Sovereignty, self-determination, and resistance: Analysing Indigenous Issues through Film

A teaching unit on global indigenous issues

By Noah Romero




5 and above


4 weeks

Learning areas

Social Sciences, English, Media Studies, Visual Arts

Inquiry focus

Indigenous studies,

human rights


This teaching unit develops an international understanding of Indigenous issues through film. By watching, analysing and reflecting upon three films, Babkiueria, The Mystery of Now and Tame Iti – The Price of Peace, students will gain a deep appreciation for the historical contexts and lived experiences of Indigenous peoples. Students will also develop a critical and historically situated understanding of Indigenous issues, both at home and abroad.

Teachers will use community responsive and arts-based pedagogies in order to guide students through their processing of the themes of the films. Each film will be presented using the following process: film screening, film analysis, and discussion sessions.

Key understandings, knowledge & actions

Identify issues related to Indigenous communities in Australia, the United States and Aotearoa New Zealand

Explore how film can help us understand historical events and the ways these events influence contemporary issues

Apply new knowledge in order to conceptualise initiatives in the pursuit of social justice


Learning experiences

1. Babakiueria

2. The Mystery of Now

3. Tame-Iti – The Price of Peace

4. Social action for Indigenous rights