If one believes, the rest will believe

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90852 (1.8) Student Exemplars

Sample A: Not Achieved

“If one believes, the rest will believe”


The theme importance of family gave me a good understanding of the four texts that I have chosen. The four texts are Night, life is beautiful, Down to Earth and Blood Diamond. They all show bravery and love which connect to the theme. Those words are a big part of the theme.
The song Down to Earth sung by Justin Bieber has used the theme importance of family many times as the song is about his mum, dad and himself through the last few years. When Justin sang this song, I knew that it was about his family. The line ‘on our way back do to earth’ means a lot when I read it. It made me thing that my parents are the ones who raised me and took care of me which makes me realise that there is nothing that can stop me from doing the same to them. But their parts of life to have bad experiences on our way to become just like your parents. Another idea that came up in the song was the splitting of his parents when he was young. That was also another big idea. As he sang the line ‘then tell me why im in tears’, it made me feel sad but then also worried as it is about crying and it mainly describes how he is feeling. Even though I explain to ides from the song, there is a lot more meaning to it. The connection between the four texts that each involves bravery, it showed me that if you are on a bad situation, bravery is required. Each text also involves the reunite of each family and each text is based on a true story.

In Life is Beautiful the father tries to make the concentration camp fun for his son to protect him from the Nazi’s. He makes what the guard says sound like the game even though we know it is really dangerous. Guido shows he is courageous and fearless when he translates the Nazi guard’s camp rules into silly, funny rules of the game for his son, because if he was found out he would have been killed. “If you are hungry you cannot ask for bread and jam because I have eaten it all, it was delicious.” (by adding an explanation and supporting evidence including below makes this a low achieved)

In Night the father and son don’t get on well, but when they go to the concentration camp the father takes care of him. The father gives him his food which means he could die like in Blood Diamond where the father risks his life to get his son back to the family.
(by adding an explanation and supporting evidence - the blue and the pink - makes this a low achieved)
In Blood Diamond the father risks his life to get his son back to his family. ‘Blood Diamonds’ is about how the rebels treat people in order to get diamonds and trade it for guns, this story tells us how this one man has to fight for his family to get them back. The rebels took over the village and shot people. They cut their arms off if they didn’t get the right answer. (Adding this makes it a high not achieved)
The quote that I used at the start explains most of the information that I have used. The quote supports the text that I have chosen and it has a strong meaning to it. I discovered that the theme is one big part in everyday life and that your family is involved in everything.
Sample A: Not Achieved
To achieve this standard significant connection(s) across texts must be explained using supporting evidence.
The standard asks the student to refer to at least four texts, then identify and explain one or more ideas about significant connections across these texts.
The student has referred to four texts and identified a thematic connection within the four texts of the ‘ importance of family, bravery and love’ in the introduction.
The student does explain connections about the importance of family in ‘Down to Earth’. Connections are identified in the other three texts, but are not sufficiently explained. Supporting evidence is not given for Blood Diamond.
Additional explanation and evidence for Blood Diamond in blue takes this sample to a high not achieved.

Additional explanation and evidence for Night and Life is Beautiful in pink takes this sample to a low achieved. This means that the student just meets the requirement to explain significant connections across texts using supporting evidence.



Sample B: High Not Achieved
Theme: Inhumanity to Man
This theme that I am writing about is quite an interesting theme because many people have at least gone through some sort of pain; nobody has lived a perfectly normal life here on planet Earth. There are many texts linking to this theme for example ‘Night’, ‘Life is Beautiful’, ‘Blood Diamond’ and ‘Boy in Striped Pyjamas’. I am going to write about some of the themes that are linked between these four texts.
The text ‘Night’ is a very touching story based on what Elie went through as a child and how he survived the Germans to tell his tale after many years of suffering. He tells us how they were treated during the long period of time they spent working dawn till dusk and how they would sometimes go to bed without any food. The Germans were cruel, harsh and every word you could think of. The same happens in ‘Life is Beautiful’, fighting for survival but there is no use fighting because they do not know if they will be able to live to see the next day. During the liberation of the camp Guido is shot by a Nazi guard.

