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Easy Text: An introduction to Australia

What do you know about Australia? Note down as many facts as you can.
Australia. Photo.
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Watch this video introducing Australia. You will find comprehension questions at the bottom of the page.

An Introduction to Australia



Australia is a country in the southern hemisphere. It is made up of the Australian mainland, the island of Tasmania and many other smaller islands in the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean.


Map of Australia. Illustration.

In 1606, Dutch explorers were the first Europeans who discovered Australia, but they did not settle there. Before this, for thousands of years, Australia was inhabited by the Aborigines. In 1770, the British claimed the eastern part of Australia. It was a useful place to send British convicts, instead of keeping them in prison in England. Gradually, other immigrants moved to Australia and the population grew. New South Wales was the first colony and five others were established in the 19th century. The six colonies joined together on January 1st 1901, to form the Commonwealth of Australia.

Australia Today

The population today is just over 21.7 million. The nation's capital city is Canberra. The other main cities are: Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide. 60% of the population live in and around these cities. Australia has a democratic political system and a high technology industry.

Tasks and Activities


  1. Make 5 questions to this text then sit in pairs and take turns questioning and answering.


  1. Use the map of Australia to find the names of the 6 states or territories.
  2. Can you find the main cities on the map? Which state are they in?
  3. Describe Australia’s flag (its colour and the objects in it)


  1. Use the dictionary and translate the following words into Norwegian.

    • hemisphere
    • inhabitant
    • explorer
    • indigenous
    • claim
    • convict
    • prison
    • immigrant
    • population
    • colony
    • establish
    • Commonwealth
  2. Here are some verbs. Can you find the nouns in the text which match them?
    (e.g. verb: explore, noun: explorers)
    Verbs: inhabit, convict, imprison, immigrate, populate, colonise


Choose one of the cities. Find pictures on the internet and make a short presentation of the city. See How to Make a Mini Presentation.

Related content

The Commonwealth of Australia is a country in the southern hemisphere comprising the mainland of the world's smallest continent.

CC BY-SAWritten by: Wikipedia and Anne Scott Hagen.
Last revised date 01/31/2019

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