Welcome to country by Aunty Joy Murphy and Lisa Kennedy

Welcome to the traditional lands of the Wurundjeri people. We are part of this land and the land is part of us. This is where we come from.

Wominjeka Wurundjeri balluk yearmenn koondee bik.

Welcome to Country.

Welcome to country by Aunty Joy Murohy and Lisa Kennedy is a book that should be read by everyone and perhaps in every classroom. Each Aboriginal community of Australia has a different way of welcoming it’s visitors and this is still continued today.

We hear Welcome to Country in different areas and events of Australia and I am sure there are many adults and children who have no idea what it is all about. This book walks the reader through the welcoming, giving pictures to explain the meaning of the sentences and the Wurrundjeri translation.

The colorful and poignant illustrations immediately capture your attention. The landscapes and people speak to you through subtle images that encompass the words of Welcome to Country.

So how can you use Welcome to Country at home or in the classroom?

Welcome to CountryGEOGRAPHY

  • Find out about your local indigenous community and their welcome to country
  • Locate where the Wurrundjeri community is located. What significant landsacpes, towns and people live here?

INDIGENOUS SOCIETY

  • Why do we need to say welcome to country at sporting events, conferences or school meetings? What is the importance of continuing this tradition?
  • Why did the Indigenous Australians have a Welcome to Country?
  • Watch Aunty Joy in this clip doing a different Welcome to Country : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NeBWuItrpW8
  • Explore smoking ceremonies and their significance.

LITERACY

  • Look at the patterns of the front and back covers – what might these represent?
  • Traditionally, Indigenous people tell stories orally – has writing this down changed the language? Explore the difference between written stories and stories told out loud.
  • How to the images match the words on each page?
  • How are the people on the pages shown to have a relationship to eachother and the land?
  • Learn how to speak your local Indigenous language: http://splash.abc.net.au/home#!/media/2454702/learn-some-dharug-greetings

For your information

I just listened to an amazing podcast from ABC conversations. Bruce Pascoe was interviewed about his upcoming book called ‘Dark Emu’ This book delves into Indigenous life and their connection to land and community. His book tells us that the people did cultivate the land, the worked in harmonious communities and they had aquaduct systems that would supply their community with life. White history has covered up this amazing piece of history and we need to embrace this knowledge so we can become more in touch with the land, use the land wisely and look after it for our children.

Author: flickingonthebook.wordpress.com

Mother, environmentalist & teacher librarian.

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