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>> Back to SpecEd 2019 – Stage 1 – Wish upon a star

Syllabus outcomes for this unit

Select the key learning area to show the list of outcomes.

English

EN1-1A: Communicates with a range of people in informal and guided activities demonstrating interaction skills and considers how own communication is adjusted in different situations.

EN1-2A: Plans, composes and reviews a small range of simple texts for a variety of purposes on familiar topics for known readers and viewers.

EN1-4A: Draws on an increasing range of skills and strategies to fluently read, view and comprehend a range of texts on less familiar topics in different media and technologies.

EN1-6B: Recognises a range of purposes and audiences for spoken language and recognises organisational patterns and features of predictable spoken texts.

EN1-7B: Identifies how language use in their own writing differs according to their purpose, audience and subject matter.

EN1-9B: Uses basic grammatical features, punctuation conventions and vocabulary appropriate to the type of text when responding to and composing texts.

EN1-10C: Thinks imaginatively and creatively about familiar topics, ideas and texts when responding to and composing texts.

EN1-11D: Responds to and composes a range of texts about familiar aspects of the world and their own experiences.

EN1-12E: Identifies and discusses aspects of their own and others’ learning.

Mathematics

MA1-17SP: Gathers and organises data, displays data in lists, tables and picture graphs, and interprets the results.

MA1-14MG: Sorts, describes, represents and recognises familiar three-dimensional objects, including cones, cubes, cylinders, spheres and prisms.

MA1-15MG: Manipulates, sorts, represents, describes and explores two-dimensional shapes, including quadrilaterals, pentagons, hexagons and octagons.

Creative arts

Dance

DAS1.1: Performs dances demonstrating expressive qualities and control over a range of locomotor and non-locomotor movement.

DAS1.2: Explores and selects movement using the elements of dance to make dance express ideas, feelings or moods.

DAS1.3: Gives personal opinions about the dances and their purpose that they view and/or experience.

Drama

DRAS1.1: Takes on roles in drama to explore familiar and imagined situations.

DRAS1.3: Interacts collaboratively to communicate the action of the drama with others

Music

MUS1.1: Sings, plays and moves to a range of music, demonstrating an awareness of musical concepts.

MUS1.2: Explores, creates, selects and organises sound in simple structures.

MUS1.3: Uses symbol systems to represent sounds.

MUS1.4: Responds to a range of music, expressing likes and dislikes and the reasons for these choices.

Visual arts

VAS1.1: Makes artworks in a particular way about experiences of real and imaginary things.

VAS1.2: Uses the forms to make artworks according to varying requirements.

VAS1.3: Realises what artists do, who they are and what they make.

VAS1.4: Begins to interpret the meaning of artworks, acknowledging the roles of artist and audience.

Science | Technologies

Science and technology

ST1-4LW-S: Describes observable features of living things and their environments.

ST1-10ES-S: Recognises observable changes occurring in the sky and on the land and identifies Earth’s resources.

HSIE

History

HT1-1: Communicates an understanding of change and continuity in family life using appropriate historical terms.

HT1-3: Describes the effects of changing technology on people’s lives over time.

PDHPE

PD1-3: Recognises and describes the qualities that enhance inclusive and respectful relationships.

PD1-4: Performs movement skills in a variety of sequences and situations.

PD1-5: Proposes a range of alternatives to solve movement challenges through participation in a range of activities.

PD1-6: Understands contextual factors that influence themselves and others’ health, safety, wellbeing and participation in physical activity.

PD1-7: Explores actions that help make home and school healthy, safe and physically active places.

PD1-8: Participates in a range of opportunities that promote physical activity.

PD1-10: Describes and practises interpersonal skills to promote inclusion to make themselves and others feel they belong.

PD1-11: Incorporates elements of space, time, objects, effort and people in creating and performing simple movement sequences.

Vocabulary words

Teaching and learning activities

Select the activity to display its details.

To print out the following activities, please select the ‘Print this page’ button at the bottom of this screen.

Activity 1 – I wish ...

Learning intention

Students will work together to create a set of data and a corresponding graph. They will speak for one minute about their wish without written prompts.

Success criteria

Students will create a mathematically correct graph representing the data collected by the class. Students will present a one-minute speech about their wish to the class.

Syllabus outcomes

  • MA1-17SP: Gathers and organises data, displays data in lists, tables and picture graphs, and interprets the results.
  • EN1-1A: Communicates with a range of people in informal and guided activities demonstrating interaction skills and considers how own communication is adjusted in different situations.
  • EN1-12E: Identifies and discusses aspects of their own and others’ learning.

