Human Rights – Civics and Citizenship

Teaching the topic ‘Human Rights’? Then here are two great resources that provide stand alone units or will supplement programs you may already run. Click on the blue title to be taken to the website.

Youth For Human Rights

This website has a whole section for educators and provides hard copies of programs as well as digital options including an iPad app.

“The Youth for Human Rights Education Package is designed for elementary, middle and high school students. It may be used as a full course or as a supplemental resource within another curriculum.”

Youth For Human Rights Website

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Youth For Human Rights iPad App



Civics and Citizenship Education

A complete program which provides PDF handouts and links to online resources.

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Australian Curriculum Human Rights Links 7-10

Year 7 Civics and Citizenship Australian Curriculum:

  • How Australia’s legal system aims to provide justice, including through the rule of law, presumption of innocence, burden of proof, right to a fair trial and right to legal representation (ACHCK050)
  • How values, including freedom, respect, inclusion, civility, responsibility, compassion, equality and a ‘fair go’, can promote cohesion within Australian society (ACHCK052)

Year 8 Civics and Citizenship Australian Curriculum:

  • The freedoms that enable active participation in Australia’s democracy within the bounds of law, including freedom of speech, association, assembly, religion and movement (ACHCK061)

Year 9 Civics and Citizenship Australian Curriculum:

  • The key principles of Australia’s justice system, including equality before the law, independent judiciary, and right of appeal (ACHCK078)

Year 10 Civics and Citizenship Australian Curriculum:

  • The Australian Government’s role and responsibilities at a global level, for example provision of foreign aid, peacekeeping, participation in international organisations and the United Nations (ACHCK091)
  • How Australia’s international legal obligations shape Australian law and government policies, including in relation to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples (ACHCK093)
  • The challenges to and ways of sustaining a resilient democracy and cohesive society (ACHCK094)

Year 1/2 students from Cummins Area School use iPads to retell stories

The following videos show how a Year 1 and 2 class at Cummins Area School used iPads to create multimodal texts to retell stories.

A great way to engage and challenge students to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of stories they have been reading.

Retelling Stories By Creating A Multimodal Text

Retelling stories – students’ perspective

The Forest as told by Year 1/2 students

These videos are from the Teaching and Learning You Tube Channel

Text to Speech – How to make the MacBook and iPad work for students with reading difficulties

It is important that students with reading difficulties receive support to access written text. A great way to support students with reading difficulties is to set up their iPad or MacBook to convert text to speech. This does not replace the need to learn to read but is a way to break down a barrier while students are developing their reading skills.

There are times when it is important and necessary for students to access content in a timely manner so they can get on with their learning. This can't be done if a student with reading difficulties is required to sit and read large chunks of text.

Text to Speech on the iPad

Text to speech on a MacBook

iPad File Management

If you require your students to transfer work back and forth between the school server and school iPads then you need to use the app File Browser. Below is a poster which you can download for yourself and your students as well as a video taking you through the steps to use File Browser.

The poster specifically shows how to move photos and video from the iPad. File Browser allows other files including Pages, Keynote and Numbers to be transferred off the iPad. Just tap the share button, tap open in another app and select File Browser.

Download classroom poster – Filer Browser: Shift photos and Video from the iPad


Stratopherix provides a range file transfer apps for iPad and iPhone including the original File Browser app that we use at PBAS. File Browser is not just useful in a school setting. If you want to connect your iPad and iPhone to your PC, Mac computer, stream music from devices or connect with an Apple TV then check out the range of apps provided by Stratopherix. These apps make it easy to manage files between all your devices at home.

Click here to view all the Stratopherix apps including File Browser (connect all your home devices including PC to iDevices), File Browser for Education, File Browser for Business, File Browser for TV (use with Apple TV) and Music Streamer (live stream your music from your computer to you iDevice).

Gallipoli – the first day


The iPad app Gallipoli – the first day is a great resource with some excellent interactive features including video, audio, interviews and information about the units that served in the campaign and the weapons they used. Through the use of dioramas, animation and narration, you can see the first day of the Gallipoli landing and all its major events (about 15-20mins). You can also go deeper into each event and understand what it was like for the soldiers involved.

There is also an online version which can be accessed here. The online version has the same information, but the quality of the animation is not quite as good as the iPad app – still a great resource for students.

One of the engaging aspects of the iPad app is that it allows students to create an account by entering their name which tracks their progress through the app. As students complete different aspects of the app they achieve various medals and military ranks.

I came across this resource (produced by the ABC) while looking for information on the Australian Curriculum Lessons website to use with my Year 9/10 history class this coming term. I would highly recommend this website if you are looking for lesson ideas linked to the Australian Curriculum.

For teachers at PBAS this app has been put onto the class set of iPads.


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What are your super powers?

Recently I started following the Facebook group  TfEL Teacher Companion which provides great articles and ideas around teaching and learning. If you are on Facebook it is worth following.

Today I found a great idea shared by Tamara Waye around how she used a super hero theme to encourage students to think about their ‘learning super power’ and their ‘learning kryptonite’. A great way to get students to think about their strengths and weaknesses when it comes to learning.