‘Blood Diamonds’ is about how the rebels treat people in order to get diamonds and trade it for guns, this story tells us how this one man has to fight for his family to get them back. The rebels took over the village and shot people. They cut their arms off if they didn’t get the right answer. How the rebels treat other people are also similar to how the Germans treated the Jews in ‘The Boy in Striped Pyjamas’, their fight for survival is very hard compared to how they live to see the next day. This is similar to the book ‘Night’ because both stories are based on the Germans and World War Two. How they were treated is nothing you can imagine, they are put into barracks which they cannot even sleep in, punished for every little thing that they do wrong, they are starved to death and also very early mornings and very late nights, they are also touched in very cruel ways!

The four texts are all very similar, if you compare them together you will see how the victims were treated in the holocaust, three of which are from the same holocaust, ‘Night’, ‘Life is Beautiful’, and ‘The Boy in Striped Pyjamas’. However ‘Blood Diamond’ is based on the diamond mines of Africa.

Sample B: High Not Achieved - (it is not complying with the evidence required)
To achieve this standard significant connection(s) across texts must be explained using supporting evidence.
The standard asks the student to refer to at least four texts, then identify and explain one or more ideas about significant connections across these texts.
The student has referred to four texts and identified a thematic connection within the four texts of: ‘Inhumanity to man’.
The student explains ideas just sufficiently about the connections of ‘Inhumanity to man’ between the four texts using evidence for three of the four texts although limited to support the thematic connection of ‘Inhumanity to man’. For example:
(Explanation)


  • Elie went through as a child and how he survived the Germans to tell his tale after many years of suffering. He tells us how they were treated during the long period of time…. The Germans were cruel, harsh and every word you could think of.

  • The same happens in ‘Life is Beautiful’, fighting for survival but there is no use fighting because they do not know if they will be able to live to see the next day.

  • ‘Blood Diamonds’ this story tells us how this one man has to fight for his family to get them back. The rebels took over the village and shot people.

  • Boy in Striped Pyjamas’, their fight for survival is very hard compared to how they live to see the next day.

(Evidence)



  • they spent working dawn till dusk and how they would sometimes go to bed without any food.


  • During the liberation of the camp Guido is shot by a Nazi guard.

  • They cut their arms off if they didn’t get the right answer.

  • they are put into barracks which they cannot even sleep in, punished for every little thing that they do wrong, they are starved to death and also very early mornings and very late nights, they are also touched in very cruel ways!

To meet Achievement the student would need to include evidence for Life is Beautiful see pink.



Sample C: High Not Achieved - (but with inclusion of evidence for Oliver Twist it becomes a High Achieved
Everyone has some type of courage, courage that can sometimes help you to survive. I have realized throughout all four texts ‘Romeo and Juliet’, ‘Night’, ‘Life is Beautiful’ and ‘Oliver Twist’ they have all given examples of courageous actions towards loved ones to help them survive.

All of the texts show how people have to rise up above everyone and fight for survival, and also to overcome their fears. In the novel ‘Oliver Twist’, Charles Dickens has tried to set an image in your head about the hard times in old England and also exploring the views of all the “dangerous” un-wealthy people who are trying to survive by using courage and determination. Nancy sacrifices her own life to protect Oliver. She is beaten to death by Sykes because she tries to protect Oliver by revealing the truth about Oliver’s past to put him in the hands of his family. She is brave because she knows it will anger Sykes if he finds out what she has done, that’s why she tries not to mention his name to survive. (explanation and evidence integrated) However it made me think about courageousness, it is about being fearless and brave so that you can stand up for what you believe in as well as standing up for peoples rights. (Convincing – moving towards Merit – internalising understandings about the connection)

