Hopalong: FOUNDATION - HPE - Engage

When B-Boy comes to stay overnight, Little J becomes envious of the attention he is getting from everyone. Out walking on Country, Nanna, Little J, Big Cuz and B-Boy find an injured joey. Uncle Mick, a Search and Rescue officer, tells them how to care for the joey that they name ‘Hopalong’. The children feed and look after Hopalong until Mick finds him a place in a wildlife shelter.

Engage - Identify people and demonstrate protective behaviours and other actions that help keep themselves safe and healthy


As a class, revisit Little J’s story within episode 7,Hopalong’, and ask students to recall what type of animal Hopalong was and how and why he got lost from his ‘mob’.

Read stories about baby animals, and stories of rescued animals and the carers who look after them, for example:

  • Waddell, M. (1992). Owl babies. Cambridge, Mass.: Candlewick Press.
  • Discuss any questions the students have about the story, such as:
    • How does the mother owl look after her baby owls?
    • Why did she go hunting?
    • Can the fledglings hunt and fly? Why not?
    • Is the hole in the tree a safe place? Why?
    • Why do the fledglings need their mother to protect them?
    • How would the fledglings feel when their mother is not with them?
    • What does this story make you think about in respect to who cares for you?

Re-watch Episode 7 ‘Hopalong’, and ask students to compare how the joey would have felt without its mother and ‘mob’ for protection. Discuss which characters care for each other in the family. Compare:

  • What actions do the children take to care for Hopalong?
  • What actions does the family take to care for B-Boy?

List the actions people take when they are caring or protecting another person, for example: being friends, giving food, providing shelter and a safe place to sleep, protecting the person from risks or danger, making the person feel loved, ensuring the person feels they belong in the community.

Provide examples of protective environments, such as: fledglings living in a tree hollow, a joey living in its mother’s pouch, baby birds staying in a nest, etc.

Using a KWL chart, ask students to find information on how a baby animal is cared for by its mother/father and where it stays till it is big enough to fend for itself. Have students share information they know and find out about baby animals.

Ask students to bring a toy animal from home; have them design and build a ‘nest’, using paper or found objects for the animal. Ask students to imagine that this toy animal is lost and they are caring for it. Invite students to share with the class what has happened to their animal and how they are caring for it.