Discovering Democracy Units
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Focus question 2: What can we learn from people who have worked in parliament?

ESL activities

Teacher instructions

Conduct all activities.

Activity 1 | Activity 2 | Activity 3 | Activity 4 | Activity 5 | Activity 6 | Activity 7 | Assessment task


Vocabulary: stand for election, parliament, pioneer, stand for parliament, politically active, Senator, Member of Parliament, framework, claim to represent.

Activity 1: Chifley and Menzies

  • Conduct 1a and 1b as a small group exercise, placing ESL learners in pairs or threes with students who have better spoken English.
  • Clarify difficult vocabulary and concepts in the biographies.
Stories of Democracy

Note: Stories of Democracy CD ROM contains additional information on Robert Menzies.

Vocabulary in Ben Chifley biography: memorial, monument, went on strike, working conditions, sacked, Australian Labor Party, economic depression, federal Member of Parliament (MP), treasurer, labour movement, nationalise, constitution, rationed, consumer goods, Premier, Communist Party of Australia, union movement, trade union, break a strike.

Vocabulary in Robert Menzies biography: memorial, monument, Liberal Party of Australia, knighted, Member of Parliament (MP), trade union, Commonwealth Parliament, acting premier, House of Representatives, electorate, the Menzies era, Cold War, monarchy, artisan, dynamic, stagnant, individual enterprise, individual initiative, thrift, determination, communism, Communist Party of Australia, High Court, referendum, Australian Labor Party.

Activity 2: A day in the life of a recent prime minister

Activity 3: Achievements and personal qualities, skills and knowledge

Vocabulary: experiences, personal qualities.

Activity 4: Job description for a prime minister

Vocabulary: life experiences, personal qualities.

Activity 5: Women's fight to enter parliament

Vocabulary in Vida Goldstein biography: memorial, monument, suffrage, nominate for election, campaigner, peace activist, delegate, suffragist, petition, candidate, Senate, political slogan, Commonwealth Parliament, equal rights, pacifist.

Vocabulary in Edith Cowan biography: memorial, monument, Member of Parliament (MP), magistrate, introduce a Bill, stand for parliament, Nationalist candidate, Legislative Assembly, backbencher, legislation, equal opportunity, League of Nations, debut speech, House of Assembly. Stories of Democracy

Note: Stories of Democracy CD ROM contains information on Edith Cowan and Vida Goldstein.

Activity 6: Leaders of today and yesterday

Vocabulary: Liberal Party of Australia, Australian Labor Party, parliament, Leader of the Opposition.

Activity 7: Women in parliament today

Vocabulary: Commonwealth House of Representatives, Commonwealth Senate, adequately.

Assessment task

ESL learners can benefit by participating in the preparation for the assessment. They may feel less confident about performing in front of the class. If learners are willing, provide ample time for preparation and practice.

Back to 'Men and Women in Political Life - At a glance'

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