Magna Carta - The story of our freedom (Year 9 & 10)

Magna Carta - The story of our freedom (Year 9 & 10)

Lesson 1 of 2 in this unit

  • Secondary
  • Year 9 - 10
  • Humanities and Social Sciences
  • History
  • Civics and Citizenship
  • Social
  • Equality
  • Human Rights
  • Leadership
  • ...

Lesson summary

Students will explore the evolution of democratic ideas and principles stemming from Magna Carta, and how these ideas have shaped key features of Australian democracy, such as the values of freedom, equality, fairness and justice.

Learning intentions:

Students will...

  • understand the historical importance of the Magna Carta
  • learn about Australia’s role in the negotiation of the UN Charter and the drafting of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights
  • discuss the meaning and importance of human rights principles such as the rule of law, the right to justice and democratic representation
  • undertake research on three groups in Australia who historically have struggled to receive recognition of their human rights and freedoms: women, migrants and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples. 

Lesson guides and printables

Lesson Plan
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Lesson details

Curriculum mapping

Australian Curriculum content descriptions:

Year 9 History

  • Key events and ideas in the development of Australian self-government and democracy, including women’s voting rights (ACDSEH091)

Year 9 Civics and Citizenship:

  • Reflect on their role as a citizen in Australian, regional and global contexts (ACHCS089)

Year 10 History:

  • The origins and significance of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, including Australia’s involvement in the development of the Declaration (ACDSEH023)
  • The continuing nature of efforts to secure civil rights and freedoms in Australia and throughout the world, such as the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (2007) (ACDSEH143)
  • Identify and analyse the perspectives of people from the past (ACHHS190)
  • Use chronological sequencing to demonstrate the relationship between events and developments in different periods and places (ACHHS182)

Year 10 Civics and Citizenship:

  • Australia’s roles and responsibilities at a global level, for example provision of foreign aid, peacekeeping, participation in international organisations and the United Nations (ACHCK091)
  • Reflect on their role as a citizen in Australian, regional and global contexts (ACHCS102)

General capabilities:  Critical and creative thinking, Ethical understanding, Personal and social capability

Australian Curriculum cross-curriculum priority: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and culture OI.9

Syllabus Outcomes: HT5-2, HT5-3, HT5-7.

Time required: 4 x 60 mins – plus additional homework time for student research and reflection activity

Level of teacher scaffolding: High – facilitate student activities.

Resources required

Additional resources: 

Additional info

To mark the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta, the Australian Human Rights Commission has partnered with Cool Australia to help students develop their understanding about the evolution of human rights since 1215 and the impact that Magna Carta has had on our human rights and freedoms in Australia today.

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  • Lesson 2 of 2
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Magna Carta - The story of our freedom

  • Primary
  • Year 5 - 6
  • Humanities and Social Sciences
  • History
  • Civics and Citizenship
  • Social
  • Equality
  • Human Rights
  • Leadership
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