Teaching Customs and Celebrations
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Teaching Customs and Celebrations
Resources to help in the teaching of HSIE Stage 2 Outcomes
Curated by Kassandra Klap
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Shirin Adl Illustrator|Children's Books|Let's Celebrate-Festival Poems from Around the World

Shirin Adl Illustrator|Children's Books|Let's Celebrate-Festival Poems from Around the World | Teaching Customs and Celebrations | Scoop.it
Let's Celebrate-Festival Poems from Around the World - Poems celebrating 24 festivals from around the world. Edited by Debjani Chatterjee and Brian D'Arcy. Published by Frances Lincoln Limited
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Kassandra Klap's comment, April 17, 2013 4:55 AM
The text presents an exciting and atmospheric journey around the world through literature that encapsulates the entirety of cultural diversity through festivals and celebrations. It explores festivals around the globe through poetry developed by local writers that capture local traditions and beliefs. It is an anthology of the global community in that it is representative of religious and other community festivals and customs from all over the world. It is a powerful resource for teachers in that it addresses many of the cultures and religions you would probably find within an Australian classroom and thus would be highly relatable to children. It raises discussion surrounding different countries and their location as well as the contribution they have made to Australian culture. It supports the proper pedagogy of reflecting student’s backgrounds and community structures within their learning (State of Victoria, 2004) as they would be able to directly relate to some of the major festivals celebrated throughout the book.

In this sense, getting students to independently think about how and when they have their own celebrations supports and promotes a learning environment that is interdependent and self-motivating (State of Victoria, 2004). An idea for a lesson to follow the reading of this text would be to get students to think about making up their own festival or celebration. They would have to explain who is involved, what it’s about, why they are celebrating and when they would celebrate. Using this rubric you could model something out of the text by demonstrating what information is offered through the poems themselves and illustrations. It might be easier to work off a theme such as, their class, or the school as a community where they could develop an understanding of how beliefs and values come to be represented within a community of people. They could make up different symbols, flags, dances, or sayings that could be common to that celebration also. Developing their own poems such as the book could be incorporated into an English lesson or looking at where in the world these festivals are happening could be used for looking at mapping in Mathematics.

State of Victoria. (2004). Effective Pedagogy: Principles for Learning and Teaching P-12. Retrieved 14th April 2013 [from] http://www.eduweb.vic.gov.au/edulibrary/public/teachlearn/student/poltleadchangepedagogy.pdf
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celebrating.pdf

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Kassandra Klap's comment, April 17, 2013 5:02 AM
‘Celebrating Together’ is a booklet developed by the NSW Department of Education that focuses primarily on the unit of exploring the subset of Cultural Diversity by looking specifically at the significance of celebrations. It has resources for stages one, two and three and aims at developing cross-cultural understandings whilst providing ways in which teachers can allow students to evaluate their own understandings of Australia as a multicultural society. It focuses directly on developing expansive subject matter that would come to enhance outcome CUS2.4 (Board of Studies, 2007). The resource is very specific to the HSIE syllabus but the activities presented can relate to a number of other subject areas, for example using research to fulfill literary outcomes such as being able to interpret factual text.
Whilst it comes full of activities and great teaching resources, a great lesson idea would be to identify the different religious groups throughout the community and try and get individuals from such areas to come and speak to the class. This would be most appropriate in looking at an Indigenous perspective, as you may be able to get an elder or community leader to come in and talk specifically about the area. Maybe some children are involved within these specific groups and could then assist the class in learning about how their family interacts within that community. You could also get the children to think about the things they celebrate within their family and then get them to present to the class by using different resources such as video, picture, PowerPoint or by bringing in significant objects. As Tait Coles examines, children inevitably excel through this kind of independence, creativity of individual expression and self-reliance thus promoting a kind of ownership of identity. This would ultimately promote the diversity of the classroom and a greater acceptance of the different belief systems within the community.

Board of Studies. (2006). Human Society and Its Environment K-6 Syllabus. NSW: Board of Studies.

Coles. T. Tait Coles - @TotallyWired – Punk Learning. Retrieved 14th April 2013 [from] http://taitcoles.wordpress.com/punk-learning/
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Nyuntu Ninti: What you should know by B Randall, M Hogan

Nyuntu Ninti: What you should know by B Randall, M Hogan | Teaching Customs and Celebrations | Scoop.it
Nyuntu Ninti: What you should know: , by B Randall, M Hogan, a Trade paperback from ABC Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers
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Kassandra Klap's comment, April 17, 2013 12:43 AM
‘Nyuntu Ninti’ explores the celebration of the Aboriginal people and their way of connecting to the land as a significant aspect of community identity and customary experience. It is based on the Aboriginal concept of ‘Kanyini’, which ultimately explores the traditional customs of responsibility and the love of nature (Harper Collins, 2008). The text is an excellent resource for teachers as it explores one of the most significant customs of traditional Aboriginal life, whilst presenting a beautiful look at the landscape in which these developed. Additionally, Harper Collins (2008) developed a resource specific for teachers, which clarifies and explains the meaning of Aboriginal words to be shared within the classroom. The text can be seen as a means for sharing the traditional beliefs and values held by Aboriginal people whilst presenting a different way of understanding the notion of what a custom or celebration might mean for different communities.

