‘Reconciliation is about building better relationships between the wider Australian community and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples for the benefit of all Australians’.
This week reminded us all that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people were the first people of Australia and that they are devoted to looking after our land. As Australians we need to learn about our shared histories, cultures and achievements, and contribute to building a reconciled Australia.
At Wellbank we challenged children’s thinking and asked ‘where do we belong?’ and ‘Who was here before we were?’ The children represented their thoughts through their drawings. We participated in a special ceremony to introduce the acknowledgment of country and told the story of the aboriginal people being the first people to live on the land. We discussed how the Indigenous Australians felt when others arrived in Australia and took over the land. The focus was on us all belonging and being considerate to each other. We made a sea of hands and placed these in our garden as a symbol of saying sorry. We also ventured up to our local park and participated in a welcome to country ceremony as a whole group. We shared the following books with the children to help set the scene;
‘My country’ By Ezekiel Mullina
‘I have Feelings’ By Jana Novotry
‘Pictures of home’ By ColinThompson
For more information regarding Reconciliation in Australia, please visit www.reconciliation.org.au