Calendar for cultural diversity

The calendar for cultural diversity promotes intercultural understanding, cultural and linguistic diversity, community harmony and social inclusion across NSW public schools and their communities.

The calendar for cultural diversity (PDF 3.6MB) provides annual dates and information for commemorations, celebrations, national days, international days, religious observances and other key events of relevance to NSW public school staff, students and their families.

Through acknowledgment and celebration of these days and events, NSW public schools can lead the way to social harmony by engendering positive interactions between students, staff and community members from the range of cultural, linguistic and religious traditions of Australians.

Each year, the calendar promotes a different theme relating to cultural diversity in the Australian context. This year’s theme, 'Heritage', highlights the richness that makes us all Australians.



The following resources provide teaching and learning activities to promote intercultural understanding:


A different language is featured on each month of the calendar, to reflect the diversity of the more than 200 languages spoken in public schools across the state. The featured languages for 2017 are Arabic, Bengali, Dari, Greek, Gumbaynggir, Khmer, Malay, Mongolian, Portuguese, Russian, Swahili and Welsh.

The language featured in July is Gumbaynggirr. The Gumbaynggirr language belongs to the Aboriginal people of Gumbaynggirr Nation on the north coast region of New South Wales, from the Clarence River near Grafton in the north, west to Guyra and Ben Lomond, and south to the Nambucca River.

Ngiyambandi ngaawa jagunyarr burraabadi. Ngawaadu ngiyaanya yaam waarruwaygam ngurraay; ngiyaanya balmuunambay.

Our language comes from our country. Language gives us our identity and makes us strong.


Each year, NSW public schools are invited to submit student artwork for possible inclusion in the calendar for cultural diversity around a given theme. The artwork selected for inclusion in each calendar represents the creative talents of public school students from across the state.

The cover artwork for the 2017 calendar, entitled The Tree of Life, was created by the Year 2 Art Club at Oakhill Drive Public School.

How schools can be involved

  • Brainstorm the class for possible interpretations of the theme for the calendar for cultural diversity 2018, ‘unity in diversity’, and consider how these could be presented visually.
  • Contribute student artwork for possible inclusion in the calendar for cultural diversity 2018.
  • Explore the languages featured in each month including related literature.

The theme of the 2018 calendar for cultural diversity is ‘unity in diversity’. Schools were invited to submit student artwork on this theme. Contributions closed on Friday 11 August, 2017.

2018 is the Lunar Year of the Dog. The new Australian Chinese zodiac, developed by the Chinese precinct of the Chamber of Commerce to promote understanding of Chinese and Australian cultures, matches the dog to the dingo based on their perceived similar characteristics. Schools also submitted student artwork depicting dogs and dingos for possible inclusion in the 2018 calendar.

Each year, the calendar for cultural diversity includes an inset on the relevant lunar year, and its Australian zodiac equivalent, on the inside cover

Artwork specifications

Artwork should:

  • reflect the theme
  • relate to learning areas
  • be A3 or A2 size for reproduction purposes
  • be the work of a single student or a group of students.

Possible media includes:

  • drawing – inks, felt pens, charcoal, pastels, crayons
  • electronic – computer software, digital camera, scanner
  • mixed media – collage, photo montage
  • painting – watercolours, oils, acrylic, gouache, poster paints, sgraffito
  • photography – cameras can be conventional, polaroid, digital, disposable
  • printmaking – etching, monoprinting, linocuts.

Submitting artwork

Schools may submit up to four entries. Photographs of larger pieces (for example: murals) may be submitted. The following information should be attached to each artwork:

  • name of student/s
  • year/s
  • title of artwork
  • name of school
  • name of teacher contact
  • description relating to the work on the theme ‘unity in diversity’ (approximately 25 – 50 words).

Closing date for the 2018 calendar is 11 August, 2017 - CLOSED

Submission details for the 2019 calendar for cultural diversity will be published here shortly.

Post submissions to:
Calendar for Cultural Diversity Project
Learning and Teaching Directorate
NSW Department of Education
Level 3, 1 Oxford Street
Darlinghurst NSW 2010

Or email submissions to

For more information please contact

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