Borobi Day - 31 May 2019!

Borobi Day banner, Yugambeh Website.

Earlier in the year, the Commonwealth Games Minister Kate Jones announced that Borobi was coming out of retirement to play the important role of Indigenous Languages Ambassador.

Borobi - Yugambeh website.

Borobi will partner with Yugambeh Museum to promote Indigenous language and culture as part of the 2019 International year of Indigenous Languages. Schools and community groups are encouraged to learn Yugambeh language and access a range of free online resources.

Borobi Day resources - Classroom Instructions.

While Borobi's Ambassadorial role is aimed at promoting Yugambeh language, the resources can be easily adapted for use with other languages. Flashcards, such as the ones above, are a great idea for counting games, learning everyday words, etc.

Gambara Gamu Biyu body chart

Other ideas for schools, kindergartens, etc. include:

  • Invite storytellers and speakers from the local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community
  • Create a parts of the body chart in your local language - use these for "Heads, Shoulders, Knees and Toes", "Hokey Pokey" etc.
  • Learn greetings/farewells in the local Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander language - uses these as part of the daily routine.
  • Count to 5, 10 in the local language - create number games/rhymes
  • Build up word lists for common/everyday things (e.g. family names, body parts, plants, animals, placenames, etc.) - create a word wall to share and learn these.
  • Create a school-community dictionary for the local language/s.
  • Promote a ‘language word of the week’ for use at school and in the community.

Borobi Day resources, Yugambeh website.

Schools and community groups are encouraged to celebrate Borobi Day as part of the International Year of Indigenous Languages.

Don't forget to check out the online resources to be found on the State Library's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Languages webpages.

Desmond Crump

Indigenous Languages Coordinator, State Library of Queensland

State Library of Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Languages Webpages

State Library of Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Languages Map

Jarjum stories: A kuril dhagun showcase focusing on children’s books and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages. Opens 19 October 2019.

Spoken: celebrating Queensland languages: A major exhibition exploring the survival and revival of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages throughout Queensland. Join in the many talks and events to celebrate the rich and diverse languages spoken today. Opens 21 November 2019.

References and Further Reading

The following selection from the State Library collections represent a sample of the diverse range of language materials from Queensland’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages. Further items can be found using One Search.

Allan, J. and Lane, J. (2001) The language of the Wangerriburra and neighbouring groups in the Yugambeh regionP 499.15 all

Babia, M. and Day, E. (1989) Torres Strait Picture Dictionary. JUVQ 499.1503 tor

Bonner, J. (2007) Wanyanganung ngabang Where's my mother. Written by Joyce Bonner; illustrations by Jodie Burns; Butchulla language translation by Jeanie Bell and Joyce Bonner. Online access via SLQ.

Bowen, L. (2015) Gudaa bula dyugi-dyugi = The dog and the chookOn order - State Library.

Cape Treasures: Children from Cape York share stories. Online access via SLQ.

Crombie, J. and Barr-Crombie, J. (2014) Children's Talking Book On order - State Library.

Crombie, J. and Barr-Crombie, J. (2018) Looking for Tucker .  On order - State Library.

Dixon, R. M. W. (1991) Words of our country: stories, place names and vocabulary in Yidiny, the Aboriginal language of the Cairns-Yarrabah regionG 499.15 1991

Erbacher, J. and S. (1998) Jarruka the scrub hen. JUVQ 641.391 ERB

Gordon, T. and Haviland, J. (1980) Milbi: Aboriginal tales from Queensland’s Endeavour RiverJUVQ 398.20994 GOR

Hercus, L. and Sutton, P. (1986) This is what happened: historical narratives by AboriginesJ 994.0049915 thi

Jarl, M. (2014) The legends of Moonie Jarl. Retold by Moonie Jarl (Wilf Reeves) ; illustrated by Wandi (Olga Miller). J 398.2 MOO  

Korkaktain, V. (2008) Minh Nga’an Wichan = Catching fish told & illustrated by Venita Korkaktain. JUV A823.4 KOR

Lawrie, M. (1970) Myths and legends of Torres Strait. Q 398.2099438 MYT

Lawrie, M. The Margaret Lawrie Collection of Torres Straits MaterialsTR2082 

Minjerribah Moorgumpin Elders-in-Council Aboriginal Corporation (2011) Jandai language dictionary: a dictionary of language spoken on Stradbroke and Moreton Islands based on words remembered by all Elders and recorded by interested visitors to our shores. HKT 499.153 JAN

Quinn, M. (1992) Djabugay: A Djabugay-English DictionaryP 499.15 qui

Ray, S. (2003) Dictionary of Torres Strait LanguagesQ 499.1503 RAY

Santo, W. & Nancarrow, C. (2006) Gudjal book of animals. JUV 499.15 SAN

Scragg, S. (2010) Retold: A retelling of stories and songs from Myths and Legends of the Torres Strait by Margaret Lawrie. Online access via SLQ

Sutton, P. (1995) Wik-Ngathan dictionaryQ 499.15 SUT

Terrill, A. (2002) Dharumbal: the language of Rockhampton, AustraliaJ 499.15 TER

Thancoupie (2007) Thanakupi’s guide to language and culture: a Thaynakwith dictionary. Q 305.899 THA

Walker, D. and Griffiths, L. (2011) Island treasures : Torres Strait children share stories. Collected by Dot Walker and Lynnette Griffiths for the State Library of Queensland. JUV A828.4 ISL

Watson, F. J. (1944) “Vocabularies of four representative tribes of South Eastern Queensland”; supplement to the Journal of the Royal Geographical Society of Australasia (Queensland), No. 34, Vol XLVIII. REFJ 499.15 wat

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