Major customs and celebrations of religious and other community groups in Bankstown - Resources for HSIE Stage 2
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Ethnicity | Bankstown City |

Ethnicity | Bankstown City | | Major customs and celebrations of religious and other community groups in Bankstown - Resources for HSIE Stage 2 |
In 2011, 34% of people in Bankstown City, came from countries where English was not their first language. Access in-depth demographics for Bankstown City from the population experts, id.
Thanh Thuong Nguyen's insight: which provides the statistics in many aspects of all suburbs across Australia would be a helpful resource for teachers in terms of teaching diversity. Teachers can find figures about population of ethnical groups, or of religious groups or statistics of number of languages in a specific suburb. This information will be very useful for teachers when doing research about the diversity of the local community within which the school that they are teaching locates. Teachers can also applying this resource into teaching the concept of diversity to stage 2 students by producing tasks that require students to conduct researches about diversity in their local community by comparing the figures of their own community in each category (ethnicity, religion) to that of other groups. Alternatively, teachers can teach students to understand diversity at a larger scale by asking them to compare local statistics with the state or with the whole nation (benchmark statistics are also available on the site). This type of activity can help students to develop their numeracy, representing data and analysis skills. They will also have an awareness of what the other community and religious groups are in their local community; and understand that this diversity has contributed to the diversity of the whole Australia.

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Celebrating Together

Thanh Thuong Nguyen's insight:

Celebrating together is a rich resource for teaching and learning about the cultural diversity of communities in Australia through the study of celebrations. It incorporates not only traditional practices of communities in Australia but also information that reflects values and beliefs of religious groups. The resource provides teaching materials, activities that closely align with the outcomes of students across stages. Through this resource, teachers can help students have deeper understanding about cultural and religious celebrations of other communities in their local area through which they can build their awareness of cultural diversity.

There are many teaching activities designed for stage 2 students that teachers can select from. For example, teachers can adopt the teaching idea on page 22 _Part D “Festivals study”. Teachers can first select a religious or cultural festival, introduce texts or resource about the festival and then encourage students to participate in tabloid of activities related to the festival (teachers then can link to other digital resources about other festivals posted on this Scoop it site). This resource also provides student handouts about some specific festivals so that students can read and find key ideas and then complete worksheets that are also included within (for example: Tibetan Buddhist New Year on page 14 or about Aboriginal_ The Redfern Park statement on page 50). By applying this material into teaching, teachers will enable students to develop their understanding of diversity through their knowledge of the celebrations of communities in local city, for example, Chinese and Aboriginal communities.

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Differing perspectives: Australia Day / Invasion Day

Differing perspectives: Australia Day / Invasion Day | Major customs and celebrations of religious and other community groups in Bankstown - Resources for HSIE Stage 2 |
Most Australians celebrate Australia Day as the day Australia was founded.

In contrast, Aboriginal people mourn their history and call it ‘Invasion Day’.

Via Catherine Smyth
Thanh Thuong Nguyen's insight:

Through the meaning implied in Aboriginal celebration of Survival Day, the page introduces Aboriginal perspective about the contemporary issue existing in Australia. When Australian people are celebrating Australian Day, many Aboriginal people found there is little to celebrate with the same meaning; rather, they celebrate Survival Day that implies their commemoration of a deep loss_ the loss of their rights to their land, loss of family, loss of the right to practice their culture. The source also includes Aboriginal participation by representing difference voices of Aboriginal people about the issue. The site also emphasises the account of Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal history by introducing the emerging thinking in some Australians about the concept of “Arrival Day” celebration in which both Indigenous and Australian history are praised and promoted.