A similar idea was expressed in the movie ‘Life is Beautiful’. Although the main character Guido didn’t rise-up against the Nazi’s in the way we would expect, he was able to stop the Nazi’s from destroying his son’s childhood by making up a story that the concentration camp was all just a big game. Everyone was playing a part and the grand prize was a real life tank. By doing this he rose up against them by outwitting them. Guido shows he is courageous and fearless when he translates the Nazi guard’s camp rules into silly, funny rules of the game for his son, because if he was found out he would have been killed. “If you are hungry you cannot ask for bread and jam because I have eaten it all, it was delicious.”
It’s interesting to see that a similar idea is shown in ‘Night’ by Elie Wiesel. This memoir is also situated in a holocaust setting where the narrator Elie is taken to concentration camps in Czechoslovakia and Germany at the age of fourteen. Upon first arriving at Birkenau, Elie was separated from his mother and sister. So throughout the camps he was attached to his father. Elie had a hard life living in the holocaust, most people did, everyone either got sick or injured from working to hard but most people just got hung or shot on the spot in front of everyone including their family, but this shows that some people need courage to try and stay alive. (weak explanation and evidence - just sufficient to comply with the requirements of Achievement – some unevenness is acceptable)

Having courage to stay alive doesn’t necessarily mean that you must stay alive because you have courage; it means that you should fight to stay alive with your loved ones like in ‘Romeo and Juliet’. Romeo and Juliet fall for each other and become madly in love. Because of their love they will do anything just to stay together. Juliet takes some poison to look dead so that she doesn’t have to marry Parris.This shows determination and willingness for a loved one just like Guido for his son.

Throughout all of these texts, ‘Oliver Twist’, ‘Night’, ‘Life is Beautiful’ and ‘Romeo and Juliet’ they have shown courage, determination, and bravery to survive.

Sample C: High Not Achieved - (but with inclusion of evidence for Oliver Twist it becomes a High Achieved
To achieve this standard significant connection(s) across texts must be explained using supporting evidence.
The standard asks the student to refer to at least four texts, then identify and explain one or more ideas about significant connections across these texts.
The student has referred to four texts and identified thematic connections within the four texts of ‘courage to survive and courageous actions towards loved ones to help them survive’.
The student explains ideas which show convincing understandings about the connections of courageous actions towards loved ones to survive’ in ‘Life is Beautiful’. Further explanation and specific evidence, is needed in the remaining texts to meet the convincing element for Merit (see EN5).

Sample D: High Achieved – (With the inclusion of the developed explanation and evidence for Ka Kite Bro in pink this takes the sample into the convincing requirement for low Merit

The decisions you make determines the story of your life. In these different texts Juno, Ka Kite Bro, Romeo and Juliet and The Wrong Boy characters had to make different kinds of decisions. Some of which were to change their lives, to do what they want to do or to do what they think is right.

The film Juno is about a teenage girl who becomes pregnant. Pregnancy is a big thing in a female’s life, especially if it’s to a teenage girl who is definitely not prepared or in the right place to have a child. Juno is then overcome with the problem about what to do with the child. She decides to go with the idea of giving the child up for adoption she knew this was the best plan. If she had the child she knew there was now way she could take care of it and her life would’ve been limited.

Another character who had to make a life changing situation was JJ from the novel, The Wrong Boy. At the end of the story he had to decide whether to go with the girl he loved into the bigger outside world or stay forever in the small, old town for the rest of his life. Juno had to make a decision that was good for everyone else but JJ made the decision that he thought was only good for himself. He said, “This is where I belong”. He felt there was no way he could fit into the outside world and become significant so he decided to stay in his town where he knew he was special. Although readers would have thought his decision wasn’t good or correct JJ knew he was right he did this so he could always be the same JJ in his small town.
In the situation of Romeo and Juliet, Romeo and Juliet were fated to be together. But they both had to decide whether to follow this fate or stay true to their conflicting families. The power of their love caused them to make the decision to be together. “Be but sworn my love, and I’ll no longer be a Capulet”. This showed that Juliet’s decision was strong, so strong that she would leave her family just to be with him.
In Ka Kite, Bro decisions are made through cultural beliefs. Tama attends a pakeha’s funeral but he just couldn’t accept how things were done. He baffled himself trying not to show how he felt. “Grit and teeth rub together” this quote shows how he was feeling. In the end he still believed that his traditions are correct and decided to express his goodbye to his dead friend in his own Maori way. When he chooses to hongi Darryl he goes against what everyone else believes but stays true to himself even though he knows everybody doesn’t understand or accept his actions. “You should keep your culture and your nose to yourself.”

