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Sample map: Australian Curriculum – History

This sample map shows explicit reference to Asia content in the Australian Curriculum for History.

Download full Sample map of Asia related content in Australian Curriculum: History (PDF 257 KB)


Level description

Personal and Family Histories

The Foundation curriculum provides a study of personal and family histories. Students learn about their own history and that of their family; this may include stories from different cultures and other parts of the world. As participants in their own history, students build on their knowledge and understanding of how the past is different from the present.

Content descriptions and Elaborations
  • using images and stories to identify similarities and differences between students’ families and those of other children (in their class and in stories about children in other places, for example the countries of Asia) (ACHHK002)
  • making a calendar of commemorative events that students, their family and friends celebrate, for example birthdays, religious festivals (such as Easter, Ramadan, Buddha day, feast of Passover), family reunions and community commemorations (NAIDOC week, and ANZAC day) and discussing why they are important (ACHHK003)
  • recognising that stories of the past may differ depending on who is telling them (for example listening to stories about the same event related by two different people such as a mother and a grandmother) (ACHHK004)

Year 1

Level description

Present and Past Family Life

The Year 1 curriculum provides a study of present and past family life within the context of the students’ own world. Students learn about similarities and differences in family life by comparing the present with the past. They begin to explore the links, and the changes that occur, over time.

Content descriptions and Elaborations
  • discussing how some cultures, for example the Chinese, describe a child as being one year old on the day they are born (ACHHK029)
  • identifying dates and changes that have personal significance (for example birthdays, moving house, changing schools, religious and school holidays), marking these on a calendar and counting down time, as well as noting that events of personal significance may differ according to children’s cultural backgrounds (ACHHK029)

Year 2

Level description

The Past in the Present

The Year 2 curriculum provides a study of local history. Students explore, recognise and appreciate the history of their local area by examining remains of the past and considering why they should be preserved.

Content descriptions and Elaborations

The importance today of an historical site of cultural or spiritual significance; for example, a community building, a landmark, a war memorial (ACHHK045)

  • identifying and designing a local historical tour of a site (for example one related to a particular cultural group) (ACHHK045)

Year 3

Level description

Community and Remembrance

The Year 3 curriculum provides a study of identity and diversity in both a local and broader context. Moving from the heritage of their local area, students explore the historical features and diversity of their community as represented in symbols and emblems of significance, and celebrations and commemorations, both locally and in other places around the world.

Content descriptions and Elaborations

The role that people of diverse backgrounds have played in the development and character of the local community (ACHHK062)

  • using local sites, museums and online collections (for the local area or state/territory) to identify the cultural groups within the local community and their influence over time (for example as reflected in architecture, commercial outlets and religious buildings) and comparing the development of the local community with another community (ACHHK062)

Celebrations and commemorations in other places around the world; for example, Bastille Day in France, Independence Day in the USA, including those that are observed in Australia such as Chinese New Year, Christmas Day, Diwali, Easter, Hanukkah, the Moon Festival and Ramadan (ACHHK064)

  • comparing the significance of national days in different countries, looking at why they developed and elements they have in common (ACHHK064)
  • viewing on the internet videos of celebrations of significant days, such as Independence Day in Greece (ACHHK064)
  • investigating the origins and significance of international celebrations or commemorations (for example the International Day of Peace) and of celebrations important to particular cultural groups in Australia and in other countries (ACHHK064)
  • identifying the meaning of celebrations from different perspectives (for example Australia Day for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples compared with Anglo-Australians) (ACHHS069)

Year 4

Level description

First Contacts

The Year 4 curriculum introduces world history and the movement of peoples.

Content descriptions and Elaborations

The journey(s) of AT LEAST ONE world navigator, explorer or trader up to the late eighteenth century, including their contacts with other societies and any impacts. (ACHHK078)

  • identifying key individuals and groups who established contacts with Africa, the Americas, Asia and Oceania during the age of discovery; examining the journey of one or more of these explorers (for example Christopher Columbus, Vasco de Gama, Ferdinand Magellan) using internet mapping tools, and examining their impact on one society (ACHHK078)
  • using navigation maps to reconstruct the journey of one or more explorers (ACHHK078)
  • investigating networks of exchange between different groups of people (ACHHK078)
  • The nature of contact between Aboriginal people and/or Torres Strait Islanders and others, for example, the Macassans and the Europeans, and the effects of these interactions on, for example families and the environment (ACHHK080)
  • investigating contact with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples before 1788 (for example the repulsion of the Dutch at Cape Keerweer in 1606 and the trade between the Macassans and the Yolngu people) (ACHHK080)

Year 5

Level description

The Australian Colonies

The Year 5 curriculum provides a study of colonial Australia in the 1800s. Students look at the founding of British colonies and the development of a colony. They learn about what life was like for different groups of people in the colonial period. They examine significant events and people, political and economic developments, social structures, and settlement patterns.