Resources

Approximate time

60 minutes

Activity plan

  1. Before the students come in, write ‘I wish …’ on the board. Prepare a pile of sticky notes on each table.
  2. Play the first minute of Pinocchio – The wish scene.
  3. Ask students to write as many wishes as they like, one on each sticky note. The teacher might need to demonstrate or suggest a few. Aim for a range of wishes.
  4. Explain that you are now going to categorise the wishes as a class. Discuss what it means to put things into categories. Put signs up around the room or on the board to create categories. Some suggestions include:
    • I wish I could …
    • I wish I had …
    • I wish I could meet …
    • I wish I knew …
  5. Invite students to put their sticky notes under the correct category. You may wish to do this as a class, or let students identify categories for themselves. If you have no wishes in certain categories, ask students for suggestions. Try to have a different number in each category. Leave the wishes up on the wall for the next few activities.
  6. As a class, discuss how you could show the results of that activity in a graph.  What sort of graph would you use? Collate the data and use tally marks to record the number of wishes.
  7. Create a column graph as a class to display the results of the wishes. Display the graph in the classroom.
  8. All students choose their favourite wish. Ask students to write it in their neatest handwriting on Attachment 1.1 and draw a colourful illustration. While students draw illustrations for their wish, play the video When You Wish Upon a Star by Linda Ronstadt. This song will be featured in the Schools Spectacular 2019 performance.
  9. Each student stands in front of the class and speaks for one minute about their wish. Discuss beforehand how the students could stretch their ideas to span one minute.
  10. After each speaker, ask another student to comment on something that they liked about the speaker’s presentation.

Reflection

Ask students to find somebody else in the school during the next break and ask them what their one wish would be.

Activity 2 – Want or need?

Learning intention

Students will learn to distinguish between a want and a need and will be able to identify different needs in different environments.

Success criteria

Students contribute to group and class discussions and can identify how the environment influences needs.

Syllabus outcomes

  • ST1-4LW-S: Describes observable features of living things and their environments.
  • PD1-7: Explores actions that help make home and school healthy, safe and physically active places.

Resources

  • Attachment 2.1 – Want or need?
  • Attachment 2.2 – What does this animal need?

Approximate time

60 minutes

Activity plan

  1. Review the wishes that students identified in the previous activity. Ask: Were these wants or needs? Discuss.
  2. Hand out Attachment 2.1 then read through the first section with the class. Discuss examples of wants and needs. Students complete the task on the worksheet sorting wants and needs.
  3. Look at the wishes that students brainstormed on sticky notes in the previous activity. Split students into groups and distribute some of these sticky notes. Each group now sorts these into wants or needs. As a class, discuss any that are contentious. Organise the sticky notes on the wall in columns of wants or needs.  Discuss whether most of the wishes were wants or needs. Why?
  4. Hand out Attachment 2.2. Explain that, at this point, students have only talked about human needs. Ask: What about the needs of other living creatures? Split the students into groups and give each group an animal. The groups fill out the worksheet. Gather back as a class and invite each group to describe the needs of its particular animal.
  5. Discuss how different animals have different needs based on the environment in which they live. Ask: Is that the same for humans? Do people living in Switzerland have different needs to people living in Sydney? What about the students in the class? Do they have different needs at home than what they do at school?
  6. As a class, brainstorm what students need at home to keep them safe and healthy (for example, food, shelter, warm clothes, and so on). On another page/board, brainstorm what we need to be safe and healthy at school (for example, rules, a space to learn, warm clothes, food, and so on). Discuss why and how these needs differ between different environments.

Note: You may also create individual questions to use this activity as an assessment opportunity.

Reflection

As they leave, students share one ‘need’ that they think is the most important in their lives.

Activity 3 – Letters

Learning intention

Students will understand the importance of grammar, punctuation and vocabulary for formal letters. Students will know how to use a column graph to display data.

Success criteria

Students create a mathematically correct column graph. Students write persuasive letters to the principal, the P&C and students’ parents/carers.

Syllabus outcomes

  • EN1-7B: Identifies how language use in their own writing differs according to their purpose, audience and subject matter.
  • EN1-9B: Uses basic grammatical features, punctuation conventions and vocabulary appropriate to the type of text when responding to and composing texts.
  • MA1-17SP: Gathers and organises data, displays data in lists, tables and picture graphs, and interprets the results.

Resources

  • Attachment 3.1 – Letters
  • Paper and envelopes
  • Student addresses
  • Thesaurus (online or paper-based)