The book could be integrated into a variety of different subject areas by unpacking the different notions presented throughout. A HSIE lesson for stage 2 could include reading through the book and looking more directly at how customs are embedded within the natural environment. This would allow children to compare and contrast their responsibilities and values of their own environment to traditional Aboriginal beliefs. A strong association to the connection of land could be made by using the school grounds to talk about the different customs and responsibilities expected by students within different areas and trying to connect these to the concept of ‘Kanyini’. It would be important to get children to recognise how these shape their identity, and a simple reflection on the natural and urban setting would suffice as an assessment of the recognition of CUS2.4 (Board of Studies, 2006) as being able to distinguish between different ways of life and how they impact values and beliefs. This would facilitate an understanding of their contribution to the Australian community as well as from the perspective of Indigenous Australians. Further lessons could go into mapping out their own environment and identifying practices or customs within different areas, which would also tie into a mathematics lesson.

Board of Studies. (2006). Human Society and Its Environment K-6 Syllabus. NSW: Board of Studies.

Harper Collins. (2008). Nyuntu Ninti (What You Should Know). Retrieved 14th April 2013 [from]
http://www.harpercollins.com/harperimages/ommoverride/NYUNTU_NINTI_teacher_notes.pdf
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Gallipoli: The First Day

A 3D re-enactment of the first landing of the ANZACs on Gallipoli. 

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Kassandra Klap's comment, April 17, 2013 3:57 AM
This website developed by the ABC presents an interactive look at ANZAC day, its history and a modern perspective. Specifically, it maps out when the ANZAC’s landed on Gallipoli through a 3D reenactment. It proves to be a great resource for teachers if looking at the celebration of ANZAC day, and could be used as a unit of work around the same time of year Australian’s celebrate and commemorate this historical event. Choosing to focus on a non-religious holiday is specific to sharing a tradition or background that promotes an understanding of how and where our values and beliefs have been shaped as Australians. The video details the ANZAC’s first landing on Gallipoli and is an interesting resource in interpreting and representing this event to a younger audience.
Looking at this in terms of a celebration initiates discussion into the kind of traditions Australians have and how we represent these within the community. After looking at the online source you could ask students to explain their knowledge of the day and what they usually do. You could look at what the school does to commemorate this event and why. An assessment of their understanding could be getting students to analyze the school rules or National Anthem and try to pick out the values of the ANZAC’s still evident within modern society. Asking such questions promotes the thinking about the nation as a wider community coming together on one day, to celebrate and commemorate specific values and beliefs. The site is specific to a historical retelling, in that it may clarify for children things such as why we have dawn services and the historical implication for the world at that time. A fun activity would include cooking ANZAC biscuits but also explaining why they were made specifically for the soldiers (anzacday.org.au). This could tie in with other subjects such as science or even English, through the production of a written recipe.
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Kid World Citizen | Activities that help young minds go global

Kid World Citizen | Activities that help young minds go global | Teaching Customs and Celebrations | Scoop.it
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Kassandra Klap's comment, April 17, 2013 2:07 AM
This website is a fantastic resource in looking at a global perspective in any area of the curriculum. It’s full of great information and activities to do with kids of different ages that explore the languages, foods, celebrations, crafts, animals and geography of different countries and cultures. More specifically, it looks at an array of different customs and celebrations each from a number of different cultures through the lense of global education and appreciation. It is ultimately promoting a framework for the understanding of cultural diversity by enabling young people to actively participate in a global community (Education Services Australia, 2008). It’s integration into classroom activities would ultimately widen the understanding many children would have of the global community through online exploration. As Murphy, DePasquale & McNamara (2003) note, the use of powerful technology within the school setting creates meaningful and intellectual engagement for authentic understanding to develop and in this sense, the website promotes the widening of global exchange and in turn further global interaction and contribution.
The website comes with different, pictures, descriptions, activities and videos, all promoting the exploration of different cultures for children. A teaching idea would be to look at some of the customs presented through the website and get children to mind map some of the aspects they think Australia has adopted from these cultures. Get children to then locate these on a world map and make connections with other countries. This does not have to be specific to celebrations but can focus on food, dress, or tradition that can all be found within the website. Ultimately this would aim to fulfill CUS2.3 and CUS2.4 (Board of Studies, 2006) by examining the different kinds of cultural identity that are now embedded within and make up their Australian community. The website could also be used as a resource for learning other languages as it contains a variety of songs and greetings specific to different cultures.

Board of Studies. (2006). Human Society and Its Environment K-6 Syllabus. NSW: Board of Studies.

Education Services Australia. (2008). Global Perspectives: A Framework for Global Education in Australian Schools. Victoria, Australia: Commonwealth of Australia.

Murphy, K.L., DePasquale, R., McNamara, E. (2003). Meaningful Connections: Using Technology in Primary Classrooms. Beyond the Journal: Young Children on the Web, 1-9.