Discovering Democracy Units
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Parliament versus Monarch

National, state and territory curriculum links

National | ACT | NSW | NT | QLD | SA | TAS | VIC | WA


The nationally developed Statements of Learning for Civics and Citizenship includes three ‘Aspects’ that are defined at four levels of schooling (ie Year 3, 5, 7 and 9). The Year 5 and Year 7 Statements of Learning are relevant to the Discovering Democracy unit, ‘Parliament versus Monarch’.

Year 5

Government and law

  • Students understand that Australia is a democracy based on a constitution, shared values and specific civic features (eg elections, parliaments, political parties, a constitution, freedom of speech and civic participation).

Historical perspectives

  • Students explore how Australian identities and civil society have changed over time (eg key civic terms used in Australia such as ‘democracy’, ‘citizen’, ‘government’ and ‘parliament’ have been inherited from other times and other places).

Year 7

Government and law

  • Students explore the principles underpinning democracy and civil society in Australia, the purpose of the Australian constitution and the roles of each level of government (eg key institutions and principles of Australian representative democracy).

Historical perspectives

  • Students explore the impact of people, events and movements of the past on Australian identities and democracy and consider ways in which people were governed in ancient times (eg key events and ideas in the development of Australian self-government and democracy).

Australian Capital Territory

The Every chance to learn: Curriculum framework for ACT schools has essential content within the early adolescence band relevant to the Discovering Democracy unit, ‘Parliament versus Monarch’.

Early adolescence band

ELA 21 The student understands about Australia and Australians.


  • 21.EA.4 Past and contemporary people, movements, events and ideas which shaped a sense of Australian identity.

ELA 22 The student understands and values what it means to be a citizen within a democracy.

Democratic features

  • 22.EA.1 The purpose of democratic civil society and the origins of law and democracy.

Democratic principles

  • 22.EA.7 The principles and institutions that underpin Australia’s representative democracy (eg parliament, elections, head of state).

Active citizenship

  • 22.EA.15 Compare democratic and non-democratic systems of government.

ELA 23 The student understands particular world events and issues.

Historical and cultural context

  • 23.EA.6 The main features of some ancient and medieval societies and their relevance for contemporary societies (eg medieval societies of England).

New South Wales

Learning outcomes within Stage 3 of the Human Society & Its Environment K–6 Syllabus are relevant to the Discovering Democracy unit, ‘Parliament versus Monarch’.

Stage 3

Change and Continuity

Time and Change

  • CCS3.2 Explains the development of the principles of Australian democracy (eg key figures and events such as King John and the Magna Carta).

Northern Territory

Student learning outcomes within bands 2 and 3 of the Studies of Society and Environment Learning Area of the Northern Territory Curriculum Framework are relevant to the Discovering Democracy unit, ‘Parliament versus Monarch’.

Band 2

Social Systems and Structures

Time, Continuity and Change

  • Soc 2.1 Research past events to evaluate why change occurs and its impact on the community.

Band 3

Social Systems and Structures

Time, Continuity and Change

  • Soc 3.1 Investigate the past and how events have impacted on individuals and groups (eg identify and research some key events and people from medieval history).


Student learning outcomes within Level 3 of the Studies of Society and Environment Years 1 to 10 Syllabus are relevant to the Discovering Democracy unit, ‘Parliament versus Monarch’.

Level 3

Systems, Resources and Power

  • SRP 3.4 Students describe the basic principles of democracy and citizenship from ancient to modern times.

South Australia

Standards 3 and 4 in Society and Environment of the South Australian Curriculum Standards and Accountability Framework are relevant to the Discovering Democracy unit, ‘Parliament versus Monarch’.

Standard 3

Time, Continuity and Change

  • 3.2 Researches and discusses the importance of understanding events and ways of life of some past periods, using primary and secondary sources (eg power and democracy).

Social Systems

  • 3.10 Describes examples of forms and structures of Australian and other governments over time in terms of how they impact on people’s lives (eg monarchies).

Standard 4

Time, Continuity and Change

  • 4.3 Interprets people’s motives and actions from perspectives of power, and relates this to future possibilities, using a historical or contemporary event or issue.

Societies and cultures

  • 4.10 Analyses different political, legal and social systems and people’s rights and responsibilities within them.


Strands and performance criteria at Standard 3 in the Society and History Syllabus of The Tasmanian Curriculum are relevant to the Discovering Democracy unit, ‘Parliament versus Monarch’.

Standard 2

Strand 2 Democratic values and processes

  • Students understand democratic values and processes in society, government and law (eg Stage 7: situations where rights and responsibilities were upheld or infringed; Stage 8: how people can infringe the rights of others; Stage 9: laws exist to protect rights).

Strand 5 Historical inquiry

  • Students undertake historical inquiries in relation to continuity and change in society (eg Standard 7: examine the past, present and future; Standard 8: develop a complex understanding of past events; Standard 9: events or actions from the past influence current decisions).

Strand 8 Communication

  • Students acquire, critically examine and communicate information.


Standards in the domain of Civics and Citizenship and in the Humanities – History within the Victorian Essential Learning Standards are relevant to the Discovering Democracy unit, ‘Parliament versus Monarch’.

Level 4
Civics and Citizenship

Civic knowledge and understanding

  • Students explain the basic elements of Australia’s federal parliamentary system and key democratic principles and values such as freedom of speech and equality before the law.

The Humanities – History

Historical knowledge and understanding

  • Students compare aspects of different cultures and countries, in both the past and present, and ask questions about their own society.

Historical reasoning and interpretation

  • Students use a range of primary and secondary sources to investigate the past … They comprehend and question sources and make judgements about the views being expressed, the completeness of the evidence, and the values represented. They use historical language and concepts to develop historical explanations. They present their understandings in a range of forms.

Western Australia

The K–10 Society and Environment Syllabus (2007) is consistent with other Department of Education and Curriculum Council frameworks and progress maps. There are developmental progressions of broad understandings in a number of strands relevant to the Discovering Democracy unit, ‘Parliament versus Monarch’.

Year 6 and 7

Investigation, Communication and Participation


  • When focusing on what happens in political and legal systems, questions are asked about the history of democracy and the ways in which the rights and responsibilities of citizens have evolved.

Time, Continuity and Change

Understanding the Past

  • Methods for sequencing the past (eg how events and ideas can be compared and contrasted between different time periods in history).

Continuity and Change

  • That change is a feature of all societies (eg how significant people, events and ideas have influenced the beliefs and traditions of a community).

Natural and Social Systems

Political and Legal Systems

  • The elements and processes of government and governance (eg development and evolution of the principles of democracy; key features of Australian democracy; how ideas of citizenship have been influenced by key civic documents).
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