Approximate time

60 minutes

Activity plan

  1. Review the needs that students identified at school in the previous activity. Explain that in this activity, students can go back to wishing. If they had one wish, what would they wish for at school?
  2. Let students talk to a partner to come up with a wish for school. Ask students to be somewhat realistic (they probably can’t have a roller coaster or a water slide at school!). Give students time to discuss and choose a wish.
  3. Each pair shares their wish with the class. Collate the wishes as a list on the board.
  4. Conduct a vote to find out which is the most popular wish in the class. Each student can vote exactly three times using raised hands. Give them time to decide. Keep a tally mark of the results. Discuss results with the class.
  5. Remind students of when they created a column graph in Activity 1. Create another column graph of the results. More advanced students might be able to create their own graph. Otherwise, do it as a whole class. Discuss the wish that won the vote.
  6. Ask the class whom they might have to approach to grant their wish. The principal? The P&C? What would be the best way to ask them? Would you just go up to them in the playground and say what you wanted? Would you call them on the phone? Would you write them a letter? Discuss why a letter would be the most appropriate way to persuade a person in power to grant your wish.
  7. Hand out Attachment 3.1.
  8. Ask whether any students have ever written or received a letter. Have a quick look at the two letters. Ask what differences the students see straight away. Discuss some of the key differences (length, formality, vocabulary). Why do they think it makes a difference?
  9. As a class, write a letter to the principal or the P&C requesting the most popular wish. Focus on the vocabulary and format of the letter.
  10. To improve the vocabulary in the letter, encourage students to use a thesaurus. Demonstrate how to use a thesaurus (either online or paper-based). Read through the letter together to make sure that students are happy with the final product.
  11. Ask the students: If they could make a wish at home, what would it be? Discuss.  Have students write their own formal letter to their parents/carers requesting their wish. Invite students to use their thesaurus again.
  12. Address the class letter to the principal/P&C and put in an envelope. Ask students to write their addresses on envelopes with their letters to send home. Convey the letter to the principal or P&C.
  13. After this activity, request that the principal or P&C come to talk to the students about their letter. Even if their wish can’t be granted, the principal/P&C should discuss the letter and affirm its effectiveness.

Note: This activity could be used as an assessment opportunity.

Reflection

Students tell a partner about their personal home wish.

Activity 4 – Some big wishes

Learning intention

Students will comprehend Isla’s story about her wish and learn to make inferences about her feelings. Students will understand some of the factors that affect other children’s health and wellbeing.

Success criteria

Students write appropriate paragraphs describing Isla’s story and are able to empathise with others and recognise their own health, safety and wellbeing needs.

Syllabus outcomes

  • EN1-4A: Draws on an increasing range of skills and strategies to fluently read, view and comprehend a range of texts on less familiar topics in different media and technologies.
  • PD1-6: Understands contextual factors that influence themselves and others’ health, safety, wellbeing and participation in physical activity.

Resources

Approximate time

30-45 minutes

Activity plan

  1. Review the wishes that students have expressed already in this unit. Ask whether students have heard of the Make-A-Wish foundation. Discuss what it involves.
  2. Watch Isla’s wish – Make-A-Wish Australia. Ask students to write at least two sentences explaining what Isla’s wish was and why she would need help to achieve her wish. Invite students to predict how Isla would feel if she achieved her wish. Discuss the responses.
  3. Watch the follow-up video, Isla catches snowflakes on her wish – Make-A-Wish Australia. Have students write a paragraph describing how Isla’s wish was granted and how they feel about it.
  4. Discuss as a class why people donate money to organisations like Make-A-Wish.  Consider ways that the class might be able to help fundraise for an organisation like this. One suggestion is the ‘Wear What You Wish’ dress up day (see Wear What You Wish – Make-A-Wish Australia).
  5. If your class or school decides to go ahead with a fundraiser for this organisation, the class should work together to write a persuasive letter (using the letter in the previous activity as a model) to be circulated in the school newsletter or sent out to parents/carers. One of the students could even do a presentation at an assembly.

Note: This activity could be used as an assessment opportunity.

Reflection

Students share as a class what they would wear on ‘Wear What You Wish’ dress up day.

Activity 5 – Everybody wants to participate!

Learning intention

Students will work together to modify known games to suit students with various disabilities.

Success criteria

Students adapt games to be more accessible and inclusive for students with various disabilities.

Syllabus outcomes

  • PD1-4: Performs movement skills in a variety of sequences and situations.
  • PD1-5: Proposes a range of alternatives to solve movement challenges through participation in a range of activities.
  • PD1-8: Participates in a range of opportunities that promote physical activity.
  • PD1-10: Describes and practises interpersonal skills to promote inclusion to make themselves and others feel they belong.
  • PD1-11: Incorporates elements of space, time, objects, effort and people in creating and performing simple movement sequences.

Resources

Approximate time

45 minutes

Activity plan

  1. Review what the students saw in the last activity and some of the physical challenges that other kids experience. Be conscious of any students in your class or school who might have physical challenges.
  2. Explain that in this activity, the students are going to play some of their favourite games, but with a twist. Choose a simple but active game like musical chairs. Play a couple of rounds. Tell the students that they now need to imagine that they have a student in the class who uses a wheelchair or crutches. Brainstorm how they could adjust the game so that everybody could play. Play a couple of rounds of the modified game.
  3. Choose another popular game such as handball. Play a couple of rounds. Tell the students that they now need to imagine that they have a student with a vision impairment in the class. Brainstorm how they could adjust the game so that everybody could play. Play a couple of rounds of the modified game.
  4. Explain that games that don’t eliminate players can often mean that everyone can participate. Suggest that the class sit down in two teams and have a go at playing ‘sitting volleyball’.
  5. Continue to modify other games if time allows. You could also extend this activity into some research about Paralympic sports and Australian Paralympic athletes.
  6. See further teaching resources and videos from:
  7. Consider requesting a visit from a Paralympic athlete from the NSW Premier’s Sporting Challenge Ambassador program.

