Te Kete Ipurangi Navigation:

Te Kete Ipurangi

Te Kete Ipurangi user options:

English Online. Every child literate - a shared responsibility.
Ministry of Education.

Learning task 1: Introduction

Starter activities

Use the Celebrations and Ceremonies photo kit (Learning Media) or find photos and pictures from magazines that show different activities. Make sure that some of the pictures show formal occasions and have elements such as Maori traditional costumes, church dignitaries, soldiers, etc.
Divide the children into groups of 3-4 and give each group three photos - try to provide three different types, eg. a celebration, ceremony and a commemoration.
Discussion questions:

  • What is happening in the photo?
  • How do you know this?

Get the groups to share their ideas and then to work together to classify all the photos into three groups.

  • Why do these photos belong together?
  • What are their similarities?
  • Why do photos from other groups not belong?
  • What assumptions can we make from looking at the clothing of the people?
  • Can we think of a word to describe each group?

If the children come up with the word celebrations write it on to the whiteboard. Otherwise introduce the words celebrations, ceremonies, commemorations.

Celebrations, ceremonies and commemorations

In small groups discuss: What are celebrations, ceremonies and commemorations?
Decide on definitions for each word, eg.

  • Celebrations: are usually associated with family, church, school or community and are usually informal.
  • Ceremonies are associated with more formal occasions and often contain rituals of some kind - religious, national, community or school.
  • Commemorations are for remembering with public people, governments, country, laws or official occasions.

Divide a large piece of paper into three columns. Students work in small groups to brainstorm examples to fit into each column. Allow 3-5 minutes for students to complete the activity. Share ideas from their chart (RTF 11KB) and allow the children to "Piggyback" ideas. Classify and correlate ideas and make class ANZAC chart.
This chart will be kept and used throughout this unit with children and teacher adding to it as new information is found. It will serve as a mini resource with notes and information discovered throughout the unit.
Discuss: Have we got our examples in the correct columns? Use highlighters to colour code any changes, eg. all ceremonies red.

  • Do they overlap? Why?
  • What are the differences?
  • What do they have in common?

Prior knowledge

Ask the children why we have ANZAC Day and what they know about ANZACS. Use the what_do_i_know (RTF 8KB) . The children write down all they know. Then write down what they would like to find out. Retain a copy of this sheet to help with assessment at the end of the unit.


Read to the students a series of provocative statements and ask them to use their thumbs to show their reaction. Discuss using thumbs up to agree with a statement, thumbs down for disagree and sideways for unsure. Asking the students to close their eyes will eliminate them following others and allow for anonymity.
Examples of statements could be:

  • War is fun.
  • Without war we can't have peace.
  • It is all right to be in a war as long as you win.
  • Taking part in war is like committing murder.
  • The government makes the war and the poor people are the ones to die.

Revisit these statements at the end of the unit. Ask the children if they have changed their minds. If so, why?


Summarise for the students how World War 1 actually began. The countries involved, the battles fought.
Read Gallipoli by Neil McKenzie [New Zealand Warrior series, search the catalogue to see if this is available from the National Library service in your area]. Read to the children several times over successive days. Discuss during and after reading what happened and why. Use the 5W's and an H to formulate questions, eg.

  • When did this happen?
  • Who were involved in the fighting?
  • Why were so many soldiers killed?
  • Where did these events take place?
  • What problems did the New Zealander's experience? What went wrong?
  • How do you think the young soldier's felt?

Record on a class chart the important information:

  • Who was fighting? Germany, Austro-Hungarian Empire and Turkey against British Empire, (which included Australia and New Zealand), France and Russia.
  • Why did they fight over this area of land? Dardenelles a narrow strait between the Mediterranean Sea and the Black Sea allowing access to Russia.
  • Date of the landing. 25 April 1915
  • What went wrong? Landing on the wrong beach, strong sea currents, cliffs and steep hills.
  • Digging in and making trenches - origin of the name diggers given to the Australian and New Zealand soldiers.
  • What was the size of the battlefield? 200 acre dairy farm - two kilometres long by one kilometre wide.
  • Why was Bernard Freyberg's swim so important?
  • What were the conditions like in the trenches? periscopes, disease, rats, flies etc.
  • What were the New Zealand casualties? 2721 men killed 4752 were wounded.

Students could write quiz questions based on the book to ask other groups.

Published on: 21 May 2009