NAIDOC Week - Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up!

NAIDOC Week is a great time to talk with your family about the rich history and cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.  This year’s theme asks all Australians to join in and Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up!  to support equity for First Nation’s people. 

Exploring this year's NAIDOC theme with your child 

Have you seen this year’s prize-winning NAIDOC poster?  Ryhia Dank, a young Gudanji/Wakaja artist from the Northern Territory has created a striking poster which you can view on the NAIDOC website.  There is an option to print out a version for your child to colour in.   

Looking at the poster with your child is a great way to talk about the theme:  

  • When looking at the poster, ask your child if they can identify the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island flags?  Can they see the animals, animal tracks or objects hiding in the pattern?  Ask your child why they think the hands might be raised and clenched, do they look like strong hands? 
  • Discuss with your child a time when you had to be strong, stand up and do something that was hard - either as a child or an adult.  Was it easier if you had someone to help?  Remind your child of a time when they had to be brave and strong, who helped them? Or a time when they helped a friend?  
  • Ask your child what would they draw on a poster to show people feeling strong together and helping each other?   Provide art resources and encourage your child to draw their own poster on the theme.  

Celebrating First Nations cultures 

NAIDOC Week offers a range of events for families to share the celebration of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures.  You can find out what’s happening on the NAIDOC website.  

Sharing books written and illustrated by First Nations people helps your child learn about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and history.  When reading these stories together, encourage your child to think about the characters and how they might have felt.  This will help grow your child’s empathy and ability to relate to other people.   

Here are a few recent titles to get you started: 

  • Freedom Day, Vincent Lingiari and the Story of the Wave Hill Walk Off by Rosie Smiler and Thomas Mayor 
  • Heroes, Rebels, and Innovators – Inspiring Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People from History by Karen Wyld 
  • Somebody’s Land by Adam Goodes and Ellie Laing 
  • The First Scientists: Deadly Inventions and Innovations from Australia's First Peoples by Corey Tutt 
  • Our Home Our Heartbeat by Adam Briggs.  Watch Adam read the story online

Sharing your interest and appreciation for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures is a great way to be a positive role model and create a safe place for your child to ask questions.  Children are naturally curious about diversity and might surprise you with the questions they ask.  Talking openly about issues like fairness and respect for diversity with your child helps to build their social awareness and grow a more inclusive society for Australia. 

It is how we can all Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up! 

More learning opportunities for you and your child: 

Visit your local public library or Indigenous Knowledge Centre for books and resources on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island cultures. You can ask the library staff about local activities and celebrations for NAIDOC Week.

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