The ball of the century

[Episode 2 | 1998 : Mohammed]

Mohammed and his father discuss playing soccer, but Mohammed is not convinced he wants to take up the sport. His grandmother replays Shane Warne bowling a leg break to English batsman Mike Gatting during the 1993 Ashes series. They discuss the 'Magnus effect', which causes the ball to spin.


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 [2]

Activity 1: Warnie
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Subtheme(s): Culture; Entertainment and games; Historical events

There are many great moments in Australia's sporting history, but few as memorable as Shane Warne's performance in the 1993 Ashes series. Many believed he was the best leg-spin bowler in the world and his performances resulted in a resurgence in the popularity of cricket.

Ask students to find and view videos of the 1993 Ashes tour online, using links found at 'Google videos'.

  • Ask students to collect information about the cricketing achievements of Shane Warne. Record this information on date/event fact cards and use them to develop a timeline of 'Warnie's' career in cricket.
  • Ask students to find out about the 'Magnus effect' in spin bowling, and practise trying to achieve it. Look at 'Why a Cricket Ball Swings' on The Creek,

  • Ask students to create a diorama about Shane Warne. Use images, models of cricket gear, and written facts to make a tribute to this famous cricketer. Have students develop a chant that they would have used if they were present at a game in the 1993 Ashes series.
  • Ask students to select an Australian sporting legend from a different sport. Students can create a short biography of the sportsperson and present their research as poster with images and text. Combine the posters in a 'Hall of fame' to be displayed in the classroom.


Activity 2: VCR
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Subtheme(s): Inventions and electronic media; Historical events

In this clip we see Mohammed and his grandmother reliving the game at Old Trafford during the 1993 Ashes series. They have watched the game many times before. Recording great sporting moments from movies and television shows became possible with the invention of the VCR, or a video cassette recorder. It was a revolutionary device at the time.

  • Ask students to investigate the development of electronic technology that captures moving image and sound. For example, students could look at the evolution of technology that captures images from the camera to be stored on film video cassettes, DVDs, compact discs or other digital files. Use a timeline to plot significant developments so that students can assess the rate of change in more recent times. Discuss how technology impacts on the way we live. Ask students to consider the environmental effects of technological advances.

  • Ask students to investigate technologies that were available to households in 1898, 1948 and 1998. They are to compare how available technology would have affected the lives of children in each of these years. Ensure students include the invention of the VCR in their research. The information can be presented electronically or on a poster.


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