Investigation 5

How can your community remember and celebrate Federation?

Federation was an important milestone in the history of Australia and New South Wales. Its significance has been commemorated in various ways over the years. Some landmarks include ‘Federal’ or ‘Federation’ in their name in honour of the forming of the Commonwealth of Australia: for example, Federation Pavilion in Centennial Park, Sydney or the Federation Star monument in Murrumburrah. However, we do not have a Federation monument or celebrate Federation with a special national day.

Use your knowledge and imagination to think of ways in which your community could commemorate Federation.

You might feel that celebrations should have some things in common with the celebrations that took place in New South Wales in 1901. Or, you might decide that they should also reflect how our society has changed and developed since the Commonwealth of Australia began. You will definitely want to consider how you would like your celebrations to be remembered…even many years from now.

Your Task

Imagine and organise how Federation could be celebrated at your school and/or in your local community.


  1. Days of national importance commemorate people and events that are significant to our historical and cultural heritage. As a class, brainstorm a list of national and New South Wales celebrations. Who or what do they commemorate? In groups, use what you have learnt about Federation to outline why this event is important to our historical and cultural heritage in New South Wales, and therefore, worthy of being recognised and celebrated. Present your ideas to the rest of the class as:
    • an advertisement or poster;
    • oral storytelling or speech;
    • storyboard or comic strip; or
    • other.
  2. Your group is in charge of organising a school or local celebration to recognise the importance of Federation. Answer the following questions.
    • What date will you choose for the celebration?
    • What are the important aspects of Federation to be celebrated?
    • Who will you invite to the celebration? Why are you inviting them?
    • What activities, words, images and music could you use to represent Federation?
    • How will the celebration be promoted? How could you use technology to promote the celebration and invite your guests?
    • How would you like the celebrations to be remembered five years from now?
    • What other questions need to be considered?
  3. Share your ideas with the rest of the class. Combine the best ideas to come up with a final plan for your celebration of Federation. Invite your principal, a member of the parents’ club, a school council representative, or a community leader to hear your class’s plans to celebrate Federation. Find out what kind of support they can offer.
  4. In the coming days or weeks, hold your celebration. You might like to invite the local media to cover your event. Write an article for the school newsletter about your celebration. Remember to include the reasons why the celebration took place.