[Episode 9 | 1928 : Bridie]
Bridie's family is having breakfast and discussing what they will do that day. Her father and brother are going to work at the brickworks, her mother will be cleaning floors for neighbours, and Bridie and her older sister Kath are expected to look after baby Colum and do chores around the house. Bridie spies on Kath and her friend Lorna as they plan to get away from their responsibilities and have a picnic by the river.
The Australian Curriculum: History aims to ensure that students develop:
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In 1923 the government of Stanley Bruce created the 'Men, Money and Markets' policy. Its aim was to find new markets for Australian products and to use immigration as a way to increase the number of workers in Australia. This policy benefited the agricultural sector, but conditions and wages for urban workers deteriorated between 1920 and 1929, leading to workers' strikes.
With many Australian men fighting in First World War (1914–18), women filled the jobs left vacant in an effort to support the war effort. The movement into the workforce changed the role of women and by the 1920s it had become more acceptable for both men and women to work.
In 1928, the life of many children in Australia was one of hard work and responsibility to family. This episode portrays the difficulties commonly encountered by many Australian families, with a father
and mother who both need to work and children who have to tend to the home and look after their younger siblings.
Times were tough in 1928. The economy was on the brink of depression, and soon Australia would see job losses and a housing crisis. Children were given a lot of responsibility and in many cases had little or no time for play. Episode 9 highlights the quest of the children to escape their daily routine in order to have some fun.
Bridie's mother is Irish. In the early 1900s, the Irish constituted a large proportion of immigrants to Australia. Most Irish immigrants came to the colonies on assisted passage after escaping the crippling effects of the 1840s Irish Potato Famine. Find out more about the legacy of the Irish in Australia at: