Professional Learning Activities

Activity 1: What is Civics and Citizenship Education?

This activity introduces both primary and secondary teachers to the ideas and dimensions of CCE. (Time: 15– 20 minutes)

Read 'The Bindi Gully Band' story from Australians All! If possible have enough copies so that workshop participants can see the story as you read it.

Before reading the story ask different workshop groups to focus on one of the following:

  • What does the writer want students to know about Australian society?
  • What values and attitudes does the story promote?
  • What view of Australian society does it promote?

Read the story and then give groups two minutes to talk about their question.

Collect feedback on a whiteboard or butcher's paper. Discuss the dimensions of values, attitudes and knowledge about Australian society contained in this story.

Final discussion question after feedback: Is this view realistic?

Activity 2: Introducing the themes of Discovering Democracy

This activity encourages teachers to look at the themes of the Discovering Democracy resources and link them to teaching and learning activities, existing opportunities at school, and school and local community activities. (Time: 30 minutes)

Download and print the following four workshop sheets (Word documents) in A3 size:

Have participants work in four groups.

Each group fills in the bottom box on the sheet for five minutes.

Each group then folds up the page (so the next group does not see their responses) and hands it on to the next group.

The fourth group unfolds the responses from the three preceding groups and classifies the responses from the others according to whether the activities are:

  • classroom teaching and learning
  • whole-school activities
  • school–community activities.

Collect feedback from groups on a whiteboard. Discuss how schools might link current school activities to the themes, gaps in CCE provision that exist in the school and ways these might be addressed.

Provide a photocopy handout of the themes from one of the Discovering Democracy books of units.

Activity 3: Exploring the Discovering Democracy resources

Give groups:

Choose an activity or unit of work from your resource that relates to work you are currently teaching in the classroom. Write down the name and page references. Select three different teaching and learning activities you could implement in your classroom. Describe your activity or unit and the teaching and learning activities to the whole group. Collect responses, 'chair' discussion and encourage teachers to share strategies.