We’re Victorians: Canterbury Primary School wins cultural diversity prize

Canterbury Primary School’s Year 6 class won their category in the Cultural Diversity Week’s Primary School Short Film competition. 

The competition called on primary school students to create a film responding to the theme – ‘This is what a Victorian looks like’.  

With the help of their teachers, Canterbury Primary School’s Year 6 class produced a short film with an acrostic poem on ‘Victoria’, declaring “I’m a Victorian!”, forming the shape of the state with their bodies and holding brightly-coloured signs. 

Canterbury Primary School receive their award at Federation Square
Canterbury Primary School receive their award at Federation Square

​​The students’ film won the Year 6 category. ‘We were really excited that we got to share our work at Federation Square and the Immigration Museum,’ Year 6 student Olivia says. 

‘The winning was a bonus,’ Year 6 student Mitchell says. ‘It was fun to make the video and share our meaning with others.’  

​Diversity in the classroom 

Teacher Brendan Hitchens says making the video was part of the Year 6 Inquiry Unit called “What does a Victorian look like?” 

Canterbury Primary School's video
A still from Canterbury Primary School's award-winning video

 ‘Being involved in the film competition gave students a wider audience to share their work and learning, and it highlighted to them just how important diversity and community are,’ Brendan says. 

Year 6 teacher Zoe Coughlan says they entered the film competition to teach students about intercultural perspectives, and also ‘to celebrate the diversity within themselves and the community.’ 

The students say their favourite part about making the video was learning that their classmates have different ideas about what being a Victorian means.  

‘I like that we all agreed that there is no set definition of what a Victorian is,’ Lewis says. ‘W​e are all unique.’ 

Brendan says Canterbury Primary School celebrates diversity every day, but Cultural Diversity Week was an opportunity to really highlight it.  

​‘Victoria is one of the most culturally diverse states in the world, with people coming from over 200 countries, speaking over 260 languages and following over 150 different faiths,’ Brendan says. ‘That diversity is reflected within our school and community and something to be celebrated.’ 

As well as making a film, the students learned about the United Nations International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, Holi Day and Nowruz (Persian New Year).  

‘Students studied Census data, researched Victoria’s migrant history and interviewed relatives,’ Brendan says. ‘They became heavily invested in the project and developed real pride about being Victorian.’ 

​Cultural Diversity in the Education State 

Victoria is the most culturally diverse states in Australia, with almost half of the community having at least one parent born overseas. Every year, we showcase the talents and richness of multicultural communities in events during Cultural Diversity Week with the Victorian Multicultural Commission. 

There are many opportunities for students to learn about cultural diversity throughout the year. See events and dates at Multicultural Events and Programs.