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Warning: This resource may contain references to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who may have passed away.

12 — Sharing what we know

Activity 1: Writing to the author

Read Chapter 9 of Follow the Rabbit-Proof Fence to find out what happened to Molly, Daisy and Gracie. Add the events in this chapter to the Rabbit-Proof Fence timeline.

Introduce the students to the grammatical concepts of active and passive voice. Consider how the author has used active and passive voice to affect the reader and demonstrate a loss of power over the characters’ own circumstances. For example ‘Permission to return to Balfour Downs was refused’ (to hide agency).  ACELA 1518

The students discuss what they feel and think after reading the accounts, and list words to describe their emotions. Discuss the book as a whole and return to questions that have been asked about The Stolen Generations and the rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Add any new information or understandings to the comment sheets started in Sequence 1 and discuss new insights the students may have gained about questions asked in the historical inquiry from reading this book.

Ask the students to write a letter to the author, telling her what they have learned about The Stolen Generations by reading the book. They should add any questions they still have to the letter.  ACELT1618

Students then edit their own and each other’s writing before they write or word-process their final copies. Students and teachers should check the letters one final time before sending them to Doris Pilkington Garimara. Copies of these letters may form a part of the museum.   ACELY1715ACELA1516

Activity 2: Talking about rights, Land Rights and the Stolen Generations

Return to the questions asked when framing the historical inquiry and identify the ones about Land Rights. Using the Philosophy for Children strategy (introduced in Sequence 1), discuss the questions and ask the students to attempt to answer them using references to source materials to support their opinions. Summarise group answers and display them with the questions in the museum.

Talk about The Stolen Generations

Return to the questions asked when framing the historical inquiry and identify the ones about The Stolen Generations. Using the Philosophy for Children strategy, discuss the questions and ask the students to attempt to answer them using references to source materials to support their opinions. Summarise group answers and display them with the questions in the museum.

Talk about rights

Alan Sharpley with placard, Bob Perry in a Ningla-a-Na T-shirt and John Newfong with hands on hips at the Aboriginal Tent Embassy in Canberra

Above: Demonstration with ‘We want land not handouts’ placard at Land rights demonstration, Parliament House, Canberra, 30 July 1972. Source: National Library of Australia, nla.pic-vn3256026, photograph by Ken Middleton

Return to the questions asked when framing the historical inquiry and identify any other questions about rights. Using the Philosophy for Children strategy, discuss the questions and ask the students to attempt to answer them using references to source materials to support their opinions. Summarise the group answers and display them with the questions in the museum.  ACHASSK135ACHASSI123

Activity 3: Setting up the class museum

Whose story will be told in the class museum?

Have the students discuss this question when they are making decisions about what should be included in their museum.

After discussing these questions, the students should come to a consensus, guided by you.  ACELY1709

How will our timelines be arranged?

Perhaps the Follow the Rabbit-Proof Fence timeline within the main timeline could be arranged on a string of barbed wire. Have the students set up the timelines with annotations. Students could work in four groups, with two doing the physical setting up of the timelines and two checking the sequences and the annotations.  ACHASSI125

How will other items be displayed?

After gathering all items for the museum together, the students decide on the placement of materials, perhaps grouping them around Land Rights or the Stolen Generations or in sections for each of the quiz cards from Sequence 1. What electronic equipment is required to display video and audio items and how are they going to be maintained? If the class has access to a set of iPods or iPads they could set up some displays with QR (quick response) codes linked to websites or information they have typed in themselves. Free QR reader apps would need to be uploaded onto the devices and QR codes generated, printed and laminated. Have all the displays set up the day before the opening of the museum.   ACHASSI133

How will guests know where the museum is going to be and when it will be open?

Students work in small groups to create signs, invitations and advertisements for the museum. They can use posters and other items from their displays in the advertisements. Send invitations to parents, community members and other people in the school and place advertisements in the school newsletter and in community locations. On the day of the opening, display other signage around the school.  ACHASSI133

Activity 4: Sharing assessment presentations

Students share their presentations for the summative assessment task.  ACELY1710  Peers assess each presentation using the Assessment task 2 rubric as a guide. Presentations are selected for inclusion in the museum. 

Activity 5: More discussion about rights

Gather in a social circle for a final discussion about rights. Students will recall the source material that had the greatest influence on their thinking about the topic. Place a large sheet of paper on a wall. Students can use thick coloured textas to write snippets of information about the rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in Australia. These might include dates, significant events, titles of literary texts, words describing emotions or quotes they remember. They should fill the sheet, adding small drawings to complement the written text. The finished product will be displayed prominently in the museum and then in the classroom as an evaluation of the unit.