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EDF5703: Collaborative arts education project

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Erin Crosbie

on 1 May 2014

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Transcript of EDF5703: Collaborative arts education project

EDF5703: Collaborative Arts education project
Unit Outline
Lesson One: Introduction to Aboriginal History 
Lesson Two and Three: Stories of the dreaming
Lesson Four: Aboriginal artwork
Lesson Five and Six: Significant places for Aboriginals
Lesson Seven and Eight: The use of natural resources
Lesson Nine: Clashes of culture
Lesson Ten: Completion of the unit

The following unit of work has been designed for grade 4 students, meeting level 4 AusVEL standards across various key learning areas (see appendix one). The central theme for the unit is Australian Aboriginal History and integrates cross-curriculum practices through Literacy, ICT, The Arts and History. This cross curriculum approach was decided upon for this unit as it is vital for students to thoroughly understand and explore the key learning’s rather than simply memorising facts.  Drake (1998) noted that “Interdisciplinary curriculum provides a vehicle for higher-level thinking. When students are challenged to move beyond memorising facts, to pursue a topic in depth, and to see patterns and relationships, they are engaged in constructing knowledge rather than merely accumulating information” (p. 17).

Along with Literacy and ICT; Dance, Drama, Media, Music and Visual Arts have all been integrated throughout the following History unit. Special focus was given to The Arts curriculum in particular as research has proven that when The Arts is integrated into other areas of the curriculum students who participate, out perform those who do not, or whose exposure to The Arts is limited (Sallis, 2006). 

The following unit of work relates closely with the webbed model of integration, whereby the curriculum is viewed through a telescope, “capturing an entire constellation of disciplines at once, using a fertile theme to integrate subject matter” (Fogarty, 1991, p. 9). This approach to curriculum integration gives more ownership of the learning process to the children themselves, differing greatly from the strict structured approach that a Literacy or History unit would normally follow (De Vries & Poston-Anderson, 2001). 

Lesson One: Introduction to Aboriginal History 

Duration: 60 minutes 

Curriculum Integration: History, literacy, ICT and Visual Arts

Focus Questions: 
1. Who are Australia’s Indigenous people and when did they come to Australia?
2. How did Aboriginal and Torres Straight Island people live before European colonisation?
My Place
(episode 23) to give students an introduction into this area of Australian History and the Aboriginal/ European cultural differences. Take notes on the board as the class discusses the focus questions (this will assist with gaining an insight into children's prior knowledge of the topic).

Activity One: Exploring the Aboriginal lifestyle
Break students off into groups and using iPads, computers and books, get students to research these questions for 15 minutes. Each group must bring one fact about how the European colonisation changed the ways Aboriginals lived back to the floor to share with the class. Record these on the board to assist students with the next activity.

Activity Two: Planning and Constructing a Diorama
Refer students to the smartboard and the major differences they discovered (change in landscape, different animals, people ect).
Have students use the procedure format of writing they learnt last term (see appendix two) to draft and plan their dioramas (sketches to be included).
Once drafts are completed and approved, students can begin work on their diorama using a range of mediums (recycled materials, paper, paint and cardboard) to show how Botany Bay may have looked when the Aboriginals inhabited the land (before European colonisation).

Encourage students to create their dioramas based on the way they envision the landscape to have looked, explain that there is no right or wrong. It is important for us to remember that when we are teaching Visual Arts we need to give students freedom and allow for their own self expression to come through in their work. It has been heavily debated by various academics, that Visual Arts processes are most beneficial to the student when they do not have to follow step by step instructions handed out by the teacher, by doing this students tend to loose confidence in their own abilities (Roy, Baker & Hamilton, 2012).

