Reading Enriches Learning: History provides online student-centred activities based on a range of history-themed texts. It responds to a key recommendation of the 2006 Australian History Summit to revive the teaching of Australian history and its global, environmental and social contexts in all States and Territories, at both a primary and secondary level. The activities are designed to promote discussion of historical events in the classroom, and to help students develop curiosity, understanding and knowledge about times past and to make connections with the present. The fiction and non-fiction books have been carefully selected for a range of interests and abilities: for younger readers (years 2–4) and older readers (years 5–8).
History-themed literature provides an excellent way of interesting and motivating students. Well-chosen, accurate fiction and non-fiction texts allow students to travel with the author through times past, bringing the period to life. Historical texts can provide multiple perspectives of events, help students understand the complex nature of issues in history, and guide them in relating their own experiences today to times past.
Although the books selected for Reading Enriches Learning: History have been organised into categories for younger readers and older readers, teachers may choose to use and adapt the activities in either category to suit their student group, or a particular area of interest or need.
The activities in this online collection have been organised to focus on specific literacy and historical literacy outcomes. Each book in the collection features activities that cover a number of the following categories:
Activities designed for individual students to complete independently.
Activities designed for small groups of students to work collaboratively, with an expectation that each group member makes a contribution to the group product.
Activities designed for all students in the class to participate in. This may include individuals or small groups contributing work to the larger activity.
Activities that aim to extend or enrich students' learning by providing real-life contexts that engage them with the wider community beyond the classroom.
Joy Lawn is a respected speaker and writer about children's and young adult literature. She has an MA in Children's Literature and Literacy and has been a specialist children's literature consultant for more than a decade. Formerly a teacher herself, Joy has wide experience in presenting at national and state conferences and advising teachers, teacher librarians and others on children's and young adult literature.
Joy is the Secretary of CBCA (Queensland). She reads children's literature avidly and reviews for a range of specialist journals.
The selection of Internet addresses (URLs) provided was valid at the time of publication. However, due to the dynamic nature of the Internet, some addresses may have changed or ceased to exist. Dead links can be reported by email.