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Human Rights Education Resources for the Classroom

Australian Human Rights Commission

The Australian Human Rights Commission's Human Rights Education Resources include a collection of resource sheets covering important human rights concepts. These resources are an integral part of the Commission's Human Rights Education Program, but can also be used as part of alternative units of study.

The Commission encourages teachers to use these resources in their lesson planning. The resources are available in a range of formats to ensure that they are easy to use.

Resource Sheets from the Youth Challenge Education Module
Unit 1: Human Rights in the Classroom
Unit 2: Disability Rights
Unit 3: Young People in the Workplace
Unit 4: Tackling Sexual Harassment in Your School

Resource Sheets from the Bringing Them Home Education Module
Personal Stories
The Laws
The Histories
International Perspective

Resources from the Face the Facts Education Module
The Face the Facts Education Module is based on the Commission's popular publication of the same name. This publication is central to all the activities included in the Face the Facts Education module.

Educational Resources for the Classroom

The Commission would like to hear from teachers who have incorporated these resources into their lesson planning. Please email your experiences, lesson plans, suggestions and other comments to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
Educational Outcomes

HREOC's Human Rights Education Resources are designed to assist student in developing:

  •     An understanding of what human rights are and an understanding of the origins of modern human rights
  •     An appreciation of the meaning and significance of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other human rights instruments
  •     An understanding of how human rights instruments are applied in Australian law and society
  •     An ability to apply the concepts of human rights to their daily lives
  •     An understanding of issues concerning asylum seekers and refugees, migrants and multiculturalism and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples
  •     Research and fact-sourcing, and an ability to think creatively and to communicate information to others
  •     Decision making skills, within an individual, group and class context
  •     Literacy skills, including critical literacy, code breaking and comprehension skills, through reading and responding to a variety of texts, both orally and through writing
  •     Skills in describing, reflecting, interpreting, analysing, evaluating and higher order thinking.

Indigenous Education Resources

Indigenous Educational and Cultural Resources

Australian Government Culture Portal - Browse Indigenous art, culture and heritage stories under Australian Stories index or explore the indigenous portal under Related Portals.

Australian Bureau of Statistics - Indigenous Statistics is an online tutorial directed towards people who would like to understand and know how to use statistics for the purpose of learning more about Australia's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

NAIDOC stands for the National Aboriginal and Islander Day Observance Committee and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and the Indigenous contribution to modern Australia . All Australians are encouraged to participate in NAIDOC Week activities.

Australian Museum - Indigenous Australia information about cultural heritage, spirituality, family land, and social justice. Includes teacher resources, information for students, and a virtual tour of the Australian Museum's Indigenous Art Gallery

Indigenous Weather Knowledge – A Bureau of Meteorology map with links to corresponding seasonal calendars for given regions.

Aboriginal Astronomy - Indigenous Australians have their own knowledge of the solar system which has been accumulated over many thousands of years.

Questacon - Aboriginal Astronomy is a great archaeoastronomy resource from the Questacon site.

Australian National Botanic Gardens – Uses of Native Plants
This site contains detailed notes and a bibliography on plants used by Aboriginal peoples of south-eastern Australia.

National Gallery of Australia – Indigenous art

National Museum of Australia – First Australians
This exhibition shows the wide diversity of languages and cultures within the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander groups

State Library of New South Wales
Discover and explore interpretations of Aboriginal culture, history, language and art through a stunning collection of manuscripts, artworks, photographs and printed books.

ABC Indigenous
The new ABC online portal for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people has replaced the pre-existing Message Stick gateway. The portal is designed to reflect current issues in the Indigenous community.

Central Art
Aboriginal Art and Culture section of the Central Art is a collection of articles, audios and videos relating to Australian Aboriginal people and their art.

Indigenous Sport Program - Traditional Games
Yulunga is an activity resource of over 100 traditional Indigenous, adapted for today to provide an opportunity to learn about , appreciate and experience aspects of Indigenous culture, a CD containing the Yulunga games can be ordered from the Indigenous Sports Program

Aboriginal Australia Map– a full colour map by David Horton, of the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies. This map can be downloaded for use in the classroom from the South Australian Department of Education and Children's Services

Indigenous Education Resources on the Australian Joint Council of Professional Teaching Associations provides useful resources and links about Indigenous Education. The site also provides a detailed EdNA website search.

Aboriginal Education Context of Board of Studies NSW includes teaching and learning resources for all Secondary KLAs, for the Primary curriculum, and in literacy and numeracy.

Lesson Plans
Board of Studies NSW K-6 - Aboriginal Perspectives through Integrated Units

Pepa Worli Classroom Activity Downloads

Aboriginal Dreaming Stories
Include lesson ideas, lesson plans and games compiled by Jackie Miers.

Making a Dinosaur Gallery

A primary classroom resource by Gary Tilley

PTC NSW would like to thank the Science Teachers’ Association NSW for allowing us to share with teachers this outstanding primary teaching resource.

The article “Making a Dinosaur Gallery by Gary Tilley” was first published in Science Teachers' Association of NSW Journal,  Science Education News (SEN) in 2014 Vol 63 No 1.   The author, Gary Tilley is a contributing STANSW Member.

Click here to download the PDF:  STA NSW Making a Dinosaur Gallery

Museum of Australian Currency Notes

The Museum of Australian Currency Notes

The Reserve Bank of Australia is our central bank; and as such it is responsible for Australia's currency notes.

The Museum of Australian Currency Notes is located on the ground floor of the bank’s Martin Place headquarters. The museum showcases the story of the Australian currency notes against the background of Australia's economic and social development, from colonial settlement through to the era of polymer banknotes.

The following exhibitions at the museum have useful information brochures available for download.

