State Library of South Australia

Early Chinese arrivals: walkers and workers in SA [opportunity 4]

Date: 18 September 2018 to 15 November 2018

Time: 10.00am to 12pm

Location: Meet in the State Library foyer

Note: Free, bookings essential

Early Chinese arrivals

Research the lives of early Chinese arrivals and through dramatic re-enactment explore the experience the Chinese encountered walking to the goldfields and living and working in South Australia. Discover the decisions and choices they and the local communities made and uncover the social and political attitudes of the time.

This program investigates some of South Australia's early connections with Asia and presents the personal and political attitudes of the time.

Suitability: Years 5, 6 and 7
Days: Tuesday to Thursday (alternate term weeks from 18 September)
up to 30 students
Maximum 1:10; 1: 6 recommended
Community Learning Librarian

Details of the interactive program

One mountain, one river, one sage: Treasures from the Shandong Library

During this exhibition, (7 September 2018- 20 January 2019) learners will discover rare and ancient treasures from the Shandong Library, China.


Using primary and secondary resources, learners will research:

  • the arrival and lives of Chinese miners who walked from Robe to Ballarat's gold fields
  • the varying attitudes of Anglo and European settlers/ locals/ miners
  • the effect of political actions including the White Australia Policy
  • the lives of Chinese who settled in SA - ordinary people and prominent men and women in business

Applied learning

Learners will use empathy, improvisation and play-building to create and film a one-minute-performance. They will develop roles, characters and dialogues consistent with their research, to convey status, relationships, points of view and intentions.

Register now


Key inquiry questions

  • What provokes cultural divisions?
  • Are the attitudes held, well founded?
  • What changes opinions?
  • How has Australian society changed over time and how has this effected society?
  • What is recorded about the past? Who recorded it?
  • What other opinions, points of view or perspectives could there be?

Effective learning principles

Teaching for Effective Learning principles underpin the learning design and all learning experiences are aligned with the Australian Curriculum, with a particular emphasis on:

  • Learning area of HASS: History, Geography and Drama
  • General Capability of intercultural understanding
  • Cross-Curriculum Priority of Asia and Australia's engagement with Asia

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Event contact details

Contact: Community Learning Team

Phone: 8207 7239

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State Library of SA - South Australian Government