Why are there differences in our world

Overview (length: 5 weeks @ 2 lessons per week)
  • A Diversity of peoples
  • The Meaning of life
  • Religions of the World
  • Religious Festivals
  • The impact of religion on people's lives
  • Contributing to the community

Topic 1
A Diversity of peoples
  • Introduction: Australian of the year - Simon McKeon YouTube -

  • These people are called philanthropists. Can you spell that (play hangman)?
  • After watching this find out what good deeds famous people do, or what charities they personally support...
billgates.jpeg jolie.jpeg chan.jpg glenn-mcgrath.jpg

  • think of Bill Gates, Angelina Jolie... anyone. Write their names on the board and tell the class / teacher about the good things they have done. Your teacher might also know of a few people and their good deeds.
    • Now think about the people you know in our community who help others.
    • It is our differences that give us something that we can help others with.
    • Our differences make us special. They can help us to make the world a better place because with them we have something to give.


  • discuss
    • “What is the purpose of life?” (can be done in tables and feedback to class)
    • “Why are you here?”
    • “What is your role in this world?”
    • “What do you think you should do in your lifetime?”


  • Assessment - Diversity Task - Students are to design a keynote / poster / collection of drawings / poem with a set of images highlighting the many differences there are between the people in this world (think about different races, social status, age, gender, religious beliefs / values, countries, cultures) and how the meaning of life is similar despite the many differences there are between people in our world. To be completed in the one lesson.


  • Marking:
    • 4 ideas about the meaning of life, written as dot points and explained.
    • Images showing the diversity of life in our world.
    • Ideas about the meaning of life fit all types of people (see assessment task).
    • Identify why these differences exist.
    • Identify how humanity benefits from its diversity.
    • Effort.

Topic 2

Topic 3
The Meaning of Life - An Individual Reflective Response
  • Assessment - Create an iMovie or other type of reflective response on what you see as your purpose and the meaning of life as you see it.
  • 3 - 5 min length
  • Visuals : e.g word, images.....
  • Own music
  • Must be own work
  • Begin in lesson and finish for HW
  • Submit on USB for correction

Topic 4
Religions of the World
  • As a class, brainstorm definitions for religion.
    • List all the religions that the class can think of.
    • Watch the short video segments of some of these religions buddhism, judaism, islam
    • Read "The Age" 2003 article on Religions -
    • Working in groups
      • Create a table or a mind map of each of 5 main religions
      • Identify 4 key points for each of these religions
      • visual image of each of these religion
      • different values of the religion
      • what do worshippers look like, sound like and believe in?

4 core beliefs
look like
sound like
  • One God
  • Trinity (God the father, God the son, God the Holy spirit) all form the one God
  • Jesus Christ died for our sins
  • Jesus rose from the dead.





  • love
  • equanimity
  • compassion


Topic 5 - Religious Festivals

Assessment : Individual task

Select one RELIGIOUS FESTIVAL and research in depth as suggested per handout.
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander spirituality
  • Buddhism -
  • Christianity (with the major denominations of Catholic, Anglican, Uniting, Presbyterian, Orthodox, Baptist and Lutheran)
  • Hinduism
  • Islam - e.g. pilgimage to Mecca
  • Judaism
  • Sikhism
Assessment sheet
Criteria sheet -
  • Information in well written paragraphs
  • Own words
  • Include images
Research organiser (to be completed and submitted individually as well).

Topic 6 - The role religion plays in people's lives

Discuss the role religion plays in people’s lives. Examine the various different religions and determine if they have anything in common. Create a Venn Diagram showing how the different religions inter-relate. (Portfolio) - 20 min


Make your own VENN diagram. Add to or improve this one. How would Islam fit in this VENN diagram instead of Buddhism?

Begin a portfolio of newspaper articles showing the impact that religion has on people’s lives. (Portfolio)

In groups of 2 or 3 find three articles about how an organisation (or someone) is making a difference.
Save your article using screen shot (command + shift + 4).
Drag into a pages document titled 'Articles demonstrating the role religion plays in people's lives'.
One article per page only.

Find three articles from the following links...


  • Underneath the article copy, paste and complete this table... 30 min
1. Identify the religion the article referring to.
e.g. The article refers to people of the Catholic faith.
2. Which values or beliefs are obvious in the article? How have they motivated action in the people?
e.g. Helping raise funds for Fr. Lito shows that Catholic's believe that they should help others where and when they can.
3. What do you think of the way religion has affected the way these people live their lives?
e.g. I think that it helps contribute to a better world. The funds raised for Fr. Lito will enable him to build a toilet block at his school in East Timor.

  • Share your articles and thoughts with the class... 20 min

Caritas Project Compassion PowerPoint
USA for Africa: "We are the World"

How can you help?

For each of the following discuss and answer these questions

  • whom (person or organisation) can you help?
  • identify the problem being addressed (why should you help them)?
  • what is challenging about this problem? (what difficulties might there be)?
  • how can you help?... (volunteer time, skills, donate, etc.... )
  • how can your actions help solve the problem? (raising money, assisting in a physical task, providing company... )

Brainstorm and mindmap how individuals, organisations and the government help people in the Echuca area?
An example is shown below...


Lesson 9
Choose a theme and create a prayer wall or space showing prayers from the different religions. The theme could centre on peace, friendship, harmony, love, understanding, etc. Appropriate songs could also be added to the prayer area and played during prayer time. (Portfolio)

Lesson 10
Each person is to write 5 questions about the religions they have studied to generate cards to play a game of Trivial Pursuit. After the questions have been checked and written on cards, students are to form teams of 3. Teams are to pit their skills against each other in a competition of Trivial Pursuit, with an adjudicator or Game Host to run the competition. (Portfolio)

Lesson 11
In small groups, students are to research a bible story that depicts a specific aspect of the Catholic religion. They are to write the story in their own words, and perform it to the class. (Portfolio)

Other Resources:

The Age , Herald Sun , ABC News , Google News

  • Task
  • Rubric