Teachers need to take care when using these materials. Students who have had traumatic experiences may find some of these activities disturbing.
Australian Curriculum links
Show how ideas and points of view in texts are conveyed through the use of vocabulary, including idiomatic expressions, objective and subjective language, and that these can change according to context (ACELY1698)
Plan, draft and publish imaginative, informative and persuasive print and multimodal texts, choosing text structures, language features, images and sound appropriate to purpose and audience (ACELY1704)
Plan, draft and publish imaginative, informative and persuasive texts, choosing and experimenting with text structures, language features, images and digital resources appropriate to purpose and audience (ACELY1714)
- Personal and social capability
- Ethical behavior
- Intercultural understanding
Students build key background understandings about what landmines are and the dangers they pose, and begin to explore ways of dealing with the landmine problem.
Create a Web map showing what you know about landmines, eg What are landmines? Why might landmines be used?
List some questions you have about landmines. See if you can find answers to them using the sources suggested below.
View and discuss the photos and information at www.cyberschoolbus.un.org/sds/introduction/index.asp.
Review and add to your Web map using new information you have gained.
Participate in a simulation activity. Use one of the following approaches, then discuss what the consequences might be if the mines were real.
- Use plastic plates hidden under camouflage sheets as ‘mines’. Take turns walking across the area (you could use a blindfold). Sit down if you step on a plate.
- Create a grid on the floor of the classroom or another suitable area (eg using chalk on the playground). Mark some random squares with an x. Take turns walking across the grid blindfolded while other students record the number of marked squares (‘mines’) you stand on.
Imagine the kinds of injuries that those who stepped on the ‘mines’ might have suffered if the simulated minefield had been real – eg loss of limbs, burns, wounds from metal fragments, blindness.
- How did this activity make you feel?
- What impact would the danger of mines have on people who faced this as a real part of their daily lives?
Explore the following quotation as a Think, pair, share activity:
So long as there are landmines in the ground, people will be deprived of their basic right to a decent life . . .
Kofi Annan, former Secretary General United Nations from www.cyberschoolbus.un.org/sds/introduction/index.asp
- What does this statement make you think about? You might like to think about what the ‘right to a decent life’ involves – eg having basic needs met and being safe.
- What ideas do you have about ways of dealing with the landmine problem? List them after class discussion. Review and add to the list as you continue your inquiry into landmines.
Students examine a case study about landmines in Cambodia. They deepen their understanding of the problems of landmines and learn about how survivors of landmine blasts are rebuilding their lives.
Read the Case study Integrated mine action in Cambodia.
Add new information you have gained from your reading to your Web map from Activity 1.
- What do you think might happen to landmine survivors and their families?
- How are people in Cambodia rebuilding their lives?
Imagine you are a landmine survivor. Write a story describing how you stepped on the landmine, what happened to you, how you recovered and how you have rebuilt your life. Include information about the people who have helped you.
What medical care is available to people in Australia who are badly injured?
Create a Venn diagram showing how people injured in Australia (eg in a car accident) and people injured in Cambodia are supported to recover from major injury.
Research the progress of de-mining in Cambodia. A good place to start is the annual Landmine Monitor Report.
Students explore how the international community is working towards the removal of all landmines. They develop presentations about landmines in order to help make a difference by letting others know about this global issue.
Reflect on what you have learnt about helping countries and people to recover from landmines. Form groups and use a Placemat activity to note individual ideas and then discuss and record a group response.
Share your ideas as a class.
Discuss and classify the different aspects of dealing with landmines under the headings ‘Prevention’ and ‘Assistance’ (or other headings you may develop). For example, Prevention could include landmine bans and de-mining programs, Assistance could include physical rehabilitation and assisting the families of people disabled by landmines.
Create a chart using the headings discussed. You may find additional ideas to go under each heading by:
Research what Australia is doing to help address the landmine problem. Start by viewing and discussing the video at http://www.ausaid.gov.au/aidissues/mineaction/Pages/home.aspx.
Prepare and deliver a presentation for the school community to raise landmine awareness and explain the need to support the Mine Ban Treaty. This could be a speech, a play, or a multimedia presentation about ‘Landmines – the problems and the solutions’ created using a program such as Snappy. You might also like to create a landmine quiz to incorporate in your presentation.
Note: Your presentations could be part of a Peace Week organised by a number of classes/levels working collaboratively. See below.
The following human rights teaching activity could be adapted to have a particular focus on International Peace Day (21 September) and Disarmament Week (October 24–30), highlighting landmine issues.
Respecting and protecting human rights (Years 3-4)
Activity 5: Special days for human rights
Students develop an understanding of human rights through designing a calendar of activities for observing international days associated with the protection of human rights.