Indigenous Elder Visit

Who knows much about Indigenous people and culture? If you’d like to find out more, read on.

On Wednesday 18th November, 3/4 students were lucky to have Uncle Bill, an Indigenous elder, visit our school. He was called ‘uncle’ out of respect and he is an elder because he is one of the oldest in his skin group.

Some of our highlights included:

  • Having the smoke ceremony. This is where Uncle Bill made a small fire and then put eucalyptus on top and 3/4s got to walk through smoke. This is done to welcome a new group and in Indigenous culture, they also snap spears and use water to welcome people.
  • Finding out that Indigenous people used possum skin for balls (footballs)
  • Finding out Indigenous people used fibres from trunk of trees to make nets to catch ducks.
  • We learnt Indigenous people threw one boomerang which looked like an eagle so ducks would head downstream into reeds so other Indigenous people could then catch the ducks. There were two nets tied to each tree.
  • We learnt that boys would hunt and girls would get the food.
  • We learnt about different Indigenous skin groups. A skin group is how people notice what and who is in your family.
  • There were also totems that represented different animal groups such as eagle, tiger snake and crow.

What else do you know about Indigenous people? Have you ever met an Indigenous elder and what did you learn about them?

From Little Things, Big Things Grow – Our Integrated topic

This term our integrated unit is called ‘From Little Things, Big Things Grow’. On Monday we went to the Melbourne museum and looked at the First People’s Exhibition. These are some things that we learnt that connect with our unit:

  • Indigenous people used possum skins to make clothes and keep warm and as they got bigger they just added onto it.
  • Indigenous people eat some eucalyptus leaves
  • If you were part of the kangaroo group you ate everything except for kangaroos, and if you were part of the eel group you ate everything except eels.
  • Indigenous people had drums made of possum skin

Here are some photos from our excursion:

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In early Term 4, we also watched part of a film called Kanyini and this is what we learnt:

  • Indigenous people got taken from their families (stolen generation)
  • Their culture is more than 40,000 years old.
  • Kanyini -this is how Indigenous people are connected to everything that is living including (land), animals, people and family.
  • Indigenous people felt like they had nothing when they were taken from their family and land (mother earth).
  • They ate different foods like lizards and insects.
  • They were always on the move (nomadic)

What else do you know about Indigenous people and culture? If you have been to the Melbourne Museum, what was your favourite thing and why?