* Students may need an additional lesson to complete their diorama

Arts Practice: Diorama
Lesson Two and Three: Stories of the Dreaming
Duration: 2x 60 minute lessons

Curriculum Integration: Literacy, ICT, History and Dance

Focus Questions:
1. What is the Aboriginal dreamtime?
2. What are some features of an Aboriginal dreaming story (audience/ purpose)?
3. Why did they continue to tell these stories (why were they so important)?
4. How were the stories passed down through the generations? (song, dance, painting and storytelling)

Read and discuss dreamtime stories from books and websites

Activity One: Discoveries
Break students into groups (have resources ready - 2 groups on books, 2 on iPads and 2 on computers). Give each group a focus question and instruct students to record 3 ‘discoveries’ per group about the dreamtime and share as a class (record these on butcher paper to hang up in the class for future reference).

Activity Two: Expression through Dance
Warm up activity

Keep the same groups from activity one and write down all animals that featured in the dreamtime stories on pieces of card - have students choose one animal per group.

Show students the clip from the Sydney Olympics whereby Indigenous dancers told stories of the dreamtime through movement and music:
Sydney Olympics performance
Students are now given the task of representing their animal through mime and dance (taking inspiration from the Sydney Olympics performance).

This activity gives students the opportunity to engage with Aboriginal culture and further understand their way of life through expression and representation. Deans, Meiners & Young (2012) have recongnised this and noted that “young peoples engagement in Dance provides opportunities to not only develop embodied visual, kinaesthetic, and musical cultural languages, vital for early expression but also to further their cultural understanding, and harmony in the 21st century learning contexts at a time of shifting populations and rapid change” (p. 130).

Groups are then to write a short play about the life of their chosen animal and perform this to the class using only mime and movement. Some group members could perform the movements while other members provide the music through clapping and sounds.
Lesson Four: Aboriginal Artwork
Duration: 60 minutes

Integration: Literacy, ICT, History and Visual Arts

Focus Questions:
1. What are some symbols and representations used by Aboriginals and Torres Straight Islanders in their artworks?
2. Who/ what do they represent in their artwork?
3. How do these works compare to other famous Australian artists?

Part Two of the lesson:
Activity Three: Dreaming Vs Narrative (Assessment piece)

During this lesson students are only required to begin planning/ drafting

Breakdown the structure of a dreamtime story (discuss: characters, parts, audience, purpose ect). Examine how these relate to the structure of a narrative, use narrative handouts to remind students of a narrative and what structure it follows (see appendix three).

Students are then to compose a narrative based on the animal they represented in their dance. Give students an inquiry rubric so they can self assess their progress and mark themselves once completed (appendix four). Suggest they complete a brainstorming activity so they can plan their story before they begin writing, hand out a planning sheet for guidance (see appendix five). Students can draw inspiration from any of the dreamtime stories to develop a fictional piece of writing or they can base the narrative on their own experiences.

The final copy of the story will become a fully illustrated story book, students are requested to incorporate the techniques of Aboriginal artists, including the use of dot paintings -as used by tribes when passing on dreamtime stories to different generations (these techniques will be covered in future lessons). Each illustration must showcase a different technique that they have learnt this year (collage, sketch, painting, charcoal, pastels ect).

Choose a volunteer from the class to read another dreamtime story (specifically chosen as the focus is around how Aboriginal people believe in representing themselves through spiritual animals).
Explore this through:

Activity One: Comparing the differences
Show students two portrait paintings that have been created by a modern Australian artist (Margaret Olley - ‘Portrait in mirror’) and an Aboriginal artist (Bede Tungutalum - ‘Owl Man’). Discuss how they are different and why. Compare how each of them represents themselves.

Be sure to prompt questions – e.g. character representation, what colours, lines and patterns does each artist use in their portrait? Guided questioning is helpful in electing responses from students to assist them in developing a deeper understanding of the imagery (Roy, Baker, & Hamilton, 2012).

Activity Two: Portrait Artwork
This final product of this activity will become the back cover of the student’s storybooks. All back covers will be a portrait of the animal they are representing themselves through in their narrative. Students will be required to make a charcoal drawing of their chosen animal emphasising the features of the animal within their portrait (feathers, scales, fur ect – drawing inspiration from both artists discussed in the last activity).

Develop detail by working back into the charcoal drawing with white AND coloured oil pastels ( add human features to incorporate the work of Margaret Olley).

