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Australia. Where is it?. Australia is a country in the south-east of Asia, to the south of Indonesia. It is a little bit smaller than China, about 80% of it’s size.
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Where is it? • Australia is a country in the south-east of Asia, to the south of Indonesia. • It is a little bit smaller than China, about 80% of it’s size. • Australia is made up of the mainland, a large separate island to the south called Tasmania, and many smaller islands around the coast. • Australia is a continent, and there are no other countries connected to it.
Where is it?(cont’d) • To the west and south of Australia is the Indian ocean, and to the east is the Tasman Sea and the Coral Sea. • To the north of Australia is South-East Asia, and the countries of Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, and East Timor are quite close-by. • New Zealand is a little further away, but it’s history and population are more like Australia.
Where is it(cont’d) • The capital city of Australia is called Canberra, and it is located in a separate area called the Australian Capital Territory (ACT for short). • There is another territory called the Northern Territory, and six states: Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia and Tasmania. • The biggest city in Australia is Sydney, which is the capital of New South Wales.
What is it like? • In the northern parts of Australia, it is hot all through the year, while in the southern parts, it is hot in summer, but cold in winter. • It does not get cold enough to snow in most parts of Australia, except for in the high mountains in Victoria, New South Wales and Tasmania. • In many parts of Australia, especially away from the coast, it can be very hot during the day, often more than 30 degrees, but cold at night.
What’s it like? (cont’d) • At the edges of Australia, near the coast, is where most of the people live, and there are plenty of trees and rivers. • In the middle of Australia, away from the coast, it is mostly desert, and for most of the year there is no water and few tall trees. • Very few people live in the middle of Australia, and there is only one large town, Alice Springs, which is right in the middle of the desert.
What’s it like? (cont’d) • Large areas of land around the edge of Australia are farm land, but there are also very large national parks, where the land and plants and animals are protected. • In the southern parts of Australia, the sea is often very rough, and surfing is very popular. • In the northern parts, the reefs which are out at sea stop the waves, and so the sea is often calm near the shore.
Who lives in Australia? • Australia has a population of about 22 million people, and most of them are descended from European people, mainly from the United Kingdom and Ireland. • There are also smaller populations of Greek, Italian and Chinese people. • The aboriginal population makes up only a small part of Australia now, about 2%, which is less than the number of Chinese Australians.
What lives in Australia? • Australia is quite a large country, and most of it does not developed by people, so there are many different types of plants and animals living there, • One of the best known animals is the Kangaroo, which is quite large, sometimes up to 2 metres tall, has a large tail and moves around by jumping. • Kangaroos keep baby kangaroos in a pouch at the front of their bodies.
What lives in Australia? • Kangaroos live in most parts of Australia, and there are so many of them that they are a problem in some areas. • To keep the kangaroo population under control, many have to be killed, but to make use of them, people can eat kangaroo meat. • Koalas are another famous Australian animal, they are like small bears and they live in trees.
What lives in Australia? • There are also large birds in Australia which cannot fly, called emus, and a small animals with fur and a bill like a duck that lives under the water, called a platypus. • In the north of Australia, there are many crocodiles. • The larger and more dangerous crocodiles are called saltwater crocodiles, although they can live in freshwater too.
What lives in Australia? • Many sharks live in the waters around the coast of Australia, and sometimes people get attacked, because a lot of people in Australia like to surf, and swim at the beach. • Many people like to go diving underwater with sharks, usually in a cage, but sometimes not. • There are also many different types of poisonous snakes in Australia.
History of Australia • The first people to live in Australia arrived from the islands to the north about 40,000 years ago. • There were many different groups of people living in Australia, speaking different languages, but many had similar cultures and beliefs. • Most Australians refer to them as aborigines, which just means the original people to live in a place. • The aborigines did not write, but passed their culture and religion along by songs and stories and paintings in caves.
History of Australia • Aborigines believed in the Dreamtime, when the world was formed, and they had stories about how things in their lives, like mountains and seas, were made. • Many of these stories involved magical animals. • Most of the aborigines were hunter-gatherers, especially those that lived in the centre of Australia, where they had to travel long distances to find food.
History of Australia • Some of the aborigines in places where food was very easy to find settled in one place and built villages. • Aborigines lived in most parts of Australia, even in Tasmania. • Tasmania used to be a part of the mainland when the sea level was lower, so the aborigines were able to cross over.
History of Australia • The first definite visit to Australia by a western explorer was in 1606, when a Dutch ship landed in the north of Australia, on the western side of Cape York. • The ship was attacked by aborigines, so they left again as soon as they could. • In 1770 Captain James Cook explored the east coast of Australia, and claimed it for the British, calling it New South Wales.
The History of Australia • The British decided that Australia would be a suitable site for a new colony, and that criminals would be sent there as punishment. • The British prisons at the time were overcrowded, and the prisoners could be used in the new colony as workers who would not need to be paid. • The British sent about 1500 people, mostly prisoners, on a group of ships to start a colony in Australia, and this was called the First Fleet.
History of Australia • The First Fleet arrived in Australia, and on the 26th of January in 1788, landed in a place called Sydney Cove, and decided that it would be a good place to start the colony. • This date is still celebrated in Australia as Australia Day, and is a public holiday. • The prisoners who were sent to Australia were forced to work building things, or helping farmers on their land. • The farmers looked after the convicts in return for their land, which they got to keep as their own.
History of Australia • If a prisoner finished his prison term and was set free, he could stay in Australia, and start a farm of his own. • As time went on, more colonies were created in different parts of Australia, some for prisoners, and some just for normal people to start farms and new towns. • These different colonies over time became the states and territories.
History of Australia • Some of the colonies were more strict than others, and places like Port Arthur were difficult places for a convict to be sent to. • Flogging with a whip was a common punishment for bad behaviour in those times. • The Aborigines who lived near the colonies were mostly driven away or killed. • The British decided that because the aborigines did not have what they thought of as a civilised culture, they did not have any right to the land, so they took it.
History of Australia • During this time, most of the aborigines living in Australia died. • Many were killed by the people from Britain, and many starved because they could not find food once the British took over their land. • But most of the aborigines died because of diseases that they caught off the British. • Diseases that were not serious for British people were deadly to aborigines.
History of Australia • This was because the aborigines had never been around these types of diseases. • The people from Europe had gotten used to these diseases over many years, so they had a natural resistance, but for the aborigines, even the flu, or chickenpox, could often kill them. • During the 1800s, gold was discovered in Australia, and many people came from different countries to try to get rich.
History of Australia • Europeans, Americans and Chinese people went to places like Ballarat in Victoria, and Bathurst in NSW, to find gold. • During this time, the different British colonies in Australia were independent of each other, but in 1901 the different colonies joined together to form states in the Commonwealth of Australia. • A constitution and legal system were formed, based on the British systems, and people could vote for government.