Note: This activity could be used as an assessment opportunity.

Reflection

Discuss how the students felt playing the modified games. Ask the class: Why is it important to make sure that everybody can participate?

Activity 6 – Reach!

Learning intention

Students will learn how to sing a song and choreograph a dance to a song that focuses on inclusion.

Success criteria

Students work together in groups to choreograph a dance representing the idea of inclusion.

Syllabus outcomes

  • MUS1.1: Sings, plays and moves to a range of music, demonstrating an awareness of musical concepts.
  • MUS1.4: Responds to a range of music, expressing likes and dislikes and the reasons for these choices.
  • PD1-3: Recognises and describes the qualities that enhance inclusive and respectful relationships.
  • DAS1.1: Performs dances demonstrating expressive qualities and control over a range of locomotor and non-locomotor movement.
  • DAS1.2: Explores and selects movement using the elements of dance to make dance express ideas, feelings or moods.
  • DAS1.3: Gives personal opinions about the dances and their purpose that they view and/or experience.

Resources

Approximate time

60 minutes

Activity plan

  1. As the students walk into class, play the song Reach by S Club 7 in the background. Discuss what students thought of the song.
  2. Put these lyrics on the board:
    We've got to all stick together
    Good friends, there for each other
    Never ever forget that
    I've got you and you've got me
    Discuss the meaning of these lyrics. What does it look like when we all stick together at school? Brainstorm.
  3. Hand out Attachment 6.1 and learn to sing the song as a class.
  4. Get the students on their feet and invite students to follow basic arm, leg and head movements as a class (for example, jump, head roll, arm worm). Ask students to think of a movement that represents ‘sticking together’. Give an example: a high-five, do-si-do, link arms, and so on. Allow students time to decide on their own movement.
  5. Break the students into small groups and ask them to put their movements together to choreograph a dance to the chorus of the song, expressing the theme, ‘sticking together’. Ask students to listen to the music and lyrics for ideas and to think about using high and low movements.
  6. Each group performs their dance for the class. After each performance, the audience discusses the way that the group conveyed the idea of sticking together in their dance.
  7. For more inspiration, see Teaching dance to primary students (The Arts Unit Digital Engagement videos).

Note: This activity could be used as an assessment opportunity.

Reflection

As students leave, play the song in the background so they can dance as they leave the room.

Activity 7 – Sing me to sleep

Learning intention

Students will understand how music, dance and art can be used to convey a mood.

Success criteria

Each student creates an artwork which reflects the mood of Brahms’ Lullaby and is able to move expressively to the music.

Syllabus outcomes

  • DAS1.1: Performs dances demonstrating expressive qualities and control over a range of locomotor and non-locomotor movement.
  • DAS1.2: Explores and selects movement using the elements of dance to make dance express ideas, feelings or moods.
  • MUS1.1: Sings, plays and moves to a range of music, demonstrating an awareness of musical concepts.
  • VAS1.1: Makes artworks in a particular way about experiences of real and imaginary things.
  • VAS1.2: Uses the forms to make artworks according to varying requirements.

Resources

Approximate time

60 minutes

Activity plan

  1. As students enter the room, play the song Reach by S Club 7 from the previous activity. Review what the song is about and what the students like about it. Ask how the song makes them feel. Discuss as a class: Do we always want music to make us feel like dancing? What other purposes can music serve? For example, background music makes us feel tense in scary movies.
  2. Ask students: What is a lullaby? What sort of music is this? What purpose does it serve?
  3. Invite the class to listen closely to Brahms’ Lullaby. Is the music fast or slow? Is it loud or quiet? Discuss how it makes them feel.
  4. Play Brahms’ Lullaby again. Ask the students to move to the music, showing how the lullaby makes them feel (for example, swaying movements with arms, stretching arms). Discuss the reasons behind the movements students used.
  5. Explain how mood is created through dance and music. Ask the class: How can we also convey mood through colour? If you were to draw a picture that reflects this lullaby, what colours would you use?
  6. Play the lullaby again while you get students to follow you making marks inspired by the music. Alternate between pencils, textas, pastels, paint, and so on, to draw different quality lines, dots and swirls in time with the music to create an abstract artwork. Teachers should choose art materials for this activity to suit their class.

Reflection

The class plays the game Heads Down, Thumbs Up to close.

Activity 8 – Lullabies around the world

Learning intention

Students will identify key similarities and differences between lullabies from three different countries. Students will identify changes in bedtime routines throughout history and the role of technology in these changes.

Success criteria

Students correctly identify similarities and differences between the lullabies. Students recognise the changing role of technology in bedtime routines for children over time.

