smlpeop-01-04.gif (8118 bytes)Step 1 - Forming Teams

Form working teams of 4 students. This can be done by your teacher or you can form groups yourselves - but remember each person will have a certain role to play within this group!

Step 2 - Background Information - Who Lives in Your Community?

Using the ABS data

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The Australian Bureau of Statistics gathers information about the local community from a census. The last census data was collected in 2001.

To find out about your local community you will be using the ABS Census material from 2001.

How to use the ABS data. Click on this link and follow the instructions. You will be able to collect your local information.

Locate your local area using the ABS data and record this data using this sheet.

Are there any surprises?

Step 3 - Examining Your Local Shopping Centre

Click on the maps to view plans of "your local shopping centre"! Print off these sheets - one for each group.

Main Complex

Site Map with
surrounding buildings.

Now that you have printed out "your local shopping centre" sheet, you are to analyse whether it is anything like what you are used to.

Using a Venn diagram, note the similarities and differences between the given local shopping centre plan and the plan of the shopping centre that you shop at.

a. Write down the characteristics of the given local shopping centre plan in the left hand side of the Venn diagram.

b. Write down the characteristics of your own local shopping centre in the right hand side of the Venn diagram.

c. In the middle write down the characteristics that are similar.

Optional Activity:

Your teacher will need to take you on an excursion to a local Shopping Centre. You will need to:
  • Contact the Manager of the Shopping Centre and ask for a copy of the floor plan. If there isn't one available, you will need to draw the plan. Allocate each person within your group to one section of the shopping centre.
  • Draw the shopping centre layout.
  • Note the features of the shopping centre and remember to go to the big question -

    Are the needs of your local community catered for in your local shopping centre?

people-04-04.gif (4672 bytes)Step 4 - The Shopping Centre Design

Now that you have found out about the people living in your community and you have looked at the shopping centre plan, you need to go back to the big question:

Are the needs of your local community catered for in this local shopping centre?

The first thing that you need to look at is the design of the shopping centre. Are all the needs of people looked after? Are there adequate toilet facilities? Is there a baby change room? Are there ramps for the disabled?

If you need to change the shopping centre design you will need to know what is involved.

Before starting any design project, particularly expensive ones, it is important to be aware of existing good ideas as well as what not to do. These design links will give you ideas including other floor plans and and will help you learn about the elements of an effective shopping complex.

Individually write down your design ideas, then as a group share these ideas and come up a design for the local shopping centre.

Part C - The Food and Cultural Requirements of the Shopping Centre

Now that you know the make-up of your community, it is important to gather information about the food and cultural influences that may need to be considered in your shopping centre. You need to cater for the members of your community so that they can shop for their food and cultural requirements.

Keep a log of information that you think is relevant as you research the links. Don't forget to cite the URL each page you obtained information.

You need to go back to the big question:

Are the needs (food and cultural needs) of your local community catered for in your local shopping centre?

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Step 4 - Back to The Drawing Board

You and your team need to carefully examine the "local shopping centre plan".

Does this plan cater for all groups and provide opportunities for them to get to know one another within your local community?


  • Looking at your local community information, are there shops in your "local shopping centre" to cater for these groups?
  • How are the older people catered for at the local shops?
  • Are there any access issues for wheelchairs, visually impaired shoppers etc.? Is there a medical centre here? Is there a place to meet?
  • Are families catered for? What would they need?
  • What about teenagers and kids? Are their needs meet? How?
  • What might be other needs of the various groups in the community?

Write down your initial impressions.

Step 5 - Looking at it in different ways

Your local shopping centre will probably need to look and function differently to what is currently in place.

To get different perspectives on how your shopping centre will look and function when completed, your group needs to divide into 4 roles. Each of you will need to choose a different one. Click on the appropriate role to find out what your job is.

Indoor Architect Eatery Designer
Window Dresser Outdoor Architect


people-03-01.gif (9451 bytes)Step 6 - Finding Solutions

In your roles discuss how the existing shopping centre will need to be altered. What will be the best use of space? What shops/products/services will need to be added? Which ones could be removed? How will you cater for people from different backgrounds, ages and needs to promote harmony? Be as creative as possible with the space provided.


Each of you now is to act on your individual roles and create either

  • a floor plan
  • a window display model
  • two menus or 
  • a model of the outside of the shopping centre


people-02-04.gif (9475 bytes)Step 7 - Forming a United Front

Everybody has done their bit in developing and promoting the group's ideas - creating the models and menus for your presentation. You now need to form together as a team once again and develop a group presentation and write out your proposal.

The proposal should have submissions from all group members, and may contain diagrams to explain ideas. Remember you need to justify the changes you make.

Each group needs to make their presentation to the Shopping Centre Manager (the teacher), and the Board (the class). Who is going to start? Which role should go first? What will the final memorable words be?

Note: even if your work is sensational to look at, you need to be a master of words in expressing your valuable contributions.


smlpeop-01-03.gif (9142 bytes)Step 8 - Presenting the Shopping Centre

While you are giving your presentation, the teacher and class will be taking notes. Items that will be noted will reflect the expectations outlined in the Evaluation Rubrics. The class will also note any good ideas.


Step 9 Evaluation - Class Group Discussion

What were the similarities and differences in the different groups' models? How did they compare visually and practically? Which ideas create the most harmony?