Share a book reading on Indigenous Literacy Day

Indigenous Literacy Day on 2 September is a celebration of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander language and literacy – coming to you this year virtually.

31 August 2020
An Aboriginal schoolgirl reads a novel.
Image: Year 3 student Jaz, from Menindee Central School, loves to get stuck into a good book. Credit: Jorden Mose.

The Indigenous Literacy Foundation (ILF) has organised events for children aged from three to 11 and for young people in secondary schools.

NSW Education’s Dart Connections already has 35,000 students registered to take part in an event beaming out from the Sydney Opera House at 2pm on Wednesday.

Children across Australia are invited to move, shake, sing, and share a book reading of ‘Yu sabi densdensbad?’ (Can you Dance?) in Kriol by Cheryl Lardy and in English by Play School’s Justine Clarke.

ILF ambassador Jessica Mauboy will sing ‘The Barramundi Song’ in two Indigenous languages, Tiwi and Mangarrayi, as well as English.

Hosted by Indigenous author and performer Gregg Dreise and NITV presenter Natalie Ahmat, this event gives younger audiences a celebratory experience of Indigenous language and literacy.

Teachers and students can register via Dart Connections or the Sydney Opera House.

For secondary students, a YouTube premiere will be live at 12:30pm and can then be viewed on-demand.

Jessica Mauboy and Archie Roach will feature in celebrations to inspire Australians about community engagement and why learning Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people’s first languages is important.

Kids and community members from the Tiwi Islands and Jilkminggan in the Northern Territory and Bidyadanga in Western Australia will share their stories about the value of language.

ILF executive director Karen Williams said Indigenous children need to visualise themselves in the stories they read to see that their “culture is cherished and their stories are celebrated by all Australians”.

The Indigenous Literacy Foundation is encouraging students to donate a gold coin on Wednesday as every $10 puts a book in the hands of a child in remote Australia.

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