Syllabus outcomes

  • MUS1.4: Responds to a range of music, expressing likes and dislikes and the reasons for these choices.
  • HT1-1: Communicates an understanding of change and continuity in family life using appropriate historical terms.
  • HT1-3: Describes the effects of changing technology on people’s lives over time.

Resources

Approximate time

75 minutes

Activity plan

  1. As students enter the room, play Brahms’ Lullaby from the previous activity. Review the features of a lullaby. Ask the students whether they think lullabies are only sung in Australia. Do they think there are lullabies in other countries? Would they sound the same?  What could be similar and different? Students discuss these questions with a partner.
  2. As a class, brainstorm different words that you could use to describe a lullaby (for example, calm, relaxing, sleepy, tranquil, sweet, peaceful, slow, soft, quiet, gentle, dreamy, drowsy, and so on). Write these on the board.
  3. Explain that you are going to listen to three different lullabies from around the world. Students will work with their partner to fill out Attachment 8.1. As you play each lullaby, students are to write down any words that they can think of to describe what they hear, including those on the board.
  4. Play Lullaby of Nepal. The video features an animation of the lullaby. At this point do not show the video, just let students hear the lullaby and write words to describe the music. Briefly discuss some of the answers.
  5. Play Lullaby of Mexico. Again, do not show the video at this point. Students fill in the worksheet and discuss briefly as a class.
  6. Play Lullaby of Greece. Again, do not show the video at this point. Students fill in the worksheet and discuss briefly as a class.
  7. Discuss the similarities and differences between each song and the lullaby the class liked most.
  8. Show students the video clips of the lullabies from earlier in the activity. They might wish to discuss whether the animation matched their interpretation of the lullaby.
  9. Ask students to think about what happens when they go to bed. Do their parents/carers sing them a lullaby? Do they read a story? Write down on the board all of the things that students do just before bed (podcast, audiobook, story, lullaby).
  10. Ask students to think about how things might have been different in the past.  What would parents/carers have done to put children to sleep back then? Write students’ suggestions on the board.
  11. As a class, discuss the differences between the two lists. What role has shifting technology played in these changes? For example, there were no lights to read by in the past, the introduction of radio/internet changed entertainment and communication, not everybody could read in the past, and so on.

Reflection

Ask students to go home and ask an older family member what happened just before they went to sleep as a child.

Activity 9 – Star light, star bright

Learning intention

Students will write their own basic lullaby lyrics and compose a musical accompaniment. These will be performed for the class and recorded.

Success criteria

In pairs, students write their own short rhyming lullaby and compose a musical accompaniment.

Syllabus outcomes

  • EN1-2A: Plans, composes and reviews a small range of simple texts for a variety of purposes on familiar topics for known readers and viewers.
  • EN1-10C: Thinks imaginatively and creatively about familiar topics, ideas and texts when responding to and composing texts.
  • EN1-11D: Responds to and composes a range of texts about familiar aspects of the world and their own experiences.
  • MUS1.2: Explores, creates, selects and organises sound in simple structures.
  • MUS1.3: Uses symbol systems to represent sounds.

Resources

  • Star Light, Star Bright – traditional nursery rhyme (anonymous)
  • Star Light, Star Bright (YouTube)
  • Simple recording equipment (for example, iPads)
  • Collection of simple classroom instruments (triangles, bells, clap sticks, shakers, xylophones, tambourines, chimes and similar)
  • For more ideas and training on teaching musical notation, see Vocal Ease MORE (NSW Department of Education music professional learning resource for Stages 1-3)

Approximate time

75 minutes

Activity plan

  1. Stand in front of the class and recite the following well-known rhyme Star Light, Star Bright.
    Star light, star bright,
    First star I see tonight,
    I wish I may, I wish I might,
    Have the wish I wish tonight.
    Ask students whether they have heard the rhyme.
  2. Ask the students: What kind of text is this? (Poem.) What makes it a poem? For example, rhyming words, short phrases rather than full sentences, and so on.
  3. Discuss what rhyming words are. Find the rhyming words in the short poem. Where in the line are they?
  4. Explain that the students are going to write their own four-line poem, but this time it will be about the moon. Students will work in pairs. Their poem will also need to have rhyming words at the end of each line.
  5. Brainstorm some words that rhyme with ‘moon’ (for example, soon, tune, bedroom, room, June).
  6. Each poem will start with the same first line. Write it on the board.
    Out of my window I see the moon.
    As a class, come up with a second line that ends with a word that rhymes with ‘moon’. Write it on the board.
  7. Each pair then goes back to their table and finishes the last two lines on their own, with new ‘moon’ rhyming words at the end of each line.
  8. The class comes back together, and each pair shares their poem.
  9. Remind students of the Star Light, Star Bright poem. Explain that these simple poems are often put to music and become a lullaby (like in the previous activity). Play this song version of Star Light, Star Bright.
  10. Explain that each pair is now going to turn their poem into a lullaby. Demonstrate using one of the pair poems and write it on the board. Using some simple classroom instruments (triangles, bells, clap sticks, shakers, xylophones, chimes and similar), work with the class to compose a simple piece of music to accompany the poem.
  11. Review the features of a lullaby from the previous activity – slow tempo, quiet sounds, music that flows, and so on. Depending on the class, you could introduce the musical terms for these concepts at this point.
  12. Discuss the fact that if we don’t write our music down, we usually forget how it goes. There are complicated ways to write down music, but we can use simple notation as well. For example, we could put a small cross above the words when we shake a tambourine or draw a triangle where you want to strike the triangle instrument. Demonstrate how to do this with the example poem.
  13. After this, each pair works on their own composition, writing their music using this informal notation.
  14. Each pair records their song using classroom recording devices such as iPads.

