Core units: Year 3 — Exemplars

Illustration 2: Children in different places – a drama activity

Curriculum overview

The Australian Curriculum: Geography (and its various HASS-based iterations) content descriptions addressed in the illustration are:

  • The location of Australia’s neighbouring countries and their diverse characteristics
  • The similarities and differences between places in terms of their type of settlement, demographic characteristics and the lives of the people who live there

Learning goals

The illustration-specific learning goals are:

  • learning about Australia's neighbours in Asia and the Pacific
  • comparing the lives of children across a range of places in Asia and talking about how their lives are similar and different to each other
  • developing the students' ability to articulate their understanding of another child's life.

Geographical understanding and context

This illustration focuses on similarities and differences between places in Australia's region. It helps students develop an idea of the location of places where children live. Role cards are provided that describe the place that is home to sixteen different children from other countries. In most of these descriptions there are a few facts about the place and a few points about the child's life there.

This illustration can be made an effective part of geographic learning if each example is linked with a map, and each child is asked to find out more about the place and the settlements within it.

Teaching approaches

1. Using role cards
A set of short statements about the location and life of a number of children in Asia and the Pacific is supplied in Role cards. The countries featured are:

  • China – Hong Kong
  • Philippines
  • China – Shanghai
  • Papua New Guinea
  • India
  • Japan
  • Singapore
  • Bangladesh
  • Cambodia
  • Vietnam
  • Indonesia – Bali
  • Indonesia – Jakarta
  • New Zealand
  • Timor Leste
  • Thailand
  • New Caledonia.

2. Preparing presentations
Each student will use the details from one card to undertake a number of activities to prepare a presentation to the class. They will play the role of the child whose information they have. Students could be asked to write a similar statement about themselves as an introduction.

To prepare students to deliver their presentation, provide the following directions:

  • Read through the description on your card.
  • Check your location on a map or atlas.
  • Try to imagine that you are that particular child, and prepare a delivery to the class.
  • Find out more information about life in that country to add to your delivery to the class.

Set a date for the talks to be presented to the class.

3. Preparing questions for discussion
You can then add a further variation, suggesting to the class that as they listen to the presentations they think of a question that they can ask of the speaker/actor about his/her life and location.

These questions and their answers can lead into a discussion of comparisons between the lives of the various children.

4. Extension activities
Students could be asked to create a page about their particular child. The page could include an imaginary drawing of the child, a map to show where he or she lives, and a drawing of one aspect of their life.

What you need

  • Set of short statements or Role cards (PDF) about children in different places.
  • Map of South-East Asia and the Pacific to pinpoint the countries.

Preparation: Children will need some time to find more information about their character.

Time frame: The talks and questions could be done in one lesson, after research and preparation time. Further time would be needed for a drawing, map and some other written information.

Curriculum connections

This illustration links with the content descriptions of the following Phase 1 Australian Curriculum.


  • Plan and deliver short presentations, providing some key details in logical sequence
  • Listen to and contribute to conversations and discussions to share information and ideas and negotiate in collaborative situations


  • Interpret and compare data displays


  • Represent and communicate ideas and findings in a variety of ways such as diagrams, physical representations and simple reports


  • The role that people of diverse backgrounds have played in the development and character of the local community
  • Use a range of communication forms (oral, graphic, written) and digital technologies


Role cards (PDF) for children from sixteen places in Asia and the Pacific.

Kindersley, B. & Kindersley, A. (1995). Children just like me: A unique celebration of children around the world. London: Dorling Kindersley.
Rayner, A. (Ed.). (2006). A life like mine: how children live around the world. London: Dorling Kindersley.
Toth, M. (2006). Asian children's favourite stories: A treasury of folktales from China, Japan, Korea, India, the Philippines, Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia. New York: Turtle Publishing.