Quick summary: Why is having people live in poverty bad for us as a country? Even if I’m not living in poverty or don’t know someone who is, why should I care? Excessive inequality in any society is harmful. A system that leaves people behind is bad for the economy as well as people. When resources and power are concentrated in fewer hands, economic growth is diminished. People trapped in poverty face harsh barriers to finding paid work or gaining skills to improve their chances in the competitive job market. When people have to go without meals, sleep on the streets or can’t afford healthcare, we see the impacts of poverty and inequality. By reducing poverty and inequality, we can enjoy the collective peace of mind that comes with a more socially and politically stable country and know that when people fall on hard times, they still have enough to meet their basic needs.
In this lesson, students explore poverty and inequality through a series of short video clips whereby they respond to the experiences of living on government income support payments. Students further explore the ideas of poverty and inequality by engaging with a number of data sets and online reports, analysing their content. Students then articulate their understanding of poverty and inequality and formulate solutions for addressing these issues through the development of a digital presentation.
- Students can identify that poverty and inequality can negatively impact people’s lives
- Students can identify that poverty and inequality can negatively impact society
- Students can explain why poverty is a risk factor for Australia’s overall health
- Students can utilise technology to promote solutions for reducing poverty and inequality in Australia.
Australian Curriculum Mapping
Years 9 & 10 Health and Physical Education:
- Critique behaviours and contextual factors that influence health and wellbeing of diverse communities (ACPPS098)
- Propose, practise and evaluate responses in situations where external influences may impact their ability to make healthy and safe choices (ACPPS092)
Syllabus outcomes: PD5-1, PD5-2, PD5-3
General capabilities: Literacy, Critical and Creative thinking, Personal and Social Capabilities, Ethical Understanding
Cross-curriculum priority: Sustainability
Relevant parts of Year 10 achievement standards:
By the end of Year 10, students critically analyse contextual factors that influence identities, relationships, decisions and behaviours. They analyse the impact attitudes and beliefs about diversity have on community connection and wellbeing. They evaluate the outcomes of emotional responses to different situations. Students access, synthesise and apply health information from credible sources to propose and justify responses to health situations. They apply decision-making and problem-solving skills when taking action to enhance their own and others’ health, safety and wellbeing.
Topic: Poverty and Inequality in Australia
Time required: 60 mins.
Level of teacher scaffolding: Medium – facilitate class discussion
- A device capable of creating audiovisual recordings, such as an iPad or camera (optional)
- A device capable of presenting a video to the class
- A device that allows students to conduct research in a safe manner
- Student Worksheets – one copy per student.
Keywords: Action, data, health, inequality, poverty, social determinants, JobSeeker, welfare, income support, economy.
Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum.