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The Last Tram Ride

 

LEARNING OBJECTIVES

Students will:
  • Understand why tram usage was stopped in Perth and the contributing factors that came to this decision
  • Organise their understandings in a graphic organiser 
  • Write a diary entry from first person perspective 
  • Write a diary entry using appropriate language for the time in history when the last tram ride in Perth occurred.

BEFORE YOU START

  • Familiarise yourself with the history of Perth Trams by reading 'Our Tram History' fact file (this is a great resource you can share with your students too)
  • Watch the introductory video on “The Last Tram Ride in Perth”
  • Read the information about Graphic Organisers 
  • Download and photocopy a class set of The 5 W's worksheet
  • Download and photocopy a class set of the Assessment Rubrics 
  • Ensure all students have a note taking book or draft writing book.

LEARNING PROCESS: Whole class [20 minutes]

Revise the three main modes of public transport available to us in Perth (bus, train and ferry), and then ask students who can name another form of transport available in Melbourne (looking for the answer 'trams')? Asks students if they think Perth ever had trams in operation.

Discuss with students the important role that trams played in the early 20th century, getting people from their homes to work in the city and to the 'big' shops in the Perth city centre, as large suburban shopping centres were not then available. Explain that owning a car was a luxury, and not until the 1950s when car prices dropped (due to mass production), was it common to have a family car so public transport played an extremely important role in peoples lives.

Hand out a copy of the Graphic Organiser 'The 5 W's' worksheet to each student and explain how the worksheet is used to list the "Who, When, Where, What, and Why" of a story or event in a simple visual way.

Introduce the video, and ask students to watch and listen carefully. Discuss what was learnt from the video as a class then individually ask students to organise the information, using the 'The 5 W's' worksheet.

Show the video again and this time let the students know that you want them to focus on the visual images shown. 

Stop the video at the invitation which invites the viewer 'You' to take a ride on the final tram journey in Perth. Announce to the class that they have all been selected to ride on the last tram in Perth!

Stop the video at key points to highlight and discuss such things as: 

  • The look of the tram and compare it against the trams they may have seen on a visit to Melbourne.
  • The people and the clothing worn – what does this tell us about the weather on that day?
  • The signage / the streetscape – what can they see? (You could even show pictures of what these streets look like today and compare them to the old footage).
  • Look at the faces of the people on the tram and in the street- what are they telling us?
Encourage students to add any additional information they have gained to their 5 W's worksheet.

LEARNING PROCESS: Individual Activity [30 minutes]

Once the footage has been viewed a second time, explain to students that they will now write a journal or diary entry from the first person view point of a passenger, or onlooker, of the last tram ride in Perth. In order to do so, pose the following questions on the whiteboard:

  • Who are you and how old are you?
  • Are you with someone else?
  • What is the weather like? 
  • What are you wearing? 
  • How are you feeling and why?
Ask students to copy down the questions and answer them individually to assist them with creating their 'character'.

Before the students commence their individual writing task discuss what language should be used in the journal entry, to fit the context and time period of the last tram ride. Ask students would people have used words like awesome or lame in the 1950s? What words would be suitable for the time period? Brainstorm a list of words on the whiteboard if necessary so students can refer back when writing their entry.

Explain that the journal entry is to be creative, but must be factually correct. Remind them to refer to 'The 5 W's' chart for factual information.

Set students to work on their draft copy. Once they are happy with their work and edited it, they must then seek feedback from the teacher before completing their final entry. For authenticity, the final copy could be tea stained to give it that "olden days" look.

EXTENSION

  • Ask students to research some of Whiteman Park’s Heritage Programs at http://www.whitemanpark.com.au/education/TransportHeritagePrograms.aspx.
  • Visit Whiteman Park, the only place in Western Australia where you can ride on a genuine vintage electric tram. The Perth Electric Tramway Society provides a regular service over 4 kilometres of standard gauge track through picnic areas and farmland. Students can develop their own itinerary and plan a day of discovery at Whiteman Park for their family and friends.
  • The face of public transport in Perth is set to change. Transport yourselves into the future. Visit www.max.wa.gov.au and find out all about Perth's new light rail!

ASSESSMENT

A simple rubric has been provided that you may wish to use to help you in the marking of this activity. The criteria to be assessed include; the writing process, creativity, the development of setting and character, accuracy of facts and editing skills.

This could also be given to children prior to them beginning their writing as a guide.

