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Issues in Educational Research, 2022, Vol 32(2), 784-804.
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Mapping community gardens in the Australian National Curriculum: A curriculum analysis model

Rachael Walshe, N. S. (Snowy) Evans and Lisa Law
James Cook University, Australia

The Australian Curriculum is a policy document that directly influences the lived realities of millions of students and teachers. However, navigating and understanding the Australian Curriculum can be confusing due to discipline-specific meta-language. This poses problems when attempting to access the Curriculum in research that extends beyond the Education discipline. In response, this paper proposes a novel model that facilitates the analysis of curriculum documents for those outside the Education discipline. To illustrate the method, the paper provides an example of how and where community gardens align with the content descriptions of the Australian Curriculum. A word frequency analysis suggests that community gardens are most closely aligned with the Humanities and Social Science's (HASS) and Health and Physical Education (HPE) learning areas. A word tree analysis thematically groups content descriptions and discusses how community gardens can support classroom implementation of both HASS and HPE. The method presented will benefit scholars outside the Education discipline who seek to engage with the curriculum. It also extends discussions surrounding how to best integrate gardens in schools.
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Authors: Rachael Walshe (corresponding author) is a sessional academic and PhD candidate in the College of Science and Engineering, James Cook University, Nguma-Bada Campus, Cairns, Australia. Rachael has attained Honours Class I in Human Geography, and a Bachelor degree in Environmental Management (Sustainability and Human Geography). Her research interests explore the role of schools and community garden's ability to address environmental amnesia's effect on the perception of food.
Twitter: @RachaelWalshe3
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/rachael-walshe-b83091115/
ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1750-8356
Email: rachael.walshe@my.jcu.edu.au

Dr Snowy Evans is the Associate Dean Learning and Teaching for the College of Arts, Society and Education at James Cook University, Nguma-Bada Campus, Cairns, Australia. Snowy's research background lies at the intersection of sustainability education, pedagogy, schools and initial teacher education. Snowy's current research interests focus on pedagogy and curriculum in pre-service teacher education, within new-materialist frameworks.
ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8053-7841
Email: neus.evans@jcu.edu.au

Lisa Law is an Associate Professor in Geography and Planning in the College of Science and Engineering, at James Cook University, Nguma-Bada Campus, Cairns, Australia. Her research focuses on urban spaces in Southeast Asia and tropical Australia, and crosses a wide spectrum including liveability and place-based urban design for the tropics, the meanings and uses of public space, environmentally responsive design, and the role of culture and the arts in placemaking.
Twitter: https://twitter.com/LisaLawJCU
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/lisa-law-48739191/
ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0095-7588
Email: lisa.law@jcu.edu.au

Please cite as: Walshe, R., Evans, N. S. (Snowy) & Law, L. (2022). Mapping community gardens in the Australian National Curriculum: A curriculum analysis model. Issues in Educational Research, 32(2), 784-804. http://www.iier.org.au/iier32/walshe.pdf

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