Children join in the celebrations of Victoria’s rich Aboriginal culture

​The Aboriginal flag will be flying high and proud over the Emma McLean Kindergarten and Daycare in Spotswood on 4 August when, for the first time, National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day (Children’s Day) will be recognised.

The Centre has organised a day of fun-filled activities for adults and children alike to celebrate the richness of Victoria’s Aboriginal culture and to promote cultural learning.

Everyone will be asked to join in on producing a giant Aboriginal flag with handprints in yellow, red and black, or make mandalas with natural materials and a hut in the yard will be decorated with Aboriginal images and materials. Aboriginal drama and dance sessions will be held to encourage children to think about the experience of Aboriginal communities that live in the bush. 

‘The program is a celebration of the richness of Victoria’s Aboriginal culture, and will be an extension of the work we do all year trying to incorporate Indigenous resources and perspectives into our programs both inside and outside,’ the Centre’s educational leader Jessica Johnston says.

Deepening a sens​​​e of belonging

Ms Johnston says a sense of belonging is essential to the wellbeing of all children. 

‘I see Children’s Day as a great opportunity to continue our work of valuing diversity, inclusivity and the rich culture of Australia,” she says.

‘I hope all the children in my care will continue to be inspired and learn more about what has gone on before, and how we will move forward together.

‘Children have the capacity to change everything. My job is to plant the seeds of inspiration and knowledge and to celebrate with hope in our hearts.’

A day for all Au​​stralians

The Secretariat for National Aboriginal and Islander Child Care (SNAICC) coordinates the annual Children Day. The day invites all Australians to show their support for Aboriginal children, and to learn about the crucial impact that community, culture and family have on the life of every child.

It aligns with the vision of Marrung: Aboriginal Education Plan 2016-2026. The Plan aims to ensure that Victorians celebrate Koorie culture, knowledge and experience, and services are inclusive, responsive and respectful. Every Koorie learner should feel strong in their cultural identity.  

This year’s theme, ‘Value Our Rights, Respect Our Culture, Bring Us Home’, recognises the 20th anniversary of the Bringing Them Home report, and the many benefits children experience when they are raised with strong connections to family and culture.

Learn m​ore

The educators at Emma McLean Kindergarten drew inspiration for activities from teaching resources and Aboriginal websites.

‘I’ve found professional development an important tool in giving me the confidence to try and embed Aboriginal perspectives into all our programs, for all children, every week, all year long,’ says Ms Johnston.

For more information on how to celebrate Aboriginal Children’s Day, see: Events - National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children's Day​​

More information is also available on the National Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander website

For more information on the Department's Marrung Aboriginal Education Plan, see: Marrung 

For information on Koorie Kids Shine at kindergarten: see: Koorie Kids Shine​