Decisions are always made differently whether it’s for yourself or for somebody else. Overall decisions are something you do to determine what you want with life. Like if Juno didn’t give the child up for adoption she would have to raise it herself maybe limiting her options and the child’s in life.


Sample D: High Achieved – (With the inclusion of the developed explanation and evidence for Ka Kite Bro in pink this takes the sample into the convincing requirement for low Merit
To achieve this standard with Merit significant connection(s) across texts must be convincingly explained using supporting evidence.
The standard asks the student to refer to at least four texts, then identify and convincingly explain one or more ideas about significant connections across texts, making clear points that develop understandings about the connection being addressed.
The student has referred to four texts and identified a thematic connection within the four texts about ‘The decisions you make determines the story of your life’.
The student expresses convincing ideas with supporting evidence about the ideas of ‘decision making’ that are made in The Wrong Boy, Ka Kite Bro and Juno in the conclusion:


  • Juno had to make a decision that was good for everyone else but JJ made the decision that he thought was only good for himself.

  • Although readers would have thought his decision wasn’t good or correct JJ knew he was right he did this so he could always be the same JJ in his small town.

  • stays true to himself even though he knows everybody doesn’t understand or accept his actions.

  • Overall decisions are something you do to determine what you want with life.

  • maybe limiting her options and the child’s in life.


Sample E: High Merit

In the texts Night, The Road, Eclipse and Life is Beautiful the theme ‘Courage to help others’ was shown. I chose this theme because I wanted to see how different authors/directors portrayed it.


The memoir Night and the film Life is Beautiful, were very similar. The two fathers from the texts took risks and never gave up during the horrors of the Holocaust, just to make life easier for their sons. They showed courage when risking their well being by putting themselves second. In Life is Beautiful Guido pretended that the concentration camp was a game that was set up for his son Giosue. He risked his life many times to put a smile on his son’s face. Guido lied to a Nazi and pretended he could translate German so he could persuade Giosue that the officer was explaining the games rules not the camp rules. Benigni chose a very staunch male to play this Nazi. I think this was to make the audience fear for Guido as he was so small in comparison. I think Guido’s action took courage because he knew if the Nazi had realized he probably would have been shot on the spot. In Night Elie’s father bravely gave up some of his own portion of bread, to give to his son so he doesn’t go hungry. I think this gesture would have taken a lot of courage because the father had no idea when he would next be fed, but he sacrificed his own comfort anyway.

The Road also demonstrates the theme of courage to help others through a father and son relationship. The story is set in a dangerous wasteland that was once America and there is little food and life. McCarthy created a horrible setting that neither the reader nor the characters want to be a part of. It is a living nightmare for the father and son and the father considers ending the pain by taking his own life. Between the two of them they only have one pistol with a single bullet. The father shows courage by holding on because his son could not survive without him and he saves the bullet for his son in case he needs it to avoid a life of slavery. This was a huge sacrifice on the father’s behalf and would have taken a lot of courage.
The film Eclipse directed by David Slade was the most unique text out of the four that I studied. Eclipse did not involve a father son relationship; rather it was a love story between Edward, a vampire; Jacob, a werewolf; and Bella, a human. All characters in the text made sacrifices throughout, risking their lives to save each other. One example of this is when Bella cuts her arm to distract the vampire Victoria for Edward. Bella could have been killed but the thought of Edward being hurt was just too much. Slade filmed a close up shot of Bella slitting her forearm. The camera then flicked to Victoria’s blood thirsty face. It is here that the audience realises the true danger of the situation and the sheer amount of courage it would have taken for Bella to put herself there. Bella showed courage by risking her life to help Edward. Even though Eclipse was very different to the other texts the film still carried the theme ‘Courage to help others’.

In conclusion the texts Night, The Road, Eclipse, and Life is Beautiful all portrayed the theme ‘Courage to help others’. Most of the different authors/directors showed this by making the audience empathetic towards a certain relationship and then putting those two characters in a dangerous setting. Then, whether it was slitting their arm, or giving up a piece of bread, all the characters made sacrifices for their loved ones. Courage is not about being fearless, it is realising that something means more to you than avoiding your fears.


