Stage 5 Geography - Changing Places
In the previous 7-10 syllabus in Environment Issues there was a section of content where students were asked to investigate individual, groups and government responses to an issue. In the new NSW syllabus this has been removed. However, in Stage 4 Changing Places the issue of WestConnex protests (or some other protests) can be used to address the inquiry questions:
Students can examine transport networks as both a cause and consequence of urbanisation (see previous post - WestConnex - Sydney, Sustainability and Transport)
Students can also use it to examine the following content dot points:
Below: The St Peters West Connex site.
Stage 6 Geography - Urban Places/Urban Dynamics
In a previous post I wrote about how WestConnex could be used as a way of exploring growth, development, future trends and ecological sustainability for a Sydney case study in the urban dynamics section of the HSC course. Another way this issue could be used in this course would be to use it to explore the culture of place of a suburb like Haberfield. There have been a variety of articles regarding the nature of the suburb in terms of heritage architecture, noise, and street life, and how this has and will change as a result of WestConnex. There are also a number of articles regarding the development site at St Peters and the removal of established trees on Sydney Park.
This could also be used as a way to ask problematic questions such as:
- What is the cost of development?,
- What kind of Sydney do we really want?
- Do the benefits to the city/commuters outweigh the costs to others?
- Will the project really releive traffic in the long term?
Students can do this through the lense of community protests to examine how different groups and individuals perceive how WestConnex (both a consequence of and a response to urbanisation - i.e a response to traffic congestion, the need for transport infrastructure) impacts their community and/or environment. In the previous syllabus there was a lot of scope to do activities such as mock council meetings, mock letters to Members of Parliament, etc. A simple search on Youtube brings up many recorded meetings regarding the project. This is an ideal scenario to use in class to reenact (or participate in) this process.
While NESA/BOSTES has not completed a rewrite of the Civics and Citizenship Australian Curriculum, we can assume it will be relatively similar based on the rewrites of 7-10 History and Geography. In Civics and Citizenship (AC) students examine how citizens participate in direct action and lobbying (Year 8) and how and why individuals and groups participate in and contribute to civic life (Year 9). This provides a perfect example to explore these kinds issues and to build on student knowledge in Civics and Citizenship.
Below is a list of links to articles and websites related to WestConnex protests. You will notice that some of these are from media outlets such as Green Left Weekly and Alt Media. In a previous post on WestConnex most of the links I provided were government websites. The two posts together provide a more balanced approach to the issue and any lesson to students should include a range of perspectives and encouraging students to do their own analysis and make their own conclusions.
WestConnex: Protesters clash with Police over 800 tree-deaths
Protesting businesses in Newtown and Enmore stick it to WestConnex
Haberfield homes acquired for building of WestConnex
Three month closure of Ramsay Street Haberfield
Talking WestConnex and Mike Baird ignoring compulsory aquisition reforms
WestConnex private contractors sell items from heritage homes ahead of demolition
Clover Moore supports protesters at 24-hour-a-day camping blockade...
WestConnex protesters arrested as Sydney Park trees come down.
Protesters Clash with WestConnex workers
How the 15.4b WestConnex will affect Sydney residents
Baird's new protest laws used against WestConnex protesters
Protests grow over WestConnex
WestConnex Action Group
Deputy Principal at a Sydney high school. Coordinating author of the new Geoactive book series.
7-10 Geography pages have been retired due to the introduction of the new syllabus. The above links relate to current NSW syllabuses. All Commerce and Legal Studies resources have been moved onto this main site (search Commerce or Legal Studies below).