Stamps - Mirrors of Australia

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This WebQuest is designed for Year 10 students to co-operatively investigate multiculturalism in Australia. It is designed as a final assessment product for a unit of work that introduces the development of Australia as a multicultural country. It requires students to develop their understanding of the diverse nature of the Australian population, and how this affects the idea of what it means to be an Australian.

By having students investigate different aspects of Australiaís multicultural heritage and communities, students are encouraged to break down Aussie stereotypes and uncover the many faces of Australia. By including refugee and Indigenous perspectives in the assignment, the students are required to look past the most obvious cultural groups in Australia and provide a voice for the minority when discussing the concept of Australian identity

The requirement to produce a set of stamps to reflect their learning connects the work they have done to a real life situation. At the end of the WebQuest they will have a produced a proposal for a new series of stamps that can be sent to Australia Post for consideration. Through the work they have done in class, the students are given the chance to influence the public representation of cultural diversity in Australia.

As students need to work effectively in a group to successfully complete the assessment task, each individual class will need to be considered in regards to student groupings. Students may need to be assigned to specific work groups, rather than selecting their own groups, prior to introducing the task.

Students should be encouraged to use other references available to them in their school libraries during the investigation stage. This encourages students to develop sound research practices for future learning.

The WebQuest does assume basic competencies with PowerPoint presentations, although it does include a link for a basic tutorial if required. If students do require assistance with PowerPoint presentations, this webquest could present the opportunity for cross-curricular education through consultation with the IT department.

The inclusion of a formal letter as part of the assessment also provides opportunities for cross-curricular education. This requirement could be discussed with the English department, and several English lessons could be used to address the mode, tenor and field of formal letters. While this is not essential, as a guide to formal letters is included as a link, it does provide the chance to show students that learning occurs across subjects and KLAs.

The WebQuest is designed to achieve standard 5 of the South Australian Framework for the SOSE strand of societies and culture. It specifically addresses objective 5.9. This requires students to analyse and demonstrate a critical understanding of prejudice as a social construction, and act to counter discrimination through ones own individual knowledge, attitudes and actions.

The concept of this WebQuest, and the learning objectives it addresses, could easily be used with other Australian state syllabi to investigate the cultural diversity of identity and citizenship in Australia.


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