NAIDOC Week celebrations are held across Australia to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. NAIDOC is celebrated not only in Indigenous communities, but by Australians from all walks of life. The week is a great opportunity to participate in a range of activities and to support your local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community.
In 2020, the week has been postponed from July, and will run from November 8-15. This year’s theme Always Was, Always Will Be recognises that First Nations people have occupied and cared for this continent for over 65,000 years.
Your P&C or school might be interested in running an event to celebrate NAIDOC Week. To support this, Council have brainstormed ideas and compiled some resources below.
Suggested NAIDOC Week activities and ideas for P&Cs/schools
COVID- safe ideas
Take a small group to visit a cultural site, or encourage families to go:
- Self-guided Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Heritage Trail at the ANU.
- Canberra parks and reserves are also home to and protect a range of heritage sites such as stone artefacts – some described here.
Utilise Canberra’s museums and galleries:
- National Portrait Gallery is doing a virtual tour of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander portraits in their collection during NAIDOC Week, and storytime reading with Shirley Purdie. Shirley's art is on display at the gallery until December, and you can take a look, and read associatied stories, online.
- Book into exhibitions, take a virtual tour, or look through great content on the websites of the National Museum, National Film and Sound Archive, War Memorial, National Zoo & Aquarium, National Gallery.
Explore ABC iView:
- Indigenous programs and videos
Indigenous book readings:
- Arrange a class reading of an indigenous book or podcast
- P&C Council will host a colouring-in competition for students from early childhood to senior school and special needs students, using the NAIDOC Week website’s rainbow serpent colouring in page.
- We will have prizes for each level and issue certificates to all applicants!
In school activities:
- Lunchtime NAIDOC stalls featuring jewellery making, cooking, weaving and games.
Once COVID restrictions are lifted:
- Host a film or TED talk screening. Reconciliation Australia has lots of resources including a recommended reading list, and the Reconciliation Film Club has a great selection of films and documentaries from leading Indigenous filmmakers and walks you through the process of organising a screening.
- Start a P&C book club! Reconciliation Australia have a suitable book list.
- Organise a disco featuring music from indigenous artists
- Hold a flag raising ceremony
- Work with an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander artist to produce an artwork representing the theme
- Invite Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander dancers to perform or artists to visit the school
- Host a community BBQ or picnic
- Lunchtime basket weaving lessons
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander parent and student breakfasts
- Buddy class activities (Reconciliation Australia website has great resources for these)
- Learning traditional skills and games (eg. Buroinjin)
- Traditional dances at breaktimes
- Whole school assemblies with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander guest speakers and digeridoo players
- Create an indigenous garden to grow bush tucker
- Encourage school staff to be part of an indigenous book cub
- Create rainbow serpents woven into school fences
- Stolen generation stories from local First Nations people
Hints for P&Cs
Sometimes it’s hard to know where to begin and it’s ok to start small. Consider supporting and enhancing the activities your school already has planned:
- purchase some indigenous stories for the library for impromptu reading sessions
- provide refreshments or bush tucker at school events
- Share photos of your activities with Council so we can promote these through our communication channels as inspiration to other P&Cs!