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Australian Curriculum Lesson Plans


I have talked about this website in the past and thought it was timely to put it out there again for teachers who are planning for the second half of the year. The website covers:

English – Foundation to Year 10

Maths – Foundation to Year 10

Science – Foundation to Year 10

History – Foundation to Year 10

Arts – Foundation to Year 10

Note: Some year levels/subjects have limited units of work available.

What made me come back to this resource was a personal need to find resources and information about the Year 9 History unit I am teaching this semester. I have already found a brilliant Gallipoli resource I will definitely be using it with my 9/10 class when we do our depth study on WW1. Below are screen shots of my Year 9 History search on the website.

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All units on the site are directly linked to the Australian Curriculum and provide downloadable lesson plans and links to resources. Even if a lesson plan doesn’t suit your specific needs you may find new resources that you can use with your existing programs.







Year 3/4 Chickens

During term 1 our Year 3/4 class looked after and hatched baby chickens in the classroom. This was done through a program called Living Eggs. Jackie organised all the resources required to set up and hatch the eggs through the Living Eggs program. The class was supplied with fertilised eggs, incubator and other materials needed to successfully hatch and look after the chicks.

Living Eggs supplies:

Embryo eggs, 2-3 days from hatching.

The Living Eggs incubators specially designed for classroom hatching.

A brooder box complete with heat light, bedding, feed and waterer is supplied which allows teachers and children easy observation and access to the chicks.

Teachers Resources, including hundreds of activities directly linked to the National Curriculum are supplied on a CD with the kit.

Colourful wall posters are supplied depicting Life Cycles and Embryo Development, depending on your pupils’ ages.

The kids were very excited throughout the whole program particularly when the eggs hatched. Watching the chicks breaking the eggs and coming out was definitely a highlight for the students (and staff) who got to witness it happen. For those of you who missed the chicks hatching there is a video below.

Student Power Point Diary – All students kept a diary from the time the eggs arrived to the time they left the classroom to go to their new homes (lucky students got to keep the chickens).

Photos and Video

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Publishing to a world wide audience


I have wanted to do this with students for a while and finally had the opportunity to do it with my Year 9 ICT class. The Year 9’s have published a book about Port Broughton to Apple’s iBook store. Click HERE to view and download the book.

The book can only be read in the iBooks app on an iPad or Mac computer.

Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iPad with iBooks 3 or later and iOS 5.1 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

The Year 9 ICT course is all about how students can use their MacBooks more effectively and to show students the possibilities that their MacBooks provide. The book is the end result of students learning how to use the app, iBooks Author.

Prior to the class book being created students developed their understanding of how iBooks Author worked, creating their own books on a country they would like to visit. This allowed me to explicitly teach students how to use iBooks Author.

Once the topic of our class book was decided students were allocated chapters/sections to complete and sent away to collect images and create text for the book. Students completed their work on Word documents and collected images in JPG format. These documents were then Airdropped from their MacBooks to mine. Airdrop is an outstanding feature on the MacBook, iPad and iPhone. It allowed me to easily get multiple photos and Word documents from my 14 students quickly with no USB or cable connection required. The book was put together on my MacBook in iBooks Author with students able show me how they wanted their work formatted.

Once the book was completed the process to publish it from my MacBook to iBooks was reasonably simple. Selecting the Publish function in iBooks Author allows you to enable iTunes Connect and decide if you want to offer your book for free or sell your book. The third step in the process is to download iTunes Producer (through iTunes Connect) and use this to to upload the book to Apple for approval, which took approximately 4 days. My account, which was used to publish the book, is set up book to provide free books only. My understanding is that setting up an account for selling books is a little more complicated.

There are a number of clear benefits to students doing this activity which include:

  1. Publishing to a world wide audience requires a certain level of quality.
    • Understanding that family, friends, teachers and the wider public will be able to access their book meant that students spent considerably more time drafting and editing. Three fifty minute lessons were used for drafting the book. Approximately 50% of students were involved in the first two lessons. In the third lesson 100% of the students were involved in editing the book which was projected onto the whiteboard in its final iBook format.
  2. Learning about and understanding copyright.
    • We didn’t go into great detail but students very clearly understood that permission had to be granted to use most images and that acknowledgement of sources was important. Students also learnt were to find copyright free images like the State Library of South Australia (online collections). Students contacted the Northern Argus, the Port Broughton Bowling Club and Barunga West Council to get permission to use their images while I approached the local caravan park and South Australia Media Gallery. The S.A. Media Gallery required an account to be set up and a written application applying for use of their images.
  3. Students who are interested in writing as a pass time or future career have been exposed to a legitimate and professional way of publishing a book.
  4. I haven’t asked the students yet but I am assuming there is also a certain feeling of accomplishment having contributed to a book that has been formally published. My intention is to ask the students how they felt about the process and if it was a worthwhile experience.

The following images are of pages from the book in the iBooks Author app prior to being published.

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