Friday, 13 April 2012

Aboriginal Adventure

This week we joined some of our friends from Home-Education Penrith for 3 days of Aboriginal culture and adventure. Firstly we visited the Australian Museum in Sydney to see Yiwarra Kuju: The Canning Stock Route. This exhibition shows many colourful pictures painted by Aboriginal Tribes people in Western Australia. Here are a few of our favourite images. 

We also coordinated our visit to coincide with an Aboriginal dance and music performance. We saw many dances, most of them featuring native Australian wildlife. 

We also had a look at some Aboriginal artefacts, and animal specimens in the museum's permanent galleries. 

Aboriginal fire making tool. 

On day 2 we set up camp at Bents Basin State Conservation Area for 2 days of hands on learning about Aboriginal life and culture. The program was kindly developed and presented by 2 of our home school mums. 

As you can see from the picture below our "tribe" was not short of water at this location, so the next priority was to make a bush shelter. 

Mums and kids at Bents Basin

Branches are stripped of leaves to make ties

Tying the poles in position

L holds the structure whilst the older boys tie the knots

Adding leaves and branches for protection against weather

With our shelter built we set about hunting for food.

To make the hunting easier we made emu callers which we painted. We also decorated our clap sticks ready for the evening celebrations.

Painting emu callers and clap sticks

Next it was time to get the fire going to cook the food.

Then the children helped prepare the meat and vegetables for the evening meal.

R learns to de-scale a fish

Kangaroo meat was cooked on hot rocks from the fire
Emu and crocodile

We enjoyed a feast of roasted yams, crocodile, emu, ostrich and chicken. The children then put on their Aboriginal face paints. 

After dinner the children enjoyed sitting around the fire listening to dream-time stories. We also did some star gazing and learnt some Aboriginal stories associated with the constellations

Fire with the addition of rainbow chemicals.

On day 3 we began with a short hike to a cave site where we had more stories from the Aboriginal dream-time.

After lunch we worked as a group to come up with our own dream-time story about Bents Basin and the things we had learnt at camp. The children will be completing their pages at home before it is bound into a book. Watch this space for more on that. 

For afternoon tea the children made damper and cooked it on sticks over the camp fire.

All in all a fantastic 3 days, so many thanks to our friends who organised it for us.


  1. great photos helen...what a great 3 days the kids had...woohoo!!!xxx

  2. You get up to some amazing stuff Hel-looks like fantastic fun. Poppy