Sample E: High Merit

To achieve this standard with Merit significant connection(s) across texts must be convincingly explained using supporting evidence.


The standard asks the student to refer to at least four texts, then identify and convincingly explain one or more ideas about significant connections across texts, making clear points that develop understandings about the connection being addressed.
The student has referred to four texts and identified a thematic connection within the four texts about ‘The decisions you make determines the story of your life’.
The student expresses convincing ideas with supporting evidence about the ideas of ‘courage’ in all four texts:

  • They showed courage when risking their well being by putting themselves second

  • Benigni chose a very staunch male to play this Nazi. I think this was to make the audience fear for Guido as he was so small in comparison. I think Guido’s action took courage because he knew if the Nazi had realized he probably would have been shot on the spot.

  • The father shows courage by holding on because his son could not survive without him and he saves the bullet for his son in case he needs it to avoid a life of slavery. This was a huge sacrifice on the father’s behalf and would have taken a lot of courage.

  • It is here that the audience realises the true danger of the situation and the sheer amount of courage it would have taken for Bella to put herself there. Bella showed courage by risking her life to help Edward. Even though Eclipse was very different to the other texts the film still carried the theme ‘Courage to help others’.

The student begins to develop understandings that show some insight (EN6). These need to be further developed to meet Excellence:



  • Most of the different authors/directors showed this by making the audience empathetic towards a certain relationship and then putting those two characters in a dangerous setting.


  • Courage is not about being fearless, it is realising that something means more to you than avoiding your fears.


Sample F: High Merit
The theme of love connection of a parent and a child is a very important part for any family. I chose this theme as it portrays love in a different way. The four texts I chose were the poem, “Mothers, love your sons” by Glen Colquhoun; the book “Night” by Elie Wisel; the song, “In the living years” by Mike and Mechanics; and the film, “My sisters keeper” based on the book by Jodi Picoult. There was a strong connection of the parent child love in these texts.
I came across a quote stating ‘I may not like what you do, but I’ll always love you’, that I think is shown in the text ‘Mothers, love your sons’ well. Glen Colquhoun describes to us the undying love a mother has for her son, no matter what. A mother’s love is very unique and stable. It is hard to break the love a mother has for her child. Glenn states ‘love your big, dumb sons, your idiot sons, your swaggering sons…Because they die so fast’ which sends a message through to the readers that no matter the stupidity sons behaviours may be, that the love a mother has for her son, will always stay strong.

Elie Wisel also describes this undying love in ‘Night’, except this time in a father – son relationship. At the beginning of the book, Elie describes his fathers to us, as the type to put more effort into his work than the well being of his family. Then, as the Wisel family is taken off to the concentration camp, Elie realises that his father is someone important in his life that he does not want to lose. Elie then makes an important decision after arriving, when given the command ‘Women and children to the left. Men to the right.’ Elie was at the age where he could have gone with his mother and the children, but instead he decides to stay with his father, who otherwise would have been alone. This decision plays a big part in bonding Elie and his father throughout the text. As their distant father son bond grew stronger they realised how important they really were to each other. They gave each other support and comfort needed, and protected each other in every possible way.

This situation reminded me of the regrets that the singer in ‘In the living years’ had after his father passed away. He tells us about the miscommunication generations in families have and the stages everyone goes through where they think their parent do not understand them. But underneath all of the miscommunication is a strong bond and love. This miscommunication can lead to lifelong fights, which then ends in huge guilt when one passes away and you haven’t made up. The singer quotes “I was not there that morning when my father passed away, I didn’t get to tell him all the things I had to say”.
The intense love bond between parent and child is very clearly demonstrated between mother and daughter in “My sisters keeper”. Throughout the text the mother gives up her life to look after her daughter, who is suffering leukaemia. The mother makes sacrifice after sacrifice to help and show her daughter she has a chance. The daughter goes on about how ‘ugly’ she feels, after losing all her hair. The mother declines and protests that she is beautiful. The mother then shaves off her hair to show normality and that her daughter although sick is normal and beautiful. This showed to what extent a mother would do for her child to take away their pain. In this case it was the pain of feeling different. Although the daughter came to terms with her own death her mother could not that is how strong the love for her daughter was.
These texts all bring together the idea that the thought of losing someone who is part of a parent child relationship can bring the parent and child closer together. They show us that the love is there even if not expressed and the love a parent has for a child is all forgiving.