Content descriptions and Elaborations

The impact of a significant development or event on a colony; for example, frontier conflict, the gold rushes, the Eureka Stockade, internal exploration, the advent of rail, the expansion of farming, drought. (ACHASSK108)

  • investigating an event or development and explaining its economic, social and political, impact on a colony (for example the consequences of frontier conflict events such as the Myall Creek Massacre, the Pinjarra Massacre; the impact of South Sea Islanders on sugar farming and the timber industry; the impact of the Eureka Stockade on the development of democracy) (ACHASSK108)

The reasons people migrated to Australia from Europe and Asia, and the experiences and contributions of a particular migrant group within a colony (ACHASSK109)

  • identifying the reasons why people migrated to Australia in the 1800s (for example as convicts; assisted passengers; indentured labourers; people seeking a better life such as gold miners; and those dislocated by events such as the Industrial Revolution, the Irish Potato Famine and the Highland Clearances) (ACHASSK109)
  • investigating the experiences and contributions of a particular migrant group within a colony (for example Germans in South Australia, Japanese in Broome, Afghan Cameleers in the Northern Territory, Chinese at Palmer River, Pacific Islanders in the Torres Strait) (ACHASSK109)
  • identifying the different motives and experiences of individuals and groups in the past (for example the reasons people migrated to Australia and their diverse experiences) (ACHHS104)

Year 6

Level description

Australia as a nation

The Year 6 curriculum moves from colonial Australia to the development of Australia as a nation, particularly after 1900. Students explore the factors that led to Federation and experiences of democracy and citizenship over time. Students understand the significance of Australia’s British heritage, the Westminster system, and other models that influenced the development of Australia’s system of government. Students learn about the way of life of people who migrated to Australia and their contributions to Australia’s economic and social development.

Content descriptions and Elaborations

Stories of groups of people who migrated to Australia (including from ONE Asian country) and the reasons they migrated, such as World War II and Australian migration programs since the war (ACHASSK136)

  • comparing push and pull factors that have contributed to people migrating to Australia (for example economic migrants and political refugees) (ACHASSK136)
  • exploring individual narratives using primary sources (for example letters, documents and historical objects); interviewing and recording an oral history; dramatising the journey and circumstances of arrival based on the sources (ACHASSK136)
  • describing cultural practices related to family life, beliefs and customs of newly-arrived migrant groups and comparing these with those of the communities in which they settled within Australia (ACHASSK136)
  • connecting stories of migration to students’ own family histories (where appropriate) (ACHASSK136)

The contribution of individuals and groups to the development of Australian society since Federation (ACHASSK137).

  • examining population data that show the places of birth of Australia’s people at one or more points of time in the past and today, and using digital technologies to process and record this data (ACHHK116)
  • investigating the role of specific cultural groups in Australia’s economic and social development (for example the cattle industry, the Snowy Mountains Scheme, the pearling industry) (ACHHK116)
  • considering notable individuals in Australian public life across a range of fields (for example the arts, science, sport, education), including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, a range of cultural and social groups, and women and men drawn from the Australian Living Treasures list or from the Australian Dictionary of Biography) (ACHHK116)
  • identifying and developing a timeline of world unrest that contributed to migration in the 1900s (for example the World Wars, the Vietnam War, the war in the former Yugoslavia, the Tiananmen Square massacre, the war in Sudan) (ACHHS117)

Locate information related to inquiry questions in a range of sources. (ACHHS121)

  • using pro formas and datasheets to develop questions and record information and sources about the movement of people to Australia in the twentieth century and the increasing cultural diversity of present day Australia (ACHHS121)

Year 7

Level description

The Ancient World

The Year 7 curriculum provides a study of history from the time of the earliest human communities to the end of the ancient period, approximately 60 000 BC (BCE) – c.650 AD (CE). It was a period defined by the development of cultural practices and organised societies. The study of the ancient world includes the discoveries (the remains of the past and what we know) and the mysteries (what we do not know) about this period of history, in a range of societies including Australia, Egypt, Greece, Rome, China and India.