Hidden History of Banking
This exhibition showcases original records of convicts deposits held by the Reserve Bank, and interprets the relationship between convicts and money through historical documents, paintings, literature, artefacts and film.

Reflections of Martin Place
The Reserve Bank’s façade has been transformed into a gallery of photographs portraying historical events in Martin Place to mark its 50th anniversary. The photographs have been selected from the Reserve Bank’s collection of some 15,000 images.

Planned for Progress
In January 1960, the Reserve Bank of Australia commenced operations as the nation’s central bank with Dr H.C. Coombs as its first Governor. The first Governor was commitment to contemporary art and culture. An exhibition of selected artworks, sculpture, furniture and original corporate emblem.

Museum opening times: 10.00am to 4.00pm Monday to Friday.
For group booking: 02 9551 9743 or 1800 300 288 (only available to callers outside the Sydney region)
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
For further information go to:

Museum of Australian Democracy

Museum of Australian Democracy

On 9 May 2009 Old Parliament House became The Museum of Australian Democracy (MoAD) at Old Parliament House Canberra.

It will be the only museum in Australia dedicated to telling the story of our democracy.       

New Education Programs

Bookings are essential for onsite programs.

Who’s the Boss?
Years: 5–8
Maximum: 60

What is a leader? Are there different types of leaders? How have parliamentary and community leaders helped to shape our nation?

Your students will find the answers to these questions and more by getting to know leaders who shaped our nation. Students visit heritage and exhibition spaces to experience the history and workings of parliament. Ideal for students beginning their exploration of Civics and Citizenship, this program engages students with role play and group activities.

Our Voices Our Choices
Years: 9–12
Maximum: 60

How are our voices heard in a democracy?

From the ancient past to possible futures, experience the impact people power has on democracy. Students experience political decision making and discuss how public opinion can affect the process.

Investigate the historic people and events that have enhanced civil and political rights in Australia. By visiting heritage and exhibition spaces your students will make up their own minds about the role citizens play in keeping democracy healthy.

Conscription: Have Your Say
Years: 9–12
Maximum: 30

What is conscription? When has it been an issue in Australia? What are the arguments for and against conscription?

Students experience the history of conscription in Australia through interactive decision making. By exploring the people and events that have put conscription on the political agenda students consider the impacts of the issue.
Students will take on the roles of political decision makers and are introduced to historical opinions and arguments and debate the National Service Bill 1964 in the place it happened.

The Environment: Have Your Say
Years: 9–12
Maximum: 30

Who has the power and responsibility to make decisions about the environment? Who has a say in the decisions?
Experience the history of environmental movements in Australia through interactive decision making. Students take on the roles of political decision makers and debate the bill which became the World heritage Properties Conservation Act 1983 and which protected the Franklin River in Tasmania.

Hands on Democracy
Years K-6
Maximum: 30

Get your hands on democracy in a discovery exhibition full of experiences which explore democratic stories and ideas. Students can seek out the answers to questions like “what is democracy?” and “what does it mean to me?”

1975 Prime Minister Dismissed!
Years: 9–12
Maximum: 50
How was the Whitlam Government dismissed in 1975? What can this event tell us about Australian Democracy.
Relive the drama as your students take on the roles of the main players. Students use authentic speeches in the places where key events happened. This program tells both sides of the story and highlights how parliament works.


Franklin River Debate: 1983
Years: 5-8
Maximum: 50

What role do State and Federal governments play in protecting our environment? What is the impact of people power?

Students investigate objects and documents to uncover the issues behind the World Properties Conservation Act 1983 that protected the Franklin River in Tasmania. Students will take the roles of politicians to debate the bill in an historic parliamentary chamber.


Resources and Outreach available from the OPH website

Old Parliament House Resource Kit

Discover the history of Old Parliament House and the people who worked here. This kit can be used to support studies of Civics and Citizenship and Australian History.

Classroom Debate: Parliamentary Role Play

Re-live history in your classroom! In a scripted role-play, students take on the roles of federal politicians from 1983 and debate an historic bill which prevented the damming of the Franklin River in Tasmania.

National History Challenge

Attention all students! The Australian Prime Ministers Centre at Old Parliament House sponsors a category about Australia’s prime ministers in the National History Challenge. The challenge invites students to act as historians - researching and interpreting the past. Stay tuned for information about the 2009 National History Challenge.

Webquest — The Petrov Affair: a Nation in Fear?

What can Australia’s reaction to the threat of communism tell us about issues of fear and security? Students investigate The Petrov Affair from the perspectives of the major characters, evaluate its impact and make recommendations about individual and national responses to fear.


Billy Hughes at War

Explore the challenging years of the First World War and the man who led Australia through those turbulent times. Through interactive online activities, students can investigate the arguments for and against conscription, cast their vote and learn how to deconstruct historic political cartoons.

Australia’s Prime Ministers: Prime Facts

Do you know which former prime minister was present at the hanging of Ned Kelly? Or which one worked as a miner before becoming prime minister? Discover the answers to these questions and many more little-known facts about our former prime ministers in the Prime Facts series. Prime Facts resources also available for each of our Prime Ministers, there are titles on related topics including Prime Ministers’ wives, Leaders of the Opposition and elections.

The Exhibitions

The Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House will trace the ancient concept of democracy from its earliest beginnings up to the present day. In addition to an enhanced experience throughout the House, three exciting new permanent exhibitions will open within the former Parliamentary Library and adjacent spaces, as well as a new fun family-friendly space perfect for children. Visitors will be inspired to celebrate, debate and experience the past, present and future of democracy. Permanent exhibitions include:  Living Democracy: the power of the people Australian Democracy: more than 2000 years in the making Prime Ministers of Australia

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