AUSTRALIAN CURRICULUM


Year 5

 

Learning Area:

English

Strand:

Language

Sub-strand:

Language variation and change

Contents code:

(ACELA1500)

Contents descriptor:

Understand that the pronunciation, spelling and meanings of words have histories and change over time 

Strand: Literacy
Sub-Strand Texts in Context

Contents code:

(ACELY1698)

Content description:

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

Sub-Strand

Interpreting, analysing, evaluating

Contents code:

 (ACELY1703)

Content description:

Use comprehension strategies to analyse information, integrating and linking ideas from a variety of print and digital sources.

Sub-Strand

Creating Texts

Contents code:

(ACELY1704)

Content description:

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 

Contents code:

(ACELY1705)

Content description:

Reread and edit student's own and others’ work using agreed criteria for text structures and language features

Contents code:

(ACELY1706)

Content description:

Develop a handwriting style that is becoming legible, fluent and automatic

 

Year 6

 

Learning Area:

English

Strand:

Literacy

Sub-strand:

Interacting with others

Contents code:

(ACELY1709)

Content description:

Participate in and contribute to discussions, clarifying and interrogating ideas, developing and supporting arguments, sharing and evaluating information, experiences and opinions

Strand:

Literacy

Sub-strand:

Interpreting, analysing, evaluating

Contents code:

(ACELY1712)

Content description:

Select, navigate and read texts for a range of purposes, applying appropriate text processing strategies and interpreting structural features, for example table of contents, glossary, chapters, headings and subheadings

Contents code:

(ACELY1713)

Content description:

Use comprehension strategies to interpret and analyse information and ideas, comparing content from a variety of textual sources including media and digital texts

Sub-strand:

Creating Texts

Contents code:

(ACELY1714)

Content description:

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

Contents code:

 (ACELY1715)

Content description:

Reread and edit students’ own and others’ work using agreed criteria and explaining editing choices

Contents code:

 (ACELY1716)

Content description:

Develop a handwriting style that is legible, fluent and automatic and varies according to audience and purpose

 

Year 7

 

Learning Area:

English

Strand:

Literature

Sub-strand:

Literature and context

Content code:

(ACELT1619)

Content description:

Identify and explore ideas and viewpoints about events, issues and characters represented in texts drawn from different historical, social and cultural contexts

Strand:Literacy

Sub-strand:

Interpreting, analysing, evaluating

Contents code:

(ACELY1723)

Content description:

Use comprehension strategies to interpret, analyse and synthesise ideas and information, critiquing ideas and issues from a variety of textual sources

Sub-strand:

Creating Texts

Contents code:

(ACELY1725)

Content description:

Plan, draft and publish imaginative, informative and persuasive texts, selecting aspects of subject matter and particular language, visual, and audio features to convey information and ideas 

Contents code:

 (ACELY1726)

Content description:

Edit for meaning by removing repetition, refining ideas, reordering sentences and adding or substituting words for impact

Content code:

(ACELY1727)

Contents description:

Consolidate a personal handwriting style that is legible, fluent and automatic and supports writing for extended periods

 


Year 5

 

Learning Area:

History

Strand:

Historical skills

Sub-strand:

Chronology, terms and concepts

Content Code:

(ACHHS099)

Content description:

Use historical terms and concepts 

Sub-strand

Explanation and communication

Content code:

(ACHHS105)

Content description

Develop texts, particularly narratives and descriptions, which incorporate source materials

 

Year 6

 

Learning Area:

History

Strand:

Historical skills

Sub-strand:

Chronology, terms and concepts

Content Code:

(ACHHS118)

Content description:

Use historical terms and concepts 

Sub-strand:

Perspectives and Interpretations

Content code:

 (ACHHS123)

Content description

Identify points of view in the past and present

Sub-strand

Explanation and communication

Content code:

(ACHHS124)

Content description

Develop texts, particularly narratives and descriptions, which incorporate source materials

 

Year 7

 

Learning Area:

History

Strand:

Historical skills

Sub-strand:

Chronology, terms and concepts

Content Code:

(ACHHS206)

Content description:

Use historical terms and concepts 

Sub-strand

Explanation and communication

Content code:

(ACHHS213)

Content description

Develop texts, particularly descriptions and explanations that use evidence from a range of sources that are acknowledged

Overview

This lesson helps students understand that resources are shaped by their physical, cultural and social environment to meet the needs of the community as they change.

Students will be transported back in time through this activity to 1958 to witness the last tram ride in Perth. The occassion marked a significant shift in the way people travelled in Perth as it coincided with the advent of mass produced cars increasing their affordability and thus accessibility. Students will write a diary entry from one of the passengers or on looker’s point of view and in doing so will be encouraged to share in the emotions and feelings that accompanied this historic moment.

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