Content descriptions and Elaborations

The Asian world: India Option

The physical features of India (such as fertile river plains) and how they influenced the civilisation that developed there (ACDSEH006)

Roles of key groups in Indian society in this period (such as kings, priests, merchants, peasants), including the influence of law and religion (ACDSEH044)

The significant beliefs, values and practices of Indian society, with a particular emphasis on ONE of the following areas: everyday life, warfare, or death and funerary customs (ACDSEH045)

Contacts and conflicts within and/or with other societies, resulting in developments such as the expansion of trade, the rise of the Mauryan Empire (including its material remains), and the spread of philosophies and beliefs (ACDSEH046)

The role of a significant individual in Indian history such as Chandragupta Maurya or Ashoka (ACDSEH133)

The Asian world: China Option

The physical features of China (such as the Yellow River) and how they influenced the civilisation that developed there (ACDSEH005)

Roles of key groups in Chinese society in this period (such as kings, emperors, scholars, craftsmen, women), including the influence of law and religion. (ACDSEH041)

The significant beliefs, values and practices of Chinese society, with a particular emphasis on ONE of the following areas: everyday life, warfare, or death and funerary customs (ACDSEH042)

Contacts and conflicts within and/or with other societies, resulting in developments such as the expansion of trade, the rise of Imperial China (including its material remains), and the spread of philosophies and beliefs (ACDSEH043)

The role of a significant individual in ancient Chinese history such as Confucius or Qin Shi Huang (ACDSEH132)

Historical Skills

Explanation and communication

Develop texts, particularly descriptions and explanations that use evidence from a range of sources that are acknowledged (ACHHS213)

  • outlining the significance of a past event, providing reasons for the event and referring to relevant evidence. (ACHHS213)
  • describing the social structure of the ancient society, using evidence from sources such as artwork and written accounts (ACHHS213)

Year 8

Level description

The Ancient to the Modern World

The Year 8 curriculum provides study of history from the end of the ancient period to the beginning of the modern period, c.650 AD (CE) – 1750. This was when major civilisations around the world came into contact with each other. Social, economic, religious, and political beliefs were often challenged and significantly changed. It was the period when the modern world began to take shape.

Content descriptions and Elaborations

The Asia-Pacific world

Angkor/Khmer Empire (c.802 – c.1431)

  • The way of life in the Khmer Empire, including, social, cultural, economic and political features (including the role of the king). (ACDSEH011)
  • The reasons for Angkor’s rise to prominence, including wealth from trade and agriculture (ACDSEH060)
  • The cultural achievements of the Khmer civilisation, including its system of water management and the building of the temples of Angkor (ACDSEH061)
  • Theories of the decline of Angkor, such as the overuse of water resources, neglect of public works as a result of ongoing war, and the effects of climate change (ACDSEH062)

Japan under the Shoguns (c.794 – 1867)

  • The way of life in shogunate Japan, including social, cultural, economic and political features (including the feudal system and the increasing power of the shogun) (ACDSEH012)
  • The role of the Tokugawa Shogunate in reimposing a feudal system (based on daimyo and samurai) and the increasing control of the Shogun over foreign trade. (ACDSEH063)
  • The use of environmental resources in Shogunate Japan and the forestry and land use policies of the Tokugawa Shogunate (ACDSEH064)
  • Theories about the decline of the Shogunate, including modernisation and westernisation, through the adoption of Western arms and technology (ACDSEH065)

Expanding Contacts: Mongol Expansion (c.1206 – c.1368)

  • The nomadic lifestyle of the Mongols and the rise of Temujin (Genghis Khan) (ACDSEH014)
  • The organisation of the Mongol army under Genghis Khan and the treatment of conquered peoples, such as the codification of laws and exemption of teachers, lawyers and artists from taxes (ACDSEH077)
  • The extent of the Mongol expansion as one of the largest land empires in history, including life in China before, during and after the Mongol conquest (ACDSEH078)
  • The consequences of the Mongol expansion, including contributions to European knowledge and trade routes (ACDSEH079)

The Black Death in Asia, Europe and Africa (14th century plague)

  • Living conditions and religious beliefs in the 14th century, including life expectancy, medical knowledge and beliefs about the power of God (ACDSEH015)
  • The role of expanding trade between Europe and Asia in the Black Death, including the origin and spread of the disease (ACDSEH069)
  • The causes and symptoms of the Black Death and the responses of different groups in society to the spread of the disease, such as the flagellants and monasteries (ACDSEH070)
  • The effects of the Black Death on Asian, European and African populations, and conflicting theories about the impact of the plague (ACDSEH071)

Historical Skills

Chronology, terms and concepts

Sequence historical events, developments and periods (ACHHS148)

