Stage 2

Convict Sydney

Convict punishment: the treadmill

As a punishment, convicts were made to step continuously on treadmills to power wheels that ground grain

Watercolour painting of two ships on the water, with sandstone outcrop in foreground and shoreline in background.

Why were convicts transported to Australia?

Until 1782, English convicts were transported to America, however that all changed after 1783

Photograph of a wooden model depicting a First Fleet ship.

First Fleet Ships

At the time of the First Fleet’s voyage there were some 12,000 British commercial and naval ships plying the world’s oceans

Convict Sydney

Convict Women & the Female Factory

Only about 13 per cent of convicts were women

Some kitchen items on the table in front of the fireplace

Colonial life at Elizabeth Farm

As they explore the home of the Macarthur family, which dates from 1793, students learn about the lives of the family and their convict servants and the impact of colonisation on the traditional owners of the Parramatta area

Woman in vdieo with overlay of activity sheet.

Activity: draw a convict from an indent

Watch this short video and learn how to use an original Convict Indent listing to draw a real convict

Children recreating a solitary confinement cell with foam bricks

Convict life at the Barracks

What was it like to be a convict living at Hyde Park Barracks?

Virtual Excursion

First Contacts

Learn about first contacts between Aboriginal peoples and colonists that arrived as part of the First Fleet and aboard other ships in the early years of the colony of New South Wales

Three girls trying on a skin in exhibition space.

Whose place?

During this thought-provoking and engaging program, students learn that the Museum of Sydney is built over the site of first Government House, from where Arthur Phillip governed the young colony of NSW