australia as a democracy and Australia’s identity. It is important that teachers have a discussion after viewing this news report because it allows teachers to identify if students understood the information presented, assess if students were listening as well as receive an indication if further clarification is needed on particular aspects. If students do require more explanation, the website provides other links teachers and students can access for more information. Linked websites include the Museum of Australian Democracy Eureka website, Australian Government website on the Eureka Stockade and the State Library of Victoria website.

 

Reference: 

Marsh, C. (2010). Becoming a teacher: Knowledge, skills and issues. Frenchs Forrest: Pearsons.

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Black Gold: Aboriginal People on the Goldfields of Victoria, 1850 – 1870

Black Gold: Aboriginal People on the Goldfields of Victoria, 1850 – 1870 | Discovery of Gold and Australia’s Identity | Scoop.it
Citation for book 'Black Gold'
Laura Griffiths's insight:

It is important when choosing a resource from an Indigenous perspective that is respectful to the Indigenous community, the resource is specific and not general, accurate and authentic (Ah See, Percival, Foley, Simoes & Anderson, 2003). Black Gold: Aboriginal People on the Goldfields of Victoria, 1850 – 1870 is a book written by Fred Cahir that specifically focuses on the Indigenous experience on the goldfields in Victoria. Finding resources that incorporate appropriately the above criteria in regards to the gold rush was difficult because many resources tended to be quite general.

 

Firstly, this resource specifically focuses and identifies the Indigenous communities affected by the Victorian gold rush (the Djadjawurrung people of central Victoria and the Wathawurrung people). Furthermore, this resource can be acknowledged as accurate and authentic due to the recent date of publication of 2012, as many sources created before 1990 “contained stereotyped and generalised information about Aboriginal people (Ah See, Percival, Foley, Simoes & Anderson, 2003). The authenticity can also be supported as Aboriginal Elders are acknowledged as being in consultation when the research was conducted and also supported the inquiry of this topic.

 

Due to the resource’s academic writing, the book would only be used by the teacher as the language would be challenging for the students to comprehend. This indicates that the teacher would read specific sections of the source and devise lessons from the information gathered on the Indigenous perspective of the gold rush. When reading the resource, teachers must take into account not only the Indigenous perspective on the gold rush but also how it then shapesAustralia’s identity.

 

This book is a large text, so teachers should focus on the following chapters and subchapters: ‘Aboriginal People and Mining (p. 5), ‘Aboriginal Voices’ (p.85), ‘“I am the owner of the land about here”’ (p. 88), ‘Social and Environmental Change’ (p.109), ‘Cultural Interference’ (p.115), ‘Environmental Degradation (p. 118). It is important that teachers also recognise from reading this book the balanced approach the author has taken when writing on the Indigenous perspective. The author does not just concentrate on the hardships the Victorian Indigenous community endured, but also the instances when there was cooperation between the Indigenous and Non-Indigenous people.

 

Reference: Ah See, C., Percival, B., Foley, C., Simoes, M. & Anderson. (2003) Aboriginal education K-12: Resource guide.Sydney: Department of Education and Training, Professional Support and Curriculum Directorate.  

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