In this learning sequence, students learn about words, chance events, games and superstitions as the basis of making the development of language and the acquisition of knowledge of other cultures relevant to those represented in the classroom.
Where schools have a language program that begins in the early years of schooling, there is an opportunity to integrate some of the language of chance. This can include lucky colours, lucky numbers and expressions associated with luck.
Activity 1: Language of chance
Students discuss the use and meaning of words associated with fairness, luck and chance events such as games involving dice and spinners. A collection of words relating to likelihood is developed using Language of chance the basis of the collection.
Students discuss the meanings of these words and put them into groups having similar meanings.
Activity 2: Being lucky
Students discuss what it means to be 'lucky'. They suggest and discuss their personal lucky numbers, colours and symbols, and compare them with those from other cultures.
They discuss the nature of beliefs or superstitions and consider superstitions held by some people in a variety of cultures, including those from the Asia region. A collection of Superstitions is provided. Additional superstitions can be nominated by the teacher and students to be added and used in the activity.
Students discuss pairs of chance events and are required to identify which of the events is more likely to occur. In some cases, the events might be equally likely to occur. The teacher and/or class can nominate pairs of events to be included and used in the activity.
Activity 3: Legend of the crane
The legend of the crane is one of a number of children's stories about cranes and their association with good luck, happiness and longevity in Japanese culture.
The construction of paper cranes using origami techniques is an optional follow-up activity.
Activity 4: Jan-ken-pon
Students are introduced to the simple game of jan-ken-pon, the Japanese version of the game known in Australia as rock-paper-scissors.
The activity includes photographs of hand gestures used in the game and versions of the game that may be played between pairs of students and teams.
In the early years of schooling students tend to have distorted and mostly self-focused views about what is lucky or unlucky and fair or unfair. As students complete the activities they will begin to recognise and develop their ideas and language associated with chance events. They will describe the likelihood of an event occurring using words that range from impossible to certain.
The activities will assist students to:
develop language associated with chance
explore chance events, including those from the countries of the Asia region.
This module provides opportunities for the class to contribute and include terms, phrases and their own superstitions. .