Updated: May 28
Today, I would like to acknowledge the Yuggera people as the Traditional Owners of the beautiful land I am standing on today. From the mountains to the river, I open my heart and my eyes as I walk this land, listening, learning and caring for Country. I want to extend this respect to Elders; past, present and emerging and to all First Nations peoples reading this post today. We are all remembered here.
Just so you know, this post does contain sponsored content through the use of affiliate links, my proud partnerships and my own products and resources and I want to thank each of you for continuing to use my affiliate links to support the work I do. As you know, each blog post is based on my own experiences, opinions, and what I have been taught, and does not represent all First Nations peoples or Communities. Please remember that, connecting with your local First Nations Community is always the most respectful way for you to embed First Nations content specific to your area.
As we know, this time of year is the busiest time on the calendar for First Nations events. With Sorry Day, Reconciliation Week, Mabo Day and NAIDOC Week covering May through to July, it is full on! And every school, classroom and community does it differently.
If you are feeling a little overwhelmed on where to start and need a little guidance, I have some great news for you! The outstanding team at the Healing Foundation; a not for profit organisation, developed with the aim of providing healing and support for the survivors, families and Communities affected by the Stolen Generations. Their work is truly life changing and invaluable. But, their work hasn’t finished there!
Today, I want to share the Healing Foundation’s Teacher Resource Kit; a kit containing a thorough unit of work for Kindergarten / prep / Foundation and all the way through to year 9. That’s right high school teachers, they have you covered too!
The Healing Foundation’s Stolen Generations Resource Kit for Teachers and Students has been created to educate young people about the Stolen Generations. It makes it easy for school communities to start the conversation and inform classroom discussions using facts, real examples and stories.
Why is teaching about the Stolen Generations important for your students?
Being a teacher is such a special career, it needs us to not just teach with our minds but from our hearts and our souls too, and that is what I believe, separates teaching from other professions. I've heard it said that:
'to teach is to touch a life forever'
and it doesn't matter where in Australia you teach, or how many First Nations students you have in your classroom or school, regardless...you touch a life forever. Having conversations, discussions and teaching lessons about the Stolen Generations and a truer history all year round, is a vital part of the change. You, are a vital part of the change, that we as a nation need to happen, to support our healing and our Nation's journey of reconciliation. To empower our future leaders, to lead not just with their minds but with their hearts and their souls too.
“A waterfall starts but with one drop, and look what becomes of that.”
The Power of One, Bryce Courtney.
As a teacher, you may be just one drop, but let's see what becomes of that!
This short clip made by the Healing Foundation, shares a really good insight from one parent about, how learning about the Stolen Generations at school, helps her son.
In Australia, intergenerational trauma predominantly affects the children, grandchildren and future generations of the Stolen Generations.
Intergenerational Trauma Animation © Healing Foundation
This next clip, also from the Healing Foundation, shares with you the impacts of the Stolen Generations, known as Intergenerational Trauma. This video is so beautifully done, and shares with you a deep understanding around how and why Intergenerational Trauma affects the students in your classroom, schools and communities today and how;
"we can stop the cycle of trauma and bring about positive intergenerational change"
Inside the Healing Foundation's Teacher Resource kit
A great place to start: Preparing your classroom
I know a lot of you have been asking questions around how to navigate teaching about Sorry Day and the Stolen Generations in your classrooms and the Healing Foundation’s Teacher Resource Kit, has an incredible guide for how to prepare your classroom titled; 'Teacher notes: Preparing your classroom'. In my opinion, this is a great place to start because it
gives you, as a teacher, a guide on how to; prepare lessons about the Stolen Generations, trauma in an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander context and cultural safety in the classroom.
You can find this resource at the bottom of the Healing Foundation’s Teacher Resource Kit, under the title 'Additional Resources'.
Trauma and Healing Timeline and poster resources.
I know many of you have been looking for different resources that demonstrate and explicitly outline the Stolen Generations, trauma and healing in a timeline format. The incredible team at the Healing Foundation have created a Trauma and Healing Timeline and poster free for you download and use as a teaching resource in your classroom and support you in teaching a truer history.
