HSIE - Early Stage 1: The Structure of Students' Families
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Welcoming Schools - Tree of Caring Lesson Plan

April Lindsay's insight:

This lesson plan has been developed and published by Welcoming Schools (welcomingschools.org), an initiative of the Human Rights Campaign Foundation. The website aims to equip teachers and schools with the professional development tools and resources to promote a school environment which embraces family diversity, avoids gender stereotyping and is free of bullying and name-calling.

 

This particular lesson plan is designed to “help students think bout the many ways families are formed and the many ways family members care for each other”. The plan outlines a number of activities which focus around the concept of family trees and other visual expressions of family groups, and encourages students to explore and express the ways in which they are connected to the people they care about. According to the Board of Studies (2006), students in Early Stage 1 should be beginning to “explore roles, responsibilities and roles in the classroom and at home” (p.16), and to do so through an inquiry process which involves “organising information through a variety of methods, including… family trees” (p.12). This resource equips teachers to facilitate this exploration by providing a structure through which students can reflect upon their own experiences of roles and responsibilities in the home, and present these visually to other people.

 

In the Early Stage 1 classroom, I would use this document to guide the facilitation of a lesson sequence which involved an initial exploration of the concepts related to family through a book or video and a discussion of these key concepts as a class, before each student created their own “tree of caring family and friends” to graphically represent their own family. These graphic representation could then be shared as a whole class, and collated for display in the classroom. 

 

By facilitating an activity that is highly focussed on the student’s own personal perceptions and experiences of family, the teacher ensures that further learning surrounding this concept will be built upon the child’s existing understanding and background experiences, which Gilbert and Hoepper (2014) state to be a key determinant of the validity and effectiveness of these future activities. 

 

*This document recommends The Family Book by Todd Parr, which is another featured resource on the ScoopIt site.

 

References

Board of Studies NSW (2006). Human Society and It’s Environment K-6: Syllabus. Sydney: Board of Studies.

 

Gilbert, R. & Hoepper, B. (2014). Teaching Society and Environment (5th ed.). Cengage Learning: Australia.

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Who are the families of the world | Global Education

Who are the families of the world | Global Education | HSIE - Early Stage 1: The Structure of Students' Families | Scoop.it
April Lindsay's insight:

Who are the families of the world is a series of teacher resources developed by Global Education (globaleducation.edu.au) which are designed to support student learning in the subject area of families and communities for Early Stage 1/Stage 1 students. The resources are comprised of 5 “activities” or lesson plans, which include links to various learning materials and stimuli (images, videos, books) and step-by-step suggestions for lesson sequences which would effectively make use of these resources. 

 

The activities outlined range from simple discussions as to what a family is and who makes up an individual student’s family, through to more complex concepts related to family and other HSIE content such as family celebrations, leisure and work. However, all activities approach the subject matter from a global perspective, which is a key element of any comprehensive HSIE unit of work. Global Perspectives, the Australian Government’s framework for global education in Australian schools, states that it is essential for all students in the early years (Early Stage 1/Stage 1) to “gradually develop an awareness of the diversity of peoples, places, cultures, languages and religions” of the world. Learning activities built upon stimuli such as these are an indispensable part of this development. 

 

These resources would be particularly useful for a teacher looking to integrate the concept of family structures and roles into a larger unit of study on social systems and structures, specifically outcome SSES1: “Identifies ways in which their own needs and the needs of others are met, individually and cooperatively” (Board of Studies, 2006, p.42), as the resources include information regarding different families’ roles in their local communities, and the ways in which they celebrate and support one another. 

 

References

Australian Government. (2008). Global perspectives: a framework for global education in Australian schools. Carlton South Victoria: Curriculum Corporation.

 

Board of Studies NSW (2006). Human Society and It’s Environment K-6: Syllabus. Sydney: Board of Studies.

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Family - Australian Museum

Family - Australian Museum | HSIE - Early Stage 1: The Structure of Students' Families | Scoop.it
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have a complex system of family relations, where each person knows their kin and their land.
April Lindsay's insight:

This resource is an online information sheet produced by the Australian Museum, which outlines key elements and structures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families and communities. This page would be a helpful resource for an Early Stage 1 teacher looking to introduce accurate information about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives on family to their students. 

 

This resource is particularly useful for a teacher approaching this topic without the personal perspective of an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander person, as it meets the selection criteria outlined by The Aboriginal Education K-12 Resource Guide (NSW Department of Education and Training, Professional Support and Curriculum Directorate, 2003). Namely, it has been developed by a credible source in consultation with indigenous people, and provides information based on thorough research. This resource is also balanced, acknowledging the diversity which exists between Aboriginal cultures. It is also a recent publication, makes use of appropriate language and terminology, and avoids stereotypes. By using a credible and appropriate source such as this to inform their teaching of an Early Stage 1 class, the teacher would take steps towards ensuring the appropriate and sensitive teaching of the features of Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families and communities.

