Unit 4: We Are One

Overview

This unit explores the concepts of multiculturalism and Australian identity. It begins by exploring the question ‘who are Australians?’ recognising that the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have lived in Australia for more than 60,000 years. During the unit students identify their own cultural backgrounds and the migration stories of other people, leading to an appreciation that as Australians we come from many different cultural backgrounds.

Through individual and community stories students learn about the contributions made by a variety of Australians from diverse cultural backgrounds. They investigate ordinary people who have achieved extraordinary things in order to help their community. They use the Habits of Mind to investigate the characteristics shared by these people and explore ways in which they too can make a contribution.

Understandings

  • As Australians we come from many different cultural backgrounds.
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have lived in Australia for more than 60,000 years and their culture is strongly connected to the land.
  • There are many Australians from different backgrounds who make contributions to their community.
  • Ordinary people can do extraordinary things and can inspire others to help their community.
  • We each have a responsibility to use our gifts and talents to make a difference and work towards a better future.

Rich Question

What inspires ordinary Australians to do extraordinary things?

Contributing Questions

  • didgeredooWho are Australians?
  • What does it mean to be Australian?
  • What are the unique characteristics of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture?
  • Why are there many different cultural groups in Australia today?
  • Can people belong to different cultural groups?
  • How do individuals contribute to Australian communities?
  • How do their actions affect the lives of others?
  • What are the characteristics of these people?
  • What can we do to contribute to our community?

Background Notes

From the Yarra Healing website: essential learnings.

  • There is diversity of lifestyles amongst Indigenous communities today.
  • Kinship ties are integral to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander identity and lifestyles.
  • A sense of belonging to 'a place' is an important feature of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander identity.
  • Important insights about the identity and culture of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander  people are contained in their songs, stories, films, poetry and art.
  • Land is central to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people's beliefs, identity and cultural values.
  • Indigenous Australians have a unique perspective to contribute to non-Indigenous people's understandings of culture, land and spirituality.

Resources

Websites

Audio Visual

  • DVD The Lion King
  • DVD The Secret Garden
  • Guest speakers from the local community