NAIDOC Week ‘Heal Country’ – Morning Star Make Compost
“The NAIDOC 2021 theme – Heal Country! – Calls for all of us to continue to seek greater protections for our lands, our waters, our sacred sites and our cultural heritage from exploitation, desecration, and destruction. Country that we speak about like a person, sustaining our lives in every aspect – spiritually, physically, emotionally, socially, and culturally.”
Although NAIDOC week falls in the school holidays, the Morning Star children have been engaged in learning activities over the past three weeks that gave expression to the NAIDOC “Heal Country” theme. They have had daily opportunities to honour and respect the traditional custodians of this land, and build awareness and understanding about their culture. The teaching and learning opportunities selected assisted the Kindergarten children to explore, learn about, and appreciate that they are working, living and learning on Gumbaynggirr country.
Through morning circle movement and story, the children were introduced to Piccolo the Gnome who heard the Earth sigh whilst out walking one day. Piccolo asked if he could help the Earth, and he set out making remedies to help heal the Earth. Piccolo told the Earth “I have a special remedy to help you grow healthy and strong. You will return to life and continue singing a song”.
The children engaged in many practical activities over the past three weeks to help care for country. These included mixing and applying tree paste to our fruit trees, building worm farms, and building a large compost that included the Biodynamic preparations as remedies for the Earth, just like the ones collected by Piccolo the Gnome.
We played circle games with Nunguu (Kangaroo) and Dungiir (Koala) and heard traditional Gunbaynggirr dreaming stories. We sang songs from the Torres Strait Islands and enjoyed role-playing fishing on the reef.
I would like to thank Damien for his help with compost building. I would like to extend my gratitude to my colleagues Galit and Amber for their support in bringing these rich and meaningful learning experiences to the children.