Follow us on:

Years 3 – 4
Lesson 3: Similarities and Differences

Everyone, Everyday Program logo large


  1. Lesson Overview
  2. Australian Curriculum Links
  3. Lesson Plan: Suggested Sequence of Learning Experiences

Downloadable Reference Materials

1. Lesson Overview

Length of Lesson

Prior Knowledge (What Should the Teacher Have Already Covered)

Resources Required

Key Concepts

Learning Outcomes

HPE Subject Area Years 3 and 4

General Capabilities by the End of Year 4 (Level 3)

Ethical Understanding
Intercultural Understanding
Critical and Creative Thinking

Assessable moments: As students undertake the learning experiences described in the lesson, take note of a range of assessable moments to provide information about student achievement. Ongoing assessment will provide evidence of the extent to which students achieve the identified Australian Curriculum links. Assessable moments are linked to learning outcomes and are identified by the following identifier: assessable moments tickLO (insert number)

3. Lesson Plan: Suggested Sequence of Learning Experiences

Format Lesson Plan: Suggested Sequence of Learning Experiences
1 mins

Refer to action plan.

In the previous Everyone Everyday lesson, we discussed the different types of disabilities and how people experience disability in different ways. We became informed about what disability is, and what it means to you.

State the learning intention: Today, we are going start exploring the N word in iNclusion: notice. We will analyse how we make decisions about people, and the similarities and differences that make us unique. We will talk about valuing difference, and look at the abilities that people have that live in our communities.

14 mins

Activity 1: What is Stereotyping?

Lesson 3 Activity 1 – Stereotyping pdf File (157 kb)
Lesson 3 Activity 1 – Stereotyping word File (2.06 Mb)

Project images of people for lesson 3 using electronic white board – "Who does what for a living?"

Task: Prepare and share

Prepare: Organise students in to pairs. Students work together to match each picture with the occupation in the list.

Model thinking process. Say, “Who does jobs at home? Who do I think looks like a doctor?”

assessable moments tickLO1 Share: Groups report back on their decisions and give reasons for them. Students review their answers and identify where they have made their decision based on stereotypes.

Main point to highlight:

  • When we only have a little information to base decisions on, we tend to rely on labels or stereotypes (i.e. the general idea about a person that makes us think, for example, that a student must be young, and a doctor must be a man).
  • Decisions based only on appearance are often unreliable.
  • Stereotypes affect how people behave, think and feel towards different people. Stereotypes can stop us from learning the whole story about someone or something. They can stop us from making friends with someone we might otherwise really like.
  • If we put labels on people, and focus on these, we can limit their opportunities to participate in everyday activities.
  • When people are treated in a particular way due to a label (stereotype) that has been placed on them, it can be very difficult for them to find the confidence to join in.

Give examples from disability:

People with disability often experience stereotyping. For example, a stereotype may assume that ‘people with a disability lead vastly different lives than others’. This is an incorrect statement as people with a disability go to school, get jobs, get married, have families, pay taxes, and do the same things that are important in all other people’s lives.

assessable moments tickLO1 Class discussion: What are other examples of stereotypes relating to people with disability? (see myths below for further examples).

Main point to highlight:

  • To avoid stereotyping, we need to get to know the people we come into contact before we make decisions about them. Remember, every contact counts!
Body 10 mins

Activity 2: Getting to Know You!

Establish context: When you meet someone new, one way to get to know them is to ask them a question about themselves.

Small group activity: Students work in small groups and create a list by brainstorming answers in response to the question: “What questions could I ask to get to know more about someone? For example: “What do you like to do in your spare time?”, “What music do you like to listen to?”, “Who is in your family?”, “What places have you visited?”, “What games do you like to play?”, “Do you have a pet? If, so, can you tell me about them?”, “What do you like to eat?” etc.

Discuss responses as a class and record on display board. This leads on to the next activity.

25 mins

Activity 2: The Greatness of Difference!

Teacher’s notes: for this activity you will need an open space so that students can move around easily. All students can start the activity by sitting together in the middle of a large square with 4 corners. You may wish to use witches hats or cones/markers for corners.

Task: Using the questions generated from the previous activity, the teacher (or a student), asks a question and gets 4 students with different responses to go to one of the corners. Then, the rest of the students go to the corner that they most relate to. If only 3 responses or even 2 responses are generated, just use this number of corners. For example, to practice the activity, use eye colour (blue, green, brown, hazel). Students go to the corner that represents their eye colour. This shows similarities and differences relating to eye colour. Repeat the activity and use questions from previous activity to highlight that we all have similarities and differences, and this is what makes us unique.

assessable moments tickLO2 Class discussion: What did you learn from this activity? We all have things that are similar to each other, and things that are different.

Main point to highlight:

  • We all have similarities and differences. There is a word we use to describe the differences between people. This word is diversity. A good example is the diversity of cultures that live in Australia. Another good example is the diversity of abilities in our communities.

assessable moments tickLO2, LO3 Class discussion: What do you think are the benefits of people having similarities and differences, that is, what are the benefits of having diversity in our community? Model thinking process to include diversity in abilities and cultures. For example, “What are the benefits of having people with different abilities living in our community”, “What are the benefits of having people from different cultures living in our community?”

Main point to highlight:

  • We all have similarities and differences.
  • If we were all the same, we would lose our individuality. Our individually makes us special and fascinating, and helps us achieve great things. This is a benefit of living in a society with different cultures and abilities.
  • Having similarities and differences does not mean that one person is right and the other person is wrong. It just means that we have different thoughts and feelings about the way we see things.

Optional group activity: Use a collection of objects, one for each student, where all the objects are seemingly the same, (e.g. leaves, rocks, sea shells). Tell students that while they all seem the same, they are each unique and different from each other. Ask them to look closely at their object, and ask them to describe it in ways that make it unique. Record answers in exercise book. Share ideas with group or tell partner. At the end of the session (or at the beginning of the next session), students can see if they can find their own object.

Conclusion and reflection 15 mins

assessable moments tickLO1, LO2, LO3 Check for understanding:

What did you learn?
Why is this important?
What questions do you have?

Homework Activities

assessable moments tickLO1, LO2, LO3 Homework Activity: Myths and reality!

Lesson 3 Homework Activity – Myths and Reality pdf File (100 kb)
Lesson 3 Homework Activity – Myths and Reality word File (42 kb)

Get students to take home the myths and reality worksheet for lesson 3 and complete for homework. Discuss as a group the following day.

Teacher’s notes: you may which to use this activity as a numeracy learning experience as it involves using tally marks to record responses. Then, class totals for each myth can be tallied and findings represented on a graph. This links to the numeracy general capability listed in Australian Curriculum Links for this lesson.

Back to year 3 – 4 Unit of Work