You can find both of these resources at the bottom of the Healing Foundation’s Teacher Resource Kit, under the 'Additional Resources' heading.
Stolen Generations Case studies
Another incredible resource that the Healing Foundation has put together, which truly do make the lesson plans (which I will talk about next) such a quality resources, are the Stolen Generations Case Studies. There are 8 in total and these case studies are such detailed recounts, given by Stolen Generations Survivors, they are just so well complied and are really easy for all ages to understand.
As a teacher, they give you access to a true account from Stolen Generations Survivors and allow you to embed these into such high quality lesson plans for both primary and high school, that you can just download and embed straight into your programs for Sorry Day , Reconciliation Week, and NAIDOC Week.
I honestly, can't praise the Healing Foundation enough for taking the incredible amount of time that it must have taken to create a resource that is so well delivered, and makes it so simple for teachers to all over Australia to embed into their teaching programs. Thank you so much!
All 8 of the case studies, can be found on the Healing Foundation’s Teacher Resource Kit under the heading 'Case Studies'.
FREE units of work for kindergarten / Prep / Foundation through to year 9
Yes, thats right I said FREE! These lesson plans have been so thoughtfully designed by the team at the Healing Foundation and give you as a teacher the foundation for embedding First Nations perspectives into your programs for Sorry Day, Reconciliation Week and NAIDOC Week in a respectful way that shares a truer history with your students.
All of the lessons have been made with your students' and their age in mind and are linked to both the the Australia Curriculum and also the Australian Cross-curriculum Priority - Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures.
Each year has four lessons included in their resource pack, which you can use for; Sorry Day, Reconciliation Week or NAIDOC Week. They can be taught all in one day or spread out over a month if you like, they are very flexible and easy for you to embed. These lessons are very detailed, they give you as a teacher a huge amount of support from linking to the Curriculum, to how to prepare your classroom and include activities such as:
Modelled reading lessons, with suggested resources and activities
Compare and contrast activities
Persuasive letter writing
Interview and picture book analysis
Diary entry writing
Writing and designing infographic
Poetry writing and performing
Critical analysis mind map
Display, reflect and share learning opportunities
Please check out the table below to see what lessons have been designed for your year and are ready for you to embed into your program.
First Nations children's picture books
If you are looking for First Nations children's picture books then don't forget to check out my books page where I have a tonne of our most adored children's books. You can also check out and filter your search in my Teacher Resource Finder to find any First Nations book or resource you need specific to year group, topics and First Nations Country.
Overall, I truly can't recommend the Healing Foundation’s Teacher Resource Kit enough! It is just so well made and supports teachers in the most practical way; to be able to deliver quality lessons such as these to our future leaders, will undoubtedly have and continue to have, a profound affect on our future and support our healing as a people and as a Nation towards reconciliation. This is a resource, that I believe, truly should be in every Australian classroom and needs to be consciously shared with beginning teachers and anyone beginning their journey of embedding First Nations perspectives into their teaching.
I really hope that today's post has given you some practical lessons and resources for Sorry Day, Reconciliation Week and NAIDOC Week and has made embedding First Nations perspectives into your daily teaching a little bit easier. If you haven't already headed over to the Healing Foundation’s Teacher Resource Kit then you can do that by clicking here to check out all of the resources they have available.
I also really encourage you to check out the Healing Foundation on instagram @healingourway and also on YouTube @thehealingfoundation , they have so many incredible resources for you to use in the classroom and to also develop and grow your own understanding of the Stolen Generations, intergenerational trauma and your role in the healing of our people and our nation's journey towards reconciliation.
Share, like and comment
If you found today's post useful, please like this post and share it with your colleagues and I would love to hear your thoughts and comments below on what you loved, about the Healing Foundation’s Teacher Resource Kit?
A massive thank you to the incredible team at the Healing Foundation for allowing me to share this outstanding resource with you and for creating and sharing all of your work with us! I am personally so grateful for your time and dedication to creating these resources for teachers and to have resources like these to share and embed. Thank you!
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Finally, I have loved sharing these resources with you today and as always... Happy embedding!