 

To enhance the “genuine exploration of Aboriginal history, languages, culture and contemporary issues”, the Board of Studies suggests that learning experiences should be developed in consultation with and with the involvement of Aboriginal communities and people. As such, I as a teacher would seek to contact a member of the Aboriginal community local to the school in which I am teaching, in order to clarify the information presented in this resource, and to develop an understanding of information more specific to the indigenous people of the area. 

 

References

Board of Studies NSW (2006). Human Society and It’s Environment K-6: Syllabus. Sydney: Board of Studies.

 

NSW Board of Studies. (2008). Working with Aboriginal communities: A guide to community consultation and protocols. Retrieved from from http://abed.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/files/working-with-aboriginal-communities.pdf

 

NSW Department of Education and Training. (2003). Aboriginal Education K–12 resource guide. Retrieved from  http://www.curriculumsupport.education.nsw.gov.au/schoollibraries/assets/pdf/aboriginalresourceguide.pdf

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The Family Book by Todd Parr

Film made for Instructional Technology graduate course for a WebQuest. Unable to find the book read by Todd Parr himself, so I made this in his honor. I do n...
April Lindsay's insight:

This video is a film version of the picture book The Family Book, written and illustrated by Todd Parr. This book would be particularly appropriate for use at the commencement of a unit of work on families, and to introduce the concept of diverse family structures to Early Stage 1 students. 

 

In the Human Society and Its Environment K-6 Syllabus (2006), the Board of Studies encourages teachers to make use of “a variety of materials and texts, including picture books… to provide examples of families and change” (p. 45). The Family Book is an excellent example of one such material. It allows students to explore the ways in which families vary, whether that be in size, structure or ways of doing things, and highlights the fact that not all families may fit the perceived “norm” or “nuclear family”. However, the book also successfully avoids promoting an unhealthy ‘us and them’ mentality, by identifying some of the key similarities and features of families (“all families like to hug each other”, “all families are sad when they lose someone they love”) in addition to celebrating difference.

 

The Family Book would be well suited to an Early Stage 1 class, as it features engaging, colourful illustrations to support students developing literacy skills, as well as sentences which use simple language and repeats key ideas and vocabulary, such as “all families”, “some families”, “different” and “same”. 

 

This book would be particularly useful as a resource for introducing the topic of families, as it effectively and creatively introduces key concepts and language to students. This book could be explored by students in a teacher-guided reading session, with students first predicting what they think the book may be about based on the illustrations, followed by a reading of the book, and a class discussion around they key concepts of families and their differences. Gilbert and Hoepper (2014) state that literacy skills are deeply intertwined with learning in the humanities and social sciences. Encouraging students to view even a simple text such as The Family Book within the context of an HSIE lesson, will begin to consolidate the link between social investigation and literacy, and encourage students to view text as a means by which they can access new information and understanding about the world around them. 

 

References

Board of Studies NSW (2006). Human Society and It’s Environment K-6: Syllabus. Sydney: Board of Studies.

 

Gilbert, R. & Hoepper, B. (2014). Teaching Society and Environment (5th ed.). Cengage Learning: Australia.

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Sesame Street: Family Song - YouTube

What is a family? A family could be a your brothers and sisters and mom and dad. It could be your grandma and grandpa and aunts and uncles. Family could even...
April Lindsay's insight:

The Family Song is another engaging student resource which teachers could present in the classroom to creatively and playfully explore the concept of family structures and diversity. It is an audio and visual resource produced for Sesame Street which lyrically explores a number of the concepts surrounding family diversity, and supports this through cartoon animation. 

 

Gibson and Ewing (2011) state that the association of new concepts and understanding with music can be highly beneficial for the consolidation of those concepts, and that “by using music, children can draw on additional avenues of learning” (p.112). As such, the use of a song such as the Family Song, will engage Early Stage 1 students in their learning of this content and consolidate what they may have learned through other sources and text types including books, discussions or personal experience.

 

The lyrical content of the song is, obviously, key. The lyrics outline a number of key concepts surrounding family structure and diversity, by asking “what is a family?”, outlining some of the activities that families might spend time doing together, and emphasising the fact that all families are of equal importance regardless of their structure, size or even proximity to each other. Furthermore, the lyrics link the concept of an individual’s family and the features of that family (care, support, love) to the concept of a ‘global family’. This links directly to one of Gilbert and Hoepper’s (2014) key principles of worthwhile learning in humanities and social sciences, namely encouraging students to recognise “conectedness to the world beyond the classroom” (p.69).

 

This resource would be useful for the introduction of the concept of family structure and diversity to an Early Stage 1 class, but would be equally appropriate throughout the entirety of a unit of work on families and communities. Students could continue to watch this animation and listen to the song over a number of weeks, and the class teacher could integrate learning of the topic with the creative arts KLA by teaching the song to students for performance at a school assembly.

 

References

Gibson, R. & Ewing, R. (2011). Transforming the Curriculum Through the Arts. Palgrave Macmillan: South Yarra, Victoria

 

Gilbert, R. & Hoepper, B. (2014). Teaching Society and Environment (5th ed.). Cengage Learning: Australia.

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