If you thought that the recent success, role-modelling and inspiration of the Matildas’ World Cup campaign was exciting, you haven’t seen anything yet! The classrooms, co-curricular activities and learning happening inside and outside of a Humanities class is on par with a Matildas vs Sweden game. In fact, perhaps even more thrilling!

Consider: both Humanities classes and the World Cup have moments of exhilaration. During the Model UN at Trinity College on Friday 11 August, our student delegates were seen collaborating, discussing, encouraging each other and debating - much like a centre back might do with the referee on game day. Our students were given three countries to represent - South Sudan, Canada and Japan - and every student participated, researched and networked to the very best of their abilities. Well done, team!

Humanities and the World Cup campaign both have moments of disappointment, too - our Year 10 Civics cohort were looking forward to listening and learning from the Federal Member for Jagajaga, Kate Thwaites. Kate has visited our Civics classes before and she was due to hold a ‘round table’ style of conversation again in August. However, like some of our Matildas, Ms Thwaites was sidelined for the session and will return refreshed and recovered in early September.

Year 7s are looking at Ancient Rome throughout this term, marvelling at the history of the Colosseum. The parallels between the excitement of the gladiatorial games and the Matilda penalty shootout are clear and intoxicating. In Year 9 Australian history, the timeline can resemble the progression of the World Cup fixture, and in Year 9 Economics and Year 11 Global Politics, students could easily be examining the disparity between male and female athletes’ remuneration.

So many opportunities to compare the thrill of the Matildas’ march and prowess to the thrill of Humanities learning. As with the mastery of anything - whether it be a goalkeeping save, a throw-in, a penalty corner, responding to short answers in a Legal test, writing a history essay, memorising definitions, embedding contemporary examples - there are times when it all seems monotonous, laborious and just really tiring.

Listening and learning in class can be a bit dull. So can kicking the ball for accuracy 100 times and doing interval training every third day to maintain fitness. Writing an extended response can be hard, as can getting back a grade that seems lower than expected. So can three months of training and recovery, only to lose in a final match and not get another chance until the next year.

Humanities 2023 is continuing to try and help our young people make sense of an ever-bewildering world as they consider the politics, finances, geography and laws of the land, all the while thinking about what got us to this point via that historical lens. Just as the Matildas had to work consistently and thoughtfully before the fabulousness of the World Cup, so do we put in the hard yards to get better at our skills and understanding. We are lucky to be part of this team.

Rosemary Jones
Humanities Learning Leader