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Still from the Screen It competition winning film 'Giba'

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures resources

Teachers are encouraged to consult with their local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community as part of their NAIDOC Week learning program. Please be aware that some of the videos embedded in this resource may contain images and voices of deceased people.

ACMI film and television classroom resources

Engage with First Nations culture through the moving image. ACMI’s classroom resources promote deep thinking, build empathy and highlight culture and identity.

Years F-3 Learn about culture and country from Little J and Big Cuz.

Years 4-6 Explore identity in Brown Paper Bag.

Years 7-8 Engage with a journey of discovery with Satellite Boy.

Years 6 and above Build knowledge around the Stolen Generations with Rabbit Proof Fence.

Years 9 and above Learn about history and culture through The Sapphires.

Further resources

The excellent resources that follow will further support your teaching of First Nations moving image texts.

Connecting with the curriculum

Celebrate NAIDOC Week with SBS Learn

IN 2021, SBS is celebrating NAIDOC Week: Heal Country with a comprehensive, curriculum-focused resource. Use this resource to support the cross-curriculum priority Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures throughout the year.

Narragunnawali: Reconciliation in Education

This suite of subject-specific resource guides spans across all subject/learning areas. Learn how to effectively embed important ideas around reconciliation, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures and contributions, across the curriculum. Please note that the guides are neither prescriptive nor exhaustive, and that users are encouraged to consult with their local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community, and critically evaluate resources, in engaging with the material contained in the guides.

VCAA Aboriginal Perspectives Professional Learning program

Access the full range of curriculum-focused sessions as online recorded presentations.

Programs and learning resources from the Australian Children's Television Foundation

The ACTF support programming around First People's culture and stories and provide excellent learning resources to support classroom teaching.

Connecting with community

Every person has the right to know the heritage of this country – and only when we do this, will this Nation reach its full maturity.

VAEAI

VAEAI (Victorian Aboriginal Education Association inc.)

If you are teaching in Victoria, keep in touch with VAEAI and make sure you take note of their Koorie Education Calendar which is full of important information about Koorie Culture and events. Subscribe to the Bulletin mailing list by contacting vaso@vaeai.org.au.

Teachers in other states who are unsure about their First Nations community organisations can contact the Education Department for information.

Koorie Heritage Trust

Our Federation Square neighbours not only offer rich onsite experiences but have also developed an expansive online portal.

Connecting with place

Koorie Culture Map

Koorie Culture Map is an interactive map experience produced by SharingStories in partnership with Koorie Communities and youth from local primary schools. The map is a collection of creation story animations and videos of culturally significant sites originally from the SharingStories iBook collection.

AIATSIS Map

Created in 1996, the AIATSIS map draws attention to the diverse language, social and nation groups. It is not intended to be exact but is a helpful learning tool for supporting student learning about the diverse histories and cultures of Australia's First Peoples.

Gambay - First Languages Map

Build knowledge around the language of the land you inhabit. First Languages Australia is working with regional language centres nationally to develop a map of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages that reflects the names and groupings favoured by community. In related videos, community elders and members reflect on the importance of language to culture. In the video below, you can hear from Taungurung elder Aunty Lee Healy about the significance of language.

Virtual songlines

Bilbie Virtual Labs and Brett Leavy have created virtual experiences of country (to be viewed in VR headset) for people who don't have access to their country.

Brainstorm some reasons people might need virtual access to country, then check out the beautiful landscapes here.

Connecting with shared and diverse histories

Kanyini

In Kanyini (2006) Uncle Bob Randall shares the story of his people.

I think Kanyini is fantastic. However you came to find Uncle Bob [Melanie], you did a great job letting him tell his story and the story of all our people's history. I think the movie showed that in listening to our Aboriginal leaders/elders we can learn an awful lot about the state of our nation. It's all in our history of black fella and white man. Uncle Bob takes you on this journey and you can't help but think 'What if the white man had learnt from these black fellas in the beginning?' How would Australia look today? I hope every one else loves Kanyini as much as my family and I do.

- ​Adam Goodes, ​AFL Legend & Australian of the Year 2014

We Don’t Need A Map

Developed by SBS in partnership with Reconciliation Australia, this resource uses excerpts from Warwick Thornton’s mischievous documentary We Don’t need a Map to explore identity, knowledge and history.

The Healing Foundation

This national Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisation partners with communities to address the ongoing trauma caused by actions like the forced removal of children from their families. You will find learning resources and other information on the website and hear first-person experiences on the associated YouTube channel.

ACMI Collection

ACMI has a number of first-person stories from First Nations people in our collection. You can watch a selection of these personal histories on our Collections YouTube channel. In the story (below) John Lovett describes the injustice of his father serving in the war but receiving none of the recognition or benefits given to non-Aboriginal returned service people.

Watch John Lovett, Back to being Black:

Australia's first fake news story

SBS Learn has created a 10 minute interactive documentary called K'gari, which debunks one of Australia’s first fake news stories about the origins of Fraser Island, by exposing the largely untold Aboriginal version of events.

Check out the documentary and learning activities here.

Connecting with country

Fire and cultural burning

Check out the SBS report on traditional burning and then find out more at the Australian Disaster Resilience Knowledge Hub.

Aboriginal astronomy

The interconnection between land, people and the universe is embedded in traditional knowledge.

Budj Bim

Located in south west Victoria, Budj Bim is the only Australian World Heritage property listed exclusively for its Aboriginal cultural values. The Budj Bim Cultural Landscape features the earliest living example of aquaculture in the world, with a history of eel farming dating back over 6,000 years. Encourage your students to discover more about this amazing site and check out the video made in 2015 as part of the UNESCO World Heritage application.

Connecting with identities and cultures

Common Ground

This exceptional and accessible website has been created to share First Nations cultures, histories and lived experiences and to build cultural knowledge.

Who We Are: Brave New Clan

The Who We Are: Brave New Clan stories explore the lives of six exceptional young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Introduce your students to a new generation of high achievers as they navigate life in urban, regional and remote settings. Classroom resources include lesson plans, factsheets, teaching tips and assessment ideas.

Start with this excerpt: Who We Are: Miranda Tapsell

Connecting through dance and art

Djirri Djirri Wurundjeri Women's Dance Group

We are so excited to be featuring Djirri Djirri as part of ACMI’s NAIDOC Week events. You can find out more about this group on their website.

Bangarra Dance Theatre

You can continue inspiring your students with dance by visiting Knowledge Ground on the Bangarra website. You may like to start with Frances Rings’ 2012 work Terrain, “a powerful and stirring production about the timelessness of Kati Thanda-Lake Eyreand the Arabunna people’s relationship with this sacred site”.

Marking Time: Indigenous Art

Through this exhibition, the NGV looks at the persistence of images, signs or text painted or drawn on a range of surfaces in Indigenous Australia, from ancient times until now. You can engage with this work through a virtual tour with filmed commentary from curator Judith Ryan.