Note: This activity could be used as an assessment opportunity.

Reflection

Pairs perform their songs for the class and display their written music on the walls.

Activity 10 – Twinkle, twinkle, little star

Learning intention

Students will understand common features of nursery rhymes and how nursery rhymes are passed on through song. Students will create their own stained-glass stars to use in a performance of Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.

Success criteria

Students perform the song Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star with their stained-glass stars, with a video recorded at the end of the activity.

Syllabus outcomes

  • EN1-6B: Recognises a range of purposes and audiences for spoken language and recognises organisational patterns and features of predictable spoken texts.
  • VAS1.1: Makes artworks in a particular way about experiences of real and imaginary things.
  • MUS1.4: Responds to a range of music, expressing likes and dislikes and the reasons for these choices.

Resources

  • Attachment 10.1 – Stained-glass stars.  Equipment: clear contact, two star cut-outs or drawings for each student, silver and gold glitter, yellow tissue paper, popsicle sticks, string/yarn, glue sticks, sticky tape and scissors
  • Simple recording equipment (for example, iPad)
  • Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star by Jewel (YouTube)

Approximate time

60 minutes

Activity plan

  1. Remind students of the rhyme that they learnt in the previous activity. Explain that these are also often known as nursery rhymes. Make a list of nursery rhymes as a class.
  2. Create a list of similarities that these nursery rhymes have in common (for example, use of rhyming words, short in length, often about animals, and so on).
  3. As a class, discuss why we teach children nursery rhymes. What is the purpose? (develop language, how to rhyme, sometimes basic counting).
  4. Focus on the nursery rhyme Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star. Sing it several times as a class. Let the students create movements to go with the song.
  5. Show the class how to draw a star using a continuous line, breaking the process down into individual components. Ask students to follow your directions, drawing a continuous line star with their finger in the air, on their partner’s back, on the desk, and so on.
  6. Guide students as they make two ‘stained-glass’ stars (see the instructions in Attachment 10.1) Students draw two stars of their own to cut out or use the template in Attachment 10.1 (depending on the class).
  7. While students make their stars, play the song version of Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star by Jewel. Encourage students to sing along.
  8. Ask the students to comment on the song. Is it like the nursery rhyme? How is it similar and different? Do they like it? Why or why not?
  9. Once the stars are completed and attached to popsicle sticks, have the students perform the song, waving their stained-glass stars during the song. Record the song to share later.
  10. Display the stained-glass stars on the windows of the classroom.

Reflection

Show students the recording of their performance of Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.

Activity 11 – Why do stars twinkle?

Learning intention

Students will understand what a star is and why it appears to twinkle in the night sky and use this knowledge to create an information text about stars.

Success criteria

Students create an appropriately formatted and accurate information text about stars.

Syllabus outcomes

  • EN1-4A: Draws on an increasing range of skills and strategies to fluently read, view and comprehend a range of texts on less familiar topics in different media and technologies.
  • EN1-2A: Plans, composes and reviews a small range of simple texts for a variety of purposes on familiar topics for known readers and viewers.
  • ST1-10ES-S: Recognises observable changes occurring in the sky and on the land and identifies Earth’s resources.

Resources

Approximate time

75 minutes

Activity plan

  1. As the students walk in, play Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star by Jewel from the previous activity.
  2. Once seated, brainstorm with the class all that they already know about stars.
  3. Ask the students where they would go to if they wanted to know more about stars (for example, websites, YouTube, or the library). Talk about the different kinds of texts where you can find information. How are they similar? How are they different? What do all information texts have in common? List these on the board.
  4. Explain the first part of the task to the students. They are going to view and/or read three different types of information texts about stars. During or after reading or viewing each text, the students will fill out the questions on the worksheet – Attachment 11.1.
  5. Show Text 1 – Why do Stars Twinkle? Help students to answer the Text 1 questions on the worksheet.
  6. Put Text 2 (Attachment 11.2) on the whiteboard or hand out to the class. Read it together as a class or individually. Help students to answer the Text 2 questions on the worksheet.
  7. On the whiteboard, show Text 3 – Astronomy for Kids – Stars. You could either work through this page as a class or have students go to this page on computers themselves. Help students to answer the Text 3 questions on the worksheet.
  8. Discuss some of the facts that students have written down on their worksheets.
  9. Students now work in pairs to create their own information text about stars in the form of a poster. They should include a heading, border, drawings or labelled diagrams, subheadings and information. Point out all of the features of information texts that the class listed earlier in the activity.

