Term 2: 13 April to 26 June
PUBLIC HOLIDAYS 2014—15
4 November 2014, Melbourne Cup
25 December 2014, Christmas Day
26 December 2014, Boxing Day
1 January 2015, New Year’s Day
26 January 2015, Australia Day
9 March 2015, Labour Day
Message from the Minister
It is with great pleasure that I present to you a copy of the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development’s Aboriginal Early Years Events Calendar and Cultural Learning Kit for 2014-15.
The Aboriginal Early Years Events Calendar and Cultural Learning Kit 2014-15 is an initiative that responds to the Victorian Early Years Learning and Development Framework (VEYLDF) outcome 1, ‘Children have a strong sense of identity’. The Aboriginal Early Years Events Calendar and Cultural Learning Kit is a practical tool that promotes Aboriginal cultural awareness in children and early childhood services. Developing learning resources that are responsive to children and their culture is key to a child’s learning and development.
Promoting respect for diversity assists children to begin to appreciate the similarities and differences between cultural groups, while children’s personal, family and cultural histories shape their learning and development. Children develop a deeper sense of identity through participating in celebrations that are culturally rich and unique.
I encourage all early childhood services to actively participate, share in and celebrate dates and events of historical and cultural significance.
Hon Wendy Lovell MLC
The Department of Education and Early Childhood Development (DEECD) would like to thank the following Organisations for their contribution and support of the Aboriginal Early Years Calendar and Cultural Learning Kit 2014–15.
Secretariat of National Aboriginal and Islander Child Care
The Secretariat of National Aboriginal and Islander Child Care (SNAICC) was formally established in 1981 and is the national non government peak body in Australia representing Aboriginal children’s services. The Secretariat of National Aboriginal and Islander Child Care promotes the rights, needs and aspirations of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and families.
Victorian Aboriginal Education Association Incorporated
The Victorian Aboriginal Education Association Incorporated is the peak body in Victoria representing education and training policy, strategy and program development at the local, state and national levels of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. VAEAI promote the provision of education and training which are culturally relevant, reinforce cultural identity and provides supportive learning environments for Koorie people.
Playgroup Victoria is the peak body in Victoria representing children and families and has been helping families discover playgroup since 1974. Playgroup Victoria is a member of playgroup Australia, a collaboration of Australian state and territory playgroup associations. Playgroup Victoria is a not for profit organisation that strives to ensure fun, learning and friendship at playgroups for all Victorian families.
Did you know?
National Aboriginal and Islander Day Observance Committee (NAIDOC) Week
National Aboriginal and Islander Day Observance Committee (NAIDOC) Week is held in the first week of July each year. NAIDOC Week is an opportunity for Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people to celebrate the rich history, unique vibrant cultures and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children ’s Day
National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day (NATSICD) is an opportunity to celebrate, highlight and promote the importance of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in the community.
International Day of the World ’s Indigenous Peoples
International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples is held on August 9 each year to promote and protect the rights of the world’s Indigenous peoples. This event also recognizes the achievements and contributions of the world’s Indigenous peoples.
Indigenous Literacy Day
Indigenous Literacy Day aims to help raise funds and awareness to improve literacy levels and the lives and opportunities of Indigenous Australians.
Black: represents the Torres Strait Islander peoples
The dhari (headdress) represents Torres Strait Islander people and the five pointed star represents the 5 major Island groups. The star also represents navigation, as a symbol of the seafaring culture of the Torres Strait.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art is the oldest living form of traditional art in the world. It plays an important role in Aboriginal culture as it is a way of connecting past with present. Many Aboriginal art forms date back as far as 60,000 years ago. This includes rock carvings, body painting and ground designs.
Native Australian Plants and Animals
Australia has one of the most diverse selections of native plants and animals. Our native animals include kangaroos, koalas, platypus, dingos, crocodiles and emus. Native plants include, wattle tree, waratah, eucalyptus gumtrees and banksias.
Australia Day is a day when the nation comes together to celebrate what’s great about Australia and being Australian. Australia Day is also an opportunity to recognise the unique status of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the first peoples of Australia. Some Aboriginal people refer to this day as Survival Day and commemorate the past and celebrate the survival of their culture.
Anniversary of the National Apology to Australia ’s Indigenous People
February 13 marks the Anniversary of the formal apology to Australia’s Indigenous Peoples. On this day in 2008, the then Prime Minister apologised to Australia’s Indigenous peoples, particularly the Stolen Generations and their families and communities, for laws, policies and mistreatment which had inflicted profound grief, suffering and loss: “For the pain, suffering and hurt of these Stolen Generations, their descendants and for their families left behind, we say sorry”.
March 21 marks a day when all Australians celebrate cultural diversity, inclusiveness, respect and the different cultures that make Australia a great place to live. Harmony day is a time to reflect on where Australia has come from, recognising the traditional owners of this land. The day is also the United Nation’s International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.
Did you know?
Clapsticks were traditionally made from timber found in the local area. They were often traded for different types of wood not found in the same area. They were used to keep rhythm in song, dance and corroboree in traditional ceremonies. They can be painted or burnt but can also be left plain.
National Sorry Day gives Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people the chance to come together and share the steps towards healing for the Stolen Generations, their families and communities who were removed from their families and communities. National Sorry Day also gives people the chance to make a practical commitment towards reconciliation. These commitments can include writing messages and signing ‘sorry books’.
National Reconciliation Week is a time to celebrate and build on the respectful relationships shared between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and other Australians. It is a time for all Australians to reflect on our shared histories, contributions and achievements.
Did you know?
Aboriginal people are a diverse group of people who are descendants of the first human inhabitants in the world. Research shows that Aboriginal people occupied Australia some 40,000 to 60,000 years ago.
Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander people are sometimes identified or referred to as;
Koori (also spelled Koorie) – Aboriginal people in Victoria and New South Wales.
Palawa – Aboriginal people in Tasmania.
Murri – Aboriginal people in Queensland.
Noongar – Aboriginal people in Western Australia.
Nunga – Aboriginal people in South Australia.
Anangu – Aboriginal people in Central Australia.
Yolngu – Aboriginal people in Northern Territory (North-east Arnhem Land).
Torres Strait Islanders are Melanesian peoples related to the Papuans of adjoining New Guinea. Torres Strait Islander people descend from 5 regions of Torres Strait Islander communities.