History / Year 8 / Historical Knowledge and Understanding

Curriculum content descriptions

Pre-Columbian life in the Americas, including social organisation, city life and beliefs (ACDSEH016)

  • describing the social organisation of the Aztecs (for example, nobility, slaves); their beliefs (for example, worship of a number of gods and the need to make human sacrifices to appease these gods); life in the capital city Tenochtitlan
General capabilities
  • Critical and creative thinking Critical and creative thinking
  • Intercultural understanding Intercultural understanding
  • Ethical understanding Ethical understanding
ScOT terms

Cities,  Beliefs,  Social history,  Lifestyles,  American history,  Mexican history,  Peruvian history,  Precontact culture

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Yulunga: jillora

Spinning balls or tops of various kinds were used as an amusement by Aboriginal people in most parts of Australia and by Torres Strait Islanders. The spin-ball used in the northwest central districts of Queensland was a round ball of about 2 to 3 centimetres in diameter. It was made of lime, ashes, sand, clay and sometimes ...


Yulunga: koolchee

This ball-throwing and hitting game was played by the Diyari people from near Lake Eyre in South Australia. The balls were called koolchee. The balls used were as round as possible and were usually about 8–10 centimetres in diameter. Gypsum, sandstone, mud, or almost any material that was easy to work was used to make the ...


Yulunga: weme

The Walbiri people of central Australia played a stone-bowling game. One player rolled a stone, which was used as a target by the second player. In the traditional game players alternated turns, with each one aiming at the other’s stone. This is a bowling game in which balls are rolled underarm along the ground to knock ...


Yulunga: kandomarngutta

In some parts of Australia children were allowed to use the bullroarer (whirlers), or small versions of it, as a source of amusement. In other areas the bullroarer had a special significance and was not used as a ‘toy’. In parts of Victoria a bullroarer called the kandomarngutta was used. This was a thin piece of wood, ...


Yulunga: kalkadoon kee'an

In areas of north Queensland, a game of throwing skill was played. A large bone, such as an emu shinbone (with twine attached to it) was thrown over a net (used to catch emus) into a pit or hole. Considering the distance to the hole, great skill was required to correctly aim the bone and ensure that it did not touch the ...


Yulunga: kai

In this game from the Torres Strait Islands, a number of players stood in a circle and sang the kai wed (ball song) as they hit a ball up in the air with the palms of their hands. The game was played using the thick, oval, deep-red fruit of the kai tree, which is quite light when dry. This is a hand-hitting (volley) game ...


Yulunga: kokan

Various hockey-type games were played in many areas of the Torres Strait and Papua and New Guinea. A hockey game called kokan, which was played on Mabuiag Island, was the name of the ball itself. This ball was 6–8 centimetres in diameter. The game was played over a long stretch of the sandy beach. The kokan was hit with ...


Yulunga: aurukun

This game comes from the Aurukun Aboriginal community in north Queensland, where it is known as ‘bat and ball’. It is a modern game that has links to traditional hitting games of Aboriginal people in the area. It is the most popular of all the games played at Aurukun and can usually be seen being played at lunch time in ...


Yulunga: brambahl

A favourite game of the old men of the Juwalarai people of the Narran River in New South Wales was brambahl (skipping). Men of more than 70 years were often the best. This is a skipping game where players perform various actions. The Yulunga: Traditional Indigenous Games resource was developed to provide all Australians ...


Yulunga: battendi

A spear game was played by Aboriginal people in the Lake Murray, Lake Alexandrina and Lake Albert areas of southern Australia. A prize such as a newly made shield was offered to the winner. The contest was in two parts: distance throwing and target throwing. This is a distance-and-accuracy throwing contest using a woomera ...


Yulunga: weet weet

The throwing of the play-stick, commonly called the weet weet (‘wit-wit’) was a popular activity among Aboriginal people in some parts of Australia, and various contests were held. The weet weet was often referred to as the ‘kangaroo rat’, because when thrown correctly its flight resembled the leaping action of this small ...


Yulunga: Bondi

The Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people had many water and diving games, which were often indulged in at any convenient creek, waterhole or at the beach. In various parts of Australia, contests in diving, floating, remaining beneath the water, and many other aquatic activities, were undertaken. They ...


Yulunga: makar

Various types of toy boats and canoes are found in parts of Australia and the Torres Strait Islands. On Sunday Island in northern Australia, small models of the raft (kaloa) were made for children to play with. In other areas of Australia small replicas of dugout canoes were fashioned. In parts of the Torres Strait simple ...


Yulunga: mer kai

This is a version of a game from the Torres Strait Islands, using the thick, oval, deep-red fruit of the kai tree, which is quite light when dry. This is a hand-hitting (volley) game where players attempt to keep the ball in the air for as long as they can. The Yulunga: Traditional Indigenous Games resource was developed ...


Yulunga: dabi

Various hockey-type games were played in many areas of the Torres Strait and Papua and New Guinea. A hockey game called kokan was played on Mabuiag Island. The kokan (or ball) was struck with a rough bat or club, baiwain or dabi, which was usually cut from bamboo. On Mabuiag Island the game was played by both genders. This ...


Yulunga: wulijini

This hand-hitting or handball game was played with a zamia (Cycas media) seed by the people of Bathurst Island in northern Australia. In the Meda district of northwest Australia players hit flat pieces of wood. This is a ball-hitting game. The Yulunga: Traditional Indigenous Games resource was developed to provide all Australians ...


Yulunga: turlurlu

Turlurlu is the name of a traditional ball rolling and hitting game played by boys in the Great Sandy Desert of central Australia. A rough ball called a kamikami was cut from the thick root of the ngulyungu tree. Each player held a mukurru, or fighting stick, as a bat. The boys formed teams and each side took turns to bowl ...


Yulunga: yongar ngardongin

The emu and kangaroo dance (play) games among the Bibbuluk kening (Bibbulum people’s dances) were performed in Western Australia in the Vasse, Augusta, Bunbury, Murray and Swan districts and probably further north and east. The game was called yongar ngardongin by the Vasse district people. Almost all large animal and bird ...


Yulunga: edor

This version of a chasing-and-tagging game originates in the Aurukun Aboriginal community and has been popular and played for as long as most can remember. This game has been frequently played around the streets, in the school at break time and before physical education lessons as a fun warm-up activity. The enthusiasm ...


Treasures of American history - online exhibition

This is an online exhibition showing the objects, artefacts and images that make up some of the treasures of US history. The treasures shown in this exhibition document eight of the challenging situations and issues that have helped to shape the USA. Topics include: revolution and the new nation; slavery; western expansion; ...