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Our Australian environment


How do you relate to the Australian environment?

When you hear 'Australian environment', what are the first words that come to mind? Perhaps 'unique', or 'drought-affected', or maybe just 'hot'?!

A small group of children sitting on the floor and participating in an activity.

In Our Australian Environment students handle objects to aid in their investigation of the relationship between the Australian continent and its people. This program provides students with the opportunity to use an iPad to photograph objects that relate to an aspect of Australia's environmental history and the theme of sustainability.


Year levels 5–12 (or 6–12 for Qld, WA and SA)
Group size 40 (note that two groups can run concurrently)
Duration 2 hours
Cost $6 per student

Tuesday–Friday at 10am and 1pm

Alternative times may be available for local schools. Please contact for further information.

This program will not run in 2017.

Curriculum links
Australian History curriculum links to our programs (225kb PDF)


  • Enable students to investigate socio-environmental history through object handling and group discussion.
  • Encourage students to explore and interpret Museum galleries that relate to the Australian environment.


  1. Introductory activity – students are introduced to the concepts of sustainability and environmental change throughout Australia's history. They handle and explore objects that relate to a variety of environmental themes and examine how these themes are interrelated through group discussion.
  2. Gallery activity – working in groups, students explore the Old New Land gallery to identify and photograph objects that relate to an aspect of Australia's environmental history and the theme of sustainability.
  3. Reflection – students reflect on Australia's environmental history and discuss how their gallery exploration has broadened their knowledge and understandings of Australia's environmental issues.

Exploring the Museum

For everything you need to know about visiting, see Plan and book a visit.

Related resources

These activity ideas might be useful in your classroom.

You may also be interested in these teacher resources:

  • Old New Land – a unit of work investigating our changing relationship with the Australian land
  • Can we 'Drought-Proof' Australia? – a unit of work exploring the causes, effects and attempts to manage drought in Australia
  • Fire in Australia – a unit of work exploring the role and impact of bushfires in Australia.

You can also see the full list of resources related to the Australian environment.