The source provides teachers with a different perspective from which they can design teaching activities that promote students developing different viewpoints. This is a useful resource for teachers not only in term of obtaining information to teach the concept and the origin of Australia Day, but also in term of teaching the story implied in the event viewed from an Aboriginal point of view. By applying the idea of this resource into teaching, teachers would be able to raise students’ awareness of the diversity that has been existed since the foundation of the country in which they are living, and advise them the existing discrimination that they should avoid. When carry on any teaching activities that requires students to collect data about the event from different perspective, it is crucial for teachers to provide enough guidance to students in order to avoid encountering sensitivity and offensiveness.

Catherine Smyth's curator insight, January 23, 2014 8:23 PM

Australia Day (January 26) is a significant event in the nation's calendar but not everyone agrees on what the day represents. For some Australians, Australia Day is about national identity or national values. For others, Australia Day represents something different. This website offers an Aboriginal perspective on Australia Day.I am interested in how teachers can deal with an issue or a topic that may be controversial in the community.


The researchers, Barton & Levstik, argue that conflict is fundamental to democracy and that teachers should be honest with their students about both the conflict and consensus surrounding an event or an issue. Rather than closing down discussion or differences of opinion, they suggest that teachers should prepare their students for a reasoned discussion about an issue. Teachers should carefully plan and scaffold the discussion about a contentious issue.


The following scaffold uses some of ideas and research findings of Barton & Levstk (2005) in Doing History. Using these ideas, teachers can plan a discussion about Australia Day or any other current event:

1. Pose an inquiry question e.g. "What is Australia Day?", "How has Australia Day changed?".  As a class, come up with additional questions.

2. Prepare primary and secondary sources related to the topic (e.g. Babakiueria DVD, newspaper articles, cartoons, songs, photographs, diary entries, historical narratives etc;)

3. Do some background research. Present facts and knowledge (e.g. dates, places, people). Use a graphic organiser to organise information. For example, use a T Chart, Venn Diagram, Retrieval Chart. (Check out the free downloadable templates on Global Education

5. Provide opportuntities for small group background work around different aspects of the topic. Gather information about different perspectives about the topic. 

6. Provide time for students to form a tentative position. Students can write a positional statement using evidence they have found.

7. Allow time to discuss and think.

Bianca Levins's curator insight, March 29, 2015 7:40 AM

Through poetry, song and stories, this page offers Aboriginal perspectives on Australia day. After several lessons spent discussing what Australia Day means to different people, this resource asks students to think deeper about the day and its significance for Aboriginal people.


Many Aboriginal people call January 26 Invasion Day or Survival Day. Why is that? To clarify their thoughts, students could complete a fishbone diagram (Global Education, 2014). Global Education suggest labeling the scales with “how, why, when, where and what” (2014). For example, ‘HOW does this person feel? WHY do they feel this way? WHAT does this make me feel?’


Students could expand their individual ideas in an independent assessment task, looking at the Creative Spirits site. Students could choose to present their findings in a variety of ways, for example as a poem about how a particular story made them feel to be read at assembly (inspired by a project at Coffs Harbour Public School), a report for the class blog, or an educational poster to display in the school to raise awareness.  



Global Education. (2014). Retrieved 31 March, 2015 from


Coffs Harbour Public School (2015). Retrieved 31 March, 2015 from


Claire Reinthal's curator insight, April 20, 2015 6:00 AM



Description of what is on this site:


This resource explains the HSIE outcome at CCS2.2 in relation to what has become known as Australia Day but is mourned as Invasion Day by many Aboriginal people.


This is done by looking at Australia Day over time and from the perspective of different Aboriginal people and the impacts the arrival of the British had on their family members/ancestors and on them personally.


This is a good follow-on resource from First Australians, Episode 1, since it gives the perspectives of people of today on the events which happened in 1788 and their impacts now. 



A teaching idea and link to relevant pedagogical research:


Working in groups, students could be asked to look at the changes in the community and family life and impacts of these due to the arrival of the British, January 26, 1788 and to create a timeline of events which caused these changes or resulted from them, including quotes from different Aboriginal people.


