'Making Tracks takes young readers on a fictional journey through some fascinating Australian stories, inspired by objects from the National Museum of Australia's collection.'
Source: National Museum of Australia website, http://www.nma.gov.au/kidz/making_tracks/
Sighted: 14/06/2006, 17/06/2009
'Trung's family is tragically separated during their attempt to escape to a new country. A raid by soldiers means that only Trung and his father make it onto the boat headed for freedom. Trung's mother and little sister are left behind in Vietnam. Trung's journey, in the hull of a crowded fishing boat, is fraught with danger and full of loneliness. His estranged father is too sad and desperate to offer much comfort.
Even when Trung arrives in Australia, his difficult journey continues. He has to contend with strange foods, streets, buildings and a new language. He begins school but feels alienated from the other students and staff. He is left alone with many hours to fill.
And throughout his journey he desperately misses his mother and sister in Vietnam. He writes them letters at first in his head and then on paper but a reply does not arrive.
Trung starts to develop a friendship with Andrew, who is also grieving the loss of his home. And, finally, one day a letter arrives from his mother in Vietnam. Trung's dark journey does not end, but he begins to hope again.' (National Museum)Canberra : National Museum of Australia Press , 2006
'It is May 9, 1927 and celebrations to mark the opening of Parliament House are underway in the small town of Canberra. But, for Billy, an orphaned farmhand on a nearby property, it is just another day of hard work and loneliness. His only friend is the work dog, Dusty.
Billy's plans change, however, when he learns that Dusty is to be shot and replaced by a younger dog. Billy sets off for the celebrations in the hope of finding a new owner for Dusty.
Billy never reaches Parliament House. On his way he befriends a chauffeur, Mr Thompson, and his young passenger, Myrtle. Their car has broken down on the way to the opening ceremony and they are stranded on the side of the road. Billy finds a home for Dusty, and the three share their stories: Myrtle tells of her desire to be Australia's first female Prime Minister; Mr Thompson talks about his wife who "vanished" during the war; and Billy explains that his father went missing in action before his mother died.
Despite Mr Thompson's belief that "things like this don't happen", Myrtle makes a connection between the stories and realises that Billy is Mr Thompson's son.' (National Museum)Canberra : National Museum of Australia Press , 2006
'The 1956 Melbourne Olympic Games are about to begin and everybody wants to watch them. Mick Leary has a new television, tickets to the Games and a cousin competing in the water polo team. Ray, who is in the same class as Mick, has to make do with sitting on the pavement watching a television in a shop window. It doesn't seem fair!
When the other children follow the boasting Leary boys around the playground, Ray retaliates by telling a lie. He announces that he is also going to the Games with his cousin, who is filming the Olympics from the new ABC broadcast van.
Mick doesn't believe Ray's story and demands proof in the form of a photo. Ray realises that he needs an excellent plan or he will be in all sorts of trouble with Mick and his rough brothers. And so begins Ray's own Olympic challenge. In trying to deal with the situation he has created, Ray gets some help from his brother, advice from his grandfather and support from his friend Skeeta.
Ray manages to get into the Games, find the ABC van and meet a new "cousin" who is happy to be photographed with Ray on the ABC van. It may have been a lie, but Ray gets the proof he needs.' (National Museum)Canberra : National Museum of Australia Press , 2006
'During a Sunday School picnic Robbie, wheelchair-bound and lonely, meets a returned soldier called Alan. Robbie, who tires of watching the other children play, follows Alan to where he is fishing on the nearby jetty. When Robbie wheels himself to the end of the jetty, he experiences a little dolphin magic: his cap is blown from his head and then thrown back to him by a passing dolphin. The event is so amazing that Robbie cannot convince Alan that it happened at all!
Although Robbie returns to watch the Sunday School cricket match he is determined to get back to the jetty. Despite the worsening weather, Robbie makes his way back to the empty jetty and spots the dolphin again. Robbie soon realises that the dolphin is asking him for help: she has a calf that is trapped and drowning beneath the jetty.
Using all his courage and strength, Robbie enters the water, and with a little help from Alan (who returns just in time) manages to cut the calf free from some tangled fishing line. This amazing achievement allows Robbie to discover his own strength. It also leads to Robbie being able to tell Alan about his father who did not return from the war.' (National Museum)Canberra : National Museum of Australia Press , 2006
John loves to fiddle with things, but when he connects a broken webcam to an old telescope he is in for a shock. Suddenly he finds himself looking back in time, caught up in a very 'cool' Antarctic adventure.' (National Museum)Canberra : National Museum of Australia Press , 2007
'Maggie is working as a children's nurse in the big house when she finds a copybook and decides to teach herself to read. She knows she shouldn't really take the book, and things only get worse when the mistress sends her home in disgrace.' (National Museum)Canberra : National Museum of Australia Press , 2008
'Tibby feels like everything is going wrong. Her big brother Clarence is all grown up, and doesn't want to play with her any more. If Clarence says there aren't any pixies except in books, then what exactly did Tibby see in the bush, peering out from behind a leaf?' (National Museum)Canberra : National Museum of Australia Press , 2008
'Ruby doesn't like working for the Nortons. She wants to go back to Alice Springs to live with her mum. Will Idris, the Afghan boy who works with the camels, help her to return home?' (National Museum)Canberra : National Museum of Australia Press , 2008
'Daisy and her mum have just moved into the Grand Private Hotel belonging to Mr and Mrs Papadopolous. It's all new and strange, but Nina, Old Dot, the Colonel and especially Rainbow Rose are there to help them make a new life for themselves. But what's so special about the year 1975?' (National Museum)Canberra : National Museum of Australia Press , 2009