What happened to Juanita Nielsen?

Case Study Overview

Students investigate the murder mystery of Juanita Nielsen, a prominent Sydney activist in the 1970s, who opposed the development of the historic Victoria Street in inner Sydney. They must decide who killed her and why. The focus of the case study is to use her death to put the society of the time under the microscope — the green bans, union rivalries, political corruption, a powerful criminal presence, police involvement, clashing egos and an emerging environmentalism movement.

An interactive entitled, Who killed Juanita Nielsen? A cold case, is also available for this case study. This module is currently under re-development due to FLASH being discontinued. 

Case Study unit of work inquiry structure (pdf)

  • Teacher’s Guide
  • Activity 1: 20 Questions
    Understanding the main concept(s) raised in the case study
  • Activity 2: Meeting Juanita Nielsen
    Investigating photos as accurate representations of people and events
  • Activity 3: Video visit
    Looking at the video segment of this case study and answering questions about it
  • Activity 4: ‘Becoming’ a witness
    Key witnesses involved in the events surrounding the disappearance of Juanita Nielsen
  • Activity 5: Questioning the witnesses
    Formulating questions to ask the witnesses and making connections between the evidence
  • Activity 6: Your editor’s instructions
    Writing a magazine or newspaper article about the Juanita Nielsen disappearance

About the Interactive

This module is currently under re-development due to FLASH being discontinued. 

Who Killed Juanita Nielsen?
Students attempt to work out who killed Juanita Nielsen from the evidence provided in order to come up with a prosecution report. They must consider all the evidence along the way from a variety of key witnesses.

For Secondary Students

• The environment movement
(1960s - present)

Case Study Resources

  • Teacher Guide
  • Print Resources (PDF)
  • Downloadable High Quality Video
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