  • placing historical events in sequence in order to identify broader patterns of continuity and change (for example the Polynesian expansion across the Pacific; the stability of the Angkor/Khmer Empire over many centuries) (ACHHS148)
  • Use historical terms and concepts (ACHHS149)
  • understanding the different meanings of particular terms and concepts when viewed in their historical context, such as feudalism in medieval Europe and Japan (ACHHS149)
Explanation and communication

Use a range of communication forms (oral, graphic, written) and digital technologies (ACHHS157)

  • creating an oral presentation, supported by audio-visual material, to recount the life of Temujin (Genghis Khan) and to explain his contribution to the Mongol world (ACHHS157)

Year 9

Level description

The Making of the Modern World

The Year 9 curriculum provides a study of the history of the making of the modern world from 1750 to 1918. It was a period of industrialisation and rapid change in the ways people lived, worked and thought. It was an era of nationalism and imperialism, and the colonisation of Australia was part of the expansion of European power. The period culminated in World War I 1914-1918, the ‘war to end all wars’.

Content descriptions and Elaborations

Making a Better World?

Movement of peoples (1750-1901)

Changes in the way of life of a group(s) of people who moved to Australia in this period, such as free settlers on the frontier in Australia (ACDSEH084)

Australia and Asia: Asia and the World Option

The key features (social, cultural, economic, political) of ONE Asian society (such as China, Japan, India, Dutch East Indies, India) at the start of the period (ACDSEH093)

  • identifying the territorial extent of Qing China, the role and influence of the Emperor, and the nature of literature, art and architecture at the time (ACDSEH093)

Change and continuity in the Asian society during this period, including any effects of contact (intended and unintended) with European power(s) (ACDSEH094)

The position of the Asian society in relation to other nations in the world around the turn of the twentieth century (that is 1900), including the influence of key ideas such as nationalism (ACDSEH142)

The significance of ONE key event that involved the Asian society and European power(s), including different perspectives of the event at the time (ACDSEH141)

Making a nation

The experiences of non-Europeans in Australia prior to the 1900s (such as the Japanese, Chinese, South Sea Islanders, Afghans) (ACDSEH089)

Living and working conditions in Australia around the turn of the twentieth century (that is 1900) (ACDSEH090)

Key events and ideas in the development of Australian self-government and democracy, including women’s voting rights (ACDSEH091)

Legislation 1901-1914, including the Harvester Judgment, pensions, and the Immigration Restriction Act (ACDSEH092)

Year 10

Level description

The Modern World and Australia

The Year 10 curriculum provides a study of the history of the modern world and Australia from 1918 to the present, with an emphasis on Australia in its global context. The twentieth century became a critical period in Australia’s social, cultural, economic and political development. The transformation of the modern world during a time of political turmoil, global conflict and international cooperation provides a necessary context for understanding Australia’s development, its place within the Asia-Pacific region, and its global standing.

Content descriptions and Elaborations

WWII (1939–45)

An overview of the causes and course of World War II (ACDSEH024)

An examination of significant events of World War II, including the Holocaust and use of the atomic bomb (ACDSEH107)

The experiences of Australians during World War II (such as Prisoners of War (POWs), the Battle of Britain, Kokoda, the Fall of Singapore) (ACDSEH108)

The impact of World War II, with a particular emphasis on the Australian home front, including the changing roles of women and use of wartime government controls (conscription, manpower controls, rationing and censorship) (ACDSEH109)

The significance of World War II to Australia’s international relationships in the twentieth century, with particular reference to the United Nations, Britain, the USA and Asia (ACDSEH110)

The Globalising World: Popular Culture (1945–present)

The changing nature of the music, film and television industry in Australia during the post-war period, including the influence of overseas developments (such as Hollywood, Bollywood and the animation film industry in China and Japan) (ACDSEH122)

Migration experiences (1945–present)

The waves of post-World War II migration to Australia, including the influence of significant world events (ACDSEH144)

The impact of changing government policies on Australia’s migration patterns, including abolition of the White Australia Policy, ‘Populate or Perish’ (ACDSEH145)

The impact of at least ONE world event or development and its significance for Australia, such as the Vietnam War and Indochinese refugees (ACDSEH146)

The contribution of migration to Australia’s changing identity as a nation and to its international relationships (ACDSEH147)

Historical Skills: Historical questions and research

Identify and locate relevant sources, using ICT and other methods (ACHHS186)

  • locating sources for recording oral histories (for example Vietnam War veterans, recent migrants) (ACHHS186)
  • recognising the role of ICT in providing access to sources and the need to ask relevant questions of those sources (for example a Google search for ‘significance of Kokoda’) (ACHHS186)

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