Pig forgery

[Episode 19 | 1828 : Alice]

Freddie tells Alice about his forging history while they paint a piglet black. They then switch it with George's piglet Benny in order to fix the race. When Alice awakes she's shocked to find there is something wrong with Wilhelmina.


The Australian curriculum: English

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The Australian Curriculum: English aims to ensure that students:

  • learn to listen to, read, view, speak, write, create and reflect on increasingly complex and sophisticated spoken, written and multimodal texts across a growing range of contexts with accuracy, fluency and purpose
  • appreciate, enjoy and use the English language in all its variations and develop a sense of its richness and power to evoke feelings, convey information, form ideas, facilitate interaction with others, entertain, persuade and argue
  • understand how Standard Australian English works in its spoken and written forms and in combination with non-linguistic forms of communication to create meaning
  • develop interest and skills in inquiring into the aesthetic aspects of texts, and develop an informed appreciation of literature.

English activities [2]

Activity 1: Forging and deceiving
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Subtheme(s): Character; Culture; Entertainment and games
  • As a class, view the clip Pig forgery and list the characters and the key locations where they are involved in the events of the clip, for example:
  1. Alice and Freddie - in a work-shed
  2. Alice and Freddie - in a stable
  3. George - sleeping with his pig in a stable
  4. Alice - sleeping with her pig in a bed on a verandah outside her house.
  • Refer students to Student Activity Sheet E19.5: Forging and deceiving and have them create a story ladder listing the key events in this clip. Ask them to cut out the events separately and place them into an envelope. Have students swap story ladders with each other and place the events in order.
  • Ask students to note how Freddie and Alice are painting the pig in the work-shed, listing the technologies available, such as the candle for light and the bellows used to dry the pig. Ask students to consider why Freddie and Alice are painting the pig and why Freddie tells Alice to be careful that she does not get wet. 
  • Have students also suggest why both Alice and George are sleeping with their respective pigs. Introduce students to the ABC3 website My Place and find the page for 1828. Explore the website and play the 'Pig Race' game: My Place, http://www.abc.net.au/abc3/myplace/

  • Set up a treasure hunt:
    Ask students to draw on a map of the farm and the quarry. Have them position the farm buildings, roads, quarry, race track and creek. Each of these sites should also be given a description of what it is and which characters frequent that site. Ask students to think about where they would bury treasure on the farm. Once they have decided this, they should write a set of cryptic clues for others to find the treasure. Once the students have developed their map and set of clues, they should swap their map with another student and try and find the other treasure.
  • Alternatively, have students work in small groups to design and paint a mural, showing what they know about the life and times of the children in the clip during this era of the 1820s. Students might include information about specific places where the children live on the farm, clothing they wear, sleeping arrangements, housing, pets, available technology, pegs on the washing line, and also sounds such as a rooster crowing, other birds and animals, and dialogue such as references to transportation, bank notes and promissory notes.


Activity 2: Freddie the forger
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Subtheme(s): Character; Currency; Inventions and electronic media
  • As a class view the clip Pig forgery and invite students to concentrate on what Freddie the forger tells Alice about his felonies. Ask students what might be meant by the description 'Old Freddie the forger'. Discuss as a class the following questions:
  1. What were the things Freddie forged? He tells Alice he was transported because he forged a British bank note and then after he was transported he forged a promissory note.
  2. What were these notes used for and why might Freddie have forged them?
  3. Who is likely to have been affected by Freddie's criminal behaviours?
  4. What does the description 'Old Freddie the forger' tell you about the man and his behaviour?
  • As a class, discuss how Freddie's references to transportation indicate that he is a convict who has been sent from England to Australia as a punishment for his crimes. Alice asks Freddie, "Didn't you learn anything?" and Freddie tells Alice he plans to give up his criminal ways. Ask students whether they believe him. Why or why not? Ask them to give examples from the clip to justify their opinions. For example, Freddie is engaged in a criminal act with Alice in painting the pig and swapping it for another pig in the race.
  • Have students to work in small groups of three to find out when and why convicts were first transported to Australia, what types of crimes they had committed and some of the punishments they received when transported. Refer to the following websites for information:
  1. Genealogy Links, 'Australian Convict Records', http://www.genealogylinks.net/australia/all-australia/convicts.htm
  2. Convict Creations, 'Convict Crimes', http://www.convictcreations.com/history/crimes.htm
  • Students should organise their findings by completing a number of case studies on actual transported convicts. They can use the template in Student Activity Sheet E19.6 Freddie the forger. Once these are completed; have students present their findings to the class through a freeze-frame activity. A freeze-frame activity is one in which the student must respond to a question or statement while in the role of the character they have researched.
  • Ask each student to complete Student Activity Sheet E19.6 Freddie the forger which lists three important pieces of information from this clip. Beside each piece of information, ask students to make a comment about whether they think the behaviour engaged in is a crime and why they believe this to be the case.

  • Ask students to design and produce a 'Wanted' poster for Freddie the forger. They are to draw an image of the felon and write a description of his crimes. Ask students to look at historical 'Wanted' posters as a guide to what layout and text are needed. .
  • There have been many poems and ballads written to describe a convict's lot in life when transported. Examples include the song 'Botany Bay'.
  • The following websites may be useful:
  1. Convict Creations, 'Australian Poetry', http://www.convictcreations.com/culture/poetry.htm
  2. Images Australia, 'Botany Bay', http://www.imagesaustralia.com/botanybay.htm
  3. Matilda, '100 Australian Poems: 1.0 "A Convict's Tour to Hell" by Francis Macnamara', http://www.middlemiss.org/matilda/2009/04/100-australian.html
  4. Matilda, 'Poems by Charles Harpur', http://www.middlemiss.org/matilda/2009/02/reprint-poems-by-charles-harpur-general.html
  • Ask students to source an example of a poem they like and rewrite the lyrics to reflect the life and aspirations of Freddie the forger. Have students share these examples with the rest of the class.


Student Activity Sheet E19.6 Freddie the forger

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