Our Purpose

Reading Australia was created by the not-for-profit Copyright Agency with the goal of making it easier for teachers, through their passion and skills, to spread a love for Australian texts. We believe that every society needs to tell their own stories and the best way we can achieve this is to provide quality and insightful resources to support all teachers of English in bringing Australia’s rich and unique literature into classrooms.

Reading Australia champions Australia’s rich literary history and presents thoughtful, stimulating, challenging, and sometimes provocative literary works for Australian students.

It reflects the stories we tell as a nation and connects teachers with diverse and robust voices.

While we do not always share or endorse the views of all titles included on Reading Australia, we believe these works should be available for all Australian readers and students.

The ‘List’

Reading Australia began as a list of 200 books chosen by a panel from the Australian Society of Authors to celebrate the work of our leading writers and illustrators in telling the Australian story. Now the list has expanded to include a further 70 titles, covering all genres and periods of Australia’s literary history.

Visit the Books section to view the full interactive list or download the brochure for a quick overview of the list.

Titles for Reading Australia are now selected by Australian literature and literacy experts, teachers, writing industry stakeholders, First Nations writers’ representatives and diverse sector representatives and includes titles for primary and secondary school students, as well as for tertiary students.

To be suitable for teaching to primary and secondary school students titles must meet the criteria below:

Criteria

  • Titles appearing on Reading Australia must be written by Australian writers and should be available in print or other formats
  • Titles should address the needs of the Australian curricula or be taught by teachers in schools
  • Titles must be works of quality writing and be appropriate for Reading Australia’s intended audience
  • While titles may be provocative and challenging they should reflect Australia’s rich and diverse cultural history and present authentic literary voices
  • There should be no known objection to the authenticity of any works
  • Author (or the author’s representative) must consent to their book’s inclusion on Reading Australia.

In addition:

  • Teacher resources for titles on Reading Australia are written by Australian teachers for teachers to use in the classroom
  • Teacher resources must be appropriate for primary and secondary school students
  • Teacher resources must be culturally appropriate and where relevant, developed in consultation with FNAWN
  • Teacher resources may present varied and diverse opinions to articulate or provide context for issues and themes in titles.
The Resources

There are now over 150 resources aimed at Foundation to Senior Secondary, with more resources added regularly throughout the year. The resources for primary level were developed by the Primary English Teaching Association Australia (PETAA) and the Australian Literacy Educators’ Association (ALEA), while resources for secondary level were jointly commissioned by the Australian Association for the Teaching of English (AATE) and the NSW English Teachers’ Association.

  • The educational resources are designed to help teachers navigate Australian texts within the framework of the Australian Curriculum. The units include curriculum codes, sample classroom and assessment activities, and links to other relevant online resources featuring all the links you need to comprehensively teach and engage your students across a suggested time frame.
  • Many of the secondary-level titles are also accompanied by essays written by eminent authors, academics and critics. These essays are personal responses from some of Australia’s most engaging writers, providing fresh and sharp perspectives and exploring the underlying themes, concepts and influences of the books.
  • In the Video section you will find interviews with and speeches made by authors. Particularly, there are ten fantastic interviews with Australian writers and illustrators created in partnership with ABC Splash.
  • Twenty titles have had AustLit trails created for them. These trails are curated collections of information covering the title’s context, themes, and more, as well as links to academic research and publications.

The selection of titles is a three-stage process

Titles for Reading Australia are selected by Australian literature and literacy experts, teachers, writing industry stakeholders and diverse sector representatives.

While titles must meet the criteria above, other factors such as cross-curriculum priorities and diversity are taken into consideration.

Stage One

Titles selected for inclusion on Reading Australia are made by selection committees for Primary School and Secondary School. These committees develop a long-list of potential titles, linked to teacher use in the classroom and curriculum needs. The committees are comprised of representatives from the following stakeholder groups:

  • Two representatives of the teachers’ associations representing primary and secondary schools (ALEA and AATE)
  • Primary Education Teachers Association of Australia (PETAA)
  • Teachers
  • ASA
  • First Nations Australia Writers Network
  • Academic/Australian Literature representative
  • ALIA
  • Children’s/YA Lit rep
  • Representatives from other sectors as required.

Reading Australia is committed to representing cultural and linguistic diversity through our selection committees and we actively encourage participation by individuals from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander backgrounds. We respect and embrace diversity in all forms, including gender, LGBTQI and cultural heritage.

Stage Two

The long list of titles developed by the selection committees is shared with teachers representing primary and secondary schools for their feedback.

Stage Three

Final selection of titles is made by Reading Australia following feedback from Stage 2 and in relation to the published criteria

Register for FREE

Register for free to create your own account – this allows you to bookmark your favourite resources and even add your own notes to return to later. You will also receive monthly Reading Australia updates and book news. More teaching resources and essays are being added all the time, so make sure you come back often to see what’s new.