The Emu in the Sky (The Great Bigarrumdja)

English Years 3-4

Key Questions

  • How did Aboriginal people use the stars to pass on stories or as a calendar to monitor natural events?
  • How do the stories of our local peoples differ from groups in other areas of Victoria or even Australia?  

Learning Objectives

  • Students will be able to identify and describe Aboriginal constellations.
  • Students will be able to recognise that stories behind the constellations were used to tell stories or mark natural events.
  • Students will be able to recognise that different Aboriginal groups had different stories and events for the constellations.

Curriculum Links

Reading & Viewing (Levels 3 & 4)

  • Read an increasing range of imaginative, informative and persuasive texts by combining phonic, semantic, contextual and grammatical knowledge, using text processing strategies, including confirming, rereading and cross-checking (VCELY256)
  • Identify features used in imaginative, informative and persuasive texts to meet the purpose of the text, and understand how texts vary in complexity and technicality depending on the approach to the topic, the purpose and the intended audience (VCELA277)
  • Read different types of texts for specific purposes by combining phonic, semantic, contextual and grammatical knowledge using text processing strategies, including monitoring meaning, skimming, scanning and reviewing (VCELY287)

Writing (Levels 3 & 4)

  • Create texts that adapt language features and patterns encountered in literary texts (VCELT265)
  • Plan, draft and publish imaginative, informative and persuasive texts demonstrating increasing control over text structures and language features and selecting print and multimodal elements appropriate to the audience and purpose (VCELY266)
  • Reread and edit texts for meaning, appropriate structure, grammatical choices and punctuation(VCELY267)
  • Use software including word processing programs with growing speed and efficiency to construct and edit texts featuring visual, print and audio elements(VCELY269)
  • Plan, draft and publish imaginative, informative and persuasive texts containing key information and supporting details for a widening range of audiences, demonstrating increasing control over text structures and language features (VCELY299)
  • Reread and edit for meaning by adding, deleting or moving words or word groups to improve content and structure (VCELY300)

Speaking & Listening (Levels 3 & 4)

  • Understand that languages have different written and visual communication systems, different oral traditions and different ways of constructing meaning(VCELA270)
  • Understand that Standard Australian English is one of many social dialects used in Australia, and that while it originated in England it has been influenced by many other languages (VCELA303)

Intercultural Capability (Levels 3 & 4)

  • Discuss texts in which characters, events and settings are portrayed in different ways, and speculate on the authors’ reasons (VCELT274) 
  • Understand that Standard Australian English is one of many social dialects used in Australia, and that while it originated in England it has been influenced by many other languages (VCELA303) 

Key Local Knowledge Featured in this Unit

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Living Stories of Dungala Kaiela

This is a fantastic text produced by the Elders and Artists of Gallery Kaiela.  It contains a story incorporating a range of local language, and is accompanied by original artwork.  The book is accompanied by a DVD, which includes an animated version of the story.

Details on how to purchase a copy are included within the Unit Plan.

emu in sky

The Great Bigarrumdja

A local story of an emu constellation.  Stories will explore this story and compare to stories of Aboriginal groups in other areas.