The bushranger

[Episode 18 | 1838 : Davey]

While out walking Duchess, Davey and Alice witness a bushranger on the run from some local soldiers, and they misdirect the soldiers to ensure his swift escape. Davey is confronted by the Owen boys who tease him about the imminent fate of Duchess.


The Australian curriculum: History

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The Australian Curriculum: History aims to ensure that students develop: 

  • interest in, and enjoyment of, historical study for lifelong learning and work, including their capacity and willingness to be informed and active citizens 
  • knowledge, understanding and appreciation of the past and the forces that shape societies, including Australian society 
  • understanding and use of historical concepts, such as evidence, continuity and change, cause and effect, perspectives, empathy, significance and contestability 
  • capacity to undertake historical inquiry, including skills in the analysis and use of sources, and in explanation and communication.

History activities [1]

Activity 1: Troopers
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Subtheme(s): Culture; Historical events; Politics

In the 1830s, armed troopers on horseback provided much of the organised policing. Outlaws were usually referred to as 'bolters' or escaped convicts. This clip shows troopers in pursuit of a masked outlaw or 'bolter' who is attempting to hide in the bush

  • As a class, discuss the actions of the troopers in the clip. In pairs, ask students to complete the think-pair-share chart about how troopers lived and worked in Davey's time. The students should answer the following questions: 
  1. Why were the troopers armed?
  2. Why did the troopers ride on horseback? 
  3. Who were the outlaws and what laws did they transgress?
  4. Why would Davey be frightened of them?
  • As a class, discuss the actions of Davey and his sister as they watch the escape of the outlaws. Ask students the reasons why Davey told the troopers to go the wrong way. Students should also consider what would have happened if Davey had told the truth. And, what would happen to Davey if the troopers had found out that he'd lied to them?

  • Ask students to create a comic strip of the action in the clip. Students should storyboard the action and draw and write up the action and dialogue, creating a pictorial story.  
  • Alternatively, students could create a timeline of the key dates of the history of policing in Australia. Ask students to research the introduction of the police force in each state. 
  • Martin Cash was a notorious outlaw at this time. Ask students to research his life story and to develop a social media page or wanted poster for him.


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