Upper Primary
280k pdf

Lower Secondary
322k pdf

Upper Secondary
338k pdf


Introduction

A copy of these teaching notes can be downloaded and printed by clicking on the icons to the left.

Hi. Welcome to “completely GORGEOUS”. Have fun!

In this website, author Kaz Cooke gives us “something that will cheer up anybody who has ‘the uglies’… the facts that will make us relax about diets” and “how to accept a natural body shape, whether it is tall, small, thin or rounded”.

Kaz encourages kids to resist advertising and media messages designed to harm their self-esteem. Body and beauty, shapes and sizes, self-image and self-esteem are all issues which students in schools around Australia think and talk about a lot, both inside and outside their classrooms, amongst themselves and with their teachers. “completely Gorgeous” invites them to laugh while they're learning.

“completely Gorgeous” has at its base a meticulously researched body of facts first presented in the book, Real Gorgeous, published by Allen and Unwin Australia, then in “Totally Gorgeous” the CD-ROM. Readers of the book have written scores of letters to Kaz saying the book has transformed their body image and self-esteem, and the way they relate to the world, even helping some to recover from, or avoid, eating disorders.

There is a huge amount of information on this site to be used as a resource for research or starting points for discussion, thought or creativity.

Using the Teaching Notes

The notes provide students and teachers with activities or questions (for thinking, discussing, or writing about) relating to each section of the site. The activities and questions are sorted as suitable for upper primary, lower secondary, or upper secondary students, or as suitable for all levels.

At the end of this introduction, teachers can choose activities from any of these sections. Often the activities are relevant to more than one key learning area. For example, a role play uses drama skills, and therefore has an Arts focus, but may also be dealing with Health, Psychology and English issues or skills. In other sections, while the discussion points might be very important for student welfare coordinators or personal development classes, there is often the scope for older students to look in more detail at, for example, scientific or psychological theories.

While many of the activities may be more applicable to girls, there are some sections especially for boys. Many of the issues are common to both sexes, and there are suggestions for activities for all young people.

Teachers will no doubt be aware that a small amount of the material and topics provided in the teaching notes and in the site are of a sexual nature. Care should be taken if these areas are culturally or religiously sensitive for class members.

The video “Gorgeous”, for which teaching notes are provided here, is contained within the website. It is also available as a videotape from Film Australia.

Help with your curriculum

“completely Gorgeous”, the website, is an active, fun, and useful classroom resource for teachers and students from upper primary school to senior levels of secondary school. It includes the text and illustrations from Real Gorgeous the book; the animated 10 minute video Gorgeous; some further material (including links to other sites addressing the subject matter), and a series of games which can be used for exploring issues across the following learning areas and studies:

  • Health and Physical Education
  • Studies of Society and Environment
  • Arts
  • English
  • Science
  • Cultural Studies
  • Media Studies
  • Psychology
  • Personal Development, Pastoral Care, Welfare
  • Consumer Education

“completely Gorgeous” is an essential reference for the following learning areas:

Human Development:

  • The potential of people to grow, develop and function in all their capacities.
  • The personal behaviours of people and the social, biological and physical environments in which people, families and communities grow and develop.
  • Human sexuality as a particularly significant aspect of human functioning with both individual and social implications.

Physical Activity and the Community:

  • The concept of fitness and its relationship with biological and cultural factors.
  • Fitness as a factor in health and performance (including the effects of exercise on the body), cultural images of body shape, social expectations about body shape, social expectations about fitness, and the fitness industry.

People and Food:
The significance of food in dietary needs and practices of different groups, in dietary trends or fads, and in meeting social and emotional needs.

Science:
The key unifying idea is that “working scientifically is a powerful way of generating, understanding and solving problems”.

In the activities for “completely Gorgeous”, students are asked to analyse situations, propose solutions, test and gather information, and record and report results. There are opportunities for them to draw conclusions, consider accuracy and reliability, and take action using science information and skills.

English:
The whole text of “completely Gorgeous” can be studied by students of English. Author Kaz Cooke writes, “And hey, let’s face it, we wouldn’t mind a laugh while we’re at it.” Students can study her unique writing style and the techniques used to organise and link the material. You could study the sequence of headings. Also worth a close look is the way Kaz ‘speaks’ to the reader. The craft of writing to reach a specific audience is demonstrated with style.

Students can describe the main features of the writing style. They can pull out examples of humour and seriousness and search for some punchlines. They can try writing in a comic style themselves.