Unit 2: Walking with the Wurundjeri

Level 2 and Level 3 Australian Curriculum (Years 2 and 3)


long agoThis unit is about local community and how it has changed over time. During the unit students investigate life as it is now and how it was in the past, identifying aspects of change and continuity. They listen to guest speakers, interview older family and community members, view photographs and pictures, as well as conducting simple research, to explore the ways of life of people from different times. They participate in local walks to describe what the local community looks like today, and imagine what it might have looked like in the past. During the unit they will investigate the local Aboriginal people, their ways of life and connection to the land today and prior to European settlement.

Key concepts

Change, continuity, place, belonging


  • Many different people have links to the local community both today and in the past.
  • Aboriginal people have lived in and around the local area for thousands of years, and still have strong links today.
  • The way of life for people in the local community has changed over time and will continue to change in the future.
  • People and communities preserve and continue things that are important to them.

Rich Question

How has our local community changed?

Contributing Questions

  • long todayWhat does our community look like now?
  • What is our community like now, and what might it have looked like in the past?
  • Who lives in our community now, and who lived here in the past?
  • Who lived here first and how do we know?
  • What aspects of the past can you see today? What do they tell us?
  • What remains of the past are important to the local community? Why?
  • What was life like for the people of the past?
  • How and why have lifestyles changed?

Important Cultural Information

From the Yarra Healing website: essential learnings.

Before commencing this unit please check ‘Yarra Healing’ for important background information regarding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures. http://www.yarrahealing.catholic.edu.au/TeachingandLearning/Essential Learning and Understandings


Written texts
Wheatley, N. My Place, Kane/Miller Books, 1994

Eidelson, M, The Melbourne Dreaming: A guide to the Aboriginal places of Melbourne, Aboriginal Studies Press, Canberra, 1997. This book is helpful for teachers in building local background information, as well as identifying local places that could be incorporated into an excursion.

Presland, G, Aboriginal Melbourne: The lost land of the Kulin people, Harriland Press, forest Hill, Australia, 2001. This book is helpful for teachers in building background information about the history of the Aboriginal people around the Melbourne area.

Local council websites often contain some information about the history of local Aboriginal groups.

www.vaeai.org.au The website of the Victorian Aboriginal Education Association Incorporated (VAEAI). VAEAI represents Local Aboriginal Education Consultative Groups (LAECGs) on policy advice at a local, state and national level. Information about anything pertaining to LAECGs contact VAEAI and they will give you necessary information. VAEAI promotes culturally relevant educational programs which reinforce Koorie identity. It also aims to provide to the wider community an awareness of Koorie cultures and aspirations.

Audio Visual
Local Historical Society (N.B. The historical society in Gisborne was the local resource for the trial school, St Brigid’s. They proved to be a fantastic resource and had a wealth of knowledge about the local Aboriginal people that we were not able to find anywhere else. They also provided the school with a copy of a resource paper written by a Masters student Rachel Tanner called ‘What Aborigines?’ A reference to the fact that for many years authorities denied that there were any Aboriginal groups who lived in the Macedon Ranges. We were able to contact Rachel who came and spoke to the students about what she found out through her research.)