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 2024 Calendar for Cultural Diversity PDF is available on this webpage and may be downloaded and printed by schools and education offices.

Download the Calendar for Cultural Diversity (PDF 29.3 MB)

Download the School Planner for Cultural Diversity (PDF 16.6 MB)

The calendar for cultural diversity 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.

  • Explore as a class what the theme for the calendar for cultural diversity calendar for 2024 "Our voices" means.
  • Discuss what this theme means to the students considering their different school, personal and community contexts.
  • Explore the languages featured in each month including related literature.
  • Investigate significant events, features and relationships within the students’ personal, school, local or global community.
  • Reflect on the ways that artists make artworks that are then interpreted and valued differently by audiences.
  • View artworks that have been made for different reasons and consider the who, where, when, why and how of these works.
  • Identify possible symbols and techniques artists use in making their artworks to convey their message, meaning or subject matter.
  • Investigate traditions, forms, materials and techniques in artworks that are suitable for portraying this subject matter.
  • Consider the various ways in which the students, as artists, could present their work visually for possible inclusion in the calendar for cultural diversity.


A different language is featured on each month of the calendar, to reflect the linguistic diversity of NSW public school students who speak more than 230 different languages. Each year twelve languages are chosen to reflect the cultural and linguistic diversity of NSW.

July’s language is Dhanggati.

For more information about Dhanggati language resources teachers may visit Muurbay Aboriginal Language and Culture Co-operative

The Macleay Valley forms the heartland of Dhanggati country, which extends banduunggakayi from mountains to (the) coast. It includes the main towns of Bellbrook, Kempsey and South West Rocks. Dhanggati language was still spoken ‘right through’ until the late 1960s, when pastoral workers and their families camped in the western end of the valley, free from managers and mission regulations about not speaking the language. Recordings that were made with those Old People in the 1960s and 1970s, along with historical documentation and the memories of today’s Elders form the basis for recent language reconstruction.

Dhanggati people worked as labourers, stockmen, and agricultural workers throughout the late 19th and early 20th centuries on the land which they had nurtured for thousands of years. This contribution to the modern economy is forgotten in many histories of the Macleay. Dunghutti people were the first mainland Aboriginal people granted Native Title, at Crescent Head, following the historic Mabo decision. The difference in spelling reflects social and linguistic evolution. Dhanggati and Burrgati are the known dialects of the same language. They share linguistic borders with Gumbaynggirr to the north, Birrbay (Gathang) south, Anaiwan west and Yugambal north-west.

Before the European invasion Aboriginal people were multilingual, speaking the languages of their neighbours. In the 1980s Aunty Rita Scott, followed by Aunty Esther Quinlin and supported by Aunty Caroline Bradshaw, began teaching language in schools. Since 2004 the Dhanggati Language Group / Ngabu Bingayi Aboriginal Corporation, in particular Uncle Bob Smith and Aunty Caroline Bradshaw, continues teaching language and culture in schools. They work with linguist Amanda Lissarrague to produce the Dhanggati Grammar and Dictionary with Dhanggati Stories and learning resources. In 2024 Guuyata Dhanggati! (Speak in Dhanggati!) Grammar Stories 1–12 will be available for language learning. This series illustrates Dhanggati language patterns with easy-to-understand language and contextual illustrations.

Macleay Valley schools currently teaching Dhanggati include Aldavilla PS, Frederickton PS, Greenhill PS, Kempsey East PS, Kempsey South PS, Kempsey West PS, South West Rocks PS, Kempsey HS and Dhalayikurr Pre-school to be joined by Smithtown PS in 2024.

For more information about Dhanggati language resources teachers may visit Muurbay Aboriginal Language and Culture Co-operative

Welcome to Dhanggati country.

Miyanggan dhanang?

How are you (all)?

Dhanggatigutun barri dhithiyn.

This is dhanggati country.

Nyinanhambu bita, nyinanhambu warru wa bukul, banduunggakayi

Our river, our plains and hills, from the mountain to the coast.

Dhanggatigutun barri dhithiyn.

This is dhanggati country.

Dhanggu barri dhithiyn.

This is my country.

Dhanang, marrungga barriya dhithiyndha!

You all, be well in this place!

Muurrbay Aboriginal Language and Culture Co-operative

Ngabu Bingayi Aboriginal Corporation Dhanggati Language Group


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 theme of the 2025 calendar for cultural diversity is "Learning together"

Submissions open in March and will close on 16 August 2024.

Each year, the calendar for cultural diversity includes an inset on the relevant lunar year, and its Australian zodiac equivalent, on the inside cover. 2025 is the Lunar Year of the Snake / Goanna. Schools are invited to submit artwork on the calendar theme or the lunar year theme.

Artwork should:

  • reflect the theme
  • link to curriculum area
  • be the work of a single student or a group of students.

Possible techniques, forms and styles may include (and are not limited to):

  • drawing, cartooning or sketching – using pencils, inks, felt pens, charcoal, pastels or crayons
  • photography and digital media – using apps, computer software, digital or other cameras for photography
  • mixed media – collage, photo montage
  • 3D – sculpture, textiles, fibre, installations using found or other objects and materials
  • painting – watercolour, oil, acrylic or gouache paints, sgraffito
  • printmaking – etching, monoprinting, linocuts, collagraph, or bas relief.

Students should consider their use of artmaking practices and qualities such as:

  • line, shape and form
  • proportion, space and perspective
  • colour – light and dark and shading
  • texture
  • repetition and patterns
  • points of interest and emphasis
  • signs and symbols and so on.

Schools may submit up to 4 entries.

Photographs should be submitted although the original artwork will need to be available for shortlisted schools.

File name of artwork should include name of school and title of artwork.

The following information should be gathered before submitting each artwork:

  • name of artist/s
  • year/s
  • title of artwork
  • name of school
  • traditional country on which school is located
  • name and email of teacher contact
  • description relating to the work on the relevant annual theme (approximately 25 – 50 words)
  • completed authority to publish form (DOCX 37 KB). For whole class or whole school artworks, a member of the school executive can complete the form on behalf of the school.

Submit an artwork by completing the calendar for cultural diversity artwork entry form. The link entry form will be posted here when submissions are open.

Submissions close 16 August 2024

For more information please contact

Digital backgrounds

Explore and download our new digital backgrounds which can be used as desktop wallpapers and/or backgrounds in virtual meetings.

Image of digital background Image of digital background
Image: Example of digital background


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


  • Teaching and learning

Business Unit:

  • Educational Standards
  • Teaching, Learning and Student Wellbeing
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