Note: This activity could be used as an assessment opportunity.

Reflection

Students share their posters with the class and read their favourite fact about stars. Display the posters in the classroom.

Activity 12 – What about the moon?

Learning intention

Students will learn about the phases and shape of the moon.

Success criteria

Students can correctly identify the different phases of the moon and the differences between a circle and a sphere.

Syllabus outcomes

  • ST1-10ES-S: Recognises observable changes occurring in the sky and on the land and identifies Earth’s resources.
  • MA1-14MG: Sorts, describes, represents and recognises familiar three-dimensional objects, including cones, cubes, cylinders, spheres and prisms.
  • MA1-15MG: Manipulates, sorts, represents, describes and explores two-dimensional shapes, including quadrilaterals, pentagons, hexagons and octagons.

Resources

Approximate time

45 minutes

Activity plan

  1. Review what students remember about stars from the previous activity. Ask them what else you can see up in the sky at night. Focus on the moon.
  2. Brainstorm everything that students already know about the moon.
  3. Hand out Attachment 12.1.
  4. Show Why Does the Moon Change? about the phases of the moon. Pause as the video progresses, so that students can write the name of the phases and draw what the moon looks like during each phase on their worksheet.
  5. Demonstrate the phases of the moon using a torch and a styrofoam ball (or similar). Make the room dark. Stick a pencil into the styrofoam ball (moon) and have a student hold it away from themselves. Have another student stand holding the torch (sun) about two metres away, holding the torch above their head and shining it straight onto the ball (moon). The student holding the ball (moon), slowly turns around in a circle, gradually facing away from the sun (torch), keeping the ball in front of them. As they are turning, discuss how much of the ball we can now see and how that relates to the phases of the moon that they drew on their worksheet.
  6. Discuss the shape of the moon in both 2D (circle) and 3D (sphere). Have students draw a circle and a sphere in their books and correctly write the words. Spend time talking about the spelling here. Discuss the differences between 2D and 3D shapes. More advanced students could label parts of the circle (circumference, arc and diameter) and the sphere (surface).

Note: This activity could be used as an assessment opportunity.

Reflection

Before students leave, they talk to their partner about their favourite phase of the moon.

Activity 13 – My place in the universe

Learning intention

Students will learn about the Milky Way and Earth’s place in a much wider universe.

Success criteria

Students brainstorm facts about the Milky Way and create paintings in response to what they have learned.

Syllabus outcomes

  • EN1-4A: Draws on an increasing range of skills and strategies to fluently read, view and comprehend a range of texts on less familiar topics in different media and technologies.
  • VAS1.1: Makes artworks in a particular way about experiences of real and imaginary things.
  • ST1-10ES-S: Recognises observable changes occurring in the sky and on the land and identifies Earth’s resources.

Resources

Approximate time

60 minutes

Activity plan

  1. Review previous activities by asking students to tell their partner one fact that they remember about stars.
  2. As a class, discuss The Starry Night by Vincent van Gough. Use the zoom function to look closely at the paintwork. Ask the class whether they like the painting. How does this artwork make them feel? Point out the bright morning star Venus shining centre-left in the painting.
  3. Ask what students already know about the Milky Way. Brainstorm facts as a class. Watch The Milky Way for Children. Add additional facts to the class brainstorm.
  4. Show Where are you? (a diagram of the Milky Way) to the class. Discuss. Ask students to draw the diagram in their books and label where they live in the Milky Way.
  5. Hand out Attachment 13.1 and help the students to write their full address on the bottom of the page.
  6. Students create their own Milky Way galaxy. Give each student a piece of black cardboard. In the middle, students can use white paint to create the centre of the Milky Way and then the spiralling arms. Students then add silver glitter to the arms. Once dry, the students add glue to the background and scatter more glitter for the outer stars. Depending on how detailed you would like to be, students could add labels for each of the arms of the Milky Way.

Reflection

Students talk to a partner about what they think they might see on the other side of the Milky Way.

Activity 14 – Paint the sky

Learning intention

Students investigate Indigenous artworks about the Milky Way and understand that knowledge of the Milky Way spans thousands upon thousands of years.

Success criteria

Students work in pairs to produce a short information report about an Indigenous artwork depicting the Milky Way.

Syllabus outcomes

  • VAS1.3: Realises what artists do, who they are and what they make.
  • VAS1.4: Begins to interpret the meaning of artworks, acknowledging the roles of artist and audience.
  • ST1-10ES-S: Recognises observable changes occurring in the sky and on the land and identifies Earth’s resources.

