Teaching Resources - Early Adolescence

Goodbye Graffiti! – Early Adolescence Curriculum Materials

Overview 

Why talk about graffiti in early adolescence? 

How do I use the materials? 

What outcomes might the students demonstrate? 

What resources do I need? 

What if students disclose that they, or someone they know, are doing graffiti? 

How might families be involved? 

What are the topics covered in the Early Adolescence Curriculum Materials?

Why talk about graffiti vandalism in early adolescence?

The Early Adolescence Curriculum Materials are part of the Goodbye Graffiti Education Curriculum Package. They are designed to support teachers in early adolescence classrooms (typically Year Seven to Year Ten) to enable students to develop knowledge, skills, understandings, attitudes and values in relation to Civics and Citizenship and to build their thinking skills as they learn about the impact of graffiti vandalism on individuals, businesses, schools and communities. This package is opposed to graffiti vandalism. However, preventing or stopping young people from doing graffiti vandalism is not as simple as telling them it is illegal. The learning experiences in these materials are designed to engage students in thinking about graffiti vandalism, the motivations and purposes of graffiti vandals, the impacts and consequences of graffiti vandalism and positive ways in which young people can contribute to their communities. It is important that experiences do not advertently or inadvertently encourage students to engage in graffiti vandalism, either as part of the learning activities or as an outcome of their learning. There is no reason, however, why students cannot be supported to do legal urban art.

How do I use the materials?

The materials are written using an inquiry approach that involves tuning in, finding out, sorting out, going further and applying what has been learned. The materials are written to be flexible. You might choose:
  • A one-week survey of graffiti: using one ‘tuning in’, ‘finding out’, ‘sorting out’, ‘going further’ and ‘applying’ activity from different topics
  • An exploration of one concept: using one sequence of experiences e.g. ‘What is graffiti?’
  • A five to eight week exploration of several topics
  • A one or two term project with all the activities in all the topics and some more of your own!
These materials are predicated on the belief that deep learning occurs when sensitive teachers listen closely to students’ discussions and conversations, taking note of their theories, ideas and thinking and maximise the learning opportunities from provocations the students provide. Experiences should be chosen in order to meet students’ learning needs and interests. In some situations, learning experiences from the Middle Childhood Curriculum Materials may be appropriate. Each activity or series of activities can be expanded to include:
  • An introduction to the graffiti related topic
  • Skills development related to the investigation, participation and communication process
  • Development of literacy or numeracy skills
  • Knowledge development related to background concepts (e.g. government structures in Australia, political parties, criminal and civil law, codes of conduct, influences on resource production)
  • Collaborative learning skills development
  • Conduct of the learning experiences
  • Reflection on group work skills and processes
  • Reflection on investigations
  • Identification of further areas for investigation.

What outcomes might the students demonstrate?

The materials are aligned to the Western Australian Curriculum and Assessment Outline. Experiences facilitate learning as described in the Western Australian Curriculum and Achievement Standards. Through engaging with the Early Adolescence Curriculum Materials, students have the opportunity to further their achievement of The Values Outcomes The General Capabilities The Learning Areas, in particular:
  • Civics and citizenship
    • Civics and citizenship knowledge and understanding
    • Civics and citizenship skills
  • Visual Arts
    • Exploring ideas and improvising with ways to represent ideas
    • Responding to and interpreting artworks
  • English
  • Health and Physical Education
    • Personal, social and community health
      • Being healthy, safe and active
      • Communicating and interacting for health and well being
      • Contributing to healthy and active communities
    • Mathematics
      • Proficiency strands
      • Number and algebra
      • Measurement and geometry
      • Statistics and probability
    • Science
      • Science understanding
      • Chemical sciences
      • Science as human endeavour
      • Science inquiry skills
    • History
      • Historical skills
    • Geography
      • Geographical inquiry and skills
    • Design and Technology
      • Processes and skills

What resources do I need?

The Early Adolescence Curriculum Materials draw on other resources that are available through Internet sources. Wherever possible, government and educational web sites have been sourced. Inevitably, web sites change over time. All are accurate at the point of production. Some of the links to video clips or the writings of people who do graffiti contain coarse language which may lead to them being blocked by school computers. While these have been kept to a minimum, students conducting internet searches from these links are likely to encounter more. It is important that you check any sites that are recommended in these materials or that you recommend, to assess whether you think they are appropriate for your students in your school.

What if students disclose that they, or someone they know, are doing graffiti?

Teachers need to find ways to encourage students to be aware of the impact of their words and behaviours on others. Some of the activities in these units encourage students to volunteer information about their own or their family’s experiences. Teachers need to talk about and develop a welcoming community in which all responses are accepted respectfully so that students contribute from their real experience. However, students need to be clear that graffiti vandalism is a crime and must be reported. You might have a conversation with your school principal to determine how you will handle a disclosure should one arise.

How might families be involved?

Activities are designed to help students make connections between home and school. There may be questions to ask at home, ways for families to be involved in the daily teaching and learning program or invitations to attend celebrations. A climate of trust and acceptance will support the participation of all families.

What topics are covered in the Early Adolescence Curriculum Materials?

  Tuning in Finding out Sorting out Going further Applying
Development of Graffiti What is graffiti vandalism? How has graffiti developed? What are the similarities and differences between pictorial and written graffiti? Can you tell if it is vandalism? Who needs to know what we have learned?
Purposes of Graffiti Why do graffiti? How else could we achieve these purposes? What alternatives worked? What alternatives could be provided in the community? Who needs to know what we have learned?
Graffiti Sub-Cultures What are the characteristics of a culture? What are the cultural characteristics of graffiti sub-groups? Is there a ‘graffiti culture’? What do you know and what don’t you know? What do you think now and what do others need to know?
Designing Out Graffiti Where are there examples of graffiti? What kinds of graffiti are located in which locations? What are the features of graffiti sites? Why does our society value grey? What have you learned? Who needs to know?
Anti-graffiti Resources What anti-graffiti resources are available? What is being done to reduce graffiti and why? What are the intended and unintended consequences? How could you reduce graffiti in your school? What have you learned? Who else needs to know?
Graffiti Histories Who writes the history of graffiti? What are the histories of graffiti? How can we present these histories? What are the impacts of these histories on current graffiti reduction strategies? What have you learned? Who else needs to know?
Graffiti Laws What do you think the laws are in relation to graffiti? What are the laws relating to graffiti in WA? What does this mean? How do the laws change? What have you learned? Who needs to know?
Working legally What knowledge and skills are needed to do graffiti? Where can we get these skills legally? What jobs are available for people with graffiti skills? What does it take? What will I apply for?
Thinking again about graffiti vandalism What is graffiti? Where do you see graffiti?Who made it?How did it get there? What parts of our work about graffiti did you find interesting?Was there anything that surprised you?What parts did you find difficult? When you see graffiti now, what do you think about it? What would you say about graffiti to other students?

To access the Early Adolescence teaching resources you are required to complete registration details. Your details will be held with the WA Police Graffiti Team and will remain confidential. You may be contacted by the Graffiti Team to obtain feedback on the teaching resources.

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