By allowing students to fully illustrate their narratives they have the opportunity to portray more information to their audiences. Children use the Visual Arts to represent thoughts and ideas that they may not know how to communicate through text (Edwards, 2002).

Arts Practice: Animal Portrait
Lesson Five and Six: Significant places for Aboriginals
Duration: Two 60 minute lessons

Integration: Literacy, ICT, History, Visual Arts and Media

Focus Questions:
1. Discuss the significant places in Australia for Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islanders
2. How did they communicate with others in these sites (discuss Aboriginal painting technique - materials, colours, patterns, tones and textures used)?
3. What symbols do they use to represent their stories and lifestyle?

Gather information from books and online resources that tell the tales of the lives of Indigenous people in significant places. Famous places include Uluru, Broome, Kakadu and Kimberley regions. Discuss how Europeans would have known these sites were significant to Aboriginals and Torres Straight Islanders (evidence left/ paintings ect).

Activity One: Mass Media Brochures
Give students the task of individually researching one significant place (using both internet and texts) and make a brochure for tourists traveling to their chosen place for an Aboriginal educational experience.

Sample brochures will be passed around the class to show students examples of good vs bad brochures and how they can design theirs to capture the attention of their audience (colour, pictures, text and format). It is important that students have an audience in mind when creating their brochure so they understand how different texts are targeted to different audiences, especially in mass media (Stewart & Kowaltzke, 2008).

Students must illustrate the brochure to capture the attention of their audience (get them to leave their front cover blank for now).

* Before begining the final copy students MUST draft and edit their work to ensure all mistakes are corrected prior to submitting.

Activity Two: Dot Painting
Introduce another Aboriginal painting technique – dot painting. Show examples of dot paintings and exaplin how Aboriginal tribes used them to tell stories and record historical event in sacred sites. Relate this back to the focus question - how Europeans knew about Indigenous inhabitants/ what evidence they left.

Discuss the colours, symbols and representations used in the sample paintings with students and encourage them to interpret what they might mean before providing them with background information (common symbols fact sheet- see appendix six).

Ask students to produce their own dot paintings to make up the front page of their brochures, ensure they are using the traditional colours and techniques.

This activity gives students the opportunity to apply and develop their arts knowledge through new arts processes and different ways of communicating information, arising from the world around them (Australian Curriculum Assessment and Reporting Authority, 2013).

Arts Practice: Brochure
Lesson Seven and Eight: The use of natural resources
Curriculum Integration: Literacy, History and Music

Duration: Two 40 minute lessons

Focus Questions:
1. What food was gathered? / How did they make shelter? / What tools did they use?
2. How did they use their environment to set up a community?

Activity One: Natural Guides
Take the students outside for a walk around the school and observe all the things in the natural environment that could be used in everyday life.

Discuss ‘Bush Tucker’ - explain that Aboriginals made their dinner from animals, plants and insects (witchetty grubs, gum nuts, eucalyptus trees, flowers ect). Get them to think about what they would use if they had to make their own shelter and dinner, collect samples.

Once back in the classroom have students present their findings to the whole class. Ask them how they would provide their family with entertainment out of the natural resources they saw in nature today? Aboriginal tribes were actively into dance and music, how did they still partake in these activities without our modern day privileges of stereos, instruments ect. Brainstorm (didgeridoos, clapping, paint from rocks, fire ect).

Activity Two: Musical Didgeridoos
Show students a video of an Aboriginal playing traditional didgeridoo music.

Students will then make their own didgeridoos and learn how to play them for a group performance. Use empty poster tubes to construct the instruments

When introducing music to the class the use of everyday resources found in the classroom is an excellent starting place for students to gauge an understanding of pitch and timbre (Jeanneret & Degraffenreid, 2012).

Get students to decorate the didgeridoo traditionally, like the ones they saw in the video (have this playing whilst they are decorating), also print out several images of traditional didgeridoos and place them on the board for reference (see appendix seven).

Traditional music practices
Once all didgeridoos are completed, hand out percussion instruments to 1/3 of the class, instruct students to rhythmically chant the below words over and again as an ostinato.

