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Science / Year 6 / Science as a Human Endeavour / Nature and development of science

View on Australian Curriculum website Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority
Curriculum content descriptions

Science involves testing predictions by gathering data and using evidence to develop explanations of events and phenomena and reflects historical and cultural contributions (ACSHE098)

Elaborations
  • investigating how knowledge about the effects of using the Earth’s resources has changed over time
  • describing how understanding of the causes and effects of major natural events has changed as new evidence has become available
  • investigating the use of electricity, including predicting the effects of changes to electric circuits
  • considering how gathering evidence helps scientists to predict the effect of major geological or climatic events
  • investigating how people from different cultures have used sustainable sources of energy, for example water and solar power
  • exploring institutions and locations where contemporary Australian scientists conduct research on catastrophic natural events
  • learning how Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander knowledge, such as the medicinal and nutritional properties of Australian plants, is being used as part of the evidence base for scientific advances
  • investigating the development of earthquake measurements from the Chinese invention of the seismograph in the second century
General capabilities
  • Numeracy Numeracy
ScOT terms

Predictions (Science),  Data collection,  Explanations (Scientific inquiry)

Video

Weddell seals: how close is too close?

Australian scientists are trying to find out how human contact affects the stress levels of Antarctica's Weddell seals. But how do these very large mammals show signs of stress? Check out the observations made and data collected for this study of animal behaviour.

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Discovering the secret life of bees

What's life like for a honey bee? That's exactly what Tasmanian scientists are interested in finding out. They've been busy gluing tiny sensors between the wings of bees, so their movements can be tracked and we can learn more about bee behaviour. What are some of the reasons scientists give for wanting to better understand ...

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Murray River crayfish

What is a 'baited remote underwater video station'? Often the most innovative scientific research is used to identify living things under the threat of extinction. Watch this clip to learn more about the shy but curious Murray River crayfish and the scientists intent on ensuring its survival.

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Living in space

Do you know that people have been living and working in space for more than 10 years? The International Space Station (ISS) orbits the Earth more than 300 kilometres above us. Watch this clip to discover what life is like in space and the type of research that is conducted there.

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Memories of Antarctic expeditions (1954 and 1961)

Listen as scientist Dr Phillip Law recounts his experiences of expeditions to Antarctica. See historic footage of travelling through pack ice. The clip features the Kista Dan (1954 expedition) and the Magga Dan (1961 expedition). The Australian National Antarctic Research Expedition (ANARE) was established to set up scientific ...

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Re-creation of Shackleton's Antarctic survival

In 1914 Ernest Shackleton and his crew set out on an expedition to cross Antarctica via the South Pole. But things went horribly wrong when their ship was crushed by ice on the way. In this news clip, witness an Australian scientist about to set out with five others to re-create Shackleton's remarkable journey of survival, ...

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Day in the life of a meteorologist

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a weather scientist (meteorologist)? In this clip, weather man Mark Wilgar describes a typical work day that begins very early in the morning! Find out what's involved in gathering and communicating weather information, and discover what Mark sees as the rewards of his job.

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Predicting earthquakes

Will scientists ever be able to accurately predict earthquakes? Imagine the number of lives that could be saved if this were possible. Dr Maryanne Demasi joins a group of researchers drilling into one of the most earthquake-prone regions on Earth as they try to improve earthquake prediction to add precious seconds to earthquake ...

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Tracking heatwaves in Australia

A database tracking the last 60 or so years of heatwaves shows that they are getting longer, more frequent and more intense in Australia. In this clip, climate scientist Dr Sarah Perkins-Kirkpatrick explains how and why. Overall, she describes that the biggest increase has been in the frequency of heatwaves in Australia, ...

Video

Increasing threat of megafires

Many scientists believe we are already experiencing megafires and that they will continue to increase in the future. In this clip you will hear from Australian scientists at the forefront of fire research. Discover what they have to say about the causes, projections, and consequences of an increased megafire threat.

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Packing for an Antarctic expedition (1954)

Listen to scientist Dr Phillip Law describe the requirements of packing for a year's stay on Antarctica. See historic footage of packing the ship Kista Dan for the 1954 expedition to Antarctica. The Australian National Antarctic Research Expedition (ANARE) was established to set up scientific research stations in the Antarctic ...

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Bushfire disaster, Victoria 2009

Investigate Victoria's devastating bushfires of 2009 and find out why they have been called Australia's worst ever natural disaster. In this clip you will see the ferocious fires that ripped through parts of Victoria, destroying bushland, farms, houses, schools and cars. Find out what made these fires so devastating.

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Fire management strategies

What role do fire-behaviour specialists and ecologists have in fire management? Watch this clip to find out about issues relating to fire management in Australia, in particular prescribed burning.

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Ecological effects of bushfires

Did you know that Australia is the most flammable continent on Earth? Watch this clip to discover how bushfires impact natural ecosystems, and how the increasing global threat of bushfires may affect Australia. Australian scientists explain the ecological consequences of fire and a US expert describes his concerns for the future.

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Fossils and the evolution of life

Have you ever wondered how scientists know when the early mammals appeared on Earth, or how long ago dinosaurs died out? Watch this clip to discover the role of fossils, and the rocks they are found in, in revealing the order and history of life on Earth. This clip takes you to fossil sites in Queensland; and to Shark Bay ...

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Supercapacitors: new battery technology

Discover how nanotechnology is contributing to the creation of new, improved batteries that may soon be used in all our mobile phones and portable music devices - even in cars and trams. Catalyst's Tanya Ha looks at how traditional batteries produce electricity and how their efficiency may be increased by tiny devices known ...

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Volcanoes and people

Imagine living in the shadow of a volcano? Well, millions of people do in Naples, Italy, where a massive volcano called Vesuvius exists. This clip explores the dangers posed by volcanoes and investigates some recent and ancient eruptions. Find out some misconceptions about volcanoes and discover how science is helping prevent ...

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Centenary of Mawson's first Antarctic expedition

Dangerous, desperate and deadly! That is how the reporter in this clip describes the first Antarctic expedition by Sir Douglas Mawson, 100 years ago. Discover the challenges Mawson faced on the coldest and windiest continent on Earth, and find out about his invaluable contributions to science.

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Weather forecasting

How do meteorologists predict the weather? Discover what types of weather data is gathered, the equipment used, and how forecasting has changed over the years. A scientist will reveal how often they get it wrong!

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Megafires

Are we approaching the 'age of megafires'? It might sound like something out of a sci-fi movie, but some scientists believe there is cause for concern. Watch this clip to find out how bushfires as we know them are changing. Discover why.