Task 4: Option 3

Option 3: Exploring past and present technologies: Share a lesson idea that involves exploring past and present technologies. You might prepare a resource, a lesson plan or some online content that accompanies your lesson. Share your idea with the community. If you are a teacher trainer, you might consider an idea for a professional development session.

The Year 2 Digital Technologies curriculum can be successfully taught with integration with other subjects such as HASS (specifically history). Year 2 students learn to recognise and explore digital systems for a purpose (ACTDIK001), and this links to learning how changing technology affected people’s lives (ACHASSK046). The children’s book ‘The Lonely Typewriter’ by Peter Ackerman is an excellent way to introduce changing technology in an engaging and child-appropriate way, as well as linking in literacy capabilities. This following is a lesson that could be used to introduce the concept of past technologies, with further lessons used to deepen their understanding and perhaps explore and compare past and present digital systems: 

Lesson hook: 

  1. Teacher covers an example of old technology, such as a typewriter, with a cloth and places it on a table at the front of the classroom.
  2. When students enter the classroom and see the covered item, teacher invites them to engage in conversation with their peers and the teacher about what they think may be under the cloth. The cover of ‘The Lonely Typewriter’ can be shown if necessary to guide student ideas.
  3. Once the students guess correctly what the item is, the item should be revealed and the students asked if they know what the item is, what it is for, and how old they think it is. If appropriate, the students should be invited to touch or hold the item.


  1. Teacher reads ‘The Lonely Typewriter’ to the students using modelled reading.
  2. Once the book is finished, the teacher should ask the students if any of them have used a typewriter before.

Main activity:

  1. Teacher starts a class brainstorm on the whiteboard with the word ‘technology’ in the centre. Students are asked to raise their hand and suggest a piece of current-day technology, such as a smart phone, a computer, etc. Teacher draws a line from the centre for the current-day object, and asks the students to think of any past versions of that object and writes those branching off of the current-day object. Examples include:
    1. Smartphones – flip phones, cord phones, pagers
    2. Laptops – PCs, typewriters, pen and paper
    3. iPods – CD players, record players, gramophones
    4. TVs – black and white TV, radios, books
  2. If students struggle to think of past technology examples, pictures of past technologies can be shown and students asked to guess what the object is and what it’s current-day counterpart is.


  1. Students asked to raise their hands and identify one object from the past that was talked about in that day’s lesson that they had either never seen or heard of before or that they thought was really interesting.

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