1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4
Whoosh, Kan-ga-roo, clap, clap, Whoosh, Kan-ga-roo, clap, clap

Transfer the words on to the percussion instruments, Whoosh=shake of the maracas, Kangaroo= shaking of the tambourines and clap, clap = wood blocks being smashed together. As a class complete the pattern, having students in the audience continually chanting the words along with the rhythm (1/3 playing didgeridoos, 1/3 percussion instruments and 1/3 chanting).
Break students off into groups of 3 or 4 and allow them to make their own music using the instruments provided.

It is important to give students time to experiment with making their own sounds and music, Jeanneret & Degraffenreid (2012) have discussed this and noted that it is “essential that children are given the opportunity to explore and experiment with sound and make their own music” to gain a thoroughly understanding and appreciation for the art (p. 406).

Be sure to ask students to think about the rhythm and how they can make it into a song to perform to the class.

*Conclude the lesson with reflection time amd ask students to discuss what they liked about the activity and what they disliked? Ask them to discuss with the person next to them what they would do different next time and what they thought they did well.

Arts Practice: Didgeridoo
Lesson Nine: Clashes of culture
Duration: 60 minutes

Integration: Literacy, ICT, History and Drama

Focus Question:
1. What were the major cultural differences between Aboriginals and European colonists?

Students have previously covered the topic of The First Fleet and European settlers, quickly re-cap on who, what, when, where, why. Brainstorm with the class and encourage all students to contribute one fact to the board.

Discuss how men, women and children had their own roles in Aboriginal culture and only women prepared the food, men hunted ECT. Ask students if they think this was the same with the European colonists? Would their inhabitants have affected the roles the Aboriginal men, women and children played? Why? After learning about both cultures what other cultural clashes do you think they would have faced? Why?
Activity One: Culture Clash
Break students up into five groups.

Make a mind map on the board with the class to highlight the most significant clashes in their cultures after the arrival of the Europeans/ what would have been the biggest problems?
This exercise is a great example of active and collaborative learning whereby all students are involved (Budd, 2004). It is also an excellent tool to connect with non-traditional learners whose learning style is not well served by text-based approaches as it draws upon a “specific topic in a nonlinear fashion and incorporates graphics and colours” (Budd, 2004, p. 36).

Give students one major problem per group (e.g. Indigenous people initially reacted with aggression toward the Europeans in an attempt to make them leave and protect their land) - get them to write a play about the issue.
By requesting students apply their understanding of the issue and transform it into a dramatic play, they are furthering their knowledge of the topic by using drama to re-create ‘active and realistic models of human behaviour through history and experiencing them first hand within the classroom (O’Toole, 2002).

The plays are to be filmed using the classrooms iPads and they can edit them if they please. Props will be allowed. Completed plays (with scripts) will be handed in to the teacher and the whole class can watch the plays in the next lesson.

After all plays have been watched, allow time for self reflection. Give students time to contribute and discuss what other groups did well and what they could improve on next time.

Lesson Ten: Completion of Unit and Assessment
Integration: Literacy, ICT, History and Visual Arts

Duration: 60 minutes

This lesson is required to finish off assessment pieces and bring the unit together. Answer any un-answered questions the students may have about what they have learnt. Go around the class and get them to share at least one fact they have enjoyed from this unit

Activity One: Finishing Assessment
*This lesson is to be included in addition to extra time students have been given throughout the term (outside of this unit) to complete plays and storybooks.

Apply the finishing touches to narrative books or plays. Students are required to complete all illustrations and type up final copies on the computer.
Ensure all students have sufficiently planned, drafted, edited and made the required changes before typing up their books.

Once all are completed allow students time to fill out the inquiry rubric (appendix four) to self assess their work.

*Teachers: take these home and bind together to give to parents as take home gifts (once been marked).
Appendix One: AusVELS
Appendix Two: Procedure writing
Appendix Four: Assessment rubric
Appendix Three: Narrative Writing
Appendix Five: Narrative planner
Appendix Six: Aboriginal symbols handout
Appendix Seven: Images of Didgeridoos
Arts Practice: Narrative book
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