Bringing History to Life
Activities TOC 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

Was Bligh guilty? of what?

Who showed more courage? Bligh? Cook? Flinders?

9:00 AM  -  10:15 PM 
The Importance of Curiosity

and Imagination

Australia asks that we stimulate ". . . students' curiosity and imagination."

Just what does that mean and how can we best make it happen?

How does that change the learning of history?

Activity One - Just what is curiosity and how does it team with imagination to bring history to life?

Activity Two - What history learning activities are most likely to deaden or kill curiosity and interest?

Activity Three - What are the major obstacles to teachers inviting students to delve into the most engaging approaches to learning history?

10:15 - 10:45
Morning Tea

These strategies are outlined in some detail in the online article "A Focus on History, Literacies and ICT." Today's activities are meant to introduce and illustrate some of these learning activities, but acquiring mastery requires months of practice best supported with a peer coaching model such as those suggested by Art Costa or Bruce Joyce.

10:45 - 12:30

Six Strategies to Spark Curiosity, Engagement and Imagination

12:30  -  1:30 PM

1:30 PM - 3:30 PM Six More Strategies to Spark Curiosity, Engagement and Imagination

Note: Each of these strategies can take some time to master as a teacher. Today's session is meant to provide some samples of such learning but the number of hours is not sufficient to establish mastery of the techniques involved. That mastery is best achieved over time as teams of teachers work together in study groups, sharing stories of difficulty and triumph, honing the necessary skills, translating theory into practice.


The Australian Curriculum: History K-10 aims to develop in each student:

  • Interest in, and enjoyment of, historical study for lifelong learning and work, including their capacity and willingness to be active and informed citizens
  • Knowledge, understanding and appreciation of the past and the forces that shape societies, including Australian society
  • Understanding and use of historical concepts, including evidence, continuity and change, cause and effect, significance, empathy, perspectives and contestability
  • Capacity to undertake historical inquiry, including skills in the analysis and use of sources, communication and explanation. (Download PDF)

© 2010 J. McKenzie, all rights reserved. These activities may not be used for professional development without paying a site licensing fee. For information, consult