Sample F: High Merit


  • even murderers have mothers.



  • They gave each other support and comfort needed, and protected each other in every possible way. “The weak to the left. Those who walked well to the right. My father was sent to the left. I ran after him. An SS Officer shouted at my back…” Elie was determined not to be separated from his father. I could see that the situation of not knowing when death would arrive but aware that it was close, changed the relationship between Elie and his father. They came to regret their past years of miscommunication in their relationship.





  • This miscommunication can lead to lifelong fights, which then ends in huge guilt when one passes away and you haven’t made up. The singer quotes “I was not there that morning when my father passed away, I didn’t get to tell him all the things I had to say”. which explains to us how the love was there he just couldn’t express it.


Sample G: Low Excellence

The theme of love connection of a parent and a child is a very important part for any family. I chose this theme as it portrays love in a different way. The four texts I chose were the poem, “Mothers, love your sons” by Glen Colquhoun; the book “Night” by Elie Wisel; the song, “In the living years” by Mike and Mechanics; and the film, “My sisters keeper” based on the book by Jodi Picoult. There was a strong connection of the parent child love in these texts.


I came across a quote stating ‘I may not like what you do, but I’ll always love you’, that I think is shown in the text ‘Mothers, love your sons’ well. Glen Colquhoun describes to us the undying love a mother has for her son, no matter what. A mother’s love is very unique and stable. It is hard to break the love a mother has for her child. Glenn states ‘love your big, dumb sons, your idiot sons, your swaggering sons…Because they die so fast’ which sends a message through to the readers that no matter the stupidity sons behaviours may be, that the love a mother has for her son, will always stay strong – even murderers have mothers.

Elie Wisel also describes this undying love in ‘Night’, except this time in a father – son relationship. At the beginning of the book, Elie describes his fathers to us, as the type to put more effort into his work than the well being of his family. Then, as the Wisel family is taken off to the concentration camp, Elie realises that his father is someone important in his life that he does not want to lose. Elie then makes an important decision after arriving, when given the command ‘Women and children to the left. Men to the right.’ Elie was at the age where he could have gone with his mother and the children, but instead he decides to stay with his father, who otherwise would have been alone. This decision plays a big part in bonding Elie and his father throughout the text. As their distant father son bond grew stronger they realised how important they really were to each other. They gave each other support and comfort needed, and protected each other in every possible way. “The weak to the left. Those who walked well to the right. My father was sent to the left. I ran after him. An SS Officer shouted at my back…” Elie was determined not to be separated from his father. I could see that the situation of not knowing when death would arrive but aware that it was close, changed the relationship between Elie and his father. They came to regret their past years of miscommunication in their relationship.

This situation reminded me of the regrets that the singer in ‘In the living years’ had after his father passed away. He tells us about the miscommunication generations in families have and the stages everyone goes through where they think their parent do not understand them. But underneath all of the miscommunication is a strong bond and love. This miscommunication can lead to lifelong fights, which then ends in huge guilt when one passes away and you haven’t made up. The singer quotes “I was not there that morning when my father passed away, I didn’t get to tell him all the things I had to say”, which explains to us how the love was there he just couldn’t express it.

The intense love bond between parent and child is very clearly demonstrated between mother and daughter in “My sisters keeper”. Throughout the text the mother gives up her life to look after her daughter, who is suffering leukaemia. The mother makes sacrifice after sacrifice to help and show her daughter she has a chance. The daughter goes on about how ‘ugly’ she feels, after losing all her hair. The mother declines and protests that she is beautiful. The mother then shaves off her hair to show normality and that her daughter although sick is normal and beautiful. This showed to what extent a mother would do for her child to take away their pain. In this case it was the pain of feeling different. Although the daughter came to terms with her own death her mother could not that is how strong the love for her daughter was.

These texts all bring together the idea that the thought of losing someone who is part of a parent child relationship can bring the parent and child closer together. They show us that the love is there even if not expressed and the love a parent has for a child is all forgiving.


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