Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures Illustrations of practice

Exploring different cultural perspectives through two-way teaching


Medina Primary School is a government school located 39km south of the Perth CBD on the traditional lands of the Whadjuk People. The school has an enrolment of 231 students, of whom 28% are Aboriginal.

In this illustration of practice, Years 5 and 6 students explore different cultural perspectives within a HASS unit of learning, through a two-way teaching approach.

OI2: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities maintain a special connection to and responsibility for Country/Place.

OI9: The significant contributions of Aboriginal Peoples and Torres Strait Islander Peoples in the present and past are acknowledged locally, nationally and globally.

OI2: All life forms, including human life, are connected through ecosystems on which they depend for their wellbeing and survival.

OI8: Designing action for sustainability requires an evaluation of past practices, the assessment of scientific and technological developments, and balanced judgements based on projected future economic, social and environmental impacts.

Intercultural Understanding (Level 4)

  • Recognising culture and developing respect | Investigate culture and cultural identity | identify and describe the roles that culture and language play in shaping group and national identities
  • Recognising culture and developing respect | Explore and compare cultural knowledge, beliefs and practices | describe and compare the knowledge, beliefs and practices of various cultural groups in relation to a specific time, event or custom
  • Interacting and empathising with others | Consider and develop multiple perspectives | explain perspectives that differ to expand their understanding of an issue

HASS (Years 5 and 6)

Knowledge and Understanding | Economics and Business (Year 5)

  • The difference between needs and wants and why choices need to be made about how limited resources are used (ACHASSK119)

Inquiry and skills| Analysing (Year 6)

  • Examine different viewpoints on actions, events, issues and phenomena in the past and present (ACHASSI127)


Science (Year 5)

Science Understanding | Chemical sciences

Solids, liquids and gases have different observable properties and behave in different ways ACSSU077

What are the benefits of the two-way approach in the classroom for the students, the non-Aboriginal teacher and the Aboriginal educator?

At the end of the video the Aboriginal educator says that the two-way approach is about students developing understanding and acceptance of cultures of all kinds. How does this approach support the development of the general capabilities in the Australian Curriculum?

What other areas of the curriculum could be developed through this topic of learning?

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