Quick summary: Students undertake an investigation into Indigenous Australians’ traditional use of fire to manage Country. They scrutinise extensive research to explore the benefits of fire regimes such as cool burning in land management. To bring their research, together students will draw up two checklists. One will identify the best conditions for cool burns and the second will evaluate how a specific cool burn went. They draw conclusions about the best way to use fire to manage and reduce land degradation.
- Students identify the environmental, cultural and economic benefits of cool burning.
- Students recognise the difference between facts, claims, and feelings.
- Students draw conclusions about Indigenous land management.
General capabilities: Critical and creative thinking, ethical understanding, intercultural understanding.
Australian Curriculum content descriptions:
Year 10 Geography:
- The human-induced environmental changes that challenge sustainability (ACHGK070)
- The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples’ approaches to custodial responsibility and environmental management in different regions of Australia (ACHGK072)
- The application of geographical concepts and methods to the management of the environmental change being investigated (ACHGK074)
- Develop geographically significant questions and plan an inquiry that identifies and applies appropriate geographical methodologies and concepts (ACHGS072)
- Collect, select, record and organise relevant data and geographical information, using ethical protocols, from a range of appropriate primary and secondary sources (ACHGS073)
- Evaluate multi-variable data and other geographical information using qualitative and quantitative methods and digital and spatial technologies as appropriate to make generalisations and inferences, propose explanations for patterns, trends, relationships and anomalies, and predict outcomes (ACHGS076)
- Apply geographical concepts to synthesise information from various sources and draw conclusions based on the analysis of data and information, taking into account alternative points of view (ACHGS077)
- Identify how geographical information systems (GIS) might be used to analyse geographical data and make predictions (ACHGS078)
- Present findings, arguments and explanations in a range of appropriate communication forms selected for their effectiveness and to suit audience and purpose, using relevant geographical terminology and digital technologies as appropriate (ACHGS079)
Syllabus Outcomes: GE5-2, GE5-3, GE5-4, GE5-5, GE5-7, GE5-8.
Topic: Cool burning
Time needed: 2 – 3 lessons
Level of teacher scaffolding: Low – students need to have an open mind to the depth of knowledge among Indigenous peoples and how their knowledge can be practically applied.
Resources needed: Access to computers and the Internet. Info Sheet – what the scientific studies found out, Info Sheet – Indigenous Australians using fire to care for Country
Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum. There is great diversity in histories and cultures among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples throughout Australia. This resource includes investigations into and information about some of them. It has an emphasis, but not an exclusive one, on the histories and cultural practices of the Aboriginal peoples of the Northern Territory. It is underpinned by consultation with Aboriginal communities in various parts of Australia.
Special thanks to:
Fish River Station, John Daly, Dr Jeremy Russell-Smith, Peter Jacklyn, Peter McConchie, Dr Tommy George, David Claudie, Dale Musgrave, Carolyn George and Victor Steffensen.