The students could be told that this task would be assessed and students asked to help devise a rubric for assessing this outcome since "...learning is best achieved when students are actively involved in the teaching and learning process." (Bobis, Mulligan, & Lowrie, 2013, p. 291). This lessons learning would be assessed formatively.



A literacy strategy/link to English KLA:


Again, this task would also be fulfilling outcomes in the NSW English Syllabus for the Australian Curriculum such as:

EN2-6B 'distinguishes between different forms of English' and 'identifies organisational patterns and features' and 'listen to and contribute to conversations and discussions to share information and ideas'.





Bobis, J.,Mulligan, J., & Lowrie, T. (2013). Mathematics for Children: Challenging children to think mathematically. Frenchs Forest: Pearson Australia.


Creative Spirits, Jens Korff (2014). Australia Day – Invasion Day. Retrieved April 20, 2015, from

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National Days and Celebrations - Vietnam

National Days and Celebrations - Vietnam | Major customs and celebrations of religious and other community groups in Bankstown - Resources for HSIE Stage 2 |

Celebrations and commemorations in other places around the world; for example, Bastille Day in France, Independence Day in the USA, including those that are observed in Australia such as Chinese New Year, the Moon Festival.

Thanh Thuong Nguyen's insight:


(Re-scooped from the Scoop it site of Asia Education Foundation) the site provides an insight into both major cultural and religious celebrations of Vietnamese people who is one of the largest communities in Bankstown city. The site includes information about the most major cultural events of the community_ Lunar New Year and Mid-Autumn festival, and about the well-known religious festival of Buddhism_ Wandering Soul’s Day_ which is also the main religion of the people from this country. Those links also connect with other websites where teachers can find further information about traditions, food and decorations that Vietnamese people usually have when celebrating the festivals.


Although the site describes how those festivals are celebrated in Vietnam, by understanding that ethnic communities always tend to maintain their own traditional and religious practices wherever they go on over the world, the site is a useful resource in term of providing teachers more information about Vietnamese traditional practices. Alternatively, teacher can also apply this idea into teaching diversity in term of how Australia has been supporting traditional practices and beliefs of ethnic groups. Teachers can first introduce the site content to students, then produce tasks that require students to do studies on how these groups celebrate these practices in Australia, following by comparing with that happens back in Vietnam, and comment on how well these practices have been preserved in Australia context. Stage 2 students can complete this task by talking to their neighbours; or searching for information, photos of the events in their local library, etc. Through this activity, students will not only learn to analyse and synthesis information but also be able to understand how Australia has been promoted cultural diversity through supporting ethnic groups to preserve their own traditions and religious beliefs. Besides, students’ researching skill and use of ICT in learning might be also developed.          

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China Down Under - Teaching Global Perspective

Thanh Thuong Nguyen's insight:

China Down Under is a great resource for teachers to teach stage 2 students about global perspective in term of introducing the interdependence between Australia and China which is also a big ethnic community in Bankstown. By adapting this resource, teachers will teach students about how customs and practice of Chinese people contributes to the diversity of Australian society, causes and effects of change of the community to Australian families, etc. Through this resource, students will not only be able to describe different viewpoints, ways of living and belief systems in Chinese community, but also be able to know how to value others, to celebrate diversity and to think critically about bias and stereotypical images.

Teachers should select stage 2_ Beliefs and contributions starting from page 69 to teach about this perspective. The section carries many specific examples of how the presence of Chinese communities and their practices have contributed to the diversity of Australia. For example, on page 74 where students learn how Chinese food (e.g. the custom of using chopsticks) has influenced on the ways of life of Australian families. And the teaching activities of “Sister Cities” on page 78 or “Martial Art” on page 80 to describes some of the changes that have occurred in Australia local communities through interactions with another culture. Besides, there is also very much information about Chinese people’s religious beliefs; therefore, teachers can also apply this resource into teaching students about beliefs and practices of Buddhism. Detailed readings and activities are also included in the resource on page 69.

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