Ballarat Primary School Program 2015
Federation University, Ballarat
16–17 April 2015
The first of the HEP workshops was successfully launched in April 2015. Participating students came from the following schools:
Ballarat North Primary School
Black Hill Primary School
Bungaree Primary School
Invermay Primary School
Macarthur Street Primary School
Pleasant Street Primary School
Ballarat Grammar School
The program will culminate with the HEP Highlights exhibition to be held at Federation University in October, allowing students to showcase their passion projects.
We would like to thank the principals, teachers, parents and students who worked with us to make this program possible.
A student’s perspective
By Urszula Nowak
On 16–17 April, I went to the HTAV History Enrichment Program (HEP). To get in, I had to sit a miniature questionnaire. This test asked me to answer a few questions about what makes me a fast learner and what I like about history. I wrote that ever since I had been introduced to history, I fell in love with it. I enjoy how the past shapes the future, I adore the history of the gold rush, not to mention my fandom for Shakespeare. I enjoy the gold rush because it is the main starting point of Australian democracy. I find the Tudor period interesting because some people were good and some were bad – and through history we learn about different people’s perspectives. I wanted to participate in HEP because even though I know a lot about history, I like to challenge myself with new things, especially if it is a passion of mine. I think it was different from school because of the harder level, and it was a lot more fun and is set for people that share the same skills.
On the first day we met at the Federation University campus building C. There we had a briefing and got to know the teachers (who were very nice), and we mingled and talked about ourselves to each other. We then got into groups and received a box called ‘the box of knowledge,’ which was full of pictures, news articles and stories. We were told to decipher the box and make a short video or performance about it. My group deciphered that we needed to work on bushrangers and convicts and their differences. We then performed. Most groups decided to use a video, but a few (like my group) decided to act it out in the space provided.
The next thing blew me away: we caught a bus over to the Museum of Australian Democracy at Eureka (MADE). There we had a guided tour. We also looked closely at the Eureka Stockade. In doing this, we learnt about the Aboriginal perspective. We also completed a worksheet about MADE’s uses of displays so we could be inspired for our passion project.
Even though we had to walk over to the S building the next day, I didn’t mind because when we got there we started talking about our passion project, and this project is the best thing about HEP. I was so excited because we got to showcase our passion about history. I decided to do Shakespeare because I love the slight chance of his Catholicism (which means that he was a bit of a rule breaker because Elizabeth I did not allow this) and I adore his plays. Morning tea and lunch was amazing and we also got a bit of time to brainstorm about our passion project. I found this time helpful and a great idea.
It’s important to offer programs like this because students need time to learn more about things they enjoy and to socialise with people that share their passions.