Resources

Approximate time

60 minutes

Activity plan

  1. Ask students where we live in the universe, focusing on the Milky Way. Ask when they think people first noticed the Milky Way in the sky. Is it recent? Steer the conversation to the fact that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples also noticed and knew about the Milky Way. The First Australians had their own stories about what it was and how it was formed.
  2. One story from the Kamilaroi people about the Milky Way is called the Emu in the Sky. Watch Dhinawan (Emu) in the Sky. Discuss afterwards.
  3. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have also painted the Milky Way for thousands of years. Show the students an example, such as the painting Milky Way Dreaming – Turquoise by Rex Winston.
  4. Discuss what the students see in the painting. What techniques has the artist used? How has the artist used colour? What recognisable features of the Milky Way can you see in the painting? As a class, construct a paragraph describing this painting, the techniques the artist used, how it makes you (the audience) feel and how it reflects the Milky Way.
  5. As a class, discuss why artists paint. What is the purpose of doing it: to tell a story, pass on knowledge, make money, express themselves?
  6. Students work in pairs to research an artwork about the Milky Way by an Indigenous artist. Students complete Attachment 14.1.

Note: This activity could be used as an assessment opportunity.

Reflection

Each pair shares their research and an image of their chosen artwork on the whiteboard.

Activity 15 – Swinging on a star

Learning intention

Students will learn to sing Swinging on a Star and perform dramatic actions appropriate to each verse.

Success criteria

Students will work in groups to create dramatic actions to complement the lyrics of the song and perform their composition.

Syllabus outcomes

  • MUS1.1: Sings, plays and moves to a range of music, demonstrating an awareness of musical concepts.
  • MUS1.4: Responds to a range of music, expressing likes and dislikes and the reasons for these choices.
  • DRAS1.1: Takes on roles in drama to explore familiar and imagined situations.
  • DRAS1.3: Interacts collaboratively to communicate the action of the drama with others.

Resources

Approximate time

45 minutes

Activity plan

  1. Explain that in this activity, the students will be learning a song, working out some actions to go with the song and recording their performance to share with parents/carers and the school community.
  2. Play Swinging on a Star by Frank Sinatra.
  3. Discuss with the students what they thought of the song. What are some words that they could use to describe it: fast, slow, happy, sad? What instruments could they hear in the song?
  4. Students talk to a partner about whether they liked the song or not and why.  Share some of these with the class.
  5. Play the song again, but this time stop during each of the verses to talk about the lyrics. Which animal is Sinatra talking about? What do we know about that animal: mule, pig, fish and monkey? Brainstorm on large sheets of paper.
  6. Split the class into five groups. One group will be given the chorus and the other four groups will each be given a verse (see lyrics from Attachment 16.1). Each group is to devise some dramatic actions to convey the character described in the chorus or verse. Give each group a copy of their verse or chorus and a corresponding brainstorm page. Allow groups 5-10 minutes to decide on their actions and practice.
  7. Play the song once more. Each group stays in their space and practises their actions when their part of the song comes on.
  8. Come back together as a class to perform the song. After one full run-through, record the performance using a recording device. All students sing the chorus and verses if they can remember the lyrics.

Note: This activity could be used as an assessment opportunity.

Reflection

Play the recording back to the class, so that they can enjoy watching their re-enactment and discuss what they liked about it.

Activity 16 – Schools Spectacular – Here we come!

Learning intention

Students will understand what Schools Spectacular is and know what to watch for in the Wish upon a star segment.

Resources

Approximate time

15 minutes

Activity plan

  1. Ask if any students have attended a previous School Spectacular performance. Those who have attended can explain to the class.
  2. Watch the Schools Spectacular 2019 promo video. Discuss with students what they think.
  3. Explain that there will be a segment in the show that reflects all that they have been learning in this unit. They will hear some of the music that they have listened to during these activities and they are going to see people helping each other out and working together.
  4. Express you want them to pay particular attention to the people they see working together and supporting each other in the show, so that when they are back in the classroom after viewing or attending the show they can try to write a description of some of those moments.

Reflection

Students tell a partner what they are most looking forward to seeing at Schools Spectacular.

Activity 17 – Schools Spectacular – STARS!

Learning intention

Students will respond to the performance and observations of helping behaviour at Schools Spectacular.

Resources

  • The televised edition of the Schools Spectacular 2019 performance if unable to attend in person.

Approximate time

15 minutes

Activity plan

1. Discuss as a class, what were their favourite things about the Schools Spectacular 2019. Ask: If they attended the show, would they go again? Would they try out to be a part of the show in 2020?

2. Focus on the Wish upon a star segment. What happened during this part of the show? Did the students recognise any of the songs from their unit of work?

3. Discuss the times they saw people helping each other out. Students write two sentences, describing two separate times they saw people helping each other out during the show.

4. Share the answers with the class.

Reflection

Ask students what their favourite part of this unit has been.

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