New Tricks: YEAR 1 - HPE - Elaborate

Little J dreams of being an acrobat in a circus when he grows up. With the help of Jacko and B-Boy, he practises circus tricks in the backyard after school. Uncle Mick, a search and rescue officer, comes to school to talk about his work. Little J uses his circus skills to demonstrate a search and rescue procedure.

Elaborate - Describe their own strengths and achievements and those of others, and identify how these contribute to personal identities


After viewing Little J & Big Cuz, Episode 3 ‘New Tricks’, engage students with the following activities to support their understanding about personal and social strengths, safety, search and rescue work.

Have students identify the skills and tricks that Little J performs in the episode, such as hula-hoops, juggling, tightrope walking, and rope course. Also, have students identify the tricks that Jacko performs, such as running through the skipping rope, and spinning, etc. Discuss the skills needed for performing these tricks, such as coordination, timing, arm strength, flexibility, balance, eye-hand coordination, step sequencing, etc.

Play the game Marngrook, which is said to be the origin of Australian Rules Football and is exemplary for having students use all characteristics of teamwork. Rules for a simplified, child friendly version of Marngrook are available. After playing the game, have students reflect on the game’s process and ask the students to comment on the teamwork required to score or win the game.

As a class, watch a selection clips featuring sports/games, competed in by Australians, in the Olympic Games.

Have students identify the skills and teamwork required in each performance. Compare what skills are needed by professional athletes to perform well, in comparison to the skills that Little J and Jacko display. In their own words, it is hoped students would find that each skill is displayed regardless of context.

Divide the class into smaller groups or pairs. Each group/pair is to devise a skill test that demands the participants to display one skill or a combination of two skills, e.g. tumbling or tumbling and catching a ball. Each group practises their skill/s and demonstrates these to the class. All members of the class learn and practise the full set of skills. The skills must be demonstrable by all members of the class, or can be adapted to the special needs of individual students.

Set up a mini-Olympics course where the students perform all skills developed by the groups/pairs. Suggested resources:

Video the mini-Olympics, so that students can see how they performed. Resources to be used to make the film include:

Tools to assist in the design and production of film projects:

Have students evaluate how the games and skills were performed and if they required the help of others to perform them. Poll students (perhaps using Kahoot) about their participation – which actions made them feel happiest: completing the course without assistance, being assisted by others, helping others to complete the course, winning an individual award, or playing as a team, etc.