Forming Government and Passing Legislation: Introduction

Key Learning Area: Studies of Society and Environment

Year Level: Upper primary/Lower secondary

Lesson Duration: 6 hours (4 lessons)

Unit Topic: How does parliament work?

Lesson Topic: Forming government and passing legislation

Lesson’s overall aim:

Students will participate in a simulation that looks at different ways a government can be formed in the parliament. They will then use a flow chart and a tree diagram to write a script that asks the audience to make decisions about the direction the play will take.

Teacher Note: If students have not developed an understanding of the democratic process of voting to elect parliamentary representatives, spend some time on developing students’ understanding of this process before starting these lessons. Voting - choosing your parliamentary representatives includes important prerequisite knowledge and skills for these lessons.

Curriculum links

Links to the Australian Curriculum 

Intended student learning objectives/outcomes


  • Understand how governments are formed
  • Understand that Australia is a democracy with key civic features including parliaments and political parties
  • Understand that the role of parliament is to represent people, make laws and publicly debate issues


  • Note-taking
  • Working in teams
  • Scriptwriting
  • Performing in front of an audience


  • Fair go
  • Freedom
  • Respect
  • Responsibility


  1. A small bucket or bag for coloured discs
  2. Coloured discs (handout)
  3. Parliamentary Education Office, Law making: Pass the Bill
  4. Passing the Bill flowchart (handout)
  5. Interactive whiteboard or a data projector
  6. What is a Private Members Bill?
  7. Costumes and props for performing the script

Teaching and learning activities

Introduction | Activity One | Activity Two | Activity Three

Back to Upper Primary Teaching and Learning Activities