Activity 4: Advanced Australia Fair (2 lessons)

How 'Advance Australia Fair' become our national anthem
Before Australia's inauguration as a separate commonwealth on January 1, 1901, Australia's official anthem was the same a the British "God Save the Queen." In 1974 and 1977 the Australian Bureau of Statistics conducted a national survey of 60,000 people to find a new national song. Advance Australia Fair was chosen as the most popular song. The other choices were the existing anthem "God Save the Queen," "Song of Australia," and "Waltzing Mathilda"). From the original five-verse song, only the first and third verses are now in our official national anthem. There has also been some changes to the song to make it more inclusive of different genders eg. ‘For loyal sons beyond the seas’ is now ‘For those who’ve come across the seas’. Click here for some more information about the Austalian national anthem:

We Are Learning To:
  • Understand the history behind our national anthem
  • Understand the importance of having a national anthem
  • Create a new verse of the national anthem that represents the Australian national identity

Below are some questions for your group to discuss and then answer in your group journal. Refer to the resource section for some more information.
  • Why do you think we have national anthems?
  • Listen to Advance Australia Fair and explore the lyrics. Summarise in a few sentences what this song means to you.
  • Do you think this song captures what it means to be Australian?

Advanced Austalia Fair - Clip

Your Task: In your group create a new verse for a new national anthem. Remember a verse is a part of a song that tells a story, and gives the listener more ideas about the main point of your song. Our national anthem has two offical verses, so you can choice to re-write these verses in your own words, or change the song completely and create new music. You will need to write a new title for your anthem. Remember when sung, that a national anthem is meant to make you feel proud to be Australian so make sure you use appropriate language that reflects what you think it means to be Australian. Once you have finished you need to record your song on the computer.

Sucess Criteria:
  • Understand the history of our national anthem
  • To be able to explain the importance of a national anthem
  • To be able to produce a new verse of Advanced Australia Fair that reflects what it means to be Australian
  • Create a new title for your anthem
  • To produce a quality recording of your new anthem
  • Work cooperatively as a group and share the work


Good Resources:
Information on why we have national anthems:
Information about Advanced Australia Fair:
Links to the music for the Australian National Anthem:

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