Big Plans: FOUNDATION - Media Arts - Explain3

Big Cuz and Little J are very excited that Sissy is coming to play with them over the weekend. They both see Sissy as their special friend. Big Cuz wants to play a ‘Sisters Only’ talent quest just for she and Sissy, and Little J plans an obstacle course for all to play. Eventually, Little J, Big Cuz and Sissy come together to test their skills on the obstacle course.

Explain - Respond to media artworks and consider where and why people make media artworks, starting with media from Australia including media artworks of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples


After viewing Little J & Big Cuz, Episode 13 ‘Big Plans’, engage students with the following activities to support their understanding about location, setting, and of how changing location and setting can change meaning.

Introduce the word ‘Setting’, and ask students to explain what they understand by the meaning of the word and how it relates to the setting where Little J set up the obstacle race in the backyard.

Have students suggest the objects used to make the obstacle course in a backyard, e.g. swinging tyre, old mattress, blanket on the clothesline, etc. Have students think about and suggest which objects in their own backyards would make a good obstacle course. Have students complete a list of items and/or drawings of what they would use for an obstacle course in their backyard.

ropose to students that if they were to change the setting of the obstacle course, would it change the type of obstacles they would use, e.g. if they lived in the mountains and it snowed; if they lived underwater; or, if they lived on the moon, etc.

Provide students with access to images of different terrains, and have each student select a landscape different from Little J’s backyard scene. If possible, print out the image and have students design an obstacle course appropriate for the features of this different terrain. Large digital landscape photographs of a wide range of Australian ecosystems, including natural and built environments, can be found at Gulliver Media Wildlife Image: Resources for Schools.

Encourage students to position a sheet of clear plastic over the photograph and to draw their obstacles on the plastic sheet but still referring to the image below. Provide whiteboard markers to draw on the transparent plastic. On completion, project the acetate (plastic) overlay sheet over a large projected image of the background setting on the IWB, or on-screen in a digital image making program such as ShowMe or Paint.

Invite students to share their ideas with the class about their imaginary obstacle course with the class and describe the type of obstacles they invented (adventure competition, outback survival, rope course climbing and skateboarding, etc.).

Explore and list words to describe the various landscapes, and discuss if they are dramatic and active words or quiet, sleepy words. Ask students to visualise a craggy landscape, rocky outcrops and cold, rushing rivers of Brave J’s outback, focusing on how the adjectives tell us that the landscape is wild, exciting and dynamic.

Have students also name their course, e.g. Little J’s Icy Wonderland, or Little J’s Submarine Garden, etc. Display the newly invented obstacle courses in their new terrain settings for the class to view and reflect on.

Suggested software programs for editing images: