What is history? Cemetery site study

The Year 7 curriculum provides a study of history from the time of the earliest human communities to the end of the ancient period, approximately 60 000 BC (BCE) – c.650 AD (CE).
Key inquiry question #1: 
What can we find out about the past from archaeological and written sources?

Content summary

The range of sources that can be used in an historical investigation, including archaeological and written sources (ACDSEH029)


  • list a range of sources used by archaeologists and historians in historical investigations

Student Activities

Written in stone

These activities aim to develop students’ knowledge and understanding of the importance of the tangible history they can see around them, especially in their local area.

  • Task 1: students use analytical skills to find historical evidence from a primary source that is written on an artefact.
  • Task 2: emphasises the significance of cemeteries as sources of evidence and the importance of preserving them for the future.
Number of set tasks: 2

Cemetery site study

This activity requires students to visit a local cemetery, conduct their own research and use the information to design a promotional brochure or poster.

Number of set tasks: 1

NSW Syllabus for the Australian Curriculum: History K-10

A student:

  • HT4-5 identifies the meaning, purpose and context of historical sources
  • HT4-6 uses evidence from sources to support historical narratives and explanations
  • HT4-8 locates, selects and organises information from sources to develop an historical inquiry
  • HT4-10 selects and uses appropriate oral, written, visual and digital forms to communicate about the past


Comprehension: chronology, terms and concepts

  • read and understand historical texts
  • use historical terms and concepts (ACHHS206, ACHHS149)

Analysis and use of sources

  • identify the origin and purpose of primary and secondary sources (ACHHS209, ACHHS152)
  • locate, select and use information from a range of sources as evidence (ACHHS210, ACHHS153)

Perspectives and interpretations

  • identify and describe different perspectives of participants in a particular historical context (ACHHS212, ACHHS155)

Empathetic understanding

  • interpret history within the context of the actions, attitudes and motives of people in the context of the past (ACHHS212, ACHHS155)


  • ask a range of questions about the past to inform an historical inquiry (ACHHS207, ACHHS150)
  • use a range of communication forms and technologies

Explanation and communication

  • develop historical texts, particularly explanations and historical arguments that use evidence from a range of sources (ACHHS213, ACHHS156)
  • select and use a range of communication forms (oral, graphic, written and digital) to communicate effectively about the past (ACHHS214, ACHHS157)
  • Continuity and change: some aspects of a society, event or development change over time and others remain the same
  • Empathetic understanding: the ability to understand another’s point of view, way of life and decisions made in a different period of time or society

Learning across the curriculum

  • Literacy
  • Critical and creative thinking