Junior Students investigate identity and Aboriginal culture

Dr Brooke Collins-Gearing

On Friday 9th August, Dr Brooke Collins-Gearing, Senior Lecturer University of Newcastle, visited students in Years 4 and 6 for some special presentations about Aboriginal culture and history. 

Year 4 students were challenged to identify an array of animal sounds, and then heard some dream-time stories about different animals.  Dr Collins-Gearing also fielded dozens of questions from the students and shared stories with the students about totem and Aboriginal spirituality.

Sharing is really important to the Aboriginal Peoples. You do not have your own possessions as they belong to everyone. You do not have to ask to take something because it is there for everybody to use with respect. There are a lot of dreaming stories that speak about greed and respect. It was to make sure not only people survived but the country survived for future generations.  Eliza M (4T)

The Aboriginal people discovered this land and have taken care of it for a long time.  We can respect them by doing the same.  The land to them is “country” and they have passed it down from generation to generation, while sharing stories and traditions. Jackson C (4L)

Year 6 students learned about the importance of storytelling, personal identity and community identity.  They heard about the stolen generation and the subsequent impacts on shared knowledge and traditions following the removal of children from their families.  Students quizzed Dr Collins-Gearing on relationship to country, Aboriginal heritage, language and customs, coming away with a deeper understanding about Aboriginal peoples.  Students then proudly showed their guest their recent dot paintings produced on bark collected from trees around the Campus.

Dr Brooke Collins-Gearing Dr Brooke Collins-Gearing
Dr Brooke Collins